Wassail (Warm Autumn Punch)

Published October 29, 2018. Updated November 9, 2018

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Wassail is one of those things that you just need to make at least once every fall. It’s a warm apple cider punch that’s perfectly cozy and comforting for chilly autumn days. It’s sweet and perfectly spiced. This recipe makes a big batch so it’s perfect for parties!

Wassail Warm Autumn Punch

The Best Wassail Recipe!

This warm, spiced apple cider punch is one of the best ways to enjoy a chilly day! It’s sweet and tangy and perfectly bright and refreshing.

It’s made with 100% juice and a hint of honey so it’s a drink you can feel fine about enjoying. And kids love it too!

I’ve had many different versions of wassail a lot of which I found too tart or over-spiced, this is the version I love best!

What is Wassail Anyway?

Generally Wassail is a spiced ale or mulled wine drunk during celebrations for Twelfth Night and Christmas Eve. Many versions though here in the U.S. are alcohol free, as is this one (though if preferred you could add vodka or rum).

Wassail Warm Apple Cider Autumn Punch

Ingredients You’ll Need for This Punch

  • Apple cider
  • Orange juice
  • Pineapple juice
  • Honey
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Cloves

Tips when selecting ingredients – use not from concentrate juices and real apple cider (the kind generally found in the produce section with floaties in the bottom).

Wassail Warm Autumn Punch

How to Make Wassail

  • In a large pot stir together apple cider, pineapple juice, orange juice and honey.
  • Add cinnamon sticks and cloves (if you don’t want to strain later on put spices in cheesecloth and tie).

Wassail Warm Autumn Punch

  • Bring to a boil over medium-high heat then reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer 30 minutes.
  • Strain and serve warm.

Wassail Warm Autumn Punch

Garnish if Desired

You can cook a few apple slices with it but I prefer not to cook oranges slices in the punch because it can add a bitter flavor from the white pith. But if you wait to add the oranges slices add it at the end it won’t really add bitterness.

Garnishing Ideas:

  • Apple slices (look for the pretty red Galas)
  • Mandarin oranges slices (use quartered slices for individual servings)
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Fresh cranberries

Wassail Warm Autumn Punch

Can I Make It in the Slow Cooker?

You can definitely make this in the slow cooker as well. Just add ingredients to a 6 or 7 quart slow cooker, cover and cook on low 4 hours. Set to warm setting for parties to keep it heated.

Can I Reheat It?

If you didn’t finish off the whole batch you can just chill whats left and rewarm later (either in the microwave, stovetop or slow cooker).

Wassail Warm Autumn Punch

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Wassail Warm Autumn Punch
5 from 1 vote

Wassail (Warm Autumn Punch)

This is the perfect cozy comforting fall drink! It's made with robust cider, tangy orange juice and sweet pineapple juice. Then add honey to taste (I like 2 Tbsp) and don't leave out those flavorful seasonal spices. They really make this drink!
Servings: 15
Prep5 minutes
Cook45 minutes
Ready in: 50 minutes



  • In a large pot (at least 6 quarts or larger) whisk together apple cider, pineapple juice, orange juice and honey. Add cinnamon sticks and cloves.
  • Bring to a boil over medium-high heat then reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer 30 minutes.
  • Strain and serve warm. Garnish if desired (see notes).


  • For best results use real apple cider (the kind generally found in the produce section in the fall). For best flavor use "not from concentrate" pineapple juice and orange juice.
  • If you don't want to strain later on put cinnamon and cloves in cheesecloth and tie, then just remove at the end and serve.
  • You can make it in the slow cooker too! Cook, covered, on low heat 3 hours.
  • Garnish with fresh apples slices, mandarin oranges slices, cinnamon sticks or fresh cranberries if desired.
  • Recipe source: adapted slightly from Allrecipes.
Nutrition Facts
Wassail (Warm Autumn Punch)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 135
% Daily Value*
Sodium 7mg0%
Potassium 339mg10%
Carbohydrates 32g11%
Sugar 27g30%
Vitamin A 105IU2%
Vitamin C 34.7mg42%
Calcium 28mg3%
Iron 0.5mg3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition values are estimates only. See full disclaimer here.


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  • Lorene Holderfield (Edorenel/Edo)

    …. P.S.

    Sorry for messing up my comment there. I’m embarrassed. Ha, ha! That question from me that I asked you was for your Christmas Punch, not the wassail. But my brain did a dumb moment there! Somehow I forgot I was commenting on the wassail, which I was… But then my brain shifted to the punch. Ha, ha! Oh, dear. I’m facepalming myself over here! xD

  • Lorene Holderfield (Edorenel/Edo)

    I love this (and your Christmas Punch recipe)! Both were what I grew up drinking as a child in the early ’90s back in Boulder, CO. I have such fond memories. Unfortunately, the family recipes were lost. So, I went on a hunt and found your Wassail and Christmas Punch recipes! :D It may not be precisely the ones my family used, but it’s close enough from what I remember. So, thank you!

    (One thing my parents did aside from a homemade ice ring, which they added rosemary, cranberries, and orange slices into, but my parents would add a scoop or three of lime sherbert into the punch to give it a green swirl throughout it. Made it rather festive, and my brothers and I loved it as kids!)

    Also, a question for you. What would you recommend to spike this (for adults only, of course)?

  • Robby H.

    This brings back warm memories. My aunt used to have this ready for us when we arrived for Thanksgiving or Christmas. Instead of honey she added some frozen lemonade concentrate (it was the 70s and 80s). It was really such a cozy treat when you came in from the cold. Thanks for reminding me of this.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Glad it reminded you of family! Same for me I had family that made it at thanksgiving growing up.