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close up of a single glass of mulled wine on a wooden coaster

Gluhwein (mulled wine)

Mulled wine or Glühwein is made with red wine simmered in whole spices, citrus, sugar, and served hot. It is popular across Christmas markets in Europe and around the world.
Course Drink
Cuisine European
Diet Gluten Free, Vegan
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 220kcal
Author Shinta


  • 750 ml Red Wine (See notes)
  • cups Water
  • 2 Oranges Juice and Zest
  • 2 Cinnamon Stick
  • 10-15 Cloves
  • 2 tbsp Dark brown sugar Or use light brown sugar
  • 2-3 Star Anise
  • pinch Nutmeg (Optional)
  • 2 Bay leaves


Instant Pot Method

  • Add the water to the Instant Pot, followed by the whole spices and zest and juice of 2 oranges.
  • Seal the lid of the Instant Pot, and Pressure Cook for '0' minutes. Let the cooking cycle complete and let the pressure valve come down on its own.
  • Open the lid of the Instant Pot and add the red wine and brown sugar. Stir to dissolve sugar.
  • Switch to Saute mode and bring to a simmer. Once the liquid starts to bubble, hit 'Cancel' and then switch to 'Keep Warm' mode.
  • Keep the IP on 'Keep Warm' mode until all the gluhwein has been served.

Stovetop Method

  • In a large sauce pan, add the water followed by the whole spices and zest and juice of 2 oranges.
  • Let the water come to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 4-5 minutes.
  • Add the red wine and the brown sugar and store to dissolve. Simmer.
  • Once the liquid starts to bubble, reduce the heat to low and serve the gluhwein hot.


  • Do not cook the red wine for too long, as the alcohol will evaporate and the drink will lose its potency. Just simmer until it bubbles and then serve hot. 
  • Use any red wine of your preference - stick to a budget brand, there is no need to invest in a premium wine!
  • Use organic oranges as we will be using the zest. Make sure you do not use grate the pitch of the orange else it will be slightly bitter. 
  • Optional spices that you can add: Cardamom, Nutmeg, Ginger, all-spice, black pepper. 
  • Honey can be used to replace brown sugar


Calories: 220kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 15mg | Potassium: 357mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 147IU | Vitamin C: 35mg | Calcium: 70mg | Iron: 1mg