Looking for a festive way to serve wine and stay warm this holiday season? Keep reading for our Keto-Friendly Holiday Mulled Wine Recipe!
There’s just something about the flavors of the holiday season that warm the soul. Just imagine spicy cinnamon and ginger, zesty oranges, and aromatic cloves–mmhmm. Maybe it’s because those scents remind us of holiday memories spent with loved ones. Whatever it is, holiday spices help us feel all warm and cozy. Plus, now you can combine your love of these flavors with wine for an extra festive holiday beverage!
That’s right, this week we’re talking about mulled wine. While wine is traditionally served chilled or at room temperature, hot (mulled) wine is served warm with a blend of aromatic spices and fruits. So, get out your favorite punch bowl or maybe just your favorite cozy mug or glass and get ready for your new favorite holiday beverage. This week we’re giving you all the details on our Keto-Friendly Holiday Mulled Wine.
What Is Hot/Mulled Wine?
Also, known as spiced wine, hot or mulled wine is a beverage generally made with red wine. By heating the wine with various spices, and sometimes various fruits, it’s infused with different flavors that enhance or complement the flavors already present in the wine. While the heating process does cause some of the alcohol to evaporate, it’s still considered an alcoholic beverage (although you can make non-alcoholic versions).
Traditionally, this beverage is served around the winter holidays. Historically, however, this beverage served several purposes.
Supposedly, the ancient Greeks added spices and heated wine that was leftover from their harvest so it wouldn’t go to waste. The ancient Romans continued the tradition but added different ingredients (such as pepper, saffron, and dates). Mulled wine was trendy in the Middle Ages when wine wasn’t always the best quality. The process of adding spices and heating it not only made the wine more palatable, but it was also believed that the spices infused it with healing properties.
The mulled wine we know today is most similar to the mulled wine from Victorian England. There was even a mention of mulled wine in Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol. That mention cemented the holiday association for this beverage, and we’ve been drinking it ever since!
There are a variety of different recipes, but most people just flavor it to taste. Today, we’re giving you our Keto-Friendly, Low-Alcohol version that will warm your heart without ruining your health and fitness goals.
Wine of the Week
This week’s recipe actually calls for two different bottles of wine–a red and white wine. This deviates a bit from more traditional recipes, but the depth of flavor is worth the break from tradition!
Before you start stressing about selecting two different wines that are meant to pair with a variety of spices…take a deep breath. We’ve already done all the work for you!
For the red wine, we’ve selected our Tenuta Ceppaiano, “Alle Viole” Toscana IGT. This merlot-like wine already has some of the flavors we’ll be infusing it with, plus a few extras, which means you’ll really be able to taste them. We’re talking oranges, aniseed, bergamot, blackberries, and mild balsamic notes. Honestly, if you get overwhelmed and simply want to drink this wine on its own, that’s not a bad option.
The Castellani, Pinot Grigio delle Venezie DOC is our white wine of choice because it adds a delicate cider-like flavor with hints of apple and hawthorn. The heating process rounds out its acidity and the addition of fruits and spices creates a subtle sweetness.
SECCO Wine Club’s Keto-Friendly Hot Spiced Holiday Wine Recipe
If you’re worried about your carb, calorie, or sugar intake with this beverage, fear not! Each of these wines has less than 1.5 carbs, less than .5 grams of sugar, and less than 125 calories per glass. Our recipe makes twelve servings and the added ingredients add less than 10 calories in total. Plus, the heating process reduces the alcohol content AND naturally sweetens the wine.
Depending on any changes you may choose to make, each serving will have less than 150 calories, less than 4 grams of sugar, and less than 3 grams of carbs. Yes, please!
- 2 large oranges
- 2 bottles of red wine
- 1 bottle of white wine
- 1 piece of fresh ginger (roughly 3 inches)
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- Half teaspoon of ground cloves
- 1 whole aniseed (optional)
- ¼ cup brandy (optional)
- Honey (optional)
- Remove the zest from the oranges in strips using a sharp knife or vegetable peeler. Avoid the pith (the soft white layer underneath the zest). If you get too much pith, it will create a bitter flavor. Go ahead and add the juice from the oranges into a large pot (large enough for three bottles of wine).
- Peel the outer layer of the ginger. Discard the peel and thinly slice the remaining ginger.
- Pour the red and white wine into the pot containing the orange juice.
- Add the strips of orange zest, fresh ginger, cinnamon sticks, and ground cloves. If you like a mild licorice flavor, add the whole aniseed. If, however, you’re not a fan of licorice, skip the aniseed.
- Cover the pot and cook over medium-low heat. If it looks like it’s starting to boil, bring the heat down even further to avoid boiling.
- Cook for roughly an hour to allow the spices and fruits enough time to infuse the wine with their flavor.
- At this point, you can add the optional brandy and/or honey. The brandy will add alcohol and carbs but creates a more complex interesting flavor. The honey adds sweetness but obviously adds sugar as well. You also have the option to skip both of these ingredients, but that’s up to you!
- Strain and serve hot. You can add a cinnamon stick to each glass for garnish if you like as well.
Spread Some Holiday Cheer With Mulled Wine
One of the other perks of this recipe is that it will fill your house with the most amazing aroma! The sharp citrus of the oranges with the sweet and mildly savory scent of cloves will quickly put everyone in your house in the holiday mood. Plus, just one sip and you’ll be warm from your head to your toes.
Let us know in the comments if you have a mulled wine recipe that puts you in the holiday mood! And don’t forget to stock up on your favorite wines and follow us on Instagram for all the latest updates.