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Here’s the ideal fall cocktail: apple cider sangria! This cozy drink pairs apple cider with red wine, orange and cinnamon.

Fall sangria recipe
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When the air gets a chill and you start pulling on chunky knit sweaters…guess what? You don’t have to stop drinking sangria! Yes, classic red sangria and white sangria are usually reserved for summer months. But there are creative spins on this Spanish drink so that you can drink it all year long. Try this Apple Cider Sangria! It pairs the cozy flavors of fall with dry red wine to make a Spanish-style autumnal spin on this drink. You’ll be amazed by how this fall cocktail is cozy and refreshing all at once.

Ingredients for apple cider sangria

This apple cider sangria is not a traditional Spanish recipe: but it takes elements of the classic way to make this drink. I lived in Spain in university and in the process fell in love with its cuisine. And I fully believe the Spanish way to make it is key: American versions are much too sweet!

Sangría is a traditional wine punch that originates from Spain. The classic version is made with red wine and chopped fruit, and often orange juice or brandy. There are endless variations: in Spain white sangria is also popular. But there are also a myriad of other creative variations like Rosé sangria, Watermelon sangria, etc. This apple cider sangria is in the second camp: a creative variation: but one that’s solidly inspired by the Spanish way to make it. Here are the ingredients in apple cider sangria:

  • Fruit: apple, pear, orange
  • Sugar
  • Cinnamon
  • Dry red wine
  • Apple cider or sparkling apple cider
How to make apple cider sangria

What wine to use for apple cider sangria?

All you need is a bottle of dry red wine for this apple cider sangria! Any dry red will do, of course! Some of the best varietals for this type of sangria are:

  • Rioja Tempranillo
  • Garnacha (Grenache grown in Spain)
  • Malbec
  • Pinot Noir

How to make sangria…the Spanish way

The way we make all of our sangria recipes is a method is inspired by our favorite Spanish chef, Jose Andres. Chef Andres is from Spain and started many successful restaurants here in the US. The “Spanish” way to make this apple cider sangria is this:

  • Macerate fruit for 1 hour: Mix the sangria fruit with sugar and cinnamon, and let it stand at room temperature and break down. This helps the fruit flavors permeate the wine even more.
  • Add liquids: Add the red wine.
  • Serve with apple cider: When serving, pour half the glass with apple cider and half with the red wine mixture. Keep reading for more…
Apple cider sangria

Serve with sparkling apple cider or apple cider

Here’s non-Spanish spin to this apple cider sangria: but it’s a tasty way to enhance the cider flavor! Here’s what to know:

  • Pour half of the glass cider, then half red wine (or mix in a pitcher!). This makes for a beautiful two-toned drink. Or, if you’re serving for a crowd, you can simply combine the cider with the red wine in a large pitcher.
  • Sparkling apple cider adds lightness and bubbles. It’s traditional in Spain to serve sangria with soda water: sparkling apple cider mimics the fizziness.
  • Or, use traditional apple cider! This brings in a beautiful tangy, apple-forward flavor.

Don’t forget to eat the fruit!

A fun part about this apple cider sangria is that you don’t have to let the fruit go to waste! When you serve it, you can also provide skewers for your guests. Then you can eat the wine-soaked fruit from your drink using the skewers! It’s a nice “dessert” or palate refresher after a meal.

Apple cider sangria recipe

More sangria variations

There are lots of types of sangria outside of this apple cider sangria: one for every occasion and season! Here are some of our favorites:

This apple cider sangria recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Fall sangria recipe

Cozy Apple Cider Sangria

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 10 1x


Here’s the ideal fall cocktail: apple cider sangria! This cozy drink pairs apple cider with red wine, orange and cinnamon.


  • 1 apple
  • 1 pear
  • 1/2 orange
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 750 ml bottle dry red wine, such as Rioja
  • 1 750 ml bottle sparkling cider or apple cider
  • Optional garnishes: Cinnamon stick, rosemary sprig, remaining orange slices


  1. Thinly slice the apple, pear, and orange. Place them into a medium bowl and stir in the sugar and cinnamon. Transfer to a large pitcher. Allow to stand for 20 minutes to allow the flavors to meld.
  2. Pour in the red wine. Stir and refrigerate for 1 hour, or as long as 4 hours. (Don’t go beyond 4 hours or the fruit texture starts to degrade.)
  3. To serve, fill a glass with ice. Fill halfway with sparkling apple cider or apple cider, then halfway with red wine mixture (or you can pour them both together in a pitcher). Garnish with cinnamon stick, rosemary or orange slices. When you’ve polished off the sangria, you can snack on the sweetened fruit.
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktail
  • Diet: Vegan

More fall drinks

Looking for more cozy fall drinks? Try some of these favorites:

  • Mulled Cider or Hot Apple Cider The very best cozy drink! Infused with spices like cinnamon and cloves, you can make it in a slow cooker or on the stove.
  • Apple Cider Bourbon Cocktail Pairs sweet cider with bourbon and lemon! It’s full flavored and easy to make, the ideal fall or winter drink.
  • Apple Cider Mimosa The perfect winter or fall brunch cocktail! Combine cider with champagne for a festive treat.
  • Mulled Wine Both sweet and savory and is perfect for serving at parties. Make it in a slow cooker to keep it warm for hours.

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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