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Dutch Oven Mulled Apple Cider

Mulled Apple Cider made in the dutch oven fills your house with the aroma of the holidays. Gingerbread spices, sweet local apple cider, and the vibrant flavors associated with holiday meals come together in a traditional warm drink the whole family can enjoy.

Close up image of hot mulled apple cider


Recipe Inspiration

Being located in Maine, we are blessed to have access to fresh Apple Cider nearly all year long. Our own farm in recent years has been the source of many gallons of apple cider thanks to a neighbor’s cider press. And it’s certainly on our list of things to obtain for our journey on this farm.

Even before the time of farm life for our family, I worked at a coffee shop. My dad would frequently visit me on his way home from work or I would bring drinks home for everyone after my shift. His favorite during the fall season was a hot cup of apple cider with caramel flavoring.

So when thinking about dutch oven drinks I could make for you to enjoy this holiday season, you know hot apple cider was there at the top of the list. So let’s dive in.

Overhead image of a dutch oven with a ladle serving hot mulled apple cider into glass mugs.

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Apple Cider
  • Whole Cranberries
  • Orange Slices
  • Cinnamon Sticks
  • Whole Cloves
  • Whole Allspice Berries
  • Star Anise
  • Nutmeg
  • Whiskey (optional)

Tools You May Need

How to Make Mulled Apple Cider Video

This recipe really couldn’t be any easier. Tie the spices in a piece of cheese cloth, or simply toss them into the dutch oven if you’re okay with straining later. Add the apple cider and fruit. Bring to a boil on the stovetop and reduce to a simmer. Taste as you go. The intensity of the spices will increase as the cider reduces. I found mine to reduce by half when I was happy with the flavor. To make spiked mulled cider, add whiskey or a bourbon for best flavor.

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Dutch Oven Mulled Apple Cider. So easy to make and your house will smell amazing! #learnontiktok #foodtiktok #applecider #castironcooking

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Additional Spices You Can Include

  • Cardamom
  • Ginger
  • Peppercorns
  • Other dried or fresh fruit such as apples, apricots, or dried blueberries
Overhead process image of mulled apple cider being made in a dutch oven with oranges, cranberries, cinnamon and spices.

Common Questions About Mulled Cider

Yes, you can use apple juice instead of cider. From my research, the suggestion is to add brown sugar during the heating process.

Cider you get from the store sometimes has spices added to it, but not commonly. Typically you would drink apple cider cold and it is by nature non-alcoholic. Mulled cider on the other had is served hot and has had additional spices infused into the cider. Mulled cider can be served non-alcoholic but is often served with brandy, bourbon, rum, rye, or scotch.

If you use an instant-read thermometer, look for between 130F-160F for the perfect temperature of a hot beverage.

Easy Cranberry Mulled Apple Cider in a cup with hot cider and cranberries being poured in.

Tips

  • This recipe is easy to double, triple, etc. and takes really no time at all to bring together. Consider how large your crowd will be and plan accordingly for how much apple cider you will need. When all is said and done, the apple cider reduces by half. So buy a bit more than you think you’ll need.
  • Love the idea of Caramel Mulled Cider but don’t think all your guests will? Grab multiple flavors of syrup and pumps, then set out at a drink station. Everyone can add flavors as they would like to cider, hot chocolate, coffee, and whatever other drinks you’re serving. They even make fruit flavored syrups for cold drinks!
  • Make multiple batches days prior to your get-together and on the day of, serve from a crockpot or a pot kept warm on the stove.
  • For easy removal of spices, wrap in a thin layer of cheesecloth that has been tied, removing the need for straining.
  • Dutch oven busy preparing other recipes? This can be done in the slow cooker as well. Add all the ingredients and set to low for 8 hours.
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Dutch Oven Mulled Apple Cider Recipe

Spiced and spiked, this mulled apple cider is perfect for the holiday season. Make a large batch right in the dutch oven to keep the party going all night. Infused with fall flavors and served hot.
Print Recipe
Prep Time:5 mins
Cook Time:30 mins
Total Time:35 mins

Equipment

  • 7 quart dutch oven
  • handheld zester
  • cheesecloth
  • funnel
  • ladle

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon apple cider
  • 1 orange sliced
  • 1 cup whole cranberries
  • 5 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg fresh
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole allspice berries

Optional

  • whiskey optional
  • caramel flavoring optional

Instructions

  • Add all primary ingredients to a large dutch oven. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes on the stovetop. Serve warm with listed optional ingredients.

Notes

Once reduced, this single recipe makes enough for about a half-gallon, serving about 8 people a cup each. As mentioned in the blog post, this recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, or even not reduced as much as I did here. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 177kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 20mg | Potassium: 296mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 63IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Apple, apple cider, christmas, dutch oven, fall, holiday recipes, thanksgiving
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 177kcal
Author: Katie Chase

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