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Muddled Apple Cider Cocktail

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There’s nothing better than a crisp fall day. And what better way to top off a crisp fall day than with a cozy fall cocktail. Our muddled apple cider cocktail is spicy and warm but also vibrant and crisp — the perfect combination for a brisk day.

Crafting An Autumn Elixir

A muddled apple cider cocktail offers the perfect blend of fruity freshness and spiced warmth. The primary ingredients are apple cider, bourbon, and lemon juice. Apple and bourbon are a harmonious pair while lemon juice brightens their vibe and allows spice to shine through. We’ve added muddled apple to our drink to create freshness and depth. In addition maple syrup rounds out the fall flavors. Our spiced whipped cream takes this drink to a whole other level.

Bringing the Warmth of Fall to Your Cider Cocktail

One of the unique features of this cocktail is the option to serve it warm. Warming this drink allows the bourbon to permeate the muddled apple, infusing its rich flavors into the mix. To serve it warm, simply start by muddling a fresh apple with a dash of bourbon and lemon juice. Top it with the remaining bourbon and set aside. Heat the remaining ingredients in a saucepan on low heat until warm, then pour them into your muddling glass. It’s like a cozy, liquid blanket on a chilly evening. For this reason, this version kind of begs to be topped with whipped cream.

The Perfect Garnish for Our Apple Cider Cocktail

As mentioned, a dollop of our spiced whipped cream will complete the presentation and add an extra layer of incredible flavor to your spiced muddled apple cider cocktail. The creamy, lightly spiced topping creates a luscious, velvety touch to your drink, making it a true celebration of autumn in a glass. If you choose to do without the whipped cream, then make sure to add a pinch of cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg to your drink for extra flavor. Or you could use a spiced apple cider.

Variations to Muddle for the Season

If you’re feeling adventurous, try seasonal variations. As winter approaches, consider replacing the muddled apple with pickled or preserved cranberries, a spoonful of pumpkin puree or an orange slice. These variations bring unique, seasonal touches to your muddled apple cider cocktail.

Sharing the Muddled Apple Cider Experience

Multiply the ingredients of this recipe to make a large batch of this to serve at your next fall get together. Do warn your guests — this drink will sneak up on you in a surreptitious way — it is goes down quickly and the bourbon can pack a punch. As a matter of fact, if you are in need of a lighter cocktail, take an ounce of bourbon away or leave out the alcohol for a fun mocktail. Without the alcohol this is a fun interactive kid’s beverage that kids will love to make with you.

So as you gather with loved ones or indulge in a quiet moment of reflection, this cocktail will enhance the sense of togetherness that autumn brings. Whether you’re enjoying a crisp evening with friends or sipping in solitude, this drink is your ticket to a cozy, flavorful experience. So what do you think? Does is this cocktail entice you? We’d love to hear your thoughts below. If you’re looking for more drink ideas, check out our Pinterest ‘refreshing sips’ drink board.

photo of muddled apple cider cocktail topped with spiced whipped cream and a cinnamon stick next to a chunk of apple, a cocktail shaker, a half squeezed lemon, a muddler, cocktail shaker and apple cider and bourbon in the background

Muddled Apple Cider Cocktail

This cocktail combines the rich, warm notes of bourbon with the sweet and tangy taste of apple cider. Adding spiced whipped cream on top creates a delightful and essential aromatic twist to your drink. Perfect for sipping on a cozy autumn evening! Be warned: this cocktail sneaks up on you quickly because it is so delicious. This recipe can be made non-alcoholic and kid-friendly by leaving out the bourbon.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Diet: Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword: apples, cocktails, fall spice
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 drink
Author: juiceofsevenlemons


  • 1/2 small apple sliced (for muddling) – something like a honeycrisp is good for this cocktail; tangy and sweet apples work best
  • 2 oz bourbon
  • 3 oz apple cider
  • 1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 oz maple syrup
  • Ice cubes
  • spiced whipped cream optional but amazing – sub with a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg or used a spiced apple cider


  • In a cocktail shaker, add the sliced apple and muddle it to release its juices.
  • Add the bourbon, apple cider, fresh lemon juice, and maple syrup to the shaker.
  • Fill the shaker with ice and shake well to chill the cocktail.
  • Strain the cocktail into a glass filled with ice.
  • Top the cocktail with a dollop of prepared spiced whipped cream.
  • Garnish with a sprinkle of ground cinnamon or a cinnamon stick, and a thin apple slice.
  • Serve your muddled apple cider cocktail immediately and enjoy the wonderful fall flavors!


Variations: Feel free to experiment with different bourbons or whiskeys to tailor the cocktail to your taste. You can also try using rum or brandy for a unique twist on this classic fall cocktail.
Make It a Mocktail: Not a fan of alcohol or want the kids to have a fun fall drink? No worries! You can easily create a non-alcoholic version of this cocktail. Simply omit the bourbon and replace it with apple cider or a clear soda. You’ll still enjoy the delicious flavors of apple and spice without the alcohol.
Garnish Options: Try adding apple slices, a cinnamon stick, or a sprinkle of nutmeg.
Glassware: For the best experience, serve this cocktail in an old-fashioned glass or a tumbler. The weight and size of these glasses are perfect for savoring every sip of this delightful drink.
Serving Tips: The Muddled Apple Cider Cocktail is excellent served over ice. It can also be served warm if you prefer a cozy, comforting drink. If wanting to server warm, muddle the apple slice per serving mug and top with liquor, heat the remaining liquid ingredients until warm, and pour them over the muddled apple and bourbon. Adjust the temperature to your liking.
Preparation Ahead: To make serving this cocktail a breeze, you can prepare certain components in advance. Consider muddling the apples and topping with lemon juice and having all your ingredients measured out ahead of time.
Enjoy Responsibly: While we encourage you to savor this delicious cocktail, it’s important to drink responsibly. If you plan to have more than one, remember to pace yourself, and never drink and drive. Cheers to a memorable and responsible fall season!

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