Apple Cider Sangria is my favorite drink for a crowd! This easy make-ahead cocktail is perfect for fall but so good you’ll want to enjoy it all year long!
This time of year we’re always having people over to the house. Whether it’s to watch a football game, for a holiday party, or just because we haven’t seen each other in a while, you can usually find us entertaining on the weekends. When we have company coming over I like to have easy batch cocktails like punch recipes ready to go so I can enjoy our guests instead of playing bartender all night. A big thanks to OXO for sponsoring this post so I can share this easy apple cider sangria with all of you! It’s one of my favorite fall recipes ever! I make this apple sangria ahead of time and then just grab the pitcher from the fridge when the party starts!
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What is sangria?
- Sangria is a traditional Spanish punch that’s made with red wine and chopped fruit. Sangria often includes other ingredients like fruit juice and brandy.
Sounds pretty good right? Traditional sangria is made with red wine, but I find a white wine pairs better with the in your face apple flavor I wanted to achieve in this fall sangria. The balance of sweet Riesling wine, good quality apple cider, fresh orange & lime juice, and brandy is incredibly tasty. It’s perfect for fall and holiday get-togethers, but it’s so freaking good you’ll want to make it anytime you can find an excuse to share a pitcher with friends!
This recipe is super easy to make, but I have a few tricks up my sleeve to make prepping and bartending your party a breeze!
Tips for Making Apple Cider Sangria
- Make plenty of ice! This OXO No-Spill Ice Cube Tray is the best ice cube tray I’ve ever own. I know it may sound silly, but the water doesn’t spill all over my freezer when the kids get in there for a yogurt, AND the ice cubes come out on the first try with no hassle. It’s amazing.
- Prep your garnishes when you prep your sangria fruit. Then store them in your OXO Ice Bucket Set fruit tray right along with the tongs. Pop everything in the fridge and then fill the ice bucket with ice when you’re ready to serve. You’ll have ice for your glasses and your fruit will stay fresh!
- Keep track of your portions with an OXO Steel Angled Jigger and OXO Steel Citrus Juicer. The jigger lets you see how much you’ve poured without being limited to the traditional 3/4-ounce and 1 1/4-ounce portions. The juicer catches seeds and pulp while draining the juice into a measuring cup so you know exactly how much juice you’ve got. These are totally bar and cooking essentials everyone should have.
- The OXO Spinning Bar Spoon. You guys! Traditionally you want to stir your cocktails with the back of the spoon continuously facing the glass. This integrates any pulp or sugars in the glass rather than leaving them to clump up at the bottom and helps keep your ice from chipping. Well, this Spinning Bar Spoon rotates as you stir and keeps the back of the spoon facing out without any fancy wrist tricks. You’re welcome.
- Don’t forget the garnish! One of my favorite things about sangria is eating the fruit when my drink is gone. This sangria recipe uses crisp apples, a cinnamon sugar rim, and a cinnamon stick to really drive home those fall flavors that pair so beautifully with this apple cider sangria.
The biggest thing to remember for a great sangria is to give it time to rest and let all those beautiful flavors marry together. You could serve this apple sangria right away if you’re in a pinch, but it’s so much better if you can be patient. And if you’re having a big old party and plan to use a drink dispenser, make a double or triple batch or this apple sangria recipe so you’re good to go all day or night!
Hungry for More?
Apple Cider Sangria
- 3 navel oranges
- 4 gala apples
- 4 to 5 limes
- 750 mL Riesling wine
- 2 cups apple cider (good quality)
- ¼ cup simple syrup (plus more to taste)
- 1 cup apple brandy
- cinnamon sticks for garnish
- cinnamon sugar to rim glasses
- Fill an OXO No-Spill Ice Cube Tray with water and freeze ice for cocktails. Repeat until you have a large bowl of ice ready for cocktails. Store in freezer. Transfer to OXO Ice Bucket when you're ready to serve.
- Core 4 apples and cut into small chunks. Place enough apple chunks into the fruit tray of an OXO Ice Bucket Set to fill it. Place ice bucket in the fridge to keep them fresh for garnishing your drinks.
- Cut 1 orange and 2 limes into slices. Cut the orange slices in half. Place the fruit slices and remaining apple chunks into a 2.5-quart pitcher.
- To the pitcher, add the wine and apple cider. Use an OXO Steel Angled Jigger to measure the brandy and pour it into the pitcher. Juice the remaining 2 oranges and limes with an OXO Steel Citrus Juicer to keep track of the fresh juice amounts. You'll want 2-ounces fresh orange juice and 1-ounce fresh lime juice.
- Stir together the sangria with an OXO Spinning Bar Spoon until fully incorporated. Chill the sangria for at least 1 hour.
- Spread some cinnamon sugar out on a small plate. Run an orange half slice with a slit cut in it around the rim of a wine glass to moisten it. Turn the glass upside down and dip the rim in the cinnamon sugar.
- Fill the glass 1/2 full with ice from your OXO Ice Bucket Set. Pour in the sangria until the glass is almost full. Garnish with 1 orange half wheel, some apple pieces, and a cinnamon stick. Serve immediately.
- You can add more or less simple syrup to your liking. I didn't make this sangria overly sweet because of the cinnamon sugar rim on the glass.
- To make rimming sugar for glasses: Combine 2 tablespoons sugar with 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon in a bowl. Spread out on a small plate.
- To make simple syrup: simmer 1 part water to 1 part sugar until dissolved. Cool to room temp.
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.
Will you be creating a new signature drink for the holidays this year?
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of OXO.
Sophie Anderson says
I am hosting a small party tomorrow and realized I hadn’t settled on what to serve for cocktails. Perfect timing! One question, have you perhaps tried this sangria with rum instead of brandy?
Julie Espy says
Hi Sophie! I have not, but a spiced rum would work well. The sangria won’t have as strong of an apple flavor and you may want to add more cider. Hope this helps!
Susan Dubose says
Sangria is my favorite too! This sounds really yummy. What do you think about the non-alcoholic version of this drink?
Julie Espy says
Hi Susan! If you want to make an N/A version of this I would actually make Ginger Apple Cider Punch instead. It’s similar and the whiskey listed in the recipe is optional.
Anthony Allen says
This looks amazing!!! I’ve got the cutest mason jars for my birthday and I know exactly what to use them for ?
Jan Michelle Encinareal says
I love this recipe. Apple cider is one of my favorites to drink every morning. This one is unique so I will surely try to make and drink it daily.
Kimberley Pereda says
Cool and healthy drink with apple cider. I can add this to my diet plan. Warm or cold is perfect to this drink. Thank you for this flavorful and healthy drink.