Herring With Cranberries

Herrings with cranberries and pickled cucumbers

An idea for herring with cranberries, apple, pickled cucumber and onion. It is perfect for Christmas Eve. This is one of many versions of this salty fish that dominates Polish tables during Christmas. Also check how to make polish pickled cucumbers 😋

Which herring to choose?
You can use herring in oil or vinegar. In a jar, bucket or tray, it depends on your preferences. It is important that these are “pure” herrings without tomatoes and other additives that could change the taste of the dish.

Do herrings need to be soaked?
For this recipe I use herrings a la matias in oil. If the herrings are very salty, you can rinse them first and soak them in cold water or milk. Depending on how salty you like your herring, you can soak them for several minutes to several hours, changing the water two or three times if necessary.
When the herrings are salty enough, just dry them, cut them, mix them with the rest of the ingredients, season them, pour oil over them and put them in an airtight container. Place a closed container (e.g. a jar) in the refrigerator for 12-24 hours to allow the flavors to mingle.

How long in advance to make the herring?
Herring with cranberries and dill can be prepared in 10 minutes, but they need to mature and acquire flavor, so we put them in the fridge for at least 12 hours before serving. The longer they marinate, the better they are, so we can prepare them up to three days in advance, as long as we pour oil over the herrings and store them in an airtight container, e.g. a jar. Thanks to this, the smell of herrings and other odors from the refrigerator will not mix and the herrings will stay fresh longer.

What oil for herring?
Pour your favorite oil over the herring. It does not have to be oil for frying because we eat herring cold. So you have much bigger choice. You can use cold-pressed, unrefined oils that contain more vitamins and nutrients, but also have a more or less distinctive taste that may not suit everyone, e.g. evening primrose oil, olive oil or linseed oil. You can also use oils that have a neutral taste so that they will not change the taste of the dish, e.g. rapeseed oil, sunflower oil or grape seed oil.

How can I modify this recipe? What goes with herring?
If you want to spice up my recipe a bit, you can modify it slightly, which will give it a new character. What else to add to herring with cranberries:

  • gingerbread spice – even more Christmasy aroma,
  • dried tomatoes – very intense flavor that goes very well with herring,
  • you can replace the apple with a pear, which will add sweetness to the herrings,
  • honey – for fans of sweet and salty flavors,
  • red onion instead of white – for color.

Also, check out my recipe for herring in cream – such a herring classic 😉.

Herring with cranberries are perfect for people on a vegetarian, flexitarian and pescatarian diet. They do not contain gluten. The proportions given below will give us one liter jar filled with herrings. This gives us approximately 10 portions of approximately 100g each.

Read the step-by-step recipe on how to prepare Christmas Eve herring with cranberries and watch the video below the recipe.
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Herrings with cranberries and pickled cucumbers

Herrings with Cranberries

A surprising recipe for herring with cranberries. A perfect idea for one of the herring versions you can serve on Christmas Eve. The combination of sweet cranberries, sour cucumber and salty herring together create a great snack.
5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cooling 1 day
Total Time 1 day 10 minutes
Course Snacks
Cuisine Polish
Servings 10 portions
Calories 193 kcal

Christmas Herrings with Cranberries


  • 6 fillets herrings a'la matias (in oil)
  • ½ apple
  • 2 polish pickled cucumbers (fermented)
  • 1 handful dried cranberries
  • pepper
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1 bunch dill
  • ½ cup oil (e.g. rapeseed)


  • If the herring is very salty, you can soak them in cold water or milk for 15-20 minutes.
    Chop the onion. Cut the peeled half apple and cucumber into small cubes. Cut the herring into smaller pieces (approx. 1 cm). Pour the cranberries with hot water and leave them for 3 minutes to soak, then drain the water and dry the cranberries.
    6 fillets herrings a'la matias, ½ apple, 2 polish pickled cucumbers, 1 handful dried cranberries, 1 bunch dill
    Mixing ingredients for herrings
  • Mix together the onion, herring, cucumbers, cranberries, apple and dill. Season with sweet paprika and pepper. Finally, add your favorite oil and mix everything. Put everything in a jar, close it and put it in the fridge for 12-24 hours. After this time, the herrings are ready. Enjoy your meal!
    pepper, ½ tsp paprika, ½ cup oil
    Seasoning herrings


Watch how to make herrings with cranberries step by step video.
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Serving: 100gCalories: 193kcal (10%)Carbohydrates: 4g (1%)Protein: 9g (18%)Fat: 16g (25%)Saturated Fat: 2g (13%)Trans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 30mg (10%)Sodium: 105mg (5%)Potassium: 185mg (5%)Fiber: 1g (2%)Sugar: 3g (3%)Vitamin A: 88IU (2%)Vitamin C: 2mg (2%)Vitamin D: 2µg (13%)Vitamin E: 3mg (20%)Vitamin K: 10µg (10%)Calcium: 34mg (3%)Iron: 1mg (6%)Manganese: 0mg (2%)Magnesium: 17mg (4%)Zinc: 1mg (7%)

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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Herrings with cranberries and pickled cucumbers

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