This fabulous slow cooker Traditional Gluehwein is the perfect mulled wine to serve at any holiday party! So easy – just toss everything into the crock pot and let it stew together and make your house smell fantastic!
When my husband and I were traveling through Krakow a few years ago, we came across a small market just off the main square that was bustling with delicious, artisan food stalls with the most amazing local fares.
Everything was delicious – festive, traditional, rich, and so beautifully prepared. Everyone who served it was cheery, and the night was magical.
Our favorite part of the fair, of course, was the traditional Grzaniec (Polish mulled wine). It was rich and spicy, with fruity tartness and a seductive cardamon spice.
It was also— um— effective at keeping us warm on a very chilly night in lesser Poland! It is strong and sweet, and everything you want in a delicious drink.
When was mulled wine invented?
Mulled wine was first imbibed by the Romans in the 2nd Century AD. Roman soldiers heated wine during the winter to stay warm.
As the Romans conquered much of Europe, their love for mulled wine spread throughout the region.
Today, this wintery treat is a festive holiday drink that you can find all overe Europe in Christmas markets, but especially in Germany, Poland, Austria, and Hungary.
Gluehwein is sweet, but not too sweet, spicy, alcoholic, and addictive – I could casually sip a mug of spiced wine all night long while cuddled up by a fire with a good book.
It’s also perfect for Christmas party drinks – make up a big batch on the stove or in a slow cooker and leave out mugs for guests to pour themselves some to warm up and sip!
When my husband decided we should make our own mulled wine, I was thrilled! This version is delicious, incredibly easy (just toss in the red wine, brandy and spices and set the slow cooker) – and it is perfect for a holiday party. Packed with the flavors of oranges, cloves, cinnamon and cardamom, this recipe will keep you warm all night long!
I love to sip it all night dreaming that someday I’ll get to drink it again while strolling through a snowy Krakow Christmas market, and enjoying all those amazing foods again soon!
Can you keep mulled wine?
Left over portions (if you have any) can be kept in the fridge for a few days, and reheated at a simmer before serving (for about 20 mintues).
More of My Favorite Christmas Ideas:
If you’re looking for deliciously festive food and drink ideas, or see some of my travels to Christmas Markets in Europe that inspired this Gluehwein recipe, please click through to see each post:
Traditional Gluehwein Recipe
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To see this easy traditional gluehwein recipe being made, click to watch the video below:
- 2 medium lemons
- 2 medium oranges, or limes
- 10 whole cloves
- 5 cardamom pods
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 2 3-inch cinnamon sticks
- 2 750-milliliter bottles dry red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Beaujolais Nouveau
- 1/2 cup brandy
- Butcher’s twine
- Slice fruit into thin rounds
- Add herbs into cheesecloth, tie off to make a small sachet.
- Add all ingredients into slow cooker, set to low.
- Let simmer at least one hour until serving.
- If flavor becomes bitter, remove herbs and fruit with peels from slow cooker!
Amount Per ServingCalories 231 Sodium 7mg Carbohydrates 29g Fiber 1g Sugar 24g