healthy holiday recipes cranberry pear sauce

With the holidays fast approaching, it’s sometimes difficult to find healthy foods to prepare. The experts from UPMC BodyChangers, a weight loss and support group program, recommend that eating healthy around the holidays is important to maintaining your overall health and weight loss goals.

Vicki March, MD, co-director of UPMC BodyChangers, offers the tips on how to prepare delicious cranberry pear sauce.

“The pears and dried cherries give this cranberry sauce an extra touch of natural sweetness, allowing you to cut down on added sugar,” says Dr. March. “You can make this cranberry sauce several days in advance. Just keep it tightly covered and refrigerated until you’re ready to serve. Perfect for a holiday side or dressing.”

Total time:55 minutes

Preparation time:40 minutes

Cooking time:15 minutes

Recipe serves: 4 cups


  • 1 bag (12 oz) fresh cranberries
  • 3 ripe Bartlett pears (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled, quartered, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries
  • 1/2 cup water


  1. In a medium-sized, heavy-bottom, non-aluminum saucepan, combine cranberries, pears, sugar, dried cherries, and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
  2. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring frequently to prevent scorching, until berries have popped and are tender (about 15 minutes). Cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate until chilled.

Nutritional Information

Calories (per serving): 149

Fat: 0 grams

Protein: 1 gram

Carbs: 38 grams

Fiber: 4 grams

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About UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital

For more than a century, UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital has provided high-quality medical care to women at all stages of life. UPMC Magee is long-renowned for its services to women and babies but also offers a wide range of care to men as well. Our patient-first approach ensures you and your loved ones get the care you need. Nearly 10,000 babies are born each year at Magee, and our NICU is one of the largest in the country. Our network of care – from imaging centers to hospital services – provides care throughout Pennsylvania and Maryland, giving you a chance to get the expert care you need close to home. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recognizes UPMC Magee as a National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, and the Magee-Womens Research Institute is the largest research institute in the U.S. devoted exclusively to women’s health and reproductive biology.