Cranberry Vinaigrette (with leftover Cranberry Sauce!)

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Need an easy way to use up your leftover Cranberry Sauce? This Cranberry Sauce Dressing is the perfect solution! All you need is 3 ingredients, that you probably already have on hand, to make this delicious salad topping.

cranberry sauce dressing poured over salad

How To Make Cranberry Vinaigrette

To make this salad dressing, all you need is at least 1/2 cup of leftover cranberry sauce, along with vinegar, oil, and water to help thin out the dressing. I use balsamic vinegar in this case, but another vinegar such as apple cider or red wine vinegar should also work well.

I like to blend everything together in a blender, to help the cranberries break down into a smooth dressing, but you can also shake everything together in a sealed jar is your cranberry sauce is already relatively smooth.

cranberry sauce in a jar with salad ingredients

This recipe is based on my homemade cranberry sauce, which is lower in sugar than traditional recipes, so you may want to use a little more vinegar if starting with a super-sweet cranberry sauce. The good thing about this recipe is you can taste it as you go!

I always start off with 1/4 cup of water to help thin it out, but you may want to add another tablespoon or two once it’s blended together with the oil and vinegar. Then you can taste and adjust from there!

cranberry sauce salad dressing in bottle

Need more Thanksgiving leftover ideas? Try my Leftover Turkey Soup!

cranberry sauce dressing poured over salad
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5 from 3 votes

Cranberry Vinaigrette (with leftover Cranberry Sauce!)

This Cranberry Vinaigrette is an easy and delicious way to use up your leftover cranberry sauce after a holiday meal.
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry vinaigrette
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 8 servings (makes 1 cup)
Calories 61kcal


  • 1/2 cup leftover cranberry sauce
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (or vinegar of choice)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water , plus more as needed to thin


  • Combine the cranberry sauce, vinegar, oil, and water in a blender and blend until smooth. Taste the dressing and adjust as needed, adding a little more vinegar if it tastes too sweet. You can also add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, to thin the dressing to your liking.
  • Serve right away over your favorite salad ingredients, or store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days.


Calories: 61kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 6mg | Potassium: 9mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 7IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Iron: 1mg
Per 2 Tablespoons: Calories: 61; Fat: 4g, Carbohydrates: 7g, Fiber: 1g, Protein: 1g

Recipe Notes:

  • The nutrition info above is based on canned cranberry sauce, so a homemade version will likely be lower in sugar.
  • You can make this dressing oil-free by using only water instead of the olive oil, if you’d prefer. You can also add mustard to this dressing to help it emulsify, instead of using oil.

If you try this recipe, please leave a comment below letting me know how you like it! And if you make any modifications, I’d love to hear about those, too. We can all benefit from your experience!

Reader Feedback: How do you dress up your Thanksgiving leftovers?

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Rande McDaniel @ The Vegetable Centric Kitchen

Oh I bet this is amazing, I made your cranberry sauce and loved it!

kaity @ kaityscooking

yummm i been having cranberry sauce ontop of my salads! I like to make a shepards pie with any leftovers and have that for the week, and ofcoarse crumble some pie over my oatmeal in the mornings ;-)!

The Delicate Place (@misathemeb)

i made a turkey hash with some leftover pumpkin puree, onions and roasted veggies. my husband made a white bean & pepper turkey stew with the dark meat and it’s so delicious! i love reinvented food and i absolutely hate wasting so i use it all! i even boil the carcass to make turkey stock 🙂


I am so glad you posted this recipe!! Only 1/2 of my family liked the sauce but EVERYONE loved this dressing!!! Thanks for the post, I was so happy to use the leftovers!!


My problem is, we’ve already eaten our cranberry sauce. I guess we’ll just have to make another batch. Simply so we can have some leftovers to make this beautiful dressing.

Val Rosenbaum

Excellent! Super simple. Super delicious. I added some strawberries from my garden Turned out just right. Thank you!!


This was the perfect launch point. I had leftover homemade cranberry sauce (which included raisins and orange juice/zest), but was thinking of starting with fresh. I tried some cranberry balsamic vinegar first, but it was just too sweet; red wine vinegar did the trick instead (took 3 tbs). I also added 1/4 tsp minced garlic, 1/4 tsp gr black pepper, and a pinch of salt.
Roast Turkey Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette was the perfect lighter answer to the prevous day’s feast.

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