Fresh Cranberry Apple Relish

November 15, 2012Katie

Cranberry Relish. Cranberry Apple Relish. My grown-up taste buds are just beginning to appreciate this Thanksgiving side dish I confess. As a child I hated it, as a grown up I tolerated it. Now, I have to admit, I am beginning to like it.

My family all loves a recipe for Cranberry Orange Relish at a certain German restaurant in Frankenmuth Michigan called Bavarian Inn. Known for their famous light and crispy fried chicken dinners served family style, this bowl of scarlet goodness comes out and my cousins all grab for it.  My mom sent me the clipping of this recipe published in their local newspaper. I actually like this recipe…

I like it a lot.  Thanks Mom!

The recipe is super simple. First and foremost, you have to put a one pound bag of fresh cranberries in the freezer until they are rock hard.

Do this the night before or at least let them set for four hours minimum. This keeps the cranberries from getting mushy when you chop them.

Now you’ll need one pound or about 3 medium size apples.   Zehnders uses Northern Spy apples.

I don’t have access to these so I just used some Granny Smith’s I had on hand..

After you cut up your apples, add one half of them into your food processor bowl fitted with the chopping blade.  Also add half of your frozen cranberries.

Put the lid on and pulse them until they are small chunks, about 1/4 inch in size.

It’s going to make quite a racket from the frozen cranberries so don’t do this with a baby sleeping in the next room.

Aren’t you glad I am so caring about your well being?

Dump that batch into a mixing bowl and do the second half of your cranberries and apples the same way.  Add them into the bowl with your other batch.

Then take a deep breath and pour in two whole cups of sugar.

Take a large spoon or spatula and stir it all around really well.


Once you have that mixed pretty well, take 2 oranges and cut off the end tips. Slice them in half and then cut them into 1/4 inch pieces about the size of the cranberries and apples. YES, you DO keep the peel on…trust me.

Then add your oranges in.

Carefully stir in your oranges.

And that’s it. Let it set for at least an hour to let the cranberries thaw.  This can be made ahead and frozen also!

Fresh Cranberry Apple Relish
Prep time
Total time
recipe courtesy of Bavarian Inn
Recipe type: salad
Cuisine: American
Serves: 10
  • 3 medium sized apples like Northern Spy, or Granny Smith
  • 1 lb. bag fresh cranberries
  • 2 naval oranges
  • 2 c. sugar
  1. Freeze cranberries 4 hours or overnight.
  2. Core apples but leave peel on.
  3. Place half of each in food processor and pulse into ¼ inch pieces.
  4. Empty into bowl. Repeat with other half. Add into bowl. Add sugar and mix thoroughly.
  5. Leaving peel on oranges, chop off ends.
  6. Chop oranges with peel on into ¼ pieces. Mix carefully into cranberries.
  7. Let set one hour.


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