Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce

Yes, it's true, you can make homemade cranberry sauce in an Instant Pot or programmable multicooker. And it only requires five minutes of cook time! (You will need to allow enough time for the Instant Pot to come up to pressure and for the cranberry sauce to cool and chill before serving.) This tasty cranberry sauce recipe is classic enough to satisfy the Thanksgiving traditionalists around the table, but light brown sugar and a cinnamon stick add warm fall flavors that make it a little bit different. For the perfect consistency, let the sauce reduce in the Instant Pot before allowing it to sit at room temperature. It will thicken up a bit while it sits, but it will be too watery if you don't let it reduce in the Instant Pot first. If you prefer your cranberry sauce on the tart side, reduce the amount of sugar by ¼ cup.

Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce
Photo: Photo: Greg Dupree
Prep Time:
10 mins
Cook Time:
1 hrs
Chill Time:
2 hrs
Total Time:
3 hrs 10 mins


  • 2 (10-oz.) pkg. fresh or frozen cranberries

  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar

  • 1 Tbsp. Tbsp. grated orange zest plus 1/2 cup fresh juice (from 2 oranges), plus more zest for serving

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt


  1. Place cranberries, sugar, orange zest and juice, cinnamon stick, and salt in a programmable pressure multicooker (such as Instant Pot). (Times, instructions, and settings may vary according to cooker brand or model.) Cover cooker with lid, and lock in place. Turn steam release handle to SEALING position. Select MANUAL/PRESSURE COOK setting. Select HIGH pressure for 5 minutes. (It will take 12 to 15 minutes for cooker to come up to pressure before cooking begins.)

  2. When cooking is finished, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes. Carefully turn steam release handle to VENTING position, and let steam fully escape (float valve will drop). (This will take 2 to 3 minutes.) Press CANCEL, and remove lid from cooker.

  3. Select SAUTÉ setting. Select HIGH temperature setting. Cook cranberry sauce, stirring often, until thickened and desired consistency is reached, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove and discard cinnamon stick; transfer sauce to a medium bowl. Cool 30 minutes. Cover and chill at least 2 hours or up to 3 days. Sprinkle with fresh orange zest just before serving.

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