Cranberry Salsa

5 from 6 votes

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Cranberry Salsa is made with fresh ingredients and has an incredible sweet and tangy flavor. This beautiful appetizer is perfect for Christmas and holiday parties.

A cracker being dipped in cranberry salsa

Cranberry Salsa

This Cranberry Salsa is another delicious recipe from my mother-in-law and one of my favorite appetizers all year round, but especially around the holidays. Fresh cranberries, jalapenos, cilantro and green onions give this salsa vibrant sweet and spicy flavor. It’s delicious on its own but we love it served over tangy cream cheese. The gorgeous green and red color make it perfect for Christmas time! Many of our holiday parties feature this delicious appetizer on the buffet table. We scoop it up with anything from tortilla chips to crackers. It’s also really good on meats, like a relish. We served it with our turkey for Thanksgiving and it was a huge hit!

A plate with a block of cream cheese and cranberry salsa on it topped with some cilantro

Health Benefits of Cranberries

Did you know cranberries can be very good for you? Here are some convincing reasons to eat cranberries all year long, and not just during the holidays:

  1. Cranberries are low in calories. Only 25 calories in half a cup!
  2. Cranberries are high in vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin K.
  3. Cranberries contain an antioxidant that prevents bacteria adhesion in the body. This is why cranberries are so well-known for preventing urinary tract infections. The same antioxidant may also promote oral health as it prevents bacteria from binding to teeth.
  4. Evidence suggests that cranberries may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by preventing platelet build-up and reducing blood pressure.
  5. Cancer research has shown that the nutrients in cranberries can help slow tumor progression, and they can positively impact other types of cancer.

Cranberries, cilantro, jalapeno, green onions, and cumin in a blender

Suggestions for this Recipe

  • Make sure to use fresh cranberries and not canned for this recipe. They’ll chop up easily in a food processor and gives the salsa a fresh, tart flavor.
  • Remove the seeds of the jalapeno before tossing in the food processor. The seeds are where the heat lives, so you’ll want to tame that down a little.
  • This recipe is sweetened with honey, which also gives it a beautiful glaze. But if it’s not sweet enough, you could add a teaspoon or so of sugar until it tastes how you like it.
  • If you are using a blender, just do small pulses so you don’t make this into a smoothie! You want the cranberries to be small but not completely blended together. This is a chunky salsa!

More Cranberry Recipes to Enjoy!

The tart flavor of cranberries complements desserts, breads, and meat. These are some of our favorite ways to use cranberries in our baking and cooking during the holidays.

Cranberry Salsa over cream cheese with tortilla chips on the side.

How to Make Cranberry Salsa

Cranberry salsa on top of a block of cream cheese

Cranberry Salsa

5 from 6 votes
Cranberry Salsa is made with fresh ingredients and has an incredible sweet and tangy flavor. This beautiful appetizer is perfect for Christmas and holiday parties.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Appetizer, Bread
Cuisine American, Mexican/Spanish
Servings 15



  • Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor.
    Cranberries, cilantro, jalapeno, green onions, and cumin in a blender
  • Pulse a few times, until ingredients are in small bits but not completely blended together. Serve over cream cheese with crackers or chips. You can also serve as a relish over meats.
    A plate with a block of cream cheese and cranberry salsa on it topped with some cilantro


Nutrition does not include cream cheese or crackers.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 26kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 1mgPotassium: 17mgFiber: 1gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 66IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 4mgIron: 1mg

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About the author

Emily Walker

Emily lives in Meridian, Idaho, with her husband, Beau, a physician assistant, and her three incredible children: a son and two daughters. Travel is one of her favorite ways to experience new cultures and cuisines, and she has a love for all things Disney.

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How many stars would you give this recipe?


  1. 5 stars
    Cranberry salsa is one of my favorite holiday snacks It is just so fresh and bright tasting. I love just a little kick of heat in mine!

  2. 5 stars
    Thanks for the inspiration to use cranberry for this recipe. I definitely don’t use It enough even at this time of year. This sounds amazing with the jalapeno in there too.

  3. 5 stars
    This cranberries salsa is such a perfect seasonal recipe! I love this use of cranberries in such a unique and delicious way. Thank you for sharing.

  4. 5 stars
    Hi Emily, thank you for sharing all these with us, the recipes, health benefits and other recipes about Cranberry. I can’t wait to give it a try and I believe my family will love it!

  5. Wondering what is the size of the bag of cranberries? Definitely making this, and if I don’t hear from you in time, I will proceed by taste alone.

  6. This is somewhat reminiscent of the raw, fresh cranberry relish my mother makes for Thanksgiving dinner: put one bag of fresh cranberries, 1 cup sugar, and one, preferably organic orange, quartered, in the bowel of a food processor, and process until evenly chopped in small pieces (you do not want it pulverized or pureed). It is another case of a wonderfully vibrant, fesh tasting salsa featuring sweet/sour cranberries. Beautiful, lasts forever, so delicious, and so good for you.

  7. This is good but I would not recommend making it in a blender. It didn’t chop up very well and I had to keep dividing it to get it evenly chopped. I would also leave some of the seeds in the pepper, needs a little more heat. Took it to a party and everyone loved it!

  8. Loved trying different salsas. This one sounded great. I may have made a LARGE mistake, I used a 4oz. can of diced jalapeños, oops! It is SO hot. To correct this I added 2 apples, 1 orange, 1 more Tablesppon lime juice and 1/4 c. more honey. It is still hot. I will let the flavors marry. My second thought is to roll out cream cheese and put a layer of salsa on top, then roll it into a spiral. So much for my short cut using a can, instead of fresh jalapeño.

  9. I am really excited about this recipe (I’m going through the archives from before I followed your all’s blog) because it’s hard to find cranberry relish/salsa and my mother-in-law has got me hooked on thin sliced french bread topped with brie and cranberry relish/salsa. It’s incredible.

  10. I’ve seen a few recipes floating around the web and recipe blogs for this kind of dip. It looks sooo yummy! But I must ask, does it have a “kicky” flavor to it, a sweet flavor, a good combination of both? I can’t handle hot things very well so I thought I better ask 🙂

    Thanks for sharing!