Christmas sangria is crisp and fruity with a touch of sweet. It features red wine, fresh fruit and warm spices. Prep this easy recipe in 10 minutes, then let it chill in the fridge. Get the celebration started with this festive drink.
This traditional Spanish-style sangria uses red wine, and features the classic flavors of the winter season. Unlike punch, it’s wine forward and not overly sweet. Pair this fruity beverage with savory appetizers and finger foods.
This delicious holiday drink is the ideal “welcome beverage” for Christmas Eve. As friends and family arrive to the party exchanging kisses and hugs, take their coats and scarves. Hand them Christmas sangria in a mason jar.
- Honey: Adds a touch of sweetness to holiday sangria. If you don’t have this on hand use agave nectar, or superfine sugar for simple syrup (equal amounts sugar and water, heated until sugar dissolves, cooled).
- Very Hot Water: The temperature is important – it must be very hot. It’s used to dissolve the honey.
- Red Wine: Christmas sangria is only as good as the wine it’s made with. Select a light red wine that’s not too expensive, but tastes excellent on its own. I recommend Rioja, Merlot, Pinot Noir or Malbec.
- Orange Liqueur: Like Cointreau or Grand Marnier. It adds fruity flavor and extra alcohol. If you don’t have either of these on hand, try 1/2 cup brandy (apple or pear brandy is delicious!) plus 1/2 cup Triple Sec.
- Orange: Adds delightful citrus flavor and a beautiful fresh color.
- Green Apple: Adds fruity tartness to sangria.
- Cranberries: Fresh or frozen. They provide a seasonal look and taste. If you don’t have them on hand, use 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds.
- Cinnamon Sticks: Add subtle warmth and spice to holiday sangria.
- Whole Star Anise: Adds an earthy floral flavor and aroma.
- Rosemary Sprigs: Add a lovely green color and aroma. The perfect garnish for this holiday drink.
📖 CHRISTMAS SANGRIA RECIPE
- STEP 1: Add honey to tall (heat-safe) glass pitcher.
- STEP 2: Add hot water to the pitcher.
- STEP 3: Stir until the honey has dissolved (about 30 seconds). Briefly, let the mixture shed heat.
- STEP 4: Pour in the red wine.
- STEP 5: Add the orange liqueur.
- STEP 6: Add in the sliced orange, cubed green apples, cranberries, cinnamon sticks, and star anise. Mix with a wooden spoon for several minutes to fully combine. Taste and adjust the flavor as needed.
- STEP 7: Cover the pitcher with plastic wrap. Let the Christmas sangria chill in the fridge for at least 4 to 5 hours (preferably overnight) to let the mixture optimally blend together.
- STEP 8: To serve, pour Christmas sangria over ice. Garnish the drinks with fresh slices of orange and/or sliced green apple, plus fresh rosemary sprigs and whole star anise. Enjoy immediately.
🤔 RECIPE FAQ
These are the most commonly-asked questions for making the BEST Christmas Sangria, and the most helpful answers for recipe success.
Rioja, Merlot, Pinot Noir and Malbec are perfect for mixing with your favorite sangria ingredients. But the best red wine for sangria is the one you enjoy drinking on its own, without any added ingredients.
Use lots of fruit! A colorful combination of 3 different types. And don’t skip chilling in the fridge. The flavors need a chance to meld together so the drink will be extra delicious. Do a taste test. Adjust and balance the flavor as needed. If desired, add some extra sweetness or extra booze.
Feel free to mix and match your favorite fruits in this festive beverage. You can use red or green pears, strawberries, red apples, pomegranate seeds, or blood oranges. For extra holiday cheer, add a bit of effervescence: a splash of sparking water just before serving.
🎄 MORE HOLIDAY DRINKS
Do you enjoy making and serving specialty drinks for the holidays? Get your printer ready. Print out your favorite recipes. Add them to your collection. Or pin them to Pinterest so you can access the recipes from anywhere!
- Sparkling Pomegranate Rum Cocktails
- Andes Mint Hot Cocoa Bombs
- Hot Chocolate Mix
- Apple Cider Mule
- Peppermint Hot Cocoa Bombs
- Christmas Hot Chocolate Bombs
- Pumpkin Spice Hot Chocolate
- Maple Whipped Coffee
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Flavor testers rated this the BEST Christmas sangria recipe. They loved the perfectly-sweet fruity taste, and the gorgeous holiday presentation with rosemary sprigs and star anise garnishes.
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The ultimate Christmas sangria. This holiday drink features delicious red wine along with fruits and flavors of the season. Serve over ice. Garnish with fresh rosemary sprigs and whole star anise.
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup very hot water
- 1 bottle (750 ml / 25 fl oz) red wine
- 1/2 cup Cointreau (orange liqueur)
- 1 orange, sliced
- 1 green apple, cored and diced
- 1 cup cranberries or pomegranate granules
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 3 whole star anise
- Rosemary sprigs
- Whole star anise
- Sliced fruit: oranges and/or apples
- Add honey to tall (heat-safe) glass pitcher. Add hot water to the pitcher. Stir until the honey has dissolved (about 30 seconds). Briefly, let the mixture shed heat.
- Pour in red wine and orange liqueur. Add the sliced orange, diced apples, cranberries, cinnamon sticks, and star anise.
- Mix with a wooden spoon for several minutes to fully combine. Do a taste test. Adjust and balance the flavor as needed. If desired, add extra sweetness or extra booze.
- Cover the pitcher with plastic wrap. Let the Christmas sangria chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
- To serve, pour Christmas sangria over ice. Garnish the drinks with fresh slices of orange and/or sliced green apple, plus fresh rosemary sprigs and whole star anise. Enjoy immediately.
No Cointreau? Use Grand Marnier. Or try 1/2 cup brandy plus 1/2 cup Triple Sec. In a pinch, you can also use vodka.
Add extra holiday sparkle: Make the drinks effervescent with a splash of sparkling water just before serving.
Storage: Sangria can be made up to 24 hours in advance. If storing it longer, remove the fruit with a slotted spoon. Transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate. If the fruit is allowed to sit in the sangria for longer than 24 hours, it may cause the drink to become bitter.
- Prep Time: 10 Minutes
- Chill Time: 4 Hours (or Overnight)
- Cook Time: 0 Minutes
- Category: Drinks
- Method: Mixing
- Cuisine: Spanish
Keywords: Christmas Sangria, Holiday Sangria, Christmas Sangria Recipe, Holiday Sangria Recipe, Red Wine Sangria
🎅🏻 Holiday Sangria 👉🏻 Join the Conversation
Have you ever experienced the joy of Christmas sangria? Would you like to make a batch for the holidays? What type of red wine will you use? Will you switch up the fruit or keep it the same? Share your thoughts below.