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Hot Spiced Cider

Mike Smith / TODAY
Cook Time:
15 mins
Prep Time:
5 mins

Chef notes

Cozy and warming, spiced apple cider is the ultimate cold weather beverage to warm up the whole family.

Technique Tip: If you don’t want to bother straining the cider, just use a slotted spoon to remove the peppercorns, orange zest, and cloves. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the zest from your orange.

Swap Option: Other spices are great, here, too. Try whole cardamom pods instead of the peppercorns or try adding a star anise for a mild licorice flavor.


  • 1 quart apple cider
  • 1 teaspoon dark brown sugar
  • 1 strip of orange zest, cut 1-inch by 3-inches
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 3 black peppercorns
  • 1 cinnamon stick, plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • Rum or bourbon, optional



In a medium saucepan, combine the cider, sugar, orange zest, cloves, peppercorns, cinnamon stick and allspice. Bring to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar.


Turn off the heat and let the mixture infuse for 10 minutes. Reheat just before serving.


To serve, strain the mixture into mugs and garnish each one with a cinnamon stick. Add a splash or two of rum or bourbon if you like.