Essential Thanksgiving food

Thanksgiving is an opportunity to make a meal from scratch. I do every year, with the exception of one item on the table.

Ocean Spray jellied cranberry sauce. From a can.

I know, I know. I’ve tried making every cranberry relish recipe you can dream or look up and it remains uneaten. Even the dogs wouldn’t eat it (not really. Never feed your dog dark fruit, seeds or dark turkey meat.)

So, every year, without fail, I buy two cans of Ocean Spray jellied cranberry sauce.

Here’s the recipe:

1) Buy two cans Ocean Spray jellied cranberry sauce
2) Punch a hole in the bottom end of the can.
3) Use a can opener to remove the lid.
4) Shake hard once over a serving plate. Listen for the slurp and plop noises.
5) Cut into slices.


This blog post is part of a blog-off series with a group of bloggers from different professions and world views, each exploring a theme from his/her world view. This was about exploring the theme, It’s Thanksgiving, so let’s blog about food To explore how others handled the theme, check them out below. I will add links as they publish.

23 Replies to “Essential Thanksgiving food”

  1. AIEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! Not from a can! We used to do it that way when I was very young, but then my mother came across a very easy recipe for making it from fresh cranberries. Some water, some cranberries, lots of sugar, boil it, put in some lemon juice, let it sit overnight. It’s so easy it’s embarrassing, and it is absolutely the best cranberry sauce that ever was.

  2. That slurping sound is the best! For us, it’s a whole production and the last thing we do to set the table. Kinda embarrassing, but we all gather round as that jellied hunk slurp-plopped out of the can. I think sometimes, we even clap 🙂

  3. Tried that, tried it all. Everyone goes for the canned stuff. I’ve just given up and resigned myself to the fact that Ocean Spray jellied cranberry sauce is going to be next to the stuffing made from scratch, the smashed potatoes, roasted turkey and the fresh green beans. Some mountains are just not worth dying on!

  4. I LOVE the canned cranberry sauce!! I buy extra cans during the holidays just so I can have through out the year! I have had cranberry sauce made from scratch and it just doesn’t do it for me. Perfect blog post!

  5. I bought two cans for the blog post, one for the photo and one just in case anything went wrong… I have no idea where the contents of the can went that I used for the photo shoot 🙂

  6. Damn, Paul, I wasn’t going to be that harsh! Although why anyone would actually prefer that jellied [g-rated expletive, if there is such a thing!] is beyond me. In Montana and Idaho my parents did not have access to a lot in the way of fresh produce, so they used canned cranberry sauce, but always the whole, not the jellied. When they moved to Southern California in 1963, they discovered fresh cranberries and that easy, easy recipe. Wonderfully flavorful, tangy… just can’t say enough about it. The other is like jelly—bad tasting jelly!

  7. Garbage, gunk, glop, goo.. all g-rated. I think it is just a tradition, not necessarily what it tastes like. It is the only time of the year that jelly is used.

  8. Love it! Well, I don’t eat the cranberry sauce itself, but from what I hear my family say, it’s just not the same if it doesn’t come out of a can. Anything else is just WRONG.

  9. See now, that’s what happens to your soul when you start prefering the goop and the slurp from a freakin’ CAN over fresh cooked, absolutely delicious homemade cranberry sauce. Your soul goes so far away you don’t even know you ever had one!

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