I’m preparing this Slow Cooker Cranberry Mulled Wine for Thanksgiving and Christmas this year. It is SO good and perfect for staying warm and bringing in the winter holiday flavors with apple cider, cranberries, red wine and a splash of brandy. A dash of honey, cinnamon sticks and cloves add the perfect medley of spices to this festive drink.
Another great benefit of this comforting cocktail is its ability to clear out your chest. The heat of the drink combined with herbs and honey is a great natural remedy for congestion. I would know all about it these last couple of weeks. My entire family was plagued with bronchitis. I tried making my own herbal tea, but couldn’t even suck it down while holding my nose. Tea is just not my thing, but a nice warm pot of wine with a bit of spice and brandy is SO soothing. A little extra splash of brandy is just what I needed!
The beauty of this drink is that you can throw in the cranberries, apple cider and spices and let it simmer on Low for a few hours before your party (or solo day of rest). The wine and brandy get added right before serving.
You don’t want to overheat the wine and cook out vital alcoholic content! This is so essential to get through all the stress of hosting a party. You know what’s at stake here…the turkey could be too dry, the potatoes too lumpy! Just give the guests plenty of mulled wine and no one will ever notice.
I’m working on developing my tastes to become more of a sophisticated wine drinker. One who can sniff and swirl the wine and identify its creation date and origin. Ha…is that even possible? Who knows…I just drink what tastes good and that is usually something more on the fruity side. Let me tell you, this is the only way I will truly be able to enjoy a Cabernet Sauvignon. The addition of cinnamon and honey add the perfect balance of sweetness with the cranberry flavors…holy yum!
Are you looking for more great cocktail ideas for the upcoming holidays? I also recommend 2 of my other favorite cocktails that are perfect for pleasing a crowd…a Caramel Apple Sangria and Whiskey Sour Slush. If you are having trouble deciding, just make them all! They are sure to disappear quickly. All these great recipes can be found on my Saturated Saturday Cocktail Page.
- 1 Bottle Cabernet Sauvignon
- 4 C. Apple Cider
- 1 C. Orange Juice (freshly squeezed is better)
- Zest of 1 Orange
- 4 Cinnamon Sticks
- ⅓ C. Honey
- 2 C. Fresh Cranberries
- 1 Tsp. Ground Cloves
- ½ C. (4 oz.) Brandy (optional)
- Add cranberries, apple cider, orange juice, orange zest, cinnamon sticks, honey, and cloves to crock pot; gently stir.
- Heat on Low for 4 hours.
- Add wine and brandy (optional) right before serving; gently stir.
- Garnish with orange peel.