Cranberry Recipes with a Twist for Thanksgiving Dinner


By: Kate Bowler,

As the holiday season starts off, I love dusting off the entertaining skills and brainstorming new ways to celebrate with family, food and drinks! When I’m coming up with new recipe ideas, I always like to start with in-season ingredients. Around Thanksgiving and into the Christmas season, there is nothing tastier (and local to my area!) than using cranberries in recipes. I’ve found countless ways to add them into my entertaining mix in the past and continue to find new ideas for incorporating them into drinks, appetizers and décor.


This holiday season, I thought it would be fun to try two new cranberry-driven concepts that are perfect for entertaining. A cranberry-ginger punch cocktail to serve to my guests, paired with a cranberry-glazed baked brie filled with juicy berries and nuts.


To make the punch, I muddled cranberries, oranges, and a bit of rosemary and sugar together and combined it with a dash of orange juice, some ginger beer and vodka over ice. The sweet citrus of the oranges, tartness of the cranberries and bite of the ginger beer are a tasty combination for a holiday-flavored punch. I would love to pour all of the ingredients in a giant punch bowl, but really, who owns a punch bowl anymore? I’m all for cutting down on serving pieces that collect dust in my pantry, and instead of approaching the punch with a more modern serving approach. I make one batch and pre-pour it into Chinet® Cut Crystal® cups so that guests can grab the cocktails off the bar. It looks festive with the drinks garnished on display! You can make a second batch in a pitcher and leave it out for refills when guests are ready for another pour.


To pair with the cranberry-flavored cocktail, I made a complimentary snack – a spin on a classic holiday appetizer: Baked Brie. I combined cranberries, brown sugar and a bit of the orange zest (to pull in the citrus flavor of the cocktail) in a saucepan to create a topping for the baked brie. Wrapped in pastry dough and baked, I topped the brie with the cranberry mixture and some chopped pecans for more flavor and texture. The result is that warm, gooey cheese that I love to slice into at a holiday party. I hate cleaning up that amazing melted cheese off of plates though at the end of an event, so I serve it on Chinet Cut Crystal plates. It looks polished on the table and saves me the headache of scraping cheese off my serving dishes after everyone has gone home for the night – just pop it in the recycling bin instead! You can even use these plates as a buffer on top of a charger that isn’t normally safe for food, like the one I used here – a slice of a tree stump for a rustic, natural look.

For both the cocktail and the baked brie, I added a few rosemary sprigs for garnishes, which is one of my favorite holiday season tricks. They smell delicious and have that pine-look that feels right on point with my holiday decorations. Get the recipes for both dishes below, and tell us what’s on your holiday menu this year on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter using #MyChinetParty!


Cranberry Baked Brie

  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tsp of orange zest
  • 1 Wheel of brie cheese (6 to 8 oz.)
  •  Frozen puff pastry dough, thawed
  • 1 egg, beaten for egg wash
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a small saucepan, combine cranberries, brown sugar and orange zest.
  3. Heat for 5-7 minutes until combined and cranberries are softened and warmed through.
  4. Roll out thawed puff pastry dough and cut into a 10″ circle; place wheel of brie into the center of the pastry dough.
  5. Working in a circular fashion, begin to wrap and fold the pastry dough around the brie, leaving some room at the top for the cranberry mixture to show.
  6. Brush the dough lightly with about a tablespoon of the beaten egg and bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and top with the cranberry mixture; bake for an additional 5 minutes until crust is golden brown.
  8. Let the baked brie rest for 5-10 minutes before cutting, and serve with crackers or toasts.


Cranberry Ginger Punch

  • ¾ cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 orange, cut into small wedges
  • 1 Tbsp of white sugar
  • 3 Rosemary sprigs, plus more for garnish
  • 1½ cup of orange juice
  • ½ cup of vodka
  • 4 cups of ginger beer
  • Ice
  1. Muddle cranberries, oranges, sugar and rosemary sprigs in a pitcher.
  2. Fill pitcher with ice and top with orange juice, vodka and ginger beer.
  3. Stir to combine and serve with cranberry, orange and rosemary garnishes.

 Serving Size – 6 drinks


For more ideas and recipes from Kate, check out her blog, Domestikated Life, and these posts on

Kate Bowler is the author of popular Boston-based lifestyle blog, Domestikated Life, where she covers topics such as festive entertaining tips, easy and fun recipes, and seasonal DIY projects.