This Gut-Friendly Fermented Cranberry Sauce Will Ease Your Holiday Digestion Woes

Last Update: November 7, 2022

The classic Thanksgiving feast can be hard on the digestive system, but this modern take on cranberry sauce may be the solution. Instead of just acting as a tart, sweet something to accompany your turkey, this gut-friendly cranberry sauce recipe adds something extra: a much-appreciated dose of probiotics to support your digestion.

Los Angeles-based cook and herbalist Sasha Emoniee created this fermented dish as a means to balance out all those holiday indulgences that may be tough on sensitive stomachs. “I make this every year on repeat from October to December,” she says. “It’s the perfect tart, herby, antioxidant and probiotic-rich side to cut through all those delicious, warming foods you’ll find during the fall and winter holidays.” 

While you can certainly swap this in for your traditional Thanksgiving cranberry sauce recipe, Emoniee encourages you to get creative and enjoy it all season long. “I love to eat it with squash macaroni and cheese, as a side with roasted green beans, on fall crudite platters, and even on sandwiches,” she says. 

Sasha Emoniee’s Gut-Friendly Cranberry Sauce Recipe 

Yield: 4 servings
Cook time: 15-20 minutes
Ferment time: Up to 24 hours


1 10-ounce bag of fresh or frozen cranberries
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 teaspoon chopped ginger
½ tablespoon Thrive Market Organic Robust Maple Syrup
1 teaspoon salt
1 cinnamon stick or ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon powder
Juice and peels from 2 oranges
Powder from 1 probiotic capsule (like New Chapter


In a pot, place cranberries, rosemary sprigs, ginger, maple syrup, salt, and cinnamon stick. Squeeze the juice from the oranges into the pot, then add the orange peels.

Turn heat to medium-low and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, continue to cook on low and stir frequently, crushing the cranberries with your spoon. 

Cook the mixture until the excess liquid has evaporated and cranberries form a thick, compote-like consistency.

Remove orange peels, cinnamon stick, and rosemary sprigs.

Place cranberry sauce in a glass container and allow to cool. 

Once cool, add probiotic powder and stir well. Cover with an airtight lid and leave out on the counter at room temperature for up to 8 hours to culture. 

After 8 hours, taste to determine if you would like it to have a more fermented flavor (Note: fermented foods typically taste tart and acidic, with a bit of effervescence). If so, leave out for an additional 8 hours and repeat until it is to your desired ferment. 

Store in the fridge, covered, until ready to eat.

This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before changing your diet or healthcare regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

This article is related to:

Guest Recipes, Gut Health, Holiday Recipes

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Amy Roberts

Amy Roberts is Thrive Market's Senior Editorial Writer. She is based in Los Angeles via Pittsburgh, PA.

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