Thanksgiving Wassail

This is a must in Big Red Kitchen throughout the Yuletide Season. We start drinking it at Thanksgiving and do not stop until after New Year. The balance of sweet and citrus and spices brings such a warmth and coziness through the Holidays. We served this at a big party we hosted a few weeks ago (OK we started a bit early this year) and it all went once the cool night settled in and we started to cozy around the fire. Something about a hot mug of Wassail on a cold night, outside by a fire, just does it for me. All right already, I’m easy, but don’t tell.

Thanksgiving Wassail– my Ma
6 cups apple cider
2-3 cinnamon sticks
1/4 tsp. fresh grated nutmeg
1/4- 1/3 cup honey
3 T. lemon juice
2 1/4 cups pineapple juice
float orange slices studded with cloves in wassail

Add all together and warm on high in a crockpot for 1-2 hours before guests arrive. Adjust all flavors as you see fit. More spice? Add more. More honey? Add more. This is a basic recipe, adjust according to you likes. To make it hard? Place bottles of Port, Brandy, Rum, or Whisky along side for guests to “fix” their own. But we like it without the “buzz.” Makes about 8 1/2 cups. Serves 8-10.

More Thanksgiving Recipes
Cream of Peanut Soup
BΓ»che de Merci
Thanksgiving Mashed Potatoes
Thanksgiving Harvard Beets
Thanksgiving Savory Corn Pudding
Thanksgiving Yummy Yams


  1. oneordinaryday
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

    I've actually never tried wassail, but it sounds delish. I like that you can toss it all in the crockpot and forget about it.

  2. Natasha @ Saved by the Egg Timer
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 9:43 AM | Permalink

    Yummm, perfect timing I was searching for a Wassail recipe last week. I will have to try this!

  3. High Plains Drifters
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 9:54 AM | Permalink

    something about cold weather and warm drinks just makes you want to sing, doesn't it? cheers!

  4. the domestic mama
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

    I have never tastes that before… I do remember it in a Christmas song, though!!!! I just may try it this year! Thanks! πŸ™‚ Happy Thanksgiving!

  5. Fallon
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 1:02 PM | Permalink

    MMM Sounds delicious.

  6. anniebakes
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

    I have always wnated to try this and it is so easy, thanks!!


  7. Mimi
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 7:06 PM | Permalink

    Sound delicious and perfect for a party.

  8. Laura
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 10:23 PM | Permalink

    Sounds delicious, I am always on the lookout for warm festive holiday drinks to serve at parties….

  9. Sabrina
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 11:14 PM | Permalink

    I am definitely keeping this recipe around for the holidays. Thanks!

  10. Ingrid
    Posted November 22, 2010 at 12:29 AM | Permalink

    I never had Wassail but it's gotta be good if it's Ma's recipe! πŸ™‚ How is she doing? We haven't seen her around BRK blog in a while.

    I hope you and your family have a blessed and delicious Thanksgiving, Robin Sue!

  11. Erika K
    Posted November 30, 2011 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    In my dreams, I'm taking at least one evening this Christmas season to enjoy an exotic old-fashioned beverage like wassail or mulled cider in my living room with the soft glowing Christmas lights on.

    I think this recipe has made me finally get it past my dream and into commitment phase. πŸ˜‰ Might have to pick up some cinnamon sticks, but I think I have everything else. I even have all of my lights up.

    ONE night this Christmas season – at least!

    Thanks for the recipe. πŸ™‚


    Cuisinart 12 cup food processor

  12. stephanie spalding
    Posted November 17, 2012 at 7:10 AM | Permalink

    Have you ever tried it with just plain apple juice? We can’t get cider here πŸ™ and I just wonder what it would taste like with apple juice.

    • Robin Sue
      Posted November 17, 2012 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

      Plain apple juice is wonderful too. Enjoy!!

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