Christmas Inspiration: Roast Duck with Blackberry Orange Sauce

Bring the flavors of a classic European Christmas dinner inspiration into your home with this mouthwatering roast duck with blackberry orange sauce recipe with roasted vegetables and crispy hasselback potatoes.

Sure to impress guests during the festive season, this main Christmas dinner inspiration incorporates seasonal fruits and spices for a fusion of flavors that celebrate the holidays in spectacular style.

From selecting the freshest duck to perfectly roasting it to a crisp golden brown, this recipe guides you through every step to ensure your European Christmas dinner is a success.

Pair the savory roast duck with the tangy blackberry orange sauce for optimum taste. Guests will be wowed by this showstopping centerpiece that captures the essence of a traditional Christmas dinner feast.


  • 1 (4-5 lb) whole duck
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/4 tsp dried rosemary


  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp minced orange zest

Preparing the Duck

Remove giblets and neck from duck and reserve for another use. Pat the duck dry with paper towels and place the breast side up on a rack in a roasting pan.

In a small bowl, mix olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme and rosemary. Rub herb mixture all over the duck. Cover loosely with foil.

Refrigerate the duck uncovered for 6 to 12 hours for flavors to blend. This step can be omitted if time is short.

Roasting the Duck

  • Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • Roast duck, uncovered, for 30 minutes.
  • Reduce oven temperature to 325°F and roast an additional 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until skin is crispy and leg meat is very tender when pierced with a fork.
  • Baste the duck every 30 minutes with pan drippings for best results.
  • Insert an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh, away from the bone. Duck is done when it reaches 165°F.

Blackberry Orange Sauce

  • In a small saucepan combine blackberries, orange juice, honey, and zest.
  • Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, until thickened slightly.
  • Use an immersion blender or regular blender to puree sauce until smooth. Keep warm until serving.


  • Remove the duck from the oven and let rest for 15 minutes before carving. Slice and arrange on a platter.
  • Serve duck slices with blackberry orange sauce for dipping. Enjoy!

Pros, Cons & Tips


  • Packed with antioxidants from berries and vitamin C from citrus.
  • Herbs add flavor without salt.
  • Lean, high-protein meat is healthier than red meat.


  • High in fat if skin is consumed.
  • Needs a long roasting time.


  • Prick skin before roasting to drain fat.
  • Baste every 30 min to crisp skin.
  • Leftovers make great sandwiches or salad additions.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: How many will this recipe serve?
A: The duck will comfortably serve 4-6 people as a main course.

Q: What kitchen tools are needed?
A: A roasting pan, baking rack, kitchen knife, blender/immersion blender, and carving knife.

Q: Can I prepare it in advance?
A: Yes, you can marinate the duck up to 1 day ahead. Refrigerate until ready to roast.

Q: What wine pairs well?
A: Look for a medium-bodied red such as Pinot Noir or a sparkling cider.

Q: Can I freeze leftovers?
A: Yes, cool completely and freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Reheat covered at 325°F until hot.

Q: How do I store leftovers?
A: Refrigerate sliced duck and sauce separately in airtight containers for 3-4 days.


Whether you’re hosting an intimate European-inspired Christmas dinner or feeding a hungry crowd, this roast duck with blackberry orange sauce is sure to become a new holiday tradition.

Get cooking today and bring festive flavors to your feast! Let me know if you give this recipe a try—I’d love to hear how it turns out!

ⓘ Disclaimer:
Please note that the information provided in this blog post is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. The author of this article is not an expert. It is important to consult with a qualified professional. The content of this blog post is based on the author’s personal experiences, research, and opinions. nor the author assumes no responsibility or liability for any consequences resulting from the use of this information. By reading this blog post, you acknowledge and accept that the information provided here is not a substitute for professional advice.

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