How To Make Mulled Wine

Tips For Mulled Wine Newbies:

If it’s your first time mulling wine, all you need to know is you’re basically just mixing wine with spice and zest (orange/lemon/lime/citrus), and then applying heat to brew it all together. It takes about 20 minutes, and it’s super easy to do.

Mulled Wine Recipe Ingredients (Cardamom, Juniper Berries, Mulling Spice, Star Anise, Bay Leaf)


Wine Mulling Basics

  • What is mulling? To “mull” is to mix thoroughly, combine, brew, or blend at length.
  • Best Wines to Use For Mulled Wine: Generally a medium-to-rich red wine is a great option for mulling wine. Wines like Sangiovese, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah/Shiraz or Merlot. If you’re opting for a white mulled wine use a dry white such as: Pinot Gris from Italy, Unoaked Chardonnay, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.
  • If you want precise guidance on wines, we’ve put together this collection of 15 wines for $15 that will work great for your mulled wine recipe.
  • Common Spices: cardamom, cinnamon sticks, nutmeg, clove, star anise, ginger, allspice, rosemary, peppercorns, fresh bay leaves, vanilla.
    TIP: If you don’t use most of these spices, you can actually buy mulling packs that come as a pre-made blend of spices.
  • Additional Additives: Brandy, Sugar/Honey, Juice (apple/cranberry)


The DOs and DON’Ts of Mulling Wine:

  • Do: Find a favourite recipe and tweak it and see if you can perfect it.
  • Do: Try substituting your own spices and amount of spice added.
  • Do: Serve in mugs (not wine glasses as they transfer heat to your hands *HOT*)
  • Don’t: Use powdered cinnamon (sticks/bark only), it makes your brew look frothy and slightly unappetizing
  • Don’t: Boil all the wine for too long – You’ll boil out all the alcohol.
  • Don’t: Use ginger beer with the mix (tried this as a “substitute” and it definitely overpowered the whole recipe).


The Best Mulled Wine Recipes


1. Classic Mulled Red Wine by Jamie Oliver

(This Mulled Wine Recipe Serves 3-4)

Food Tube Video: How to Make Mulled Wine, Jamie Oliver:

“It tastes like Christmas in a glass”

Classic Mulled Wine Ingredients

  • 2 clementines
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 lime
  • 200 g caster sugar
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 3 fresh bay leaves
  • 1 whole nutmeg , for grating
  • 1 vanilla pod, halved lengthways
  • 2 star anise
  • 2 bottles Chianti or other Italian red wine

Wine Mulling Directions:

Let everything cook away and warm up gently so the flavours have time to mingle with the wine. I like to leave my mulled wine ticking over on a really low heat and just ladle some into glasses as and when guests pop in.

  1. Peel large sections of peel from your clementines, lemon and lime using a speed peeler. Put the sugar in a large saucepan over a medium heat, add the pieces of peel and squeeze in the clementine juice. Add the cloves, cinnamon stick, bay leaves and about 10 to 12 gratings of nutmeg. Throw in your halved vanilla pod and stir in just enough red wine to cover the sugar.
  2. Let this simmer until the sugar has completely dissolved into the red wine and then bring to a boil. Keep on a rolling boil for about 4 to 5 minutes, or until you’ve got a beautiful thick syrup. The reason I’m doing this first is to create a wonderful flavour base by really getting the sugar and spices to infuse and blend well with the wine. It’s important to make a syrup base first because it needs to be quite hot, and if you do this with both bottles of wine in there you’ll burn off the alcohol.
  3. When your syrup is ready, turn the heat down to low and add your star anise and the rest of the wine. Gently heat the wine and after around 5 minutes, when it’s warm and delicious, ladle it into glasses and serve.


2. 5-Star Mulled Red Wine by Ina Garten on the Food Network)

(This Mulled Wine Recipe Serves 3-4)

Ingredients for Red Mulled Wine

  • 4 cups apple cider
  • 1 (750-ml) bottle red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 3 star anise
  • 4 oranges, peeled, for garnish

Directions for Mulled Red Wine

  1. Combine the cider, wine, honey, cinnamon sticks, zest, juice, cloves and star anise in a large saucepan
  2. Bring to a boil and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes.
  3. Pour into mugs, add an orange peel to each and serve.


3. Mulled White Wine with Pear Brandy by Epicurious

(This Mulled Wine Recipe Serves 2-3)

Ingredients for White Mulled Wine

  • One 750-ml bottle dry or off-dry white wine, preferably Riesling or Grüner Veltliner
  • 1 piece star anise
  • 2, 1/4-inch-thick slices fresh ginger
  • 3 green cardamom pods
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons honey, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup pear brandy, such as Poire Williams
  • 4 slices Asian pear

Directions for Mulled White Wine

  1. Put the wine in a medium heavy saucepan with the star anise, ginger, cardamom, cloves, and honey (start with 3 tablespoons and adjust later if necessary). Set the pan over medium heat and bring just to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat and let the wine mull for at least 15 minutes.
  2. Taste and add more honey if you like. Gently reheat the wine until it starts to steam, then turn off the heat and stir in the brandy.
  3. Divide among 4 mugs or heatproof glasses, putting a few of the whole spices in each mug if you like, and add a slice of Asian pear. Toddy away!


4. Martha Stewart’s White Mulled Wine Recipe

(This Mulled Wine Recipe Serves 2-3)

White Mulled Wine Martha Stewart RecipeImage Source: Martha Stewart

Ingredients for White Mulled Wine

  • 1 orange
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 3 whole star anise pods
  • 1 piece (1 inch) peeled fresh ginger, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 bottle (750 mL) medium-bodied white wine

Directions for Mulling White Wine

  1. Peel orange in strips using a vegetable peeler, being careful not to remove any pith (the white part). Push cloves into peel.
  2. Combine clove-studded orange peel, the star anise, ginger, water, and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar, and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, and add wine. Let stand for 20 minutes to mull.
  3. Just before serving, gently reheat mulled wine over medium heat until just beginning to simmer. Serve warm.


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