Mulled Cider and Mulled Apple Juice for a Non-Alcoholic Alternative

Mulled Cider or Mulled Apple Juice

Christmas, Drinks | 14th December 2016 | By

I’m not quite sure why mulled wine has become such a classic British drink at Christmas. Apple cider is a more traditional beverage after all. I’m as partial to a glass or two of mulled wine as anyone else, but given the choice I’d go for mulled cider every time. It has a lighter, fruitier and more refreshing taste. You don’t need to add as much sugar either. Mulled apple juice can be served alongside or even instead of, allowing drinkers and non-drinkers alike to join in the festive cheer.

At a time of year when it’s cold, wet or grey, a drop of mulled cider or apple juice is warming, cheering and tasty. It also acts as an air freshener for the house, filling it with the scent of fruit and spices. Mulled cider or mulled apple juice are very easy to make, the main thing that’s required is time for the flavours to infuse. Stud an organic orange with cloves, slice some apples, throw in a cinnamon stick, some cardamom pods and a grating of nutmeg and you’re done. A dash of calvados, if you have it to hand, can add to the general merriment. If you’re really pushed for time, you could just use an organic mulled cider spices pouch from Steenbergs.

Mulled Cider or Mulled Apple Juice

Let’s get hygge. A glass of mulled cider or apple juice is at its best when accompanied by a mince pie or even a chilli and chocolate mincemeat slice. Christmas has arrived, let the feasting begin.

For more festive recipes, head on over to the Tin and Thyme Advent calendar where you’ll find a delicious Christmas recipe from a fellow blogger behind each door. And don’t forget to head over to the Tin and Thyme Christmas gift guide if you’re in need of ideas for food loving friends and family.

So how about ditching the mulled wine this year and trying mulled cider instead?

0 from 0 votes
Mulled Cider or Mulled Apple Juice
Mulled Cider or Mulled Apple Juice
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
15 mins
Ditch the mulled wine this Christmas and make mulled cider or mulled apple juice instead. It's lighter, fruitier and more refreshing.
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: British
Keywords: apple juice, apples, cider, spices
Servings: 6 people
Author: Choclette
  • 25 cl water
  • 1-2 tbsp golden granulated sugar for mulled cider only
  • 1 organic orange
  • 6 cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 cardamom pods
  • a grating of nutmeg
  • 1 litre apple cider or apple juice
  • 1 dessert apple - sliced
  • a dash of calvados or apple brandy optional
  1. Pour the water into a large pan and place over a moderate heat.
  2. Stir in the sugar according to how sweet you like it. You won't need any if using apple juice.
  3. Half the orange and stud one half with the cloves. Juice the other half and add both to the mix.
  4. Throw in the spices and bring to the boil. Simmer for a couple of minutes.
  5. Add the cider (or apple juice) and warm the mixture until it's not quite simmering. Keep at this temperature, stirring occasionally for 8-15 minutes. Any alcohol will be lost if it reaches boiling point.
  6. Remove from the heat, add the apple slices, stir in the calvados or apple brandy if using and pour into a serving vessel or ladle straight into glasses.
Recipe Notes

Double or triple the quantities as needed.

Other recipes for festive drinks you might like

Keep in Touch

If you make this mulled cider or apple juice, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below or via social media. A photo is always good too. For more delicious and nutritious recipes, follow me on TwitterFacebook, Instagram or Pinterest.

If you like the mulled cider recipe, why not pin it to remind you later?

Mulled Cidre and Mulled Apple Juice


  1. Leave a Reply

    14th December 2016

    I’m ashamed to say I don’t think I’ve ever had mulled cider but I’d happily drink some of this – looks delicious with the cinnamon stick in!

  2. Leave a Reply

    14th December 2016

    I actually prefer mulled cider (and the non-alcoholic mulled apple juice) to mulled wine, mostly because mulled wine is too tannic for me, even with sugar added to balance that. This recipe looks perfect!

    • Leave a Reply

      16th December 2016

      Thanks Kavey, that’s very nice of you to say. I guess fewer tannins is what I meant by “lighter”.

    • Leave a Reply

      14th December 2016

      Thanks, it’s just so good at this time of year and for any festive gathering.

  3. Leave a Reply

    14th December 2016

    I am all for the mulled cider, in fact we call in Bonfire Juice 🙂
    Happy crimbo Choclette, here’s wishing you a relaxed and tasty Christmas & a rocking 2017!
    Janie x

    • Leave a Reply

      16th December 2016

      Aw, thanks Janie. Happy Crimbo to you too. Bonfire juice is a brilliant name. I just need a bonfire now.

  4. Leave a Reply

    14th December 2016

    I love mulled cider and this looks soooo good. I just want to dive right in (with a glass, all civilised-like, mind).

    • Leave a Reply

      16th December 2016

      Phew, I’m glad to hear you’re happy to try this with a glass Kate. I have visions … 😀

  5. Leave a Reply

    Mel | A vIrtual Vegan
    15th December 2016

    I have never had mulled cider or apple juice which is strange as I know I’d love it. I love you ride of drinking it with a mince pie as an accompaniment. I need to try this over Christmas!

  6. Leave a Reply

    15th December 2016

    I love mulled cider, too. I think that it is not only lighter, fruitier and more refreshing but it is also healthier!

    • Leave a Reply

      16th December 2016

      Interesting, I hadn’t thought about that aspect of it. Doesn’t red wine have lots of antioxidents?

    • Leave a Reply

      16th December 2016

      Yes, I usually do a bowl of each when I’ve got friends coming round; non-drinkers don’t have to feel left out.

  7. Leave a Reply

    17th December 2016

    Yay to non-alcoholic Christmas beverages 😀 As a non drinker, this sounds amazing! I’ve never had anything like this but it sounds so delicious and warming 😀 and it’s so easy to make! Must give it a try 🙂

    • Leave a Reply

      17th December 2016

      Oh you must. Mulled apple juice is fab for non drinkers as not only is it delicious and warming, but they don’t need to feel left out.

  8. Leave a Reply

    Dean Johnson
    14th October 2018

    Absolutely love this!! Thank you.

Leave a Comment

You can use these HTML tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>