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A jar of the spiced cranberry simple syrup on burlap with fresh cranberries in the background.

Spiced Cranberry Simple Syrup

Put a festive and delicious spin on your holiday drinks with this spiced cranberry simple syrup! Made with fresh orange zest, this homemade simple syrup comes together in less than 15 minutes of hands-on preparation time, and it’s as easy as it gets. You’ll want to add this cranberry-orange simple syrup to all your drinks this season.
Course Beverages
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Steeping Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 drinks
Calories 111kcal


  • Small saucepan
  • Microplane grater
  • Fine-mesh sieve


  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg preferably freshly grated
  • teaspoon ground ginger
  • Pinch of ground cloves


  • In a small saucepan, add the cranberries, water, sugar, cinnamon sticks, orange zest, ground ginger, nutmeg and cloves over medium-high heat.
  • Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off heat and allow the mixture to steep for another 10 minutes.
  • Place a bowl under a fine-mesh sieve. Strain the syrup in the fine-mesh sieve. Store the cranberry simple syrup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for several weeks. Enjoy!



  • I love using a microplane grater rather than a traditional zester for the orange. It’s much more efficient and does a great job extracting that delicious citrus oil.
  • For the best flavor, use spices that have been opened within six months. After that, the flavor isn't quite as intense.
  • Cranberries are generally only available from October through January. Keep some cranberries in your freezer, and you can make this syrup all year long. No need to thaw — just add the frozen berries straight to the water and sugar.
  • Once cranberries come to a boil, they can over-boil quickly, so keep an eye on them.
  • When straining, I like to use a sturdy spoon to push down on the cranberries to extract as much flavor as possible.
  • Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.


Serving: 1ounce | Calories: 111kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 26mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 26g | Vitamin A: 18IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 1mg