Cranberries: Local, Healthy, Delicious


Cranberry Swirl Cheesecake © Courtesy of BC Cranberries

Cranberries are native to British Columbia and are called “ibimi” [ih-bih-mee] or “bitter berries” by the local First Nations. This bitterness is due to the proanthocyanidins (PACs), which are also responsible for many of the unique health benefits of cranberries, such as protecting the heart and cardiovascular system. Known for their bitter flavour, cranberries are naturally very low in sugar. This bitterness is great for those who like dark chocolate and black coffee—pure unsweetened cranberry products fit right into our palate.

You can get unsweetened cranberry juice and cranberry juice blends from Bremner’s, our local B.C.-based juice maker. For most people, though, a sweet tooth is evident. That is why most cranberry products have added sugar to increase palatability. Thankfully, the added sugar doesn’t diminish any of the health benefits—a spoon full of sugar helps the medicine go down, after all. Sweetened dried cranberries have the same sugar content as raisins but provide many more health benefits.

At this festive time of year, it may be a bit more challenging to lower our sugar intake, but Lisa MarcAurele at Low Carb Yum ( has a recipe for you that is short on prep time, low-carb, eye-catching and sure to please family and friends.

We wish you a happy and healthy holiday season. For more cranberry recipes, visit our website at


Recipe by Lisa Marcaurele | PREP TIME: 10 minutes | COOK TIME: 2 hours | SERVINGS: 12 people

When you’re looking for a festive holiday treat that’s as beautiful as it is delicious, this easy cranberry swirl cheesecake is a decadent dessert that’s sure to please any crowd!



  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons Pyure All Purpose
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon



  • 1/3 cup powdered erythritol
  • 1/4 teaspoon stevia extract powder
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 bag fresh cranberries, 12 ounces
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice



  • 32 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup powdered erythritol
  • 1/4 teaspoon stevia extract powder
  • 5 eggs lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice



  1. Grind pecans in a food processor. Pulse the processor until the largest pieces are no bigger than split peas. Add the butter and the sweetener. Blend until it’s mixed evenly.
  2. Press it into the bottom of a 9-in springform pan. Sprinkle cinnamon on top to cover. Press cinnamon in with back of a spoon.
  3. Bake at 300°F for 8-12 minutes.
  4. Cool.


  1. Combine sugar and water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat for one minute.
  2. Stir in berries; cover and reduce heat. Cook until most of the berries have popped, about 7 to 10 minutes. Add lemon juice.
  3. Press mixture through a sieve and set aside.


  1. In a large bowl beat the cream cheese with the xylitol and stevia until light and fluffy. Add eggs, beating just until blended. Add lemon juice. Pour into crust.


  1. Spoon cranberry sauce over filling; cut through filling with a knife to swirl.
  2. Put a pan on the bottom rack of the oven and fill with water.
  3. Bake cheesecake on middle rack at 350°F for 45 minutes. Turn oven off; let cheesecake stand in oven for 1 hour with door propped ajar.
  4. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack. Carefully run a knife around sides of the pan to loosen and remove side of the pan. Refrigerate overnight.

Nutrition: Serving: 1slice | Calories: 292 | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 101mg | Sodium: 264mg | Potassium: 86mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 700IU | Vitamin C: 4.1mg | Calcium: 90mg | Iron: 0.7mg

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The BC Cranberry Marketing Commission regulates, in any and all respects, the transportation, processing, packing, storage, and marketing of any variety of cranberries grown in the province of British Columbia.


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