Americans have spoken: Cranberry sauce is the worst Thanksgiving food

Photo: bhofack2 (iStock)

It can be dangerous to accept public opinion polls as scientific fact. Everyone knows that everyone is almost always wrong. However, two separate opinion polls have come to the exact same conclusion and therefore it must be true: Cranberry sauce is the worst Thanksgiving food of all.

The sources of this information are a poll taken by Harris for Instacart and another taken by WalletHub and synthesized by the Detroit Free Press. Harris surveyed 2,000 people; of those, 29% said that, of all the Thanksgiving foods, they hated cranberry sauce the most. Green bean casserole came in second, with 24%. A resounding 68% said they hated Thanksgiving food but ate it anyway because tradition. (Additionally, 40% of Millennials said they would rather give up sex for a month than be responsible for cooking Thanksgiving dinner, and 42% of men said they would rather give up football.)

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WalletHub’s findings, based on geotagged Twitter data, were even more damning. Only 3% of Americans admitted to actually liking cranberry sauce.

Here at The Takeout, some of us were distressed by this news. In the words of Allison Robicelli, who chose cranberry sauce in our Thanksgiving fantasy food draft, “It makes everything on the table a little more interesting: turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, buttered rolls. [Turkey skin] is so good with cranberry sauce. The sugar and tartness go so well with the skin’s fattiness.”

Kate Bernot also argued passionately on behalf of cranberry sauce in a recent staff meeting. “There are no other tart elements on the Thanksgiving menu,” she said. “It’s not like you’re squeezing lime juice over anything.” She conceded that the ridges on the side of canned cranberry sauce were a flaw in its presentation, but agreed with Allison that cranberry sauce is meant to be a condiment, not something eaten on its own.

America, take note. Listen to your food writers.

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About the author

Aimee Levitt

Aimee Levitt is associate editor of The Takeout.