Cranberry Balsamic Marinated Olives

by Julie Cohn
Cranberry Balsamic Marinated Olives3

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Thanksgiving and Christmas are right around the corner, but eating healthy for the holidays can be challenging.  Many traditional holiday recipes have lots of butter, fat, and sugar.  While it is okay to indulge a little bit during the holidays, I don’t want my family to go overboard with the calories, so I am working on a few healthy holiday recipes that fit in with my Mediterranean Diet way of eating (WOE).  These Cranberry Balsamic Marinated Olives are a healthy and delicious choice for holiday appetizers, snacking, or relish tray. 

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The olives in this Cranberry Balsamic Marinated Olives are chock full of healthy oleic fat, Vitamin E, and antioxidants.  The marinade includes virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, and zesty spices.  I use a touch of honey, a natural sweetener, to add a sweet and tangy flavor to the olives, but you can leave out the honey if you choose. 

A note about the dried cranberries:  Traditional packaged dried cranberries have a lot of added sugar in them, so make your own, get dried cranberries with half the sweetener, or use unsweetened dried cherries, which are less tart and have more natural sugar in them.  

Cranberry Balsamic Marinated Olives4

Cranberry Balsamic Marinated Olives

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 15 minutes


Delicious sweet and zesty marinated olives, perfect for healthy holiday appetizers, relish tray, or snacking.


  • 2/3 c. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp. Aged Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, sliced thin
  • 1 tsp. Raw Honey
  • 1-2 Fresh Rosemary Sprigs
  • 1/4 tsp. Fennel Seed
  • 1 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 tsp. Fresh Orange Zest
  • 2 c. Assorted Olives (Greek, Spanish, Italian)
  • 1/3 c. Dried Cranberries


  1. Whisk the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey, garlic, and spices together and place in a canning jar.
  2. Place the olives and cranberries in a 2-quart (64 oz) canning jar.
  3. Pour the olive oil mixture over the olives, cover, and shake well.
  4. Place the jar in the refrigerator and set it for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  5. Remove the olives from the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
  6. Strain the olives from the liquid, reserving the liquid in the canning jar.
  7. Use the olives within 48 - 72 hours of marinating.
Nutrition Information
Yield 8 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 179Total Fat 17gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 14gCholesterol 0mgSodium 251mgCarbohydrates 7gFiber 1gSugar 4gProtein 0g

All nutrition information is approximate.

Looking for another delicious holiday Mediterranean Diet recipe?  Try this Four Bean Salad or this Mediterranean Fruit Salad! 

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