Cranberry-fig chutney

Cranberry-fig chutney

What’s a Thanksgiving feast without a deliciously tart cranberry sauce?

Here’s a modern remix of the perennial Thanksgiving favorite. Spiked with ginger, cardamom and a touch of chili pepper, this cranberry chutney is a bold and exotic take on the classic cranberry sauce. Dried figs and a dash of Cointreau add to the chutney’s lusciousness.


Cranberry-fig chutney

makes 3 cups
active time: 30 min

For the figs

  1. 4 oz (115 g) dried California or Turkish figs (8 medium) – cut in 1/4″ pieces
  2. 2 tablespoons Cointreau (Grand Marnier and Kirsch are good substitutes)
  3. 2 tablespoons orange juice

For the chutney

  1. 1 1/4 cups apple or grape juice
  2. 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  3. 1/2 cup organic sugar
  4. 2 cinnamon sticks
  5. 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger (use a microplane grater)
  6. 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  7. 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon dried chili pepper flakes to taste
  8. 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  9. 12 oz (340 g) fresh cranberries

  1. Step 1: Place the figs, Cointreau and orange juice in a shallow bowl. Stir well and let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes.
  2. Step 2: Meanwhile, heat a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over high heat. Add the apple juice, lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon sticks, ginger, cardamom, chili pepper flakes, and salt. Bring to a boil. Once the sugar has dissolved, reduce heat to medium-high and add the cranberries. Stir well and fast-simmer for 6 to 7 minutes until the cranberries have fallen apart and the juices thickened. With a wooden spoon, crush the cranberries on the side of the pan until mixture is chunky. Turn off the heat, add the fig mixture and stir. Cover and let stand for 15 minutes. Transfer to a bowl to cool to room temperature. Discard cinnamon sticks and serve.
  3. Cook’s note: Refrigerate up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Cranberry-fig chutney

chutney, figs, cranberries


  1. Martin Tidswell

    I have used figs from my tree that have been frozen. I cooked my figs and added some pectin and canned the results. Wonderful is all I can say. Makes the old tinned cranberry sauce taste a bit bland. I also use it like jam with peanut butter. Makes a really tasty PB&J sandwich with just a hint of a kick. Yum.

    • Viviane Bauquet Farre

      Thank you for your note, Martin. I am delighted you enjoyed this chutney and found so many creative ways to use it (homegrown figs to boot!). Here’s wishing you and yours a most delicious Thanksgiving!

  2. Audrey Cooling

    can I use fresh figs I have a glut of large juicy black figs

    • Viviane Bauquet Farre

      Hi Audrey! Yes, you can use fresh figs for this recipe. Follow the recipe exactly, but don’t add the figs to the cranberry chutney until it has cooled to room temperature. You don’t want the figs to cook, not even slightly. Enjoy your fresh figs… what a treat!

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  5. I’m about to make this….sounds so delicious. Love the idea of the bit of pepper flakes. Should go well with the sort of Mexican slant I’m putting on the standby dishes this year.

  6. I love the idea of making the sauce with figs. Brilliant. Happy Thanksgiving to you both!

  7. I’m in charge of the cranberry sauce this year… you’ve given me some great ideas!

  8. I grew up in Middleboro, Ma. ….cranberry country…. I have had cranberries every which way but never with figs! Can not wait to try this…. on my way to the store for figs! Love your newsletter!

    • Thank you for your wonderful words Carol! How very lucky for you to have grown up in cranberry county… Cranberries are such beautiful plants. Do let me know how the chutney turned out! Happy Thanksgiving.

  9. Love love love love this!!! Perfect cranberry dish for Thanksgiving!

  10. This is definitely a keeper! Great click!

  11. This IS the ultimate cranberry condiment. Thank you and have a great holiday!

  12. Looks like a winner to me! Just in time for Thanksgiving. Thank you Viviane!

  13. This is wonderful. I’m definitely writing this one down for pops. We are having so much fun getting reading for our big Austin Thanksgiving cooking together. He’ll love this.

  14. Got to tell you I love your modern twist. I think my family would enjoy this recipe very much, and I will try it for sure! Well, I would try anything that you make since every of your recipes are fantastic and very appealing! Thanks for sharing and have a beautiful weekend ahead!

  15. Love the fig and cranberry combination – it has such a wonderful sublime flavor where the figs take away a slight bit of the tartness from the cranberries! Lovely!

  16. Wow – very interesting combination! I love figs, but am on the fence when it comes to cranberries. I didn’t grow up with them in Germany, and haven’t been able to really fall in love with them yet. This recipe sounds like a wonderful twist, though!

    • Hi Kiri! I didn’t grow up with cranberries either so I really sympathize! But I do love their tartness. Here the figs add a bit of sweetness to them… and I love the exotic spices.

  17. What a gorgeous presentation, this looks so delicious and perfect for the holidays! 🙂

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