Ready in under 10 minutes, this fresh cranberry salsa is tart and slightly spicy in the best way possible. Serve with pita chips or slather on a sandwich!

Fresh Cranberry Salsa

We try to eat as seasonally as possible, but sometimes it gets a little tough, especially in the wintertime. We tend to allow ourselves splurges on little things, like fresh cilantro or citrus. So, we loved the thought of combining them with cranberries for a winter cranberry salsa – a hint of the warmer times to come!

Another great recipe with fresh cranberries? Go to Easy Cranberry Bread.

The inspiration behind this cranberry salsa

This cranberry salsa recipe comes to you from my dear friend Milena, who was thinking about sustainability and environmentalism years before they even entered my mind. In fact, she was formative in inspiring both Alex and I to imagine the way we eat and live today.

While she’s now studying to receive her doctorate in sustainable agriculture in Vienna, and we got the rare pleasure of a visit, and along with it, this tasty salsa! I’m not sure who she credits with the recipe, but it was a tasty starter for our weekend of delicious kitchen experiments (including Mediterranean bulgur salad and spiced roasted cauliflower – delish!).

Give it a try with some pita chips or tortilla chips, or slather it on a sandwich.

jalapeno pepper and cranberries

How to make fresh cranberry salsa

This cranberry salsa is insanely easy to make since the food processor does all the work for you! To make this homemade salsa, you’ll first want to roughly chop the red onion and jalapeño pepper. If you want a spicier salsa, leave some of the seeds in the jalapeño (and make sure to avoid touching your face after you’ve handled the pepper!).

Then, simply add the rest of the ingredients into a food processor and pulse until the cranberry salsa is combined. Personally, we like our salsa slightly chunky, but the final consistency is totally up to you!

What’s so great about this cranberry salsa recipe is that you can use either fresh or frozen cranberries in it. However, if you go the frozen cranberry route, you’ll need to let them come to room temperature before making this recipe.

How to store fresh cranberry salsa

This cranberry salsa keeps well in the fridge for about a week, and the flavor gets better the longer you let the flavors mingle. We haven’t tried freezing this salsa (it doesn’t last that long in our house!), so I can’t speak to how well that storage method would work.

cranberries in a food processor

Looking for more salsa recipes?

Outside of this cranberry salsa, here are a few more of our favorite salsa recipes:

Looking for more cranberry recipes?

And…a few more cranberry recipes for good measure!

This cranberry salsa recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

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Fresh Cranberry Salsa

  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x


Ready in under 10 minutes, this fresh cranberry salsa is tart and slightly spicy in the best way possible. Serve with pita chips or slather on a sandwich!


  • 10 ounces cranberries (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 2 jalapeño peppers (or less, depending on your spice preference)
  • 1 large lime
  • ⅓ cup honey
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro
  • Kosher salt
  • Pita chips or tortilla chips, to serve


  1. If the cranberries are frozen, bring them to room temperature.
  2. Cut the red onion into quarters. Slice the jalapeño peppers in half, remove the ribs and seeds, and chop them into a few pieces. Place the onion and peppers into the bowl of a food processor and pulse several times to chop.
  3. Add cranberries, juice from 1 lime, ⅓ cup honey, and a pinch of kosher salt. Tear off the leaves of half of a large bunch of cilantro and add them to the bowl. Pulse several times to combine. Taste and adjust flavors as necessary. Serve with crackers, chips, pita, or bread.
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Mixed
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: cranberry salsa

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you'll want to make again and again.

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  1. I wish I could grab one of those chips in the picture and dip in to give this a try… you know, just to be sure I like it! It’s funny that changing up a recipe unexpectedly sometimes makes unseasoned tasters wary, but I have a feeling that in this case, I might just be overwhelmed by the suprise of how much I really do like it. Thanks for continuing to pass on the innovation!

  2. I have tons of cranberries just sitting in my fridge and what a great way to use them up. I love the raspberry and green in the first photo as those are my two favorite colors.

  3. To add to the perks of this recipe: there is raw honey along with the raw cranberries, and I can’t think of any recipe with actual raw, fresh cranberries and no sugar to boot… HEALTHY! We had an awesome time guys, thanks so much!

  4. We make a salsa just like this every year for the holidays, always a HUGE hit. Almost exactly the same recipe, except we use a whole bunch of cilantro and sometimes use 1/2 c of raw turbinado sugar for crunch… And keep it a little choppier in food processor so you can see the small chunks of red and green. We serve it ladled over a block of cream cheese – which compliments it perfectly – with black pepper crackers. Anyhow, I heartily recommend this, either version, as a huge hit. Fun blog, lots of inspiring recipes, thanks!

  5. Just made this, and it’s a huge hit with the whole family, pre-teen kids and husband included! Will definitely be in the Thanksgiving rotation this year. Thank you!

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