“Spiced Cranberry Cider”

It’s another sunny, cold morning here in Chicago. All you want to do is cuddle up with a cozy blanket and something warm in your hands. So, one cold evening I wanted a cup of spiced cider. But guess what, we were out of apple cider. However, I had cranberry juice in the house. I thought to myself, “Self what would happen if I used cranberry juice in place of apple cider?” Consequently, Spiced Cranberry Cider was born.

Cranberry is something you may already have in your house especially if you have kids. Kids love their juice. Well I had Ocean Spray brand left from the holidays and I will say this drink is just what the doctor ordered on a cold winters night.

Spiced Cranberry Cider

Spiced Cranberry Cider is made with cranberry juice in addition to cinnamon stick, star anise pods, whole allspice, a knob of fresh ginger, and a little honey for a hint of sweetness. You can leave the honey out if you desire no added sugar. Once cider is made, taste to see if it’s needed. The honey takes the edge from the tartness of the cranberry juice. I like it both ways but you be the judge.

Mix cider ingredients in a pot, bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for about 15 minutes. Strain into desired serving pitcher and serve warm or chilled in mugs. You can garnish with cinnamon sticks and anise pods for presentation especially if serving at a gathering however not a must have. Mix up a big pot and keep warm on stove top for parties. This sweet, tart concoction will perfume your home with the smell of warming spices not to mention the color is beautiful. Grab a mug and enjoy!

Spiced Cranberry Cider

Spiced Cranberry Cider
Warm Your Tummy! – Spiced Cranberry Cider
Spiced Cranberry Cider
Spiced Cranberry Cider – Sweet and Tart with Warming Spices


Spiced Cranberry Cider

4 cups cranberry juice

1 large cinnamon stick (2 if small)

1 t. whole allspice

2 star anise pods

1/2-inch knob of fresh ginger, sliced thin

1 T. honey

Mix all ingredients in a 2-quart saucepan. Bring cider to boil; then reduce to simmer for about 15 minutes. Add in honey and stir until dissolved. Strain cider into desired pitcher or serving container; discard spices. Pour cider into mugs and garnish with star anise pods or cinnamon sticks, if desired.

Serve warm or chilled.

Makes 4 servings.

Note:  Recipe can easily be made into larger batches if needed.


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Michelle Heyden Written by: