Cranberry Salsa is an amazing holiday appetizer that is served over cream cheese and paired with your favorite chips or crackers. You’re going to love this fun twist on classic party food!

A cracker sitting on top of a block of cream cheese and cranberry salsa.

Every time we bring this dish to a party, it is an instant hit! It’s popularity is no surprise though, seeing as we’ve been making this for years, and have been thoroughly obsessed with it ourselves. Everyone expects tortilla chips and salsa at a party, but this gives them a fun twist on a party staple. We love how the cranberries make this salsa so fresh and vibrant, and serving it over a brick of cream cheese with some crackers just makes it all the better. This recipe is so quick and easy to make, that the hardest part is merely choosing what to use to dip! Pick out your favorite crackers or chips, and get dipping!


Fresh cranberries are commonly sold in the grocery store in 12 ounce packages. They are most often found in the fall right after the cranberry harvest. When working with fresh cranberries, rinse them under cold water. Run your fingers through the cranberries and pick out any that are soft or mushy. Rinse the cranberries again and proceed to use them in your recipe.

If you would like to use frozen cranberries, you will need to thaw them completely before using. We highly recommend fresh cranberries rather than frozen in this recipe, because thawed frozen cranberries will be a bit mushier.

Ginger Tip:

This recipe calls for fresh ginger. When using ginger it is easiest to cut off any gnarled spots before peeling. Once peeled you can grate it easily on a hand grater. Once it gets down to a nubbin of stringiness just toss the stringy mess away.

Spice Level of Best Cranberry Salsa:

The jalapeños give this salsa a nice kick, but you are welcome to make this according to your own taste preferences and use more or less jalapeño.

Serving Suggestions: 

A common and popular way to serve cranberry salsa is over a brick of cream cheese. You can also serve it up plain, as you would any salsa. It pairs well with Wheat Thins, Ritz crackers, and tortilla chips. 

A hand holding a cracker dipped in cranberry salsa.

Storage Instructions: 

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

If you like this recipe, you may also be interested in some of my other holiday recipe favorites:

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTube, Facebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.