Hot Apple Cider and Whiskey

at a glance
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 12 hours
Servings 5 cups
5 from 1 vote

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When the cold wintery air decides to come back to town, it will be time to snuggle up with a mug of something that will warm your fingers and tummy. I have an obsession with hot apple cider. I also consider myself somewhat of a whiskey girl. It was only a matter of time before the two found each other.

To me, apple cider tastes like Christmas and scarf weather. It’s spicy, sweet, and smells amazing.

Instead of the store bought apple cider, I put together a simple do-it-yourself recipe you can repeat at home. This way you can control how spicy and the amount of sugar added.

I recommend you make it in a crockpot because it will slowly make your home smell amazing. If you don’t have a crockpot, put one on your Christmas wish list ASAP. Make this recipe in a large saucepan or baking dish until Santa delivers.

The added (and optional) whiskey turns this childhood favorite into a seasonal adult cocktail … that I will probably sip in my fuzzy slippers while I watch one of the greatest Christmas movies of all time, Miracle on 34th Street.




Meet my nephew puppy, Eli! He’s a 7 month old miniature schnauzer that gets to spend the holidays with us! Gus is convinced he and Eli are the same size.



Apple Cider Whiskey Cocktail

By: Cassy
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 12 hrs
Servings: 5 cups


  • 4 Small Green Apples cut into quarters
  • 4 Small Red or Pink Apples cut into quarters
  • 2 Lemons cut in half
  • 5 Cinnamon Sticks 3”
  • 1 Tbl Ground Ginger
  • 4 Whole Star Anise
  • 1 Tbl Whole Cloves
  • 5 Cups Water
  • 2 Tbl Honey
  • 5 Shots Whiskey


  • Put all the ingredients (except for the honey and whiskey) into a crockpot.
  • Although all the ingredients will fit perfectly in a 4-quart crockpot, feel free to use a larger one.
  • When you’re chopping the apples and lemons, don’t worry about cutting out seeds or stem – throw the whole thing in.
  • Cook on low heat for at least 12 hours. (I’ve kept mine on heat as long as 18 hours).
  • Pour the cooked mixture through a colander into a large bowl. Using a spatula, smash the apples and lemons to get all the juice out.
  • Strain again if needed.
  • Add the 2 Tbl of honey and stir.
  • Pour 1 cup of the cider into a mug and, if you so fancy, add a shot of whiskey.
  • Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Instant Pot Version:
  1. Add all ingredients except for honey and whiskey to Instant Pot.
  2. Secure lead and ensure valve is sealed, then cook on manual for 15 minutes.
  3. Perform a quick release of pressure.
  4. Pour the cooked mixture through a colander into a large bowl. Using a spatula, smash the apples and lemons to get all the juice out.
  5. Strain again if needed.
  6. Add the 2 Tbl of honey and stir.
  7. Pour 1 cup of the cider into a mug and, if you so fancy, add a shot of whiskey.
  8. Enjoy!


Meet the Author
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Cassy Joy Garcia

HOWDY! I’m Cassy Joy and I am just so happy you’re here. I’m the founder, Editor-in-Chief, and Nutrition Consultant here at Fed and Fit. What started as a food blog back in 2011 has evolved now into so much more.
Get to know Cassy

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    Recipe Rating

  1. Lucas Nyreen says

    Lucas Nyreen —  12/17/2012 At 10:10

    As you might imagine, this one definitely caught my attention. This sounds/looks so amazingly delicious.

  2. elizabethbirnbaum says

    elizabethbirnbaum —  12/18/2012 At 02:53

    nice! one of my favorites too 🙂

  3. Kylie says

    Kylie —  11/21/2015 At 19:37

    I just made this overnight, 2 lemons is way too many! One would have been fine, or maybe a half. I had to add a lot of brown sugar to balance it out and its still pretty acidic

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  11/23/2015 At 01:37

      We tend to like things not as sweet and more sour/acidic, but that is a great help for others that do not. Thanks for trying it Kylie!

  4. Jamie says

    Jamie —  10/26/2020 At 16:01

    What type/brand of whiskey is best?

  5. Katie says

    Katie —  11/26/2020 At 17:53

    5 stars
    This was my first time making my own apple cider and this recipe did not disappoint! I only used one lemon and did not squeeze it at the end to decrease the amount of acidity since I like my cider more in the sweet side. This will now be a new Holiday tradition at my house!

    • Brandi Schilhab says

      Brandi Schilhab —  11/30/2020 At 10:15

      Score! So glad to hear that, Katie!