Mulled Wine Recipe | Gimme Some Oven (2024)

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This traditional homemade mulled wine recipe is incredibly easy to make and always SO cozy and delicious.

Mulled Wine Recipe | Gimme Some Oven (1)

Mmmmm…mulled wine.

Also known as glühwein, vino caliente,glögg,vin brulé,bisschopswijn,vin chaud, candola, vinho quente…or literally a hundred other names, depending on where in the world life may find you. Needless to say, it seems like just about everyone in the world loves some hot wine. And clearly, I can vouch that you all do too!

I actually first shared this recipe five years ago this month, after returning home from a chilly trip to Spain and England in 2012, where my friends I loved warming up mugs of hot wine each evening in the pubs. Since then, literally hundreds of thousands of you have pulled up this recipe to simmer warm batches for yourself. (Amazing!) And I ironically now find myself living back in the continent where I first fell in love with the drink, where we have been served warm mugs of mulled wine at nearly every holiday gathering and Christmas market and food festival we attend. In our first holiday season away from home, this festive drink has felt more comforting and nostalgic and delicious as ever.

So today, in honor of my mulled wine recipe’s 5 year-iversary on the blog, I thought I would bump it back up to the top of the site (along with a new step-by-step video and fresh photos) for those of you who may also looking to simmer a cozy batch for yourself this winter.

Because after having made this recipe dozens and dozens of times myself over the years, I am absolutely convinced that homemade mulled wine just about the easiest recipe ever for winter and holiday entertaining. Truly. It literally just takes about 5 minutes to prep and can be made either on the stovetop or in a slow cooker. It’s easy to scale anywhere from a “date night” to two…up to big holiday parties with dozens. It’s totally customizable with your favorite spices and liqueurs. And it’s guaranteed to make your home smell absolutely amazing and warm everyone up on a chilly winter night.

So grab a bottle of wine and let’s get to mulling!

Mulled Wine Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Mulled Wine Ingredients:

To begin, gather your ingredients. For this mulled wine recipe, you will need:

  • Wine:No need to splurge on a pricey bottle — a mid-range bottle of dry red or white wine will do. (Or if you’re making a big batch, this is a great recipe to break out a nicer boxed wine too!) The best wine for mulled wine will be fruity and full-bodied, so that it can withstand the heat and not have its flavor completely drowned out by the aromatics. I recommend looking for a bottle of Zinfandel, Merlot, Grenache,
  • Brandy: Similar to sangria, it’s also traditional to spike your mulled wine with an extra bit of liqueur. Brandy is the traditional choice, but Cointreau (or another orange liqueur) or tawny port are also delicious alternatives.
  • Fresh oranges: One of which we will slice and mull in the wine, one of which you can slice and use as a garnish if you’d like. (Edit: To minimize bitterness, I recommend peeling the orange before simmering it in the wine.)
  • Cinnamon:I love the making mulled wine with cinnamon sticks, but you could whisk in some ground cinnamon if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Mulling spices: These vary in mulled wine from country to country, but whole cloves and star anise are my favorites, plus perhaps a few cardamom pods.
  • Sweetener:Feel free to add your favorite sweetener to taste. Sugar is classic, but I prefer to naturally sweeten mine with either maple syrup or honey.

Mulled Wine Recipe | Gimme Some Oven (3)

How To Make Mulled Wine:

To make mulled wine, simply…

  1. Combine ingredients. Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and give them a quick stir.
  2. Simmer. Heat until the wine almost reaches a simmer over medium-high heat. (Avoid letting it bubble in any way. Alcohol begins to vaporize at 172°F, so take care to ensure that the wine does not evaporate.) Reduce heat to low, cover completely, and let the wine simmer for at least 15 minutes or up to 3 hours.
  3. Strain and season. Using a fine mesh strainer, remove and discard the orange slices, cloves, cinnamon sticks, star anise and ginger. Give the mulled wine a taste, and stir in your desired amount of extra sweetener if needed.
  4. Serve. Serve warm in heatproof mugs, topped with your favorite garnishes.

Full ingredient amounts/instructions listed in the recipe below.

