Did you know you could make crock-pot apple cider from scratch at home? Set in the morning or before bed and in 8-12 hours you will have a house that smells amazing and fresh apple cider!
A few years ago I learned that you can take fresh apples, an orange, and some spices and make crock-pot apple cider from scratch. My mind was blown. I put everything in my crock-pot before work and when I got home, I had the most amazing apple cider waiting for me. Not to mention my house smelled insane. Holiday candles don’t hold a flame (pun intended) to crock-pot apple cider cooking away!
I like to use a variety of tart and sweet apples in my cider. For this batch I used some honeycrisp, granny smith, golden delicious, and braeburn. But you can use really any apples you want. I would avoid using all tart apples, such as granny smith, though.
Making apple cider in your slow cooker or crock-pot really couldn’t be simpler. You just quarter all of the fruit and put it in the pot with water and spices and let it heat on low for 8-12 hours.
I imagine how amazing this would be to set up on Christmas Eve and have the family wake up to warm apple cider in the morning, with the house smelling amazing. I get giddy thinking about it.
Or it would be so fun to have it going all day on Halloween so that it is ready to add some bourbon to in the evening when you are passing out candy! This stuff tastes GREAT with some bourbon!
The first few times I made this, I just spooned the cider out of the crock-pot with all of the apples and spices still floating around in there. It was great. But then, I read some other crock-pot apple cider recipes and learned that if you take a potato masher and mash up all the apples then strain it, you get more appley flavor!
I originally published this recipe in 2012, but this week I made it again with updated pictures and a new video to show you just how darn easy it is to make! I had also heard from some readers that there was a slight bitter taste to their cider. I have never had a problem with this, but I decided to change the amount of orange from 2 to 1 and decrease some of the spices to help remedy the problem. It continues to taste amazing and I think the risk of bitterness has been eliminated!
Now that I have all this apple cider in my fridge, I’ve got to find some recipes to use it up! Maybe some apple cider cocktails? Or baking recipes involving apple cider?! Do you have any favorites?!
- 6 quart slow cooker (reduce the amounts for a smaller cooker)
- 8-10 medium size sweet apples (I like McIntosh, Empire, Golden Delicious, Pink Lady, and Braeburn, do NOT use Red Delicious apples)
- 1 orange
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 1/2 TBSP whole cloves
- 2 tsp whole allspice
- 2 inch knob of fresh ginger (optional)
- sweetener of choice, up to 1 cup (granulated sugar, brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, or combo)
- Chop apples and orange into large chunks keeping the peels on.
- Put apples, orange, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, ginger in the slow cooker.
- Fill the slow cooker with enough water to cover all of the apples. It should fill it pretty much to the brim of the pot.
- Turn it on low and put the lid on.
- Allow to brew for 8-12 hours. (12 hours is best and even longer would be fine too!)
- Take a potato masher and mash all of the apples up. Strain the cider through a fine mesh sieve or through cheesecloth for a more clear cider.
- Add sweetener of choice to taste for your sweetness level.
- Store left over cider in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
A few readers commented that their cider tasted a bit bitter. I have re-tested the recipe and made changes to eliminate the risk of the cider tasting bitter. Most of our palettes are used to tasting sweet cider, so make sure you add some sweetness to yours because it does dramatically change the flavor.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0