Cranberry pie says hello, holidays! with just a half-bag of fresh cranberries. Enjoy the tart flavor bursts of real cranberries, wrapped in a shortbread-like mixture that serves as a crust and binder.
Make this healthy pie with fresh cranberries, white whole wheat flour, walnuts, eggs, and other wholesome ingredients. It's quick and easy enough for young bakers to make. Serve as is for family dinners or adorn with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for special occasions. Note January 14, 2012: this is an updated version that makes the pie in two layers, cranberries and then batter, to shorten baking time. I've also created a vegan version.
Active time: 20 minutes. Total time: 1 hour. Serves 8 as is or 12 with vanilla ice cream.
1/2 cup butter (4 ounces or 1 stick or 113 grams)
1 1/3 cup sugar, divided (266 grams)
2 cups fresh cranberries (6 ounces or 170 grams)
1 cup white whole wheat flour (120 grams)
1/4 cup corn oil
1 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (6 ounces or 170 grams)
butter or shortening to grease pie plate
whipped cream as a topping or vanilla ice cream along side, optional
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease a 10-inch pie plate.
- Melt butter. If you can, use a Pyrex measuring cup to melt butter in the microwave for 30 seconds on high, then use the same cup to measure corn oil. If you don't have a microwave, melt butter in a small pan on the stove over medium heat.
- While butter melts, beat 1 cup (200 grams) sugar and eggs on medium high for about 2 minutes until light and fluffy, as shown in the mixer action-shot below.
- Rinse, pick over, and dry cranberries. Put in pie plate and sprinkle with remaining 1/3 cup (66 grams) sugar.
- With the mixer on low, stir in butter, flour, and oil into egg mixture until just combined, then stir in nuts.
- Drop spoonsfuls of batter over cranberries, then spread evenly with a spoon. Bake for 45 minutes, until top begins to brown and tester comes out clean.
- Serve wedges of cranberry pie warm or at room temperature, topped with whipped cream if desired.
Recipe tips and notes:
- Use pecans instead of walnuts for a slightly sweeter, more Southern pie.
- Cranberries freeze well, so grab an extra bag when they are on sale.
- Thanks to my beloved mother-in-law, Catherine Watson, for permission to base this version on the wonderful cranberry pie she served at so many holiday dinners.
- Note on the update. I'd tried mixing the cranberries with the batter and baking, which saved prep time but made the overall cooking time very long. It seems that the water in the cranberries kept the batter temperature at or below the boiling point (212°F). I should have listened to my mother-in-law!