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Published on June 17, 2020

Spiced Orange Compote

Healthy Meals Made Easy

These spiced oranges, from EatingWell magazine, are delicious served as is or alongside angel food cake. Their flavor improves as they sit, so make the compote a day ahead of serving.


  • 8 small oranges, preferably seedless
  • 2 cups water
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 star anise


  1. Use a 5-hole zester to remove zest from oranges in long, thin, spindly strips (or use vegetable peeler to remove strips of zest and cut into thin slivers). Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add zest and cook for 3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to a small strainer (reserve the cooking liquid). Rinse with cold water; separate and drain on a paper towel.
  2. Stir sugar into the reserved cooking liquid; bring to a simmer. Cut vanilla bean in half lengthwise; scrape the seeds into the sugar water and add the pod along with cinnamon stick, cloves, and star anise. Continue to simmer until the sauce reduces to 1/2 cup and thickens slightly, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  3. Meanwhile, slice off an end of each orange so they stand upright steadily. Carefully remove all the remaining peel and white pith from the oranges with a very sharp knife. Slice the peeled oranges into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Remove any extraneous pith, rind, or seeds.
  4. Discard the vanilla pod and whole spices. Stir the zest into the sauce. Layer the orange slices in a serving bowl, spooning the sauce between layers to distribute the zest evenly throughout

Makes 10 half-cup servings with 61 calories, 0 g fat, 15 g carbohydrates, 1 mg sodium, and 2 g fiber, plus 140 mg potassium.

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