Sometimes on a cold day, you want a warm cocktail to heat you up from the inside out! This week's cocktail will do just that, and is super easy to make for a crowd!

I like to the think of mulled wine as the winter version of sangria (and just like with sangria, you can adjust any of the ingredients to suit your tastes!)

The best part about making mulled wine? You can throw it all in a slow cooker, and it makes your house smell AMAZING.

mulled wine
Laurie Cataldo


  • 1 bottle red wine (I use Pinot Noir, because it's what I like, but I'd definitely recommend a nice, full Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • 1/4 cup blackberry brandy
  • 1/8 cup sugar (optional)
  • 4-6 cinnamon sticks
  • 5-6 whole cloves
  • 2 whole star anise (plus additional to garnish)
  • zest of 1/2 lemon (try to keep the zest in long strips!)
  • orange slices (optional)

Add all the ingredients into a slow cooker (heat on low for a couple of hours, or until hot -- then switch to 'warm' setting) or in a saucepan* (heat until just simmering, then keep warm.) Serve it in mugs are heat-resistant glass, garnished with a cinnamon stick, orange slice, and a star anise (cuz they're just so darn pretty!)

*If you make this in a saucepan, just make sure you don't use an aluminum pan, as the wine will react with the pan and your drink will taste metallic!

Now, depending on how boozy your guests are, this recipe could serve 1-6 people (though if you can get away with one bottle of wine for 6 people, we need to chat!) and can be easily halved, doubled, or tripled.

*Bonus* - You can totally make a kid-friendly version of this by substituting grape juice for the wine and pomegranate juice or apple cider instead of the brandy!

Switch it up:

Feel free to use different spices (grated nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, juniper berries...)
Try a different flavored brandy like ginger or apple.

This makes for an excellent and festive holiday drink that your whole family is sure to enjoy!

*Please drink responsibly.*

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