Cranberry sauce with port & star anise

Cranberry sauce with port & star anise

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(13 ratings)

Prep: 5 mins - 10 mins Cook: 20 mins


Serves 10
Star anise gives this classic sauce a really Christmassy flavour, and a contemporary update

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
  • Easily doubled

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal51
  • fat0g
  • saturates0g
  • carbs9g
  • sugars6g
  • fibre1g
  • protein0g
  • salt0g
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  • 250g fresh or frozen cranberry


    A tart, ruby-red coloured berry which grows wild on shrubs throughout northern Europe and North…

  • grated zest of 1 orange and the juice of 2 oranges



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • 2 tbsp redcurrant jelly



    These shiny little berries grow low on bushes, hanging from the branches like rows of miniature…

  • 150ml/¼ pint port
  • 1 star anise
    Star anise

    Star anise

    star an-eese

    Star anise is one of the central spices in Chinese cooking. It has a strong anise flavour, with…

  • 2 tbsp golden caster sugar, or more to taste


  1. Tip the cranberries into a saucepan, grate in the orange zest then squeeze in the juice. Add the redcurrant jelly, port and star anise and slowly bring to the simmer.

  2. Cook gently over a low heat for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until all the cranberries have burst and the sauce thickens and looks glossy. You want to end up with a saucy texture rather than a jammy one – you will find fresh cranberries thicken the sauce more readily whereas the frozen cranberries will take a little longer.

  3. Stir in the sugar and taste. Chef Tony Tobin likes the sauce to have enough tartness to make you suck in your cheeks, but add more sugar if you prefer. Cool and then fish out the star anise. The sauce will keep in the fridge in a covered container for 1 week or for 2 months in the freezer.

  4. To serve, take out of the fridge an hour or so before the meal so that it returns to room temperature, then spoon into a serving dish.

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Comments, questions and tips

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26th Nov, 2019
I've made this for the last three years and bottle it in small jars like jam and store it in the fridge. It lasts for months - unless I give it away as gifts. It is delicious with duck, pork or poultry of course, and also with cheese. Highly recommended.
5th Jan, 2019
Most delish and enjoyed by all. We did not add any sugar and the tartness was fab.
13th Dec, 2017
My sauce is never going to thicken with the amount of liquid I added in the recipe, so I've drawn off some of the excess. Any ideas what I can do with this mix of cranberry and redcurrant flavoured port and orange juice mix? I haven't added sugar yet.
c27858's picture
2nd Dec, 2014
Just making this now. Will freeze for Christmas. I like the idea of a tart cranberry sauce instead of the jammy stuff that comes in jars.
26th Nov, 2012
Super recipe! I haven't added extra sugar. I love the tartness. I'm freezing it ready for Christmas.
31st Dec, 2011
fabulous tasting and so easy to make
23rd Dec, 2011
Fab! a complete doddle to make and makes your house smell really christmassy too (potpourri and cooking... what's not to like?) - I've made this for family and sold it at my daughters' Christmas Fair - everyone loves it, a real winner every time.
16th Dec, 2011
This recipe is great, very easy to make and absolutely delicious, it is very very tart though so i added more sugar as suggested. This is going to be an annual favourite , Thank You.
3rd Jan, 2011
Wow! This has to be the easiest yet most tasty Cranberry Sauce ever. Will definitely use this recipe from now on.
23rd Dec, 2010
Just made this ready for Christmas day, So easy to make and tastes delicious.


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