Hot Buttered Apple Cider is hot buttered rum meets fresh apple cider (you can make it boozy or not.) It’s perfect for winter celebrations, or just curling up, solo, by the fire.
hot buttered cider is a delicious riff on hot buttered rum
We’re celebrating the shorter days by the fire with mugs of hot buttered cider. We’ll probably also have a batch warming in the slow cooker on Thanksgiving so everybody can help themselves. The drink is aromatic and absolutely delicious on a chilly evening. Don’t be jealous, you can have some too, it’s so easy to make.
hot buttered rum originated with the American colonists
A cocktail that’s lasted that long just has to be good 🙂
- Rum was the spirit of choice for the colonies because it was made in the nearby Caribbean, with fermented molasses which is a by product of early sugar cane farms.
- Hot buttered rum is a cocktail made with rum (you can substitute whiskey) butter, a sweetener, and spices, which makes it perfect for the holidays.
what’s the difference between a toddy, a nog, and a hot buttered drink?
All these historic cocktails date back to colonial times or earlier.
a toddy: a drink made from alcohol, water, sugar (or honey,) and spices
a nog: (short for eggnog) is made with milk or cream, sugar, raw eggs, one or more alcoholic spirits, and spices. It is mostly served chilled, but can be warmed.
a hot buttered drink: the addition of butter makes this sweetened and spiced hot drink unique.
what you’ll need to make hot buttered cider
- apple cider – cider is basically raw unfiltered apple juice. It has a cloudier appearance and a more robust flavor than apple juice. (Got leftover cider? Try my cider and sage gravy or my mulled cider jelly!)
- brown sugar
- spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice
- rum (leave out for a non-alcoholic drink) Use a golden or dark rum. You can also use spiced rum if you like.
- whipped cream, also optional
how to make toasty and delicious hot buttered cider
- Blend the butter, sugar, and spices in a bowl until well combined into a paste or ‘batter,’ as it’s called.
- Heat up the apple cider in a saucepan, just until it comes to a simmer, and stir in the butter/spice mixture until completely dissolved.
- Pour into mugs, and add an ounce of rum or whiskey to each glass.
- Top with lightly sweetened whipped cream and a dusting of nutmeg.
keep your hot buttered cider warm in a crock pot
I love to pour the whole lot into a slow cooker on the keep warm setting. Guests can serve themselves, and spike it or not, as they choose. One benefit of this method is that the house will smell wonderful.
some thoughts on variations
- You might use maple sugar, or maple syrup instead of the brown sugar. You can also add a bit of molasses.
- Whiskey works well in place of rum.
- You might try it with hard cider, and in that case leave out the rum (or not!)
- For a vegan version, substitute coconut oil for the butter.
to make a non alcoholic hot buttered cider
Just leave out the rum, everything else stays the same.
to make a single serving of hot buttered cider
Heat a cup of cider on the stove or in the microwave, and stir in a heaping tablespoon of your spiced batter. Add an ounce of rum (or more to taste.) The batter will keep for a week or more in the refrigerator if you want to use it this way. You can even roll it into a log and wrap in plastic; then you can slice off what you need.
more cozy fall and winter drinks
- Slow Cooker Mulled Wine – think of it as a drinkable holiday scent diffuser!
- Pomegranate Mulled Cider – I developed this to help me cut back on wine consumption, and it worked.
- The Sloppy Santa and 9 Other Naughty Nightcaps – because winter eves can be endless.
- The Ultimate Hot Chocolate – for chocoholics who don’t do chocolate half way.
- Homemade Irish Cream – a fun and easy project.
- How to Make Smoking Cocktails with Dry Ice (Or not!)
Hot Buttered Apple Cider
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp ground allspice
- pinch salt
- 4 cups apple cider
- 4 ounces rum (optional)
- whipped cream and freshly grated nutmeg for serving (optional)
- To make the butter mixture, combine the room temperature butter with the brown sugar, spices, and salt in a bowl.
- Mash the ingredients together with a fork or spoon until they become a smooth paste.
- Heat the cider in a saucepan and, when hot, add the butter mixture and whisk or stir until the butter mixture is melted.
- Pour into heat proof glasses or mugs and add an ounce of whiskey or rum to each serving (optional) and top with whipped cream and a dusting of freshly grated nutmeg, if desired.
To make ahead:
- Make the butter/spice mixture (you can double or triple the recipe)
- Roll it into a log, just like cookie dough, and wrap tightly in plastic.
- When ready to use, just slice off the amount you need: allow approximately 1 tablespoon per serving.
- The log will keep for a week in the refrigerator.