Mulled wine, also known as spiced wine, is an alcoholic drink usually made with red wine, along with various mulling spices and sometimes raisins, served hot or warm. It is a traditional drink during winter, especially around Christmas.


Tracing its roots back to the ancient Romans, mulled wine gained favour as a soothing concoction enjoyed during chilly winters. The Roman penchant for warm, spiced wine became a cultural phenomenon traversing Europe's expanse alongside the expanding empire. As this aromatic libation journeyed through different regions, individuals began incorporating diverse herbs and spices to enhance the sweetness and elevate the taste of subpar wines. Moreover, the belief in their potential health benefits fuelled the infusion of these botanical elements.

For more drinks perfect for warming you during the chilly winter months, check out our winter drinks recipes and mulled drinks recipes, and for more on mulling see our top tips for making mulled wine, plus five mulled drinks you can make in minutes.

See our twists on a classic mulled wine recipe below, and check out more of our soothing mulled wine recipes.

1. Mulled white wine

Mulled white wine served in clear mugs with mince pies in background

Switching up your wine is a simple way to bring your drink up to date. Instead of heady cloves and star anise, this mulled white wine recipe uses cinnamon, vanilla and elderflower cordial. There's also a bottle of cider thrown in for good measure, because it's Christmas, and why not?

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Make a refreshing sangria or cook a fantastic dinner party dish with more of our white wine recipes.

2. Mulled rosé

Mulled rose served in a glass cup

Rosé is back in fashion, and it turns out it's just as suited to mulling as red or white wine. Try our mulled rosé recipe – the wine is combined with grapefruit, stem ginger, allspice and crème de cassis for a light, fruity flavour.

Discover our guide on the best rose wine, tried and tested.

3. Swedish glögg

Glogg wine served in clear glass cups with almonds and raisins

Transport your tastebuds to snowy Scandinavia with this Swedish version of mulled wine. It's made using the same winning formula as traditional mulled wine, but with the nifty addition of flaked almonds and raisins. To make it really authentic, add an extra glug to your glögg – it's customary to include a nip of aquavit, a caraway-flavoured spirit.

4. Mulled mead

Mulled mead served in a glass mug

Mead is made from fermented honey, and has enjoyed a renaissance since modern artisan 'meaderies' have reprised the production of this sweet wine. Our mulled mead recipe is flavoured with cloves, cinnamon and ginger, with a dash of brandy added for good measure. If you can't find mead, you can swap it out for cider.

Learn how to make mead at home with our step-by-step guide.

5. Slow cooker mulled wine

Slow cooker mulled wine served in glass mugs next to a slow cooker

Heating the mulled wine slowly over a low temperature will ensure the flavours infuse without the risk of the alcohol evaporating away. If your slow cooker has a 'keep warm' function, use it so you don't have to repeatedly reheat your mulled wine during a Christmas party. This slow cooker mulled wine recipe uses all the classic flavours, plus citrussy triple sec.

6. Non-alcoholic mulled wine

Non-alcoholic mulled wine made with pomegranate juice served in a glass mug

Cutting out the booze completely means anyone can enjoy this mulled drink. Use apple or cranberry juice in place of wine, but add the same spices and fruit. Try alcohol-free mulled wine that's made with cranberry and frozen blackberries for a rosy red look that rivals standard mulled wine.

Going without booze needn't be boring. Check out more of our fab and festive mocktails with our non-alcoholic Christmas drink recipes.

7. Mulled port

Mulled port in a pan with lemon zest shavings and poured into glasses

Other than using stronger, sweeter port, there's another key point of difference to this mulled wine recipe – it's served chilled. To take our mulled port & lemon recipe to the next level, use whisked egg white to stick lemony sugar to the rim of the glass for a festive margarita-like finish.

Discover our favourite ports to buy with our guide to the 10 best ports to buy – for Christmas and beyond.

8. Appleberry mulled wine

Appleberry mulled wine served in a large glass with slices of apple

Our appleberry mulled wine recipe really ramps up the fruit factor. Cloudy apple juice is used to sweeten the wine, while frozen forest fruits add texture. Finish with apple slices for an edible garnish.

9. Pomegranate & vermouth mulled wine

Pomegranate and vermouth mulled wine served in a tall collins glass

Combine red wine with pomegranate juice and red vermouth to make this elegant, modern, grown-up twist on the classic drink. Honey adds sweetness without taking the edge off the alcohol medley.

Our elegant vermouth cocktail recipes are perfect for a dinner party or an easy evening tipple.

10. Mulled wine cocktail

Woman carrying a tray of three mulled wine cocktails

If you're a super-organised party planner, a mulled wine recipe that you can make ahead will be right up your street. Make the basic recipe for this mulled wine cocktail, then, when it comes time to serve, either heat it up or pour into chic cocktail glasses over ice.

More Christmas drinks inspiration

All our top mulled wine recipes
The best-ever Christmas cocktails
Our favourite festive punches
The best sloe gin
The best wine to drink on Christmas Day
The best boozy Christmas gifts


Do you know any new spins on classic mulled wine? Leave a comment below...

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