October Is Almost Over So Make Some Seasonal Treats While You Still Can!

Athena ScalziIt may very well be pumpkin spice season, but let’s not forget it’s also apple cider season! Fewer things in life delight like a warm mug of apple cider. Well, that is, if it’s my cider you’re drinking. And it could be yours too! I’m here today to share with you a recipe for apple cider so good, you’ll never be able to drink store bought again. If you’re not ready for that level of awesomeness, do not scroll any further.

I actually got this recipe online somewhere, and I can’t remember where because it was sophomore year of high school and I have terrible memory. But I do remember that the original recipe was for “apple pie moonshine” that was basically just apple juice and vodka. So all I did was leave out the alcohol and voila! A perfect cider recipe.

the ingredients required for the apple cider

Pictured here is everything you need! As you can see, the secret ingredient to my cider is store-bought apple cider. All I do is add some sugar and spice and it turns out way better than it originally was! So, the recipe is as follows:

2 quarts apple cider

2 quarts apple juice

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup white sugar

2-4 cinnamon sticks

6-8 whole cloves

For the apple cider, I just grab whatever brand is at the store, it doesn’t really matter. As for the juice, again you can use any brand, I just prefer Mott’s. And for the brown sugar you can use light or dark, whatever you have on hand is fine!

So, combine the cider and juice in a big pot and heat it up, do not boil! You just want to get it warm enough so that when you add the sugars, they dissolve. After adding the sugars, reduce to a simmer and add the cinnamon and cloves, then put a lid on it and let it all come together for about an hour. Then remove the cinnamon sticks and cloves and it’s ready to be enjoyed!

I made this cider for my teachers sophomore year, and then I made it again my sophomore year of college for my dormmates, and I’m making it again this year for my family. It’s really simple and I’ve gotten a ton of positive feedback on it, so I really recommend this recipe.

If you try it out, please let me know what you think in the comments! And have a great day!

-AMS

20 Comments on “October Is Almost Over So Make Some Seasonal Treats While You Still Can!”

  1. I have to be honest, as a Vermonter whose family always made fresh apple cider and put it up in the freezer to last through the winter, the idea of adding apple juice and sugar to cider brings me great pain!

    I do love a good hot mulled cider, though, with lots of spices, and cinnamon sticks as stirrers are great fun.

  2. While I can’t try the recipe as written – can’t do sugar – I love the idea of combining cider and juice so thank you for that. Also, I adore your measuring cups!

  3. As someone who had one grandparent born in Maine, I feel the pain of the Vermonters at adulteration of cider, which should be properly adulterated only with maple syrup, if at all.

    On the other hand, the legal limits on carbohydrates in Ohio are much laxer than they are in New England (or California for that matter)

  4. Damn, that’s a lot of sugar.
    I remember having a sweet tooth like that, but I lost it a while ago….

  5. What I want to know is, who came up with pumpkin spice in the first place, and who convinced the American public that it was good? Because, totally Not.

  6. Cindy F wrote: “It never occurred to me to leave out the Everclear. I’ll give it a try.”

    That is a 160 proof comment. I may need to lie down for a moment.

    Thank you.

  7. If you need to add sugar to your cider, there’s something wrong with your apples. I like cider just the way it comes from the apple tree, but that’s just me. Vodka might be OK, but I would more likely start with French Calvados, aka apple cognac. Never cared for pumpkin spice, not sure what it even is supposed to be. Grrr.

    Can you tell I’m all stressed out by the politics? I’m not a curmudgeon, honest I’m not!

    My Grandma had an apple orchard, with some yellow transparent trees, they bore very early in the season, practically in spring, and were great cooking and preserving apples. Don’t think they would ahve been good for cider, which is more a fall thing.

  8. I… umm… apple juice is already concentrated sugar in water. What, in the name of humanity, would cause you to consider adding more sugar to it? I seem to remember a Calvin and Hobbes cartoon where Calvin is pouring sugar over his Honey Crunchy Sugar-O’s, or something… you have me baffled. That’s not food. It’s toxic.

  9. If one simmers cider without a lid, it gets both sweeter and more strongly apple-y due to the evaporation. (And the spicing ramps up as well.) It can get wonderfully intense.

    This does make the choice of input cider much more relevant, and means you get less total volume of cider out. But given the added sugar in this recipe, I figured I’d mention it as an alternate “extra-sweet cider” approach. :)

    (It had literally never occurred to me just dump in more sugar. I’ll probably try that sometime just to see what it’s like, though I suspect I’ll miss the extra intensity of the other flavors.)

  10. As someone who grew up in the Mid-Atlantic and moved to the Pacific Northwest, I am so, so, so jealous that you get fresh apple cider.

    I live in a state famous for apples, but to get real cider (fresh or sweet cider not hard cider) I either have to go to an orchard or a super fancy expensive grocery store.

    It’s not fair!

  11. I use the same recipe, but add spiced rum. When I want to doll it up, I do a cinnamon sugar rim on the glass and use a cinnamon stick as a garnish rather than putting it in the pot to simmer.

  12. Around here, cider comes in crown-sealed bottles labeled with the alcohol level and a warning to Drink Responsibly.

    As for pumpkin spice? That’s the salt & pepper added to the big oven-baked chunks o’ pumpkin, thick green rind still attached, that are an essential part of a lamb roast dinner.

    Now & then one encounters a local who has spent time in North America during autumn and wistfully recalls the pumpkin pies enjoyed there.

    Starbucks and pumpkin spice lattes have long since arrived on these shores. Pumpkin scones are also a Thing. Sadly, pumpkin pie never caught on.

  13. “Pumpkin spice” is similar to what is called “mixed spice” in the UK (in the spice section of US markets there is often a mixture called “pumpkin pie spice,” usually containing cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves). Once in a while something labeled “pumpkin spice” also has actual pumpkin in it. Yeah, my main beef with unfermented apple cider is that it’s TOO sweet, if anything (and apple juice is worse, as it has fewer interesting flavor elements to offset the sweetness). I just can’t imagine putting sugar in it. I do love apple cider doughnuts, though.

  14. HelenS, if UK shops sell mixed spice, Australian supermarkets must have it too! Many culinary traditions here have origins there. (Including the unmissable massively multi-course hot Christmas lunch [in scorching Southern Hemisphere midsummer, but I digress]. ^_^ ) I’ll have to check for mixed spice next time I go shopping. I have seen Aussie recipes that call for “spice, if liked.”

    I echo killerpuppytails about the beautiful measuring cups. Those patisserie-handled jam spreader knives, seen in a previous post, were quite spesh as well!