| | |

Apple Spiced Wassail Recipe

This Apple Spiced Wassail Recipe is a cozy, 15 minute, incredibly delicious holiday beverage everyone can enjoy. Made with warm spices, cider, and citrus; it’s a quick and simple warm drink to make for Christmas and New Year’s celebrations!

Two pewter mugs of wassail with fruit slices and a cinnamon stick

When is Wassail Traditionally Served?

New Year’s Eve Anglo-Saxon traditions included a celebration in the halls of the Lord of the Manor. Among a feast or all feast, they would also feature a large pewter or silver bowl filled with wassail.

In those days, it was often a mixture of cider, ale and mead, and infused with warm spices and fresh crab apples.

Other traditions hold to having wassail at Twelfth Night while other traditions hold to drinking wassail during all of the 12 Days of Christmas.

Wassailing Tradition

In the middle ages, wassailing was an exchange between fudal lords and peasants. The peasants would “visit” the lord’s hall. The song, “Here We Come A-wassailing“, describes the tradition best:

“We are not daily beggars that beg from door to door
But we are friendly neighbours whom you have seen before.”

The lord of the manor would give food and drink to the peasants in exchange for their blessing and goodwill, i.e.

“Love and joy come to you,
And to you your wassail too;
And God bless you and send you
a Happy New Year.”

Wassail Ingredients

This incredibly simple warm drink recipe is made with a handful of ingredients, some spices, and juice. The exact measurements are in the recipe card below. Here’s what you need:

  • 100% apple cider
  • Orange juice
  • Spices: Cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, apple pie spice (if you don’t have this on hand, you can substitute ground ginger and nutmeg)
  • Fresh fruit: sliced apples and oranges
  • Optional Ingredients: Sometimes I like to add a star anise and fresh rosemary when I have it on hand. Anise is a strong flavor that some love so I’m careful when adding it to this wassail.
Top view of wassail in a large pan with slices of fruit, juice and herbs

How to Make Wassail

I’ve mentioned how seriously simple this recipe is. Here’s all you need to do:

Choose a large pan or Dutch oven and fill it with apple cider and orange juice. Then mix in the spices, add fruit slices and warm through over medium low heat. This could take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes, but it can definitely hang out on the cooktop for a while.

The only important tip you need to know is don’t let it boil.

Oh, and be prepared for a lovely, holiday aroma to fill your kitchen!

Wassail Questions

What is the difference between spiced cider and wassail?

Honestly, not a whole lot. Both mulled cider and wassail are considered a warmed spiced juice. Traditionally, wassail is made with apple cider or even juice, where mulled ciders can be made with cranberry or other juice drinks.

What is wassail made of?

Traditional wassail is made with hard liquor, apples, brandy, and spices. This mock wassail recipe is nonalcoholic and is for everyone. It’s made with cider, orange juice, spices, and slices of apples and oranges.

Why is it called “wassail?”

From the Anglo-Saxon, the phrase ‘waes hael’, which means ‘good health,’ was traditionally served in large bowl, often made of pewter or silver, and served in mugs. Today, its referred to as “wassail.”

More Recipes You May Also Enjoy

SAVE THIS AND PIN IT FOR LATER!

Make sure you don’t lose track of this recipe by pinning it for later! If you are not already you can follow me on Pinterest, as well as keep up with me on FacebookInstagram, and YouTube. If you make this recipe I would also love it if you’d tag me in your photos and leave a star rating below!

Side view of a mug of wassail and a pot of wassail in the background
Two pewter mugs of wassail with fruit slices and a cinnamon stick

Apple Spice Wassail

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

This Apple Spiced Wassail Recipe is a cozy, 15 minute, incredibly delicious holiday beverage everyone can enjoy. Made with warm spices, cider, and citrus; it's a quick and simple warm drink to make for Christmas and New Year's celebrations!

Ingredients

  • 8 cups 100% apple cider
  • 2 cups orange juice
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 12 whole cloves (or 1 teaspoon ground cloves)
  • 1 apple, sliced
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • ½ teaspoon apple pie spice or (1/4 tsp each ground ginger and nutmeg)
  • Garnish: apple slices, fresh cranberries

Instructions

  1. In a Dutch oven, combine cider, orange juice, cinnamon sticks, apple and orange slices, cinnamon sticks and seasoning.
  2. Bring to a simmer over medium low heat. Continue to simmer until heated through, about 10 to 15 minutes (do not boil). Garnish with apple slices and cranberries, if desired.

Notes

Write additional notes

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Did you make this recipe?

Follow me on Pinterest for more and use the "Pin" button at the top of the recipe card.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *