The Best Mulled Wine Recipe of All Time


  • 1 bottle of red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot work great)
  • 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 1 orange, zest and juice
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 4-6 whole cloves
  • 4-6 whole star anise
  • 3-4 cardamom pods (lightly crushed)
  • 1 vanilla bean (split lengthwise)
  • Optional: a splash of brandy or rum
  • Orange and lemon slices for garnish
  • Cinnamon sticks for stirring

Etiquette Pro Tip: Serve in big open cups with saucers (and napkins) to catch any drips to avoid wine stains! 


  • Pour the red wine into a large saucepan over low to medium heat. Avoid boiling the wine; you want to gently warm it.
  • Add the honey or maple syrup, orange zest, lemon zest, orange juice, and lemon juice. Stir until the sweetener is fully dissolved.
  • Place the cinnamon sticks, cloves, star anise, crushed cardamom pods, and the split vanilla bean into the saucepan. Continue to heat the mixture, allowing the spices to infuse the wine with their warm flavors.
  • Keep the heat on low and let the mulled wine simmer for about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Be mindful not to boil it, as high temperatures can cook off the alcohol.
  • If you want to give your mulled wine an extra kick, add a splash of brandy or rum just before serving. This step is entirely optional but adds a delightful twist.
  • Once your mulled wine is warm and infused with aromatic spices, it’s ready to serve. Pour it into heatproof mugs or glasses, garnish with a slice of orange and lemon, and add a cinnamon stick for stirring.
  • Pro Tip: Be careful not to drink until it has cooled to a temperature comfortable to drink. Sip slowly and savor the rich, complex flavors that only mulled wine can offer. It’s the perfect beverage to enjoy with friends and family during the winter season, whether you’re gathered around a roaring fire or simply relaxing indoors.


  • Feel free to adjust the sweetness to your liking. If you prefer a sweeter mulled wine, add more honey or maple syrup.
  • Experiment with different spices or citrus fruits to create your signature mulled wine recipe.
  • You can also make a non-alcoholic version by substituting grape juice or apple cider for the red wine.
  • Make sure to serve your mulled wine hot but not boiling to preserve its flavors and prevent guests from burning their mouths. Test the liquid via a thermometer to ensure it is a safe temperature before serving. 

Now that you have the perfect mulled wine recipe in your arsenal, it’s time to invite your loved ones over for a winter gathering. Cheers to making winter memories that will last a lifetime!
Learn about one of the best winter recipes to serve at your next dinner party here.

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