Slow Cooker Cranberry Apple Cider is simple to make, sweet, and delicious. This welcoming, spiced hot beverage makes the whole house smell amazing, too.

Slow cooker cranberry apple cider in a clear mug.

In my house, cinnamon and clove-spiced cranberry apple cider is THE beverage for the fall, winter, and through the holidays.

Thankfully, it’s quick to make and only needs 5 ingredients; all you have to do is mix everything together in a pot or crockpot and heat it up. Apple slices and cranberries make it even merrier.

Table of Contents
  1. Recipe ingredients
  2. Ingredient notes
  3. Step-by-step instructions
  4. Recipe tips and variations
  5. Slow Cooker Cranberry Apple Cider Recipe

Recipe ingredients

Labeled slow cooker cranberry apple cider ingredients.

Ingredient notes

  • Apple cider: You can make your own apple cider or substitute an equal amount of apple juice.
  • Cranberry juice: You can use 100% cranberry juice or cranberry juice cocktail (the cocktail is a prettier color but has added sugar).
  • Sugar: My recipe has 2 cups, but you can add it to taste. Brown sugar is fine, too.  Or Substitute 6 to 10 packets or teaspoons of Splenda OR Stevia, but taste it along the way so you don’t go overboard.
  • Apple slices or fresh cranberries: For garnish. I like to slice the apples sideways through the core so the seeds look like stars.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. To a slow cooker (4 quarts or more), add apple juice, cranberry juice, cinnamon sticks, and cloves. Float some apple slices and fresh cranberries on top if you want them.
Slow cooker cranberry apple cider in a crockpot.
  1. Heat until hot, about 3 to 4 hours on HIGH. Serve right from the slow cooker with a ladle and some cozy mugs close by.
Slow cooker cranberry apple cider in a clear mug.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: One recipe makes 96 ounces, enough for twelve 8-ounce servings.
  • Storage: Store leftovers in the refrigerator and enjoy within the week.
  • Make ahead: You can make it the day before, but then you’d need to reheat it, so it’s not absolutely necessary. Reheat the cider on the stove and transfer to the crockpot to speed things along.
  • Stove-top: Add the ingredients to a large pot and heat over medium-high heat until hot, about 10 minutes. Then reduce the heat to warm and serve with a ladle and mugs closely so everyone can help themselves. Or, transfer to a slow cooker to keep warm all day long.
  • Make it a cocktail: To your own mug, add a splash of your favorite alcohol such as spiced rum, cinnamon schnapps, brandy, or bourbon.
  • Sugared cranberries: For extra sparkle at the holidays, soak the cranberries in simple syrup, let dry, then roll in sugar.

Apple Cider

Invest 10 minutes of prep time and you can transform fresh apples into a classic Apple Cider. This big-batch homemade cider is sensational party drink idea.

3 hours 10 minutes
View Recipe

More cranberry recipes

Slow cooker cranberry apple cider in a clear mug.

Slow Cooker Cranberry Apple Cider

Slow Cooker Cranberry Apple Cider is simple to make, sweet, and delicious. This welcoming, spiced hot beverage makes the whole house smell amazing, too.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs
Total Time 3 hrs 10 mins
Servings 12 servings
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Calories 244

Ingredients 

  • 64 ounces apple cider or apple juice (see note 1)
  • 32 ounces cranberry juice cocktail (see note 2)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar (see note 3)
  • 2 cinnamon sticks or 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 12 whole cloves or 1 tsp. ground cloves
  • Apple slices and fresh cranberries, for garnish (see note 4)

Instructions 

  • To a slow cooker, and apple juice, cranberry juice, sugar, cinnamon sticks, cloves. Float apple slices and fresh cranberries on top if desired.
  • Cover and cook on HIGH until hot about 3 to 4 hours. Turn heat down to "warm" and serve.

Notes

  1. Apple cider: You can make your own apple cider or substitute an equal amount of apple juice.
  2. Cranberry juice: You can use 100% cranberry juice or cranberry juice cocktail (the cocktail is a prettier color but has added sugar).
  3. Sugar: My recipe has 2 cups, but you can add it to taste. Brown sugar is fine, too.  Or Substitute 6 to 10 packets or teaspoons of Splenda OR Stevia, but taste it along the way so you don’t go overboard.
  4. Apple slices or fresh cranberries: For garnish. I like to slice the apples sideways through the core so the seeds look like stars.
  5. Yield: One recipe makes 96 ounces, enough for twelve 8-ounce servings.
  6. Storage: Store leftovers in the refrigerator and enjoy within the week.
  7. Make ahead: You can make it the day before, but then you’d need to reheat it, so it’s not absolutely necessary. Reheat the cider on the stove and transfer to the crockpot to speed things along.
  8. Stove-top: Add the ingredients to a large pot and heat over medium-high heat until hot, about 10 minutes. Then reduce the heat to warm and serve with a ladle and mugs closely so everyone can help themselves. Or, transfer to a slow cooker to keep warm all day long.
  9. Make it a cocktail: To your own mug, add a splash of your favorite alcohol such as spiced rum, cinnamon schnapps, brandy, or bourbon.
  10. Sugared cranberries: For extra sparkle at the holidays, soak the cranberries in simple syrup, let dry, then roll in sugar.

Nutrition

Calories: 244kcalCarbohydrates: 62gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 11mgPotassium: 173mgFiber: 1gSugar: 57gVitamin A: 6IUVitamin C: 33mgCalcium: 27mgIron: 1mg
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Meggan Hill

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Comments

  1. My experience with fresh cranberries is that they are hard…should you disregard them in your cup or add them to the crockpot so they can cook and soften? Are they also too bitter to eat from your cup?

    1. Hi Ronald, you’re right. Raw cranberries are terribly bitter. In this case, I use them as a garnish the way you might put a twist of rind in a martini. It’s technically edible, but no one is eating it; it just looks pretty. I wouldn’t eat them either way, even if you softened them in the cider. They’ll still be too bitter! Thanks for the question and sorry if I created any confusion. Take care! -Meggan

  2. first of all, it look beautiful! and second, 5 ingredients and just a few minutes of actual work is right up my alley! Came out fantastic5 stars