How To Make Mulled Wine

I first became familiar with how to make mulled wine when visiting Europe (I have German ancestry), where it is popular during the chilly months.

Mulled wine is an old, historical beverage dating from at least the Middle Ages, and was used to warm you up from the inside out. It's most typically a red wine concoction (although some do use white) full of spices and also fruits, such as citrus and cherries. And served hot.

A great alternative to hot apple cider, for those who can drink alcoholic beverages. (But you can also make it with non-alcoholic wines, as needed).

Mulled wine is wonderful in cold weather, of course. Sort of a comfort drink – the elderly friends and family who I know love this. It's often a tradition at Christmas and other winter holidays, and also during Halloween and Thanksgiving. Perfect for many party theme ideas.

But I also make it in the warmer months as well, when it is chilly or rainy outside.

Different versions of how to make mulled wine can be found in almost any European country. So if you have a particular ancestry that uses certain wines or spices, feel free to add them into the "brew"! Some countries sell packets of spices made just for mulled wine. You may be able to find them here in specialty markets, but I like to make it from scratch.

The easiest way on how to make mulled wine is by using a crock pot. Put you could also do it in a double boiler (not aluminum), on the Low setting. First heat it up (but do not let it begin to boil). Then set it on Low.

When I learned how to make mulled wine, it was first through some trial and error. I find the best kind of wine is heavy red wine, such as a Cabernet. I also love Port. I don't like to use "cheap" wine, because I've have bad-tasting results when it's heated and mixed with the spices.

I've tasted white wines that have been mulled, but for me they don't have as full a flavor. Mulled wine is one of my favorite easy, healthy recipes ("healthy" being relative, depending on what you put into it – I like as much natural as possible).

How To Make Mulled Wine

Here's a great recipe from my friend Marsha, cook extraordinaire:

  • 2 bottles of red wine.
  • ¼ cup Brandy (optional, but I find it to be delicious!). Brandy gives it more depth of flavor.
  • 2 orange slices.
  • 2 to 3 whole cloves.
  • 2 cinnamon sticks.
  • 1/4 cup sugar or brown sugar, or sweetener (raw honey is also delicious, if you like natural).
  • Optional…
  • Nutmeg and mace – start with ¼ teaspoon.
  • A pinch of anise.

Mix all the ingredients together in the crock pot (or pan) and cook on Low for about 2 to 3 hours, stirring frequently. Taste it from time to time as the flavor deepens, to see if you want to add more of any of the ingredients.

Towards the end (in the last half hour or so) you can add in pitted cherries and lemon slices for effect. Ladle into mugs to serve. I like pre-warmed mugs, myself.

This is best when served fresh. But I never turn down a mug of mulled wine – I think it improves with age. But then, that's probably my perspective on a lot of things at this stage of the game!

Be sure to also read:

Festive and Easy Sangria Recipe -- Sure to add sparkle to your parties and events. Choose either red or white wine recipes.  Non-alcoholic, sparkling grape juice is great too.
Delicious Healthy Dessert Recipes -- Our healthy dessert recipes are delicious and fresh. Lots of ways to modify them too, including for low salt or sugar ideas. Fun for either groups or individuals.
Perfect Party Theme Ideas -- Who doesn't love a party? Get party theme ideas for seniors that are sure to add a little life. Plus crafts and décor ideas too.


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