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Hands wrapped around a cozy mug of hot apple cider.
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5 from 12 votes

Instant Pot Apple Cider

Our easy homemade Instant Pot Apple Cider is sweet and spicy with just the right amount of heat. Delicious served hot or cold, spiked, or non-alcoholic. Bursting with fresh apples, oranges, pomegranate, and mulled with warming spices for an immunity boosting fall drink.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Natural Release Instant Pot15 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Beverages
Cuisine: American
Diet: Low Lactose, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 6 cups
Calories: 153kcal
Author: HWC Magazine

Equipment

  • Instant Pot
  • Potato Masher or spatula
  • Colander
  • Fine mesh strainer or cheese cloth

Ingredients

  • 6 to 8 medium apples about 2.5 to 3 pounds - we used a mixture of Gala and Granny Smith.
  • 2 medium oranges
  • 1 knob ginger fresh - 1 inch knob (or¼ teaspoon dried ground)
  • cup maple syrup (or brown sugar, honey, dried dates, or sugar alternative of choice)
  • 4 whole cinnamon twill sticks or 1 tablespoon dried ground cinnamon
  • 3 Star Anise (or ½ teaspoon of 5 spice powder)
  • ½ cup pomegranate seeds (arils) or up to 1 cup. optional fresh seeds from whole pomegranate (reserve some for garnish)
  • ½ teaspoon dried ground cloves use ¼ to ½ teaspoon dried ground depending on your preference. Can also use 3 to 6 whole cloves
  • ½ teaspoon dried ground nutmeg (or ½ whole nutmeg)
  • Water enough water to cover apples and oranges or about 6 cups.
  • rum, whiskey, Fireball or alcoholic beverage of choice optional (if the adults in your crew are starting to whine about weekend leaf removal add as needed)
  • cinnamon twills, slices of apples, oranges, star anise and pomegranate seeds. Optional Garnishes

Instructions

  • Slice apples in quarters. Remove the apple core and seeds and roughly chop. You could even just roughly chop and leave the seeds and the core, if you do not plan on using the apple puree for any other recipes.
  • Remove the orange peel from the oranges and roughly chop. It is important to also remove the pith (the white part next to the rind) from oranges as when this cooks, the pith can become bitter.
  • Place the prepared apples and oranges in the instant pot. In addition, add the fresh or dried ginger, maple syrup or sweetener of choice, cinnamon twills or ground cinnamon, Star Anise or 5 Spice powder, pomegranate seeds, cloves, nutmeg, and enough water to cover the apples. (Pomegranate seeds are optional)
  • Seal and set your instant pot (pressure cooker) on high pressure for 15 minutes and let it naturally release for about 10-15 minutes and then carefully release. You can also just leave it naturally release completely if you wish. Please note that it can take up to 30 minutes for the temperature of the instant pot to pressurize.
  • Remove any whole spices and then mash the spiced apple mixture.
  • The best method for straining apple cider is to first pour your apple cider mixture through a regular colander to grab the big portions off fruit.  You can pitch the parts of fruit that the colander caught as it is mostly the apple skins and things you do not want.
  • Then, we take the strained prized spiced cider juice and little by little add it through a fine meshed strainer (or cheesecloth) and strain to give you a clearer beverage. Check out our video to see how we did this.
  • Enjoy mulled apple cider hot or iced. We like to garnish with apple slices, orange slices, cinnamon sticks, star anise and pomegranate seeds. For the adults, add a shot of your favorite whiskey, rum, fireball, or favorite alcoholic drink as desired.

Video

Notes

Storage
Homemade instant pot apple cider can be stored for up 5 days in the refrigerator or up to 2 months in the freezer.
What to do with the apple pulp?
After you are done with the second straining, don’t throw out the apple pulp (sauce). We love adding apple sauce to breads, pancakes, and muffins to give them extra spice and keep them moist
Crockpot (Slow Cooker) Apple Cider Directions
Add all ingredients to the slow cooker with the lid and set on low for 3 hours or high for 1.5 hours.
Stove Top Directions
After you place all the ingredients into a large pot on the stove top, put on a lid and put on high heat until it reaches a gentle boil.  Then, turn down the heat and simmer for 2 to 3 hours or until the apples are fall apart soft.
Other Suggestions
Choose a mixture sweet and sour apple for the best results.
Adjust the amount of sweetener up or down as desired. If you like it sweeter, add more. On the other hand, if you like it less sweet, add less. 
Are you out of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves? No worries!  Substitute with ground all spice as ALL of these spices are in the dried ground all spice blend.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 153kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 26mg | Potassium: 319mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 29g | Vitamin A: 200IU | Vitamin C: 33mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 1mg