Cranberry Pear Chutney

Posted on 12 October 2010 | 4 comments | share this

Thanksgiving weekend was filled with all of life’s best: family, friends, sunshine, and beautiful local food.  It was a blog inspiring few days on Vancouver Island while we cooked up the season’s best.  All the food was harvested close to home and shared among friends and family.  It was hard to decide which recipe to share first but after much deliberation I decided on cranberry pear chutney.  This chutney is the grown-up, sophisticated cousin of the cranberry sauce we ate as kids with the addition of pear, fresh ginger and a hint of spice.

Cranberries are native to North America and a relative of the ever so popular blueberry.  The berries are initially white in colour and turn a deep red when fully ripe and ready to harvest in late September and October.  Fresh cranberries are available fresh from September to November and frozen all year long.  While cranberries are mostly associated with Thanksgiving, they are delicious anytime in preserves, muffins, cakes and made into juice.

This cranberry chutney need not be made just once a year- it is fabulous with turkey but also nice anytime on a sandwich or served alongside your favourite cheese.  It is the perfect combination of tart, sweet and spicy.  It comes together in a hurry and will be sure to get rave reviews from dinner guests.  Try this recipe at your next harvest meal.

Cranberry Pear Chutney

Makes: 2 cups

2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries

½ cup unrefined cane sugar (or 1/3 cup honey)

2 medium pears, peeled and cut into cubes

2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

¾ cup unsweetened apple juice or water

Juice of 1 lime

1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced

1 shallot, minced

1 tsp olive oil

½ tsp mustard seeds

1 small cinnamon stick

Pinch crushed chili flakes

Pinch of salt and fresh ground pepper

Heat saucepan on medium heat.  Add the olive oil and saute the shallot until translucent.  Add the rest of the ingredients.  Cover the pot and bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 25-30 minutes, until the fruit softens and the chutney thickens.

Discard the cinnamon stick.  Cool to room temperature. Store in a tight-sealing container in the fridge until ready to use.

Can be kept refrigerated from 1-2 weeks.


  • wow – and there it is already – amazing – super photos and dialogue – very inspiring.

  • FANTASTIC Melissa! i LOVE your pictures – you got talent girl. Keep up the great, and inspiring work.

  • Hi Melissa,
    It was very simple to make, and it tastes delicious! I really like how it is a unique combination of tart, sweet and spicy as you say! 🙂

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