If you’ve never made fresh apple cider before, you’re in for a treat. Since you toss everything into your slow cooker, the hardest part about this recipe is waiting – and even that’s enjoyable! Though it takes a few hours, your home is filled with the warm and comforting scents of cinnamon, nutmeg, apples and oranges while it brews. When it’s done, each sip of this lovable libation is a showcase of the season’s best flavors. Whether you’re entertaining or enjoying a cup by the fire, it’s an excellent choice.
Slow Cooker Cinnamon Spice Apple Cider
In 6-quart slow cooker, combine apples, oranges and spices. Add water, leaving 1-2” space at top.
Cover. Cook on low heat 6 to 8 hours or on high heat 3 to 4 hours. If apples aren’t soft and fork-tender, continue cooking until they are.
Using a wooden spoon or potato masher, gently mash apples and oranges, being careful to not splash yourself.
Cover. Continue cooking on low heat about 30 minutes.
Using a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth, strain mixture; place liquid back in slow cooker. Discard solid parts.
Stir in maple syrup or sweetener. Adjust to desired sweetness.
To serve, garnish with extra cinnamon sticks, orange peel and/or apple slices.
If using a 3-4-quart slow cooker, cut ingredients in half.
*To enhance the apple flavor, use a variety of apples. I used 4 Granny Smith apples, 4 Fuji apples and 4 Gala apples.