This easy Instant Pot mulled wine is a comforting and warming holiday beverage made with red wine and spices. Mulled red wine is a classic hot Christmas cocktail, and with the pressure cooker you can have it ready in a matter of minutes.
German gluhwein, Scandinavian glogg, or British mulled wine; this traditional Christmas cocktail made with holiday spices and red wine is traditional all across Europe.
This easy mulled wine recipe is made using an Instant Pot. The main benefit of using this method is that the drink becomes completely portable. You can prepare this away from the kitchen if you're entertaining, or even add the ingredients to the pot and take it with you to a Christmas party.
Why you'll love it
- Quick and easy mulled wine recipe
- A delicious Christmas cocktail
- Make it in less than 20 minutes
- Customize the recipe to suit your preferences
- Alcohol-free option available
Red wine: Use a bottle of any red wine that you like. I like to use a fruity Merlot or Zinfandel. You can also use an alcohol free variety if you prefer.
Bourbon: Adds a kick of flavor and extra alcohol to the mulled wine.
Oranges: Orange slices add flavor to the wine. You can alternatively use a little orange juice, but fresh oranges are best.
Lemon zest: The lemon balances out the flavors of the other ingredients. Optional, but highly recommended.
Star anise: Whole star anise looks great as a garnish, and adds the traditional Christmas flavor to the mulled wine. Don't substitute for aniseed or ground anise.
Cinnamon sticks: You can also use ground cinnamon if you prefer.
Cloves: Or ground cloves. Adding extra cloves will enhance the flavor of the red mulled wine.
You can find full instructions + ingredient measurements in the recipe card at the bottom of this page
Use a knife or vegetable peeler to peel the lemon. Try to include as little of the white layer of the peel as possible. Then, slice the oranges.
Use the SAUTE setting to gently heat up the mulled wine. You don't want the wine to boil, only gently simmer or simply become warm. Allow the spices to mull in the warm wine for at least 5 minutes, or up to 1 hour. The longer you leave the wine, the deeper the spice flavor will become.
Remove the whole spices, oranges, and lemon peel. I like to use a fine mesh strainer for this purpose.
Serve the warm spiced wine in cups, optionally garnished with fresh orange slices, cranberries, cinnamon sticks or fresh rosemary sprigs.
- Add extra spices, or pressure cook the glühwein for a couple more minutes to enhance the spice flavors. The longer the wine gets to mull, the more flavor it will develop.
- Feel free to adjust the spices however you like.
- Strain the mulled wine with a fine mesh sieve or cheesecloth to remove the whole seasoning and fresh fruit.
- If your Instant Pot has a WARM setting, you can pressure cook the wine, and then keep it warm for a few hours. This is a great option for entertaining.
Instant Pot gluhwein can be served as a delicious beverage for Christmas, or enjoyed throughout December. It's excellent for entertaining, or to enjoy as an evening cocktail.
I love to serve homemade gluhwein with other seasonal treat, like Dark Chocolate Almonds or mince pies. You can also enjoy it with afternoon tea, or on its own as a cocktail.
With extra flavors: Try adding a little apple cider, apple slices, cranberries, ruby port, ginger, vanilla pod, whole nutmeg, white wine, bay leaves or sugar. Each of these ingredients will slightly alter the flavor of the pressure cooker mulled wine.
Try different wines: Mulled wine is traditionally made with a dry red wine, but you can also make it with white wine. You can also use wine without alcohol if you prefer.
Stove top version: You can also make mulled wine by warming the wine and spices in a pot on the stove. Avoid boiling the wine, and instead simply heat it up and serve.
To make this recipe, you will need a 3 quart or 6 quart Instant Pot or pressure cooker. Additionally, you might need a knife, a cutting board and a fine mesh strainer.
If you want to make a bigger batch, for example using two or three bottles of red wine, you might want to use a larger pressure cooker. Make sure that you never fill the Instant Pot above the maximum fill line.
Store any leftover mulled wine in a refrigerator, and reheat it in a microwave, on the stove or in your Instant Pot. Mulled wine is best served warm.
The wine tends to develop even more flavor while it's stored, particularly if you leave the spices in the liquid. This is a great way to enhance the flavors without increasing the cooking time.
Frequently asked questions
Yes, you can absolutely cook with wine in an Instant Pot. However, keep in mind that you should not pressure cook high amount of alcohol, as the evaporating alcohol could be a safety hazard.
Boiling mulled wine will remove most of the alcohol. Wine tends to develop an unpleasant flavor when this happens, so you should avoid it if possible.
You can absolutely overcook mulled wine. Cooking it for long periods of time could make it overly spicy, and remove the alcohol in the wine, which makes the drink develop a bitter flavor.
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Instant Pot Mulled Wine
- Use a knife or vegetable peeler to peel the lemon. Try to include as little of the white layer of the peel as possible. Then, slice the oranges.
- Place the orange slices, lemon zest, red wine, maple syrup, bourbon, cloves, star anise and cinnamon sticks in your Instant Pot and stir.
- Use the SAUTE setting to gently heat up the mulled wine. You don't want the wine to boil, only gently simmer or simply become warm.
- Allow the spices to mull in the warm wine for at least 5 minutes, or up to 1 hour. The longer you leave the wine, the deeper the spice flavor will become.
- Remove the whole spices, oranges, and lemon peel. I like to use a fine mesh strainer for this purpose.
- Serve the warm spiced wine in cups, optionally garnished with fresh orange slices, cranberries, cinnamon sticks or fresh rosemary sprigs.
- Mulled wine is best when served immediately, but any leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.
- Feel free to add any extra ingredients, like cranberries, apple cider, apple slices, brown sugar or ginger.