As fall fades into winter and the weather starts to get that first nip in the air, my mind automatically starts to drift to the holiday season. Once it gets close to Christmas, it is time to make this super easy Wassail recipe.
The warm and comforting mulling spices, along with apple juice, orange, pineapple, and cranberry juice are like a warm and comforting hug from your grandma. This super easy wassail recipe is sure to warm you up on a cold evening and make you feel like you are home!
So What Exactly is Wassail?
Wassail is a warm holiday drink that combines fruit juices and mulled spices. It is the souped-up version of hot apple cider, although it is much tastier in my opinion. Sometimes you can find it as a hot toddy of sorts or a warm drink spiked with alcohol.
Have no fear as this version is a non-alcoholic version that can be served to everyone. If you prefer to have it with alcohol, you could just add what you like to it. Normally it would be brandy or rum.
Wassail combines apple cider, orange juice, pineapple juice, and mulling spices. It is a warm drink that is served around the holidays or at large gathering in the winter months. Wassail has been around for many centuries, and it is actually an old English drink that is served in the autumn or wintertime.
This recipe is not a 100% traditional Wassail recipe but it is close enough. What makes this recipe super easy is it is made in a slow cooker such as a Crockpot. Once you mix in all the ingredients, you just let it sit in the slow cooker for a few hours.
While all the flavors merry together, the second great thing about this recipe is how awesome your house is going to smell. Guest will swear your house is the Yankee Candle store. If this is your first time trying it, you are going to be in for a treat! It is such a delicious drink.
How To Make This Super Easy Wassail Recipe
I like to find the best possible ingredients that I can for this recipe as it will give you the best results. I will also note that we are going to use ground spices instead of whole spices as some recipes will call for. This is what makes this recipe “Easy.” The best part is all you do is dump and go then you are done. No straining with cheese cloth or none of that.
The first thing you need to make Wassail is apple cider. I really like the sweetness of apple in this drink. Also, I like to buy apple cider with the mother in it. If you don’t like pulp or floating things in your drink, then you can buy strained apple cider. In my opinion the pulp and mother aid in the health benefits of this drink and make it more filling. You will need 8 cups of apple cider
Just like with the apple cider and the mother, I like to buy orange juice with the pulp. I know not all are a fan of that so if you do not like that, just buy the type that you do like. You will need 2 cups of orange juice.
I love the way pineapple juice really brings this drink to life. Not only does it give it a nice fruity flavor, but it brings some added sugar to the drink as well. After adding the fruit juices, I feel as if this recipe has enough sweetness for me. Some recipes call for adding in some brown or white sugar. I think the pineapple juice, as well as the other juices, really sweetens this recipe enough for me. You will need 2 cups of pineapple juice.
Cranberry is sweet and sour. It adds a nice zing and also brings in some darker colors to the recipe. You will need 1 cup of cranberry juice.
Not only is ginger good for you, but it is also a great spice that really works well in this recipe. The ginger is slightly sweet with a hint of citrus and some peppery notes. You will need ½ teaspoon of ginger.
Nutmeg is another mulling spice. Just like ground clove, it is a warm spice with a nutty flavor. You will need ¼ teaspoon of ground nutmeg.
Next, we have allspice. Allspice is a berry that is dried. It has sweet and savory notes. Allspice is added for the warmth and pizzazz! You will need ¼ teaspoon of allspice.
Cinnamon is also another spice that has many great health benefits. In this recipe, we are going to use cinnamon sticks. You will need 3 cinnamon sticks for the cooking portion of this recipe.
I like to use a cinnamon stick as a garnish in each cup of wassail that is served. If you would like to do that, I would get 1 cinnamon stick per cup of wassail. If you cannot find cinnamon sticks, you can substitute them with ground cinnamon. At that point, you would use 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
If you feel that this mixture is not sweet enough, add ¼ cup of brown sugar. Star Anise is also another mulling spice that can be added to this recipe if you like. Candied ginger could also be used in place of ground ginger. In this case, I would omit the optional brown sugar. Orange slices can be cut in half and put on the rim of your cup for a garnish along with whole cloves, a few cranberries, and one cinnamon stick per cup.
Step One: Grab a crock pot or other slow cooker.
