Do you remember what cooking was like before the Internet? How you were stuck with whatever recipes you had in your cookbooks or could beg off friends? My mom has twice as many cookbooks as I do for just this reason.

I have the Internet. And if I promise not to get flour on it, I even get to use my husband’s Kindle in the kitchen as a “cookbook.”

So this week we’re taking a look at some recipe offerings from one of our favorite sources — Betty Crocker. Betty’s always known what to do, and she’s grown with the times nicely. These days, there’s an entire section of Thanksgiving recipes to check out on her website, even complete menus.

Let’s look at her ideas for cranberries.

Now, cranberries are always something I want to make, but then realize I don’t really like. But I want to like them. Perhaps with these alternatives to the canned options, this year I can pull it off.

Cranberry Salad

1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

1 container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed

1 can (8 oz) crushed pineapple, drained

2 cans (14 oz each) whole berry cranberry sauce

In medium bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Fold in whipped topping. Stir in pineapple.

Pour cranberry sauce into separate bowl; stir to break up any large chunks.

In each of 8 glass dishes, spoon cranberry sauce to cover bottom of dish. Spoon cream cheese mixture evenly over cranberry sauce. Top with remaining cranberry sauce. Serve or refrigerate. Or serve in a pretty trifle dish or glass bowl.

Now, if you must be traditional, perhaps you can try this apricot-inspired sauce this year.

Citrus-Apricot Cranberry Sauce


1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped

1/2 cup orange juice

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup water

2 whole star anise pepper

1 bag (12 oz.) cranberries

1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

With vegetable peeler, remove all peel from lemon in strips and squeeze 2 tablespoons juice.

In 2-3-quart saucepan, stir together apricots, orange juice, sugar, water, star anise, lemon juice, and 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Heat to boiling on medium-high, stirring occasionally.

To saucepan, add cranberries and lemon peel. Return to boiling. Reduce heat to medium; simmer 3-4 minutes or until half of cranberries pop and mixture thickens. Let cranberry sauce cool before serving or cover and refrigirate up to 4 days. Discard star anise and lemon peel before serving, if you like.

What are your favorite cranberry recipes? Be sure to share them with us in the comments below, or email me at