One of my favorite ways to use cranberries is in Nantucket Cranberry Pie. Cranberries bring a layered flavor to any dish and their beautiful ruby red color complements your holiday table.
With a perfect blend of pucker and sugar, our Nantucket Pie recipe features plump cranberries and a delicious home-made crust. A must-try recipe perfect for the holiday season.
As a cranberry fanatic, I’ve modified this cranberry pie recipe until it’s reached the perfect balance of sweet and tart. In this post, we’ll dive into how to make a cranberry pie the whole family will go gaga for.
We’re sharing tips to help you get the best results with this recipe. If you don’t need the tips, scroll to the bottom for the full recipe, including a printable recipe card.
What is Nantucket Cranberry Pie?
While early Fall is all about pumpkin, November celebrates cranberries. Unlike a typical pie, this easy cranberry pie recipe works like a rustic upside-down pie.
The bottom layer is a deliciously sweetened cranberry sauce -like filling that’s simple to make. Add a few nuts and let the cranberries do the rest.
Topping off the Nantucket cranberry pie is a beautifully balanced cake-like layer that tastes divine. It features a soft layer with a crisp top and a hint of almond flavor. Yummy!
Ingredients for Nantucket Cranberry Pie
Cranberries – fresh or frozen
Pecans – give them a rough chop
Unsalted Butter – melted and cooled slightly
Eggs – lightly beaten
Turbinado sugar – gives the crust a nice crunch
How to Make Cranberry Pie
The prep time is minimal – about 10 minutes.
Start by rinsing the cranberries and picking out any stems, shriveled berries or debris. Pat them dry and place in a greased pie plate. Top with sugar.
Combine the remaining ingredients in a medium sized mixing bowl. Drop the dough by spoonfuls onto the cranberry sugar mixture. Carefully spread the topping to cover the cranberries.
That’s it! Done! Pop that pan of deliciousness in the oven to bake.
You can serve the slices plain, or fancy it up with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
When is Cranberry Season?
September through November is the prime time to stock up on cranberries. As the North American cranberry harvest rolls in, you’ll want to pick up as many bags of these delicious bog berries as you can.
That way you’ll have berries on hand when you crave Nantucket Cranberry Pie in the coming months.
One of the best things about cranberries is how easy they are to store. Simply toss the bag in the freezer and the berries will last up to 6 months. No need to wash the berries first.
Cranberries are surprisingly versatile and can be used in a variety of recipes such as cranberry crostini, cranberry bread, cranberry salsa, cranberry bliss bars, and more. I even like them in Broccoli Salad (don’t judge me until you’ve tried it)! So many cranberries, so little time.
Reasons you’ll love this recipe
- Nantucket Cranberry Pie ticks all the holiday food boxes – easy to prepare, looks pretty and tastes yummy.
- The tart cranberries and not-too-sweet topping are a nice alternative to the typical sweet holiday desserts served this time of year. I love sweets as much as the next person, but sometimes it’s nice to branch out.
- A quick recipe is like gold during the busy holiday season. And this recipe will most likely be one of the easiest dishes you’ll create. Heck, you don’t even need a mixer!
- It’s easy enough for a regular family dinner.
- Clean up is easy peasy – just a bowl and a couple spoons.
- Because this pie is made with fresh cranberries, it counts as healthy, right?! Wink, wink! Work with me here!
More recipes with cranberries
Have you had Nantucket Cranberry Pie? Do you consider it a cake or a pie? Inquiring minds want to know what you think.
NOTE: Originally posted in 2015, updated Dec. 2017, Dec. 2018 and Nov. 2021.
Nantucket Cranberry Pie
- Add cranberries, then chopped pecans to the prepared pan, and top with 1/2 cup of sugar.
- Combine flour, 3/4 cup sugar, melted butter, eggs, vanilla, almond extract and salt in a medium-size mixing bowl. Stir until just combined. The batter will be thick.
- Pour the batter over the cranberry mixture, completely covering the cranberries. If you need to spread the batter for better coverage – be gentle so you don't pull the cranberries above the batter.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean. If using optional turbinado sugar, remove from oven 5 minutes before done, sprinkle with sugar and return to oven to finish baking.
- Allow to cool slightly before cutting. May be served warm or at room temperature. Top with whipped cream or ice cream if desired.
- I realize it seems like a crazy amount of sugar, but it’s a necessity to balance the tartness of the cranberries.
- Yes, you can make this without the nuts. While I prefer it with nuts, sometimes you have to make your nut-hating people happy.
- Recipe slightly adapted from The Pioneer Woman.
Nutritional information is provided as a reference, using an online calculator. We recommend verifying the information independently for accuracy.