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Slow Cooker Mulled Cider

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Slow Cooker Mulled Cider is a delicious hot beverage that is perfect for making and enjoying during the fall and winter months.

mulled cider in mugs

September 30th is National Mulled Cider Day. Celebrate by making your very own homemade slow cooker mulled cider! Share this cider with everyone around you. It’s such a delicious, warm-you-up beverage! Share your mulled cider on social media by using the hashtag #NationalMulledCiderDay, #MulledCiderDay and #RecipesForHolidays. Be sure to keep an eye on my October Food Holidays page so you can keep track of all the food holidays in the month of October.

“The heat of autumn is different than the heat of summer. One ripens apples, the other turns them into cider.”

-Jane Hirshfield

The History of Mulled Cider:

Mulled Wine (spiced and heated wine) dates back to 2nd century Rome.

Mulled Cider is a descendant of Wassail- an old English beverage made from roasted apples. Wassail means, “good health.” The story goes that a young maiden presented the drink to Prince Vortigen saying “waes hael” in a toast. The term wassailing refers to the act of the pewter bowl of wassail being carried into the room with a grande display of singing and serving.

Originally, wassail was made from mulled ale, curdled cream, roasted apples, eggs, cloves, ginger, nutmeg and sugar.

Nowadays, there isn’t a difference between mulled cider and wassail. It has evolved into a non alcoholic, warmed and spiced apple cider.

ingredients displayed for making mulled cider

Ingredients needed:

  • apple cider
  • oranges
  • lemons
  • cinnamon sticks
  • brown sugar
  • cinnamon
  • nutmeg
  • cloves
slow cooker mulled cider in slow cooker

How to make Slow Cooker Mulled Cider:

Add apple cider to your slow cooker insert. Add slices oranges and lemons, cinnamon sticks and brown sugar. Heat on high for two hours. Then sprinkle in some cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Simmer on low for another hour.

slow cooker mulled cider in mugs

Add the slow cooker mulled cider to mugs, and garnish with fruit and perhaps a cinnamon stick.

mulled cider in a mug with orange and cinnamon sticks

Move over hot chocolate! Grab a cup or two of slow cooker mulled cider, and plan a wassailing tour around your neighborhood this fall!

Fun Facts About Mulled Cider:

  • Hot mulled cider is a popular beverage to make during the fall and winter months.
  • Mulled cider is now a popular beverage to make and enjoy on Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
  • Wassail (a hot mulled cider) was served while wassailing, a medieval southern English drinking ritual intended to ensure a good cider apple harvest the following year. These ceremonies still exist today!
  • Wassailing is now used as a verb describing caroling from house to house during the holidays.
  • The combination of spices varies, but it usually consists of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. Sometimes star anise is added in too. It can include fresh or dried fruit- apples, oranges or orange zest, lemons and raisins).
  • References to wassail and wassailing appear in many songs from rock bands and folk singers.
  • Wassail has been mentioned on television too- making appearances on Mystery Science Theater, the Frank Sinatra Show, The Simpsons, Frasier and Alton Brown’s Good Eats.
mulled cider in mugs

Slow Cooker Mulled Cider

Yield: 15 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes

Here's a warm beverage that everyone should make in the fall and winter months!


  • 1 gallon of apple cider
  • 2 medium oranges, sliced
  • 2 lemons, sliced
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • Dash of ground cinnamon
  • Dash of ground nutmeg
  • Dash of ground cloves


Add apple cider to the slow cooker. You’ll need to add the fruit to it, so if you cannot fit the whole gallon, don’t worry about it.

Add the fruit to the cider. Add the cinnamon sticks. Stir in the brown sugar.

Heat, covered, on high for 2 hours. Add the light sprinkle of spices. Cover again, turn down to low and heat for one more hour. At this point, it’s ready to serve.

You can add in more cider as the mulled cider in the slow cooker begins to disappear. Just stir it in, and the spices will combine with the newly poured cider.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 15 Serving Size: 1 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 140Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 11mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 1gSugar: 29gProtein: 1g

Nutritional information is estimated using a nutrition calculator, so it's not likely to be 100% accurate.

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