Mulled Wine Recipe | Gimme Some Oven (4)

Possible Variations:

Want to customize this mulled wine a bit? Feel free to…

  • Use white wine:This recipe is also delicious (and lovely) when made with a dry white wine.
  • Use a chai tea bag:In place of the cloves and star anise, feel free to steep 1 or 2 chai tea bags in the mulled wine (preferably caffeine-free, if you are serving this to a group in the evening).
  • Add different aromatics:Feel free to add in whatever aromatics sound fun! Fresh ginger slices, cardamom pods, nutmeg, allspice or lemon zest are some other great aromatics to try.
  • Add garnishes: For a festive touch, feel free to sprinkle some fresh cranberries in the pot a few minutes before serving.
  • Make Crock Pot mulled wine: You are also welcome to try making mulled wine in the slow cooker with the setting on low. I just want to clearly caution that slow cookers can run the gamut when it comes to what they consider a “low” temperature. So if you use a slow cooker, be sure to keep a very close eye on it to ensure that the wine is not accidentally overheated and simmering.

Mulled Wine Recipe | Gimme Some Oven (5)

More Holiday Drink Recipes:

Looking for more festive holiday drink ideas? Here are a few more favorite holiday drink recipes:

  • Sangria
  • Hot Toddy
  • Moscow Mule
  • Chai Eggnog
  • 3-Ingredient Cranberry Bourbon Fizz

Mulled Wine Recipe | Gimme Some Oven (6)

Mulled Wine

5 Stars4 Stars3 Stars2 Stars1 Star4.8 from 53 reviews

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
Print Recipe


Homemade mulled wine is incredibly easy to make on the stovetop (or simmer in the slow cooker), it’s easy to customize with your favorite spices and add-ins, and it is SO cozy and delicious. Perfect for winter and holiday entertaining!



  • 1 (750 ml) bottle of dry redwine
  • 1/4 cup brandy (or orange liqueur)
  • 1 orange, sliced into rounds (also peeled, if you would like a less-bitter drink)
  • 8whole cloves
  • 2cinnamon sticks
  • 2star anise
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons sugar, honey, or maple syrup to taste(or your desired sweetener)
  • optional garnishes: citrus slices (orange, lemon and/or lime), extra cinnamon sticks, extra star anise


  1. Combine ingredients. Add wine, brandy, orange slices, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, and 2 tablespoons sweetener to a large saucepan. Stir briefly to combine.
  2. Simmer.Cook the mulled wine on medium-high heat until itjust barely reaches a simmer. (Avoid letting it bubble — you don’t want to boil off the alcohol.) Reduce heat to low, cover, and let the wine simmer for at least 15 minutes or up to 3 hours.
  3. Strain. Using a fine mesh strainer, remove and discard the orange slices, cloves, cinnamon sticks, and star anise. Give the mulled wine a taste, and stir in extra sweetener if needed.
  4. Serve. Serve warm in heatproof mugs, topped with your favorite garnishes.


Cheesecloth option: You can also place the oranges, cloves, cinnamon, and star anise in a cheesecloth. Then simply strain and pull out the bundle when ready to serve.

Photos: I doubled the recipe for the photographs shown above.

posted on December 21, 2017 by Ali

Christmas, Drinks / co*cktails, Easter, Thanksgiving, Valentine's Day


Mulled Wine Recipe | Gimme Some Oven (2024)


What temperature do you heat mulled wine? ›

Mulled wine evaporates at 80 °C, so make sure to keep it below this temperature. We recommend heating and serving it at around 65 °C, using a Thermapen kitchen thermometer to monitor the temperature. Serve your festive drink in warmed glass mugs to help the wine maintain its optimal serving temperature whilst drinking.

How do you heat mulled wine without a stove? ›

Using a Y-shaped peeler, remove 1-inch strips of zest from the orange and add them to the wine mixture. Halve the orange and squeeze its juice into the bowl, and then add star anise, allspice, cloves, peppercorns, and cinnamon sticks. Microwave on high until hot but not boiling, 2½ to 3 minutes.

How long to cook off alcohol in mulled wine? ›

In short, yes, some of the alcohol burns off when boiling mulled wine, but you should only be gently bringing up to the boil and simmering for around 15-30 minutes which isn't enough time to completely remove all alcohol traces.

