Skip to Content

What to Do With Leftover Cranberry Sauce: Best 11 Tasty Ideas🍴

What to Do With Leftover Cranberry Sauce: Best 11 Tasty Ideas🍴

Are you looking for what to do with leftover cranberry sauce? We’ve rounded up 11 of our favorite leftover cranberry sauce recipes that you can make at home. 
Thanksgiving reminds us of so many things: turkeys, stuffing, and cranberry sauce.

You might have made too much of the cranberry sauce, and now you have some leftovers.

One easy option is to throw them, but it would be a waste.

We have a better idea.

Use them in some of your favorite dishes!

It might be surprising, but the cranberry sauce makes an interesting topping for savory foods and meats.

And as you can see from this article, you can use it in a lot of different ways when cooking.

You can go the standard route and serve your guests some Leftover Cranberry Sauce Bars with leftover cranberry sauce.

Or take things up a notch and prepare Leftover Cranberry Sauce Mini Cheesecake for your kids.

These ideas are already good enough, but wait until you see #11.

This dish would give a whole new meaning to your usual meals.


Of course, you are.

Here are 11 great ways to use up leftover cranberry sauce.

A close-up photo of a rustic bowl brimming with apple crisp, its golden-brown topping glistening with melted butter and a dollop of cranberry sauce adding a vibrant splash of color.

1. Cranberry Sauce Muffins With Oat Streusel

Muffins are flexible.

You can put anything from your fridge in it, and it will still taste heavenly.

Use your leftover cranberry sauce to make this even more filling.

Whether as a simple breakfast or a quick snack, this will earn you tens across the board.

The texture and the nutty taste of oats will complement the tart and sweet taste of the cranberry sauce.

Nothing speaks more delightfully done than moist and chewy muffins with cranberry sauce in them!

2. Leftover Cranberry Sauce Bars

Dessert bars are always an option for many people because it’s simple and easy to make.

Plus, you can make a delicious dessert bar with your leftover cranberry sauce in less than an hour!

You can even make bigger batches and feed them to your kids whenever they feel hungry for a snack.

These are light and tasty, enough for them before the next big meal.

You can also serve these as desserts to your guests, and they won’t bat an eye.

3. Instant Pot Cranberry Meatballs

Who says you can only have sweet and indulgent cranberry sauce on desserts?

Of course, you can use it on virtually anything – even in meals!

Try it with your meatballs, and they’ll never taste the same again! 

We love these Instant Pot Cranberry Meatballs because they are easy to make and delicious.

But instead of an Instant Pot, you can also use an oven or slow cooker.

Serve with mashed potatoes, and you’re done for the day!

Your kids won’t notice the difference, and all they’re focused on is finishing these bad boys and getting their seconds.

Only if there is anything left in the pot.

That’s how good this dish tastes!

4. Cranberry Coffee Cake

What to do with leftover cranberry sauce?

Enter Cranberry Coffee Cake!

Whether serving it for breakfast or dessert, it’s a cozy way to use up your leftover cranberry sauce.

It’s the perfect accompaniment to morning (or afternoon) coffee.

The flavors of cranberry and orange go perfectly with cinnamon.

You can serve it chilled, just like the sauce!

It’s delicious, rich, and satisfying.

The tart cranberries add a pleasing tang to a deliciously sweet vanilla base.

And the bitter taste of coffee balances out the sweetness of the cranberry sauce in this warm treat.

You might have to bake it, but it’s all worth it.

This also pairs well with your usual black coffee or Earl Gray tea.

Feel like royalty while eating this coffee cake with your tea-time partners!

5. Leftover Cranberry Sauce Parfait

Parfaits are always welcomed in any event and are easy to eat.

They’re filling yet light and airy yet creamy at the same time, thanks to the cream cheese and yogurt combo.

Plus, they’ll never feel like a heavy dessert after a huge meal!

This is the perfect dessert you could serve to your family and friends over the holidays or even when you just have an intimate family dinner.

A quick tip: Always serve them cold!

Put them in small cups for easy serving and hand them out to your guests after the meal.

6. Mini Cranberry Sauce Cobblers

Cobblers are a beautiful, delicious dessert, but they can require time and energy.

You have to mix up an eggy dough and then wait for the oven to do its magic.

But if you want fresh cranberry sauce and don’t want to put in the work, you could make mini cobblers instead.

These babies are baked inside individual ramekins.

They’re great for one or two people, and since they’re so cutely portioned, you’ll never have to worry about overindulging.

Plus, it is an easy-to-make dish.

With it, you’ve got yourself a cozy breakfast or dessert that will warm you up on cool winter nights.

Try serving them chilled.

And while you’re at it, you can add a rich vanilla ice cream scoop for an extra-rich touch!

Cobblers are classic Southern treats, and they won’t know you’re using leftover cranberry sauce from last night’s dinner.

All they want to know from you is how you made this so good.

7. Slow Cooker Cranberry Chicken

Don’t look twice – you’re reading it right.

