Hot Apple Cider Recipe (Stovetop, Slow Cooker & Instant Pot Instructions)

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apple-cider-recipe

Whether it’s wielding icicle lightsabers at their grandparents or plunging fully clothed into the ocean in December, my kids seem determined to enjoy each year’s winter play opportunities to the fullest. When they come in to warm up I usually serve herbal tea, but sometimes I surprise them with this easy hot apple cider recipe. Like my homemade hot chocolate, it’s a rare treat, but it’s one that comes with a bonus. It serves as the base for hot buttered rum. 🙂

Making apple cider from scratch is so much easier than you might think. You don’t even need to core the apples – just cut them into four slices, add some water, spices and a few orange slices if you have them – then simmer until your whole house smells delicious and your family starts wandering into the kitchen to see what’s going on.

Oh, and one quick note: I often blend this hot apple cider with a little butter to make it creamy. Basically, it’s buttered rum without the rum, which tastes amazing and helps keep my kids blood sugar stable while they sip.

If you want to try it you’ll find details in the recipe, but first you might be wondering . . .

What are the best apples for making hot cider?

There are a lot of opinions on this subject. Personally, I’ve tried using all sweet apples (honeycrisp, gala, fuji, etc.) and a mix of sweet and tart like granny smith. I like the mix, but ultimately it’s the spices that really make the cider shine and both are absolutely delicious.

Ingredients for hot apple cider ready to simmer in a pot Print Pin5 from 3 votes

Easy Hot Apple Cider Recipe (Stovetop, Slow Cooker & Instant Pot Instructions)

Make homemade apple cider from scratch using just fresh apples , spices and water (plus a few slices of orange if you have them on hand). This recipe makes approximately 4 cups. Servings 4 Calories 232kcal Author Mommypotamus

  • 5 apples
  • 4 cups water
  • 2-3 cinnamon sticks
  • 2-3 star anise
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 cardamom pods (optional)
  • 4 whole allspice (optional)
  • 3-4 slices of orange (optional)
  • 4-8 tbsp butter (optional)

Stovetop Instructions

  • Quarter the apples (no need to seed or core them) and place them in a medium pot.
  • Add the spices, water and orange slices (if you're adding them), then cover the pot and bring the water to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for two hours. The water may not cover all the apples at first – that's okay. As they release their liquid and become softer, just mash them down using a potato masher.
  • When the cider is ready, use a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to separate the liquid from the apples, orange slices and spices.
  • Check for sweetness. If needed, add coconut sugar or maple syrup in 1 tablespoon increments until it reaches the sweetness level you prefer.
  • Optional Step: Blend with butter if desired. I usually just pour the apple cider back in the pot, add the butter, and blend with an immersion blender, but you could pour the cider/butter into a traditional blender and mix it up that way, too.
  • Serve warm with cinnamon sticks, star anise, or fresh cranberries for garnish if desired.

Slow Cooker Instructions

  • Place apples, spices, water and orange slices (if using) in a slow cooker.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.
  • When the cider is ready, use a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to separate the liquid from the apples, orange slices and spices.
  • Check for sweetness. If needed, add coconut sugar or maple syrup in 1 tablespoon increments until it reaches the sweetness level you prefer.
  • Optional Step: Blend with butter if desired. I usually just pour the apple cider back into the slow cooker, add butter, and use an immersion blender to blend. Another option is to pour the cider and abutter into a blender and mix it up that way. Serve warm with cinnamon sticks, star anise, or fresh cranberries for garnish if desired.
  • Serve warm with cinnamon sticks, star anise, or fresh cranberries for garnish if desired.

Instant Pot Instructions

  • Place the apples, spices, water and orange slices (if using) in an Instant Pot.
  • Close the pressure cooker lid, set the valve to the "seal" position, and cook on high pressure for 30 minutes.
  • After 30 minutes, slowly turn the pressure release valve to begin venting pressurized steam. Once the valve has finished releasing steam, twist and turn the lid open.
  • Use a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to separate the liquid from the apples, orange slices and spices.
  • Taste and check the sweetness. If you'd like it to be a little sweeter, add 1 tablespoon of coconut sugar or maple syrup. Taste again and add more if needed.
  • Optional Step: Blend with butter if desired. After straining out the apples spices I usually pour the apple cider back in the Instant Pot, add the butter, and blend with an immersion blender, but you could pour the cider and butter into a traditional blender and mix it up that way, too.
  • Serve warm with cinnamon sticks, star anise, or fresh cranberries for garnish if desired.

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 232kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 116mg | Potassium: 266mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 473IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 1mg

Want more apple and slow cooker recipes?

Slow Cooker Apples With Salted Caramel – These slow cooker apples can be quickly put together before bed, then the whole kitchen is filled a delicious aroma in the morning. My kids love them – I hope your family will, too.

Easy Apple Crisp – Made with a scrumptious crisp topping layered over a filling similar to apple pie, this easy apple crisp recipe is one of my family’s favorite cool weather desserts.

3 Ingredient Crock Pot Applesauce from Cook Eat Paleo – This easy recipe is made with no added sugar, and it’s delish!

Baked Gluten-Free Apple Cider Donuts from Lexi’s Clean Kitchen – This yummy recipe can be made with the fresh apple cider recipe above!

homemade-apple-cider-recipe

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