Homemade Fresh Cranberry Juice

At a recent Costco excursion, I picked up a giant sized bag of cranberries.  My thought was “I *need* this giant bag to make cranberry sauce with for Thanksgiving”.   As it turns out, I only needed about 2 cups worth of this enormous monster of a bag, which to the naked eye, didn’t even make a dent in its contents.  So I made the cranberry sauce and tossed the rest of the berries back in the fridge.  I really had no idea what I was going to use them for.  One thought was to dry them, but I never can quite master the timing for drying fruit where it doesn’t turn out like a hockey puck, so I quickly discounted that thought.  Then it dawned on me….why not make cranberry juice?  I love drinking it, so why not make it?  Well here we go…let’s make it together?  It’s super easy and FAR better than the jugs at the supermarket.

Start off with 8 cups of cranberries and 8 cups of water.  Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for 25 minutes.  You should hear them popping like little red balls of popcorn.

They should all be popped and starting to break down after 25 minutes of simmering.  It’s starting to smell good in here!

Juice enough lemons to make 1/2 cup.  It took 3 small lemons for me.

And enough oranges to make another 1/2 cup.  This was 1 1/2 for me.  The remaining half was added to fresh squeezed grapefruit juice.  Mmm.  Add the 2 juices to the bottom of the bowl you’ll be using to collect the cranberry juice mixture.

Use a food mill to pass the cranberry mixture through the smallest plate.  The mixture will be a little thick, don’t worry, we’re going to run it through a sieve later.  Believe me, it’s all worth it.

Add agave nectar to the cranberry & citrus mixture to your taste.  I started with 1/2 cup and ended up with 1 cup of nectar to the 9 cups of juice.  You could also use white sugar for this.  Just taste test as you go.

Stir in the nectar until it’s all incorporated.

Pass the sweetened mixture through a fine mesh sieve.  Stir to help the draining process.  Don’t mash the pulp too hard or it will pass through and your resulting juice will be thick.  Remove the pulp to a bowl and set aside.  Repeat with the remaining juice.  Save the pulp for another use.

Refrigerate the juice and serve any way you’d like.  Cosmo anyone?  :)

Homemade Fresh Cranberry Juice

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 9 cups

Homemade Fresh Cranberry Juice


  • 8 cups fresh cranberries
  • 8 cups water
  • 1/2 - 1 cup agave nectar
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice


  1. Add the cranberries and water to a large stock pot. Bring to a boil and then turn down the heat, cover and simmer for 25 minutes.
  2. Pass the cranberry mixture through a food mill with the smallest plate. Add agave nectar to your taste. Add the 2 juices to the bowl and stir to combine.
  3. Set a fine meshed sieve over a large bowl, pass the cranberry mixture through the sieve, trying to not press the solids too much (this will result in a thicker juice). Remove solids to a bowl and repeat with remaining cranberry mixture. Save solids for another use (fruit leather perhaps). Refrigerate juice and serve.

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