Use whatever leftover cranberry sauce you have in creating this satisfying and hearty dish.

With the slow cooker, get ready to munch on some tender, fall-off-the-bone chicken frolicking with the gooey cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving.

Cranberry sauce is a holiday staple, but it’s versatile enough to go well with savory dishes.

For example, this slow-cooker cranberry chicken recipe looks fantastic, and it couldn’t be any easier to make!

You’ll find the chicken so tender that it will absorb the delicious savory-sweet goodness of the cranberry sauce like a sponge.

Plus, this meal is ideal for those who want to enjoy cranberry sauce but don’t want to use it just for desserts and pastries.

Serve with rice or mashed potatoes for a complete meal, and you’ll have something your whole family will love!

And if you don’t have a traditional slow cooker at home, you can use your Instant Pot.

You can also leave this cooking in your Instant Pot and go to work.

After a long day at work, come home to a freshly-cooked chicken meal ready whenever you want it.

8. Leftover Cranberry Sauce Mini Cheesecake

How can you use cranberry sauce in a cheesecake?

As you would in any other fruit!

The base of cheesecakes tends to have either a graham cracker or cookie crust.

Then there’s the filling, which is mostly cream cheese.

You could also add sliced dried fruit or chopped nuts to the crust if you want extra flavors.

And cranberry-topped cheesecake will be warm and gooey but still have that subtle sharpness from the cheese’s tanginess.

This works well with sweeter elements like fruits and nuts and is a luscious dessert to end your meal.

9. Leftover Cranberry Sauce & Apple Crisp

Perhaps the best part of this leftover cranberry sauce recipe is that it’s super easy to make.

Simply dump the apple crisp and sauce together in a pan, and voila!

You’re done!

The apples provide a sweet but satisfying crunch, while the cranberry sauce adds just the right amount of fall flavor.

It’s so delicious that you’ll have a hard time resisting even if no leftovers are lying around!

Plus, this leftover cranberry sauce dish can be served either chilled or warm.

It is simply perfect for feeding large groups.

We’re sure you’ll like it!

10. Chocolate Cranberry Sauce Cookies

These cookies are a fun twist on chocolate chip cookies.

They’re a great way to use up leftover cranberry sauce.

Also, who hates chocolate?

Everyone loves chocolate, and they’ll love it more with this recipe.

Cranberry sauce might seem like an unlikely addition to your cookie batter.

But it adds sweetness and gooeyness to your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe.

These would also be perfect for kids who love chocolate chip cookies but get tired of the same old thing every time.

You can even add some of the leftover cranberry sauce into the frosting.

The only thing these tasty treats are missing is a glass of milk!

11. Pulled Pork Sandwiches With Leftover Cranberry Sauce

Okay, maybe we broke the rules here.

But this is more interesting than talking about how to store leftover cranberry sauce (even if we think that’s a good thing to write about, too).

Trust us; this is going to be a hit.

One of the best ways to use leftover cranberry sauce is to make pulled pork sandwiches, and they’re easy to make.

The combination of the tenderness of the pulled pork with the tasty leftover cranberry sauce mixture is simply heavenly.

You can easily serve it as a full meal with a side of fries or just a snack.

Jut beware: It can get messy!

And can we complain about the mess? Sure.

But it is too tasty to resist anyway.

The bottom line

So there you have it: some of the most exciting and fun ways to use your leftover cranberry sauce.

We know you didn’t expect some of those recipes to appear in this article.

But you can surprise your loved ones at the dining table with these incredible dishes too!

Watch as their jaws drop on the floor when they taste these sinfully delicious dishes.

Looking for more cranberry food options, we’ve compiled lists of 17 Kickin’ Cranberry Appetizers17 Cranberry Desserts19 Can’t-Miss Cranberry Recipes, and 11 Creative Cranberry Sauces, and 13 Eye-Popping Cranberry Cocktails that you should definitely check out.

What to Do With Leftover Cranberry Sauce🍴

What to Do With Leftover Cranberry Sauce🍴

Here are 11 easy, great ways to use up leftover cranberry sauce!


  • Cranberry Sauce Muffins With Oat Streusel
  • Leftover Cranberry Sauce Bars
  • Instant Pot Cranberry Meatballs
  • Cranberry Coffee Cake
  • Leftover Cranberry Sauce Parfait
  • Mini Cranberry Sauce Cobblers
  • Slow Cooker Cranberry Chicken
  • Leftover Cranberry Sauce Mini Cheesecake
  • Leftover Cranberry Sauce & Apple Crisp
  • Chocolate Cranberry Sauce Cookies
  • Pulled Pork Sandwiches With Leftover Cranberry Sauce


  1. Have a look at our list of What to Do With Leftover Cranberry Sauce.
  2. Choose the dish you want to recreate.
  3. Start cooking your newly found recipe!
  4. Share your insights on our Facebook page!

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

A mouthwatering close-up of a juicy chicken breast enveloped in a glistening cranberry glaze, nestled in a rustic cast iron skillet.

Skip to Recipe