Can you cook mulled wine for too long? ›

One important thing to remember when making your mulled wine – don't boil or heat it for too long! You'll cook off all the alcohol and be left with tasty but boozeless mulled grape juice.

What is the best way to heat mulled wine? ›

Re-heat it – If you make mulled wine in a pot, you can always put that pot back on the stove and re-heat the wine. As long as you don't bring it to a boil, the flavour of the wine won't be affected. You may lose a little of the alcohol punch, but you still get all the rich, spicy taste of your delicious mulled wine.

Does mulled wine lose alcohol when heated? ›

Heat the wine slowly to extract the maximum aroma, and never, ever, ever allow it to boil. Firstly, you will lose the alcohol, and secondly, boiling will change the flavours of the wine.

Can I heat mulled wine in a microwave? ›

Cold mulled wine may be strained and chilled, then reheated very gently in a microwave. Much better is to strain it and either freeze it to add to your next batch, or to set it into one large or many small jellies that will brighten up ice creams and are good topped with clotted cream.

Can you microwave wine for mulled wine? ›

Combine all ingredients in a heatproof jug (or in a saucepan). You can alter the proportion of orange juice to red wine according to taste. Microwave on HIGH for 1 1/2 - 2 minutes (or heat in a saucepan on the stove) until hot but NOT BOILING. Stir.

How much alcohol is in mulled wine after heating? ›

But fear not, hot cider, hot toddy, and mulled wine lovers: Around 85 percent of your beloved alcohol will survive the heating process. The U.S. Department of Agriculture did a study in 2007 that nailed down the numbers with the magic of the scientific method.

What is the best wine to make mulled wine? ›

The best red wine to use for mulled wine is Merlot, Zinfandel or Garnacha (also called Grenache). These wines are dark, fruity and full bodied, which means they can support all of the flavors we'll be adding. Look for labels that describe the wine as “jammy” or with “notes of vanilla.”

Why should you not boil mulled wine? ›

You need to infuse the wine long enough with the spices to take on their flavour but DON'T ON ANY ACCOUNT LET THE MIXTURE BOIL as you'll be left with a bitter taste. Slow and low is the way to go. And it shouldn't be served piping hot, just comfortably - and comfortingly - warm.

Is mulled wine good for you? ›

The red wine base in mulled wine brings its own set of health benefits. Resveratrol is associated with heart health benefits and may help protect the lining of blood vessels, lower bad cholesterol levels, and prevent blood clots. When consumed in moderation, red wine has been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease.

Does homemade mulled wine go bad? ›

If you have homemade mulled wine, opt to consume it quickly within a couple of days. If you don't get to it soon enough, you can freeze your mulled wine as ice cubes or in a freezer-safe container, and it will last for up to six months.

How long is homemade mulled wine good for? ›

Then let the mulled wine cool at room temperature, transfer it to an airtight container, and store it in the fridge — it will keep well there for up to three days.

Is it safe to drink old mulled wine? ›

Once opened, mulled wine is known to only maintain its quality for 3 to 5 days. You will be able to determine whether your mulled wine has gone bad by assessing its appearance, aroma, and taste.

How do you warm up store bought mulled wine? ›

Pour the mulled wine into a large pre-heated saucepan on a low heat. Stir occasionally for few minutes until warm to the touch. Do not over-heat and never allow the wine to boil. However tempting it may be do not microwave mulled wine as the delicate spices can be over-excited and result in a rough, burnt tasting wine.

What temperature is wine cooked at? ›

Depending on what you're looking for from the answer, wine 'boils' at a lower temperature than water (78.5°C/173°F compared with 100°C/212°F).

How do you heat bottled mulled wine in the microwave? ›

Microwave on HIGH for 1 1/2 - 2 minutes (or heat in a saucepan on the stove) until hot but NOT BOILING. Stir. Pour into wine glasses and serve.

What happens when you boil mulled wine? ›

Wine is delicate, so don't crank up the heat. Simmer the wine instead, and never boil it, as sugars will caramelize. Plus, alcohol burns off as it's heated, so don't “cook” the wine. When overheated, wine can taste raisin-like or syrupy, cancelling out the original fruity flavors that enhance spices and sweeteners.

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