Sugar-Free Dried Cranberries Recipe

Close up of spoonful of dried cherries
Cultura RM Exclusive/Diana Miller/Getty
Total Time 10 min
Prep 10 min, Cook 0 min
Yield 1 cup Dried Cranberries

This three-ingredient Sugar-Free Dried Cranberries recipe is the answer to a low-carber's prayers. And you really don't need a dehydrator. Just know they will take about 8 hours to dry in your home oven.

Dried cranberries are the darlings of everything from pumpkin bread to quinoa salad to sauces and more.

The trouble is, most store-bought dried fruit is loaded with sugar, making them out of bounds for a low-carbohydrate or sugar-free diet.

It took awhile to get this method down, but now that I know what to do, it's easy.

The important thing is not to be afraid to squish them down in the first phase, or they won't fully dry -- the soluble fiber in them "gels" and retains water unless it's exposed to the air.

These are great as part of this Low-Carb Trail Mix Recipe.


  • 1 (12-ounce) bag fresh whole cranberries
  • 1 cup sugar substitute of your choice (can vary to taste)
  • 1/2 cup water


  1. Heat oven to 200 degrees F.
  2. Put 1 (12-ounce) bag of fresh whole cranberries in a large skillet, and pick through to remove soft and/or brown ones.
  3. If the sweetener (to equal 1 cup sugar) you use is powdered, dissolve it in water. (See this comparison of sources of liquid Splenda.) Pour over the cranberries and stir.
  4. Heat on medium-high until cranberries pop, about 4 to 5 minutes. Stir every minute or two. When all seem popped, turn off the burner and let them cool for 10 minutes.
  1. Squish them down with the back of a large spoon. Don't worry if it seems they are melding together. Let cool another 5 minutes or so.
  2. Cover baking sheet with three layers of paper towels and a piece of parchment paper. (I'm sure this would work great in a food dehydrator, but I don't have one.)
  3. Spread cranberries on the parchment. Have faith -- they will mostly separate again as they dry. If unpopped ones remain, squish them down now.
  4. Put in oven and turn heat down to 150 degrees F.
  5. In 2 to 4 hours, replace parchment and flip paper towels over. (You don't have to do this, but it speeds up the process.)
  6. Start checking after 6 hours. Total time depends upon humidity and other factors. It usually takes me about 8 hours. It also depends on whether you want to dry them to the point where they still have some give or whether you like them firmer.
  7. Separate them, and store covered (zip-type bags work well).

    Carb Count:The whole recipe has 25 grams of effective carbohydrate and 16 grams of fiber.

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