Cozy up with a cup of this homemade hot apple cider. Made with warming spices like cinnamon and cloves, this spiced apple cider is like fall in a cup! It’s perfect for getting in the fall mood, and it’s even better when you’re snuggled up by the fire.
Homemade Hot Apple Cider
Need something to celebrate the fall season? Look no further. This hot apple cider is like liquid gold! It’s made with whole fruit, honey, and plenty of fall spices. It took a few tries to get this right, but we finally got the perfect recipe! Not only is this apple cider delicious, it’s also super easy to make. This means most of the work is left to the pot where it simmers away. We also added some cranberries and star anise to give it an extra boost of flavor. Plus, you can even control how much sweetener you want to add. Whether you like your apple cider tart or sweet, you can adjust it to your liking. So if it’s chilly out, make a pot of this sweet and cozy apple cider!
- Apples: We like to use a combination of honey crisp and Granny Smith apples. If you like your apple cider on the sweeter side, you can use red delicious apples instead of Granny Smith.
- Cinnamon Sticks: Don’t skip these! They’re a key ingredient for all things warm and spicy.
- Whole Cloves: You’ll need 1 tsp of cloves for this recipe. Much like cinnamon, cloves are a staple ingredient in most fall recipes. You can find it in things like pumpkin pie.
- Whole Allspice: You can find these in the spice section of most grocery stores.
- Star Anise: This star shaped spice adds a touch of warmth and sweetness. Plus it smells a lot like licorice! A little goes a long way, so you’ll only need two.
- Orange: You’ll need ½ a large orange for this recipe.
- Cranberries: We use whole, frozen cranberries since they add a nice touch of flavor.
- Water: This is the base of the apple cider.
- Honey: Add as much or as little as you want to sweeten up your drink.
How to Make Homemade Hot Apple Cider
- First, place the ingredients in a large pot then pour in the water. Make sure the spices are submerged in the water. You may have to push them down a bit with a spoon.
- Next, bring the pot of fruit to a simmer over medium-high heat.
- Then reduce the heat, cover, and cook for 1 hour.
- After 1 hour, mash the fruit to release the juices. At this stage it will look very clumpy, but we’ll strain it later.
- Continue to cook the apple cider for 3-3.5 hours or until the flavor of the spices come through.
- Then strain the liquid using a fine mesh sieve, pressing it down to release all the juices. If you want, you can strain it a second time. This will give you a smoother drink. Serve warm in a mug or heat proof glass. To make this drink even more impressive, add a few slices of fruit along with some cranberries and spices on top!
For slowly infused recipes like this one, whole spices work best. Ground spices don’t have the same effect, and they could taste muted or raw when added to liquid.
Nope! Just cut them into quarters or slices, cutting around the stem and the core.
No. You can use maple syrup, sugar, or even brown sugar. Just be sure to add your sugar or brown sugar while it’s still hot so it can easily melt.
Yes. If you don’t drink it right away, you’ll need to store it in the fridge for up to 5 days. When you’re ready to drink it, heat it in the microwave or on the stove.
Of course! This recipe is non-alcoholic, but if you want to jazz things up a bit, feel free to add spiced rum or whiskey.
More Fall Recipes You’ll Love
If you’re a fan of cozy drinks, you’ll love this cinnamon dolce latte. It even has maple whipped cream!
A Few Tips
- Add the sweetener while it’s warm and not scalding hot. If it’s too hot, the sweetness might not come through.
- The longer you let the cider cook, the stronger the flavor. If you like your apple cider super strong, feel free to cook it longer than the recipe says.
- Strain your cider twice for a smoother drink. Doing so will get rid of any extra pulp left on the bottom.
- Keep the solids from the second strain. Once you’ve strained everything, you’ll be left with apple sauce!
This homemade hot apple cider is made with fresh apples and tons of cozy fall spices. Perfect for staying warm on a chilly autumn day!
- 7–8 large apples, cored and quartered (we use ½ honey crisp ½ granny smith)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 tsp whole cloves
- 1 tsp whole allspice
- 2 star anise
- ½ large orange, thinly sliced
- ¼ cup (30 g) whole frozen cranberries
- 6 cups (1 ½ L) water
- Honey, to taste (or any sweetener of your choice)
- Place all the ingredients into a large pot. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
- Once simmering, cover and reduce to low heat. Cook for 1 hour.
- With a wooden spoon or potato masher, mash the fruit to release the juices. You don’t need to mash them completely, but just enough to get the liquid out of the fruit. Cover and continue to cook on low for 3-3.5 hours, stirring after every hour.
- Turn off the heat to cool slightly then add the honey (or your sweetener of choice).
- Strain the liquid through a fine mesh sieve into a large pot or pitcher. Discard the solids.
- For a smoother drink, strain it one more time to get rid of any extra pulp at the bottom. Discard the solids or keep as applesauce.
- Serve warm and enjoy!
Nutrition information listed without sweetener
Keywords: apple cider recipe, homemade hot apple cider, mulled cider, hot cider recipe