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Citrus-Free, Additive-Free Mulled Cider

User Rating 5 Star Rating (1 Review)


Updated October 21, 2008

Mulled cider recipes generally include either orange juice or an orange studded with cloves. Convenient boxed spice mixes may or may not include citrus but generally do include the catch-all term "spices," which is safe for very few people with allergies. This recipe is simple, free from citrus, and spicy enough to be festive. I generally use ground spices (with the exception of cinnamon). But if you prefer a clearer cider, you can substitute whole spices in a tea ball or disposable tea strainers.

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes


  • 5 cups apple cider
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 Tbsp. ground ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cloves
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar (if necessary)


  1. In a medium saucepan, bring cider to a boil over medium heat. Stir in all other ingredients except for brown sugar. Then reduce heat to a bare simmer.
  2. Simmer cider, uncovered, for about 20 minutes. Taste and add up to 2 Tbsp. brown sugar if cider needs to be sweeter.

To serve: Ladle hot cider into mugs. Garnish with whipped cream or your favorite dairy-free topping, if desired. Makes about 4 cups.

Cooking larger/smaller quantities: This recipe works well for virtually any quantity of cider. Be aware, however, that you'll lose some cider to evaporation (the exact amount depends on how wide your pan is and how gently your cider simmers). Expect to lose about a cup of cider in a medium saucepan; a larger saucepan will lose a little more. It may be wise to start with a little more cider than you think you'll need -- you'll find that people want seconds.

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