Step Two: Pour in the apple cider, orange juice, pineapple juice, and cranberry juice.
Step Three: Using a wooden spoon, mix the juices together by stirring well.
Step Four: Add in the ground ginger, ground nutmeg, and allspice.
Step Five: Mix these spices up as well as you can. With the juice being cold, sometimes they do not mix well. Do not fret, as the Wassail heats up, the spices will blend together.
Step Six: Add in the Cinnamon Sticks.
Step Seven: Cook in the crockpot for two hours on high or four hours on low.
Step Eight: Ladle into cups and serve. Garnish each cup with one cinnamon stick, half a slice of an orange on the rim of the cup, and a few whole cloves and cranberries per cup.
- Wassail makes a great gift! Fill up quart-size mason jars and wrap some twine with a note or pretty ribbon around it.
- Wassail can be frozen to save for a later time when you are short on time. Make ahead and put into freezer-safe containers, then freeze.
- Buy a crockpot or slow cooker that has a timer on it. Once the Wassail has cooked the desired amount of time, the Crockpot then switches over to warm. This is great if you have to go to work the morning of the event. Just make ahead and it is ready when you get home to set up for your party.
Super Easy Wassail Recipe (Non-Alcoholic)
- Crockpot or Slow Cooker
- 8 cups apple cider
- 2 cups orange juice
- 2 cups pineapple juice
- 1 cup cranberry juice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- 3 whole cinnamon sticks
- Orange Slices cut in half put one half orange slice on the rim of each cup
- Whole Cinnamon Sticks add one cinnamon stick per cup
- Cranberries add a few cranberries per cup
- Whole Cloves add a couple whole cloves per cup
- Step One: Grab a crock pot or other slow cooker.
- Step Two: Pour in the apple cider, orange juice, pineapple juice, cranberry juice.
- Step Three: Using a wooden spoon, mix the juices together by stirring well.
- Step Four: Add in the ground ginger, ground clove, ground nutmeg, and allspice.
- Step Five: Mix these spices up as well as you can. With the juice being cold, sometimes they do not mix well. Do not fret, as the Wassail heats up, the spices will blend together.
- Step Six: Add in the Cinnamon Sticks.
- Step Seven: Cook in the crockpot for two hours on high or four hours on low.
- Step Eight: Ladle into cups and serve. Garnish each cup with one cinnamon stick, half a slice of an orange on the rim of the cup, and a few whole cloves and cranberries per cup.
How Do I Store the Leftover Wassail?
If you plan on drinking the Wassail over the next couple of days, you can store it in a carafe, pitcher, or similar vessel. Then just pour it out into your cup and reheat it in the microwave. It should be good for up to a week.
What Do I Do With The Leftover Juices?
If you are not planning on drinking the leftover orange, pineapple, cranberry, and apple cider, just freeze them. That way you will have them on hand for the next time you plan on making Wassail.
Is Wassail an Acholohic Drink?
Traditionally Wassail was not an Alcoholic drink. This recipe is not as well but it is very common for people to add brandy or rum to it if they want a spiked holiday drink.
Where did Wassail Originate From?
Wassail originated from Britain. Although its past had pagan roots, it is typically enjoyed in modern times around Christian holidays such as Christmas Eve and Christmas Morning.
Is Wassail Good For You or Does it Have Health Benefits?
Wassail has many ingredients that are considered by some as “good for you.” I am not sure if drinking this would give you good health, so I would consult your health professional to be sure.
Can I cook this Wassail Recipe on the stove top?
Yes, Use a large pot or large saucepan and add in your ingredients like they are laid out in the direction steps. Cut the stove burner onto medium-high heat and bring it to a boil. Once the Wassail has started to boil, cut the burner down to medium-low heat and simmer for 45 minutes to an hour. After that, you can turn the burner off or on warm.
How Do I Make a Big Batch of this Wassail Recipe?
If you want to make a bigger batch, you could double or triple this recipe.
Next time you are planning a Christmas party get-together or other party and you want to serve a hot drink or hot beverage, give this super easy Wassail recipe a try! It truly is the perfect holiday drink with simple ingredients. Before long, it will become your Christmas tradition. It is also great to sip on any time there is cold weather.
Check out some of these awesome Holiday Recipes!