It's getting to be that time of year where I start craving all the warm, cozy, bourbon drinks! If you feel the same, you are going to love this super easy Spiked Mulled Cider that will warm you right up!
If you've never tried mulled apple cider before- let me tell you it is delicious. Essentially it is apple cider flavored with spices and citrus, but in this recipe, we are also adding in bourbon! I originally created this recipe for World Market and loved it so much I knew I had to share it on SGTO too!
A lot of recipes call for hours of simmering time, but I found that using mulling spices and apple cider vs. apple juice led to a cocktail that was quicker to make and just as delicious and a lot easier!
How to make mulled cider with bourbon
Luckily, making hot apple cider with bourbon or whiskey is actually very easy to do!
- Apple Cider (I used a local cider made in WA)
- Mulling Spices- these are the spices I used from World Market. Also, here is a fun recipe to make your own mulling spices!
- Fresh Orange Slices
- Fresh Apple Slices
- Bourbon (or whisky if you prefer!)
Add to pot & simmer
Basically, all you have to do is add the apple cider, mulling spices, orange slices, and apple slices to a large pot and simmer over low heat for 45 minutes until the apple cider has been infused with flavor!
You DO NOT want the mixture to boil or the apple cider may reduce too much and actually become too sweet, so simmering at a low heat really is crucial.
Strain & add in bourbon
Before serving, strain out any spices or fruit in the hot apple cider. I prefer to do this glass by glass (see video for reference) and used a small handheld strainer. However, you can also strain the mulled cider by placing a colander on top of a clean pot and pouring the cider through there.
Then, fill up each glass with 8 oz of hot mulled apple cider and pour in 1.5 oz of bourbon.
Add garnishes & serve:
This step is totally optional, but I liked to serve my spiked hot apple cider with a fresh orange slice or apple wedge and a whole cinnamon stick for a cocktail that looks as good as it tastes. However, this really isn't necessary for the flavor so feel free to skip this step!
Then, serve and enjoy this warm Holiday cocktail!
FAQ & Substitutions:
For sure! I prefer bourbon but whiskey or a dark rum with caramel flavors would also work wonderfully.
I used Makers Mark for this recipe which is one of my favorite bourbon brands. However, other brands I also recommend Four Roses or Woodford Reserve as other great options.
Leftover spiked cider can be stored in a closed container in the fridge for 2-3 days. Here is a great air tight pitcher to store it in.
Just make it has cooled completely before adding to the fridge. Also, make sure to strain the spices and fruit before storing or the flavor might be too intense if left to soak. It can be enjoyed cold or can be reheated on the stove to be enjoyed warm.
This Spiked Mulled Apple Cider truly makes the best Holiday cocktail for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or even Hanukkah!
Though it may not be traditional, I personally know we will be bringing it to our Hanukkah celebrations this year to pair with crispy Vegan Potato Latkes & Vegan Challah. Enjoy!
More Fall & Winter cocktail recipes you will love:
If you loved this recipe, please leave a 5-star review on the recipe card. I always appreciate your feedback and support! You can also follow along on my Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and Pinterest or sign up for our newsletter!
Spiked Mulled Apple Cider
- ½ gallon apple cider
- ¼ cup mulling spices
- 4 orange slices optional, cut into wedges
- 3-4 slices apple slices optional
- 8 oz bourbon I prefer 8 oz, but up to 12 oz can be added for a stronger cocktail
- 8 cinnamon sticks optional, as garnish
- 8 whole star anise optional, as garnish
- Add the apple cider, mulling spices, 2 orange slices, and 3-4 apple slices to a large soup pot. Then, turn on the heat, stir, and cook over low heat for 20-30 minutes until the cider is infused with flavor.
- Remove the pot of cider from the heat and pour 8 oz strained mulled cider into a large mug. Add 1 oz bourbon to each mug. You can also add all the bourbon directly to the pot of mulled cider before serving and stir it in. Before serving, garnish with optional orange slices, cinnamon sticks, or star anise and stir. Enjoy!
- These are the mulling spices I used from World Market. Also, here is a fun recipe to make your own mulling spices!
- Leftover mulled cider can be stored in a closed container in the fridge for 2-3 days. Before storing, make sure to strain out all the mulling spices and fruit slices. Leftovers can be enjoyed cold or reheated on the stove to enjoy warm.
- Bourbon can be subbed 1:1 with any alcohol. Other good choices would be whiskey or dark rum.