Texas Holiday Treats: Spicy Cranberry Salad
Nothing says holidays like a bowl of glowing red cranberry salad, and Texas Pepper Jelly’s recipe will make the best cranberry salad you’ve ever experienced, hands-down.
Put this cranberry salad on your holiday table to add to the season of cheer! Serve it in a really nice crystal bowl, ceramic dish, or pull out the family heirloom bowl for this salad. No matter what you put it in this sidedish serves up great and complements the rest of the meal.
We like to serve it in a festive holiday bowl celebrating the Christmas or Hanukkah season. Even in Texas, we love a holiday dish with snowflakes because snowflakes are shiny like the salad.
What is cranberry salad?
Well, it isn’t cranberry sauce. It has a tangy taste and like a great salad, it has a good crunch. The crunch comes from the nuts and pineapple.
Don’t confuse this salad recipe with cranberry sauce, because they are not the same thing. Cranberry sauce is a jelly-like sidedish strictly made from cranberries and a little sugar. The sauce doesn’t include the goodies that are in our spicy cranberry salad, such as our Rib Candy™, pecans, maple syrup, and pineapple. Yum!
It’s making us hungry for Thanksgiving just typing this out!
How to make TPJ’s Spicy Cranberry Salad?
Ingredients you’ll need:
- 1 12-ounce package of fresh cranberries (frozen cranberries will work)
- 1/4 cup Texas Pepper Jelly’s Apple Cranberry Rib Candy
- 1 tart apple, peeled and finely chopped
- 1/2 cup pecan pieces
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tbsp orange juice
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp finely grated orange/lemon peel (either or both enough to equal 1 tbsp)
- 1/2 pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup finely shredded pineapple
How to put this recipe together:
Put all ingredients except the pecans into a medium saucepan and mix thoroughly. Stirring continuously (don’t leave them!) until the mixture comes to a rolling boil, then turn the heat down and continue stirring for about ten more minutes or until the mixture starts to thicken. The cranberries will have begun to soften and many of them will be “popping.” That’s good; you want them to pop!
Remove from heat and add the pecans. Pour into a pretty bowl, cover, and refrigerate until time to set the table. We suggest giving it at least 4 hours to get a good chill throughout the entire dish.
This cranberry salad is beautiful as well as delicious.
Some people prefer their cranberries to be chopped up fine; go ahead and throw them in your blender if you want, but we like ours mostly whole and round with about half of them “popped in two.”
We already said it, but we are saying it again, “Delicious”. Absolutely delicious. In fact, you might want to consider doubling this recipe so you’ll have some for the next day but don’t count on that. However much you make, you and your guests will eat up on day one.
Some people hide a little. And since cranberry salad tends to be even better the next day, there won’t BE a next day for it.
We do what we gotta do.
IF…and that’s a big if … you have leftovers, you can turn it into a turkey or chicken cranberry salad sandwich the next day.
How to make chicken cranberry salad?
We like to add the cranberry salad to some pre-cooked chicken or even some of the leftover turkey from Thanksgiving!
Simply chop up the poultry you have on hand and put it in a small bowl. Add some of the cranberry mixture to it. Stir it up until all the poultry is covered with some salad. You are welcome to serve it just like that on some bread. Pita bread is a good option.
We like to take ours a step further. We add a little chopped celery (about 1 stalk diced), and additional chopped pecans to add some fresh crunch to our chicken. Stir all of the ingredients together until combined.
Put the chicken cranberry mixture on a fresh hoagie roll with some baby spinach and you have a sandwich fit for a king.
What can I do with cranberries?
Maybe you have some leftover cranberries from the bag you purchased for this recipe? Don’t worry we have other recipes and other ways for you to use them up. If you really like cranberries, we have ways for you to incorporate more of our cranberry products into your everyday meals.
Spicy Cranberry Salad Recipe
- Medium pot
- Wooden spoon
- Food processor or blender
- Chef knife
- Cutting board
- Medium mixing bowl
- 12 oz fresh cranberries frozen cranberries will work, too
- ¼ cup TexasPepper Jelly Apple Cranberry Rib Candy
- 1 tart apple Pink lady is a good option
- ½ cup pecan pieces
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 tbsp orange juice
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp orange peel or lemon peel finely grated (either or use both enough to equal 1 tbsp)
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup pineapple finely shredded
- Put all ingredients except the pecans into a medium saucepan and mix thoroughly.
- Stir continuously (don't leave them!) until the mixture comes to a rolling boil.
- Turn the heat down and continue stirring for about ten more minutes or until the mixture starts to thicken.
- The cranberries will have begun to soften and many of them will be "popping." That's good; you want them to pop!
- Remove from heat and stir in the pecans.
- Pour into a serving bowl, cover, and refrigerate until time to set out for guests.
- We suggest giving it at least 4 hours to get a good chill throughout the entire dish.
Note about cranberry consistency:
- Some people prefer their cranberries to be chopped up fine; go ahead and throw them in your food processor or blender if you want a finer consistency.