Cooking Up Holiday Cheer at Donovan Reporting

While there are many wonderful “ingredients” to a perfect Christmas holiday, one of my favorites is preparing those special, delicious, tried-and-true recipes for my family and friends!

So the other day, when I stopped by my daughter Erin’s house, I was delighted to find her with my mother’s enormous, three-ring binder cookbook. She was frantically flipping through the pages.

“Mom,” she exclaimed. “I cannot find that recipe!”

“Which recipe is that?” I replied.

“You know, the cranberry casserole,” she said. “I know it’s here somewhere, and I need to make it for the Coleman Family Thanksgiving! They all expect it!”

The recipe she was after is one the few not included in our family treasure. But I told her not to worry, I would email it as soon as I got home.

I was so glad to see Erin sharing our family recipes. And in all honesty, the cranberry casserole is a great choice. It’s technically a side dish, but it’s so delicious, sometimes I’ll opt for another helping instead of dessert! It’s decadent and it’s special – just what a holiday recipe should be.

This Christmas, I thought it might be fun to share this wonderful recipe with all of you. I will warn you, it’s a little time-consuming, but it comes out perfect every time, and is always a crowd pleaser.

So please enjoy – from my kitchen to yours. And best wishes for a wonderful holiday season from all of us at Donovan Reporting!

easy-holiday-prep-cranberry-apple-casseroleCranberry Apple Casserole

For the casserole:

4 cups chopped and peeled Granny Smith apples (about six apples)

1 can solid cranberry sauce

1 can chunky cranberry sauce

2/3 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar


Preheat oven to 350

Grease bottom of 2-quart casserole dish (Pam may be used)

In a large mixing bowl, combine ingredients. Mix well and place in casserole dish.


For the topping:

2 sticks butter

2/3 cup brown sugar

1 cup all-purpose flour (If you only have self-rising that’s okay too)

2 cups Quaker oatmeal (not instant)

1 cup pecan pieces (optional)


Place 2 sticks butter in medium microwave-safe bowl and melt. Do not boil.

Then add the remaining topping ingredients to the bowl and mix. Spoon over casserole, trying not to leave any blank spots.

Bake casserole for 45 minutes or until brown and bubbly.

NOTE:  Check after 35 minutes to make sure topping is not getting too dark.  You want a nice golden brown.  Casserole might spill over, so it’s a good idea to place foil or a baking sheet on rack below casserole.


Allow at least 30 minutes before serving.  Casserole may be served hot, warm, room temperature, or even cold.