Homemade Apple Cider


cider from scratch - made in crock pot
cider from scratch – made in crock pot

Fall is by far my favorite season of the year. I love the crisp, cool air and the smell of warm toasty things. There are still a couple weeks left of summer but now that the temperatures have dropped in the mornings and I’ve started wearing long-sleeves – it feels like fall has arrived early. To celebrate this fall-like weather, I decided to make some delicious sweet homemade apple cider in my crockpot.

I decided to use 12 smallish apples to make my cider. A mixed variety is best – the apple vendor at the farmer’s market suggested a combination of gala, pristine and honey crisp so that’s what I used for this particular batch. If you have a larger slow cooker, feel free to add more apples and adjust the spices as needed.

cider spices... mmm toasty
cider spices… mmm toasty

A lot of people will tell you that you don’t have to core and remove your apple stems, but I do. I think it makes it easier to strain and save the pulp once your cider is done. I also decided to leave the peels on, to help color and flavor the cider. I cored and chopped my apples and cut off any parts that were bruised. I put the apples in my crockpot along with some spices and used just enough filtered water to cover the apples. I set it on high for about 5 hours (4 to 8 will do just fine though) and when it was done, I strained the cider. I don’t like to waste so I decided to make an apple chutney with the leftover apples. You can easily make tasty applesauce though (just blend the pulp).

cider from scratch
cider from scratch

As for adding sweetener – my husband and I feel differently about sugar. I like a little and he likes a lot so I decided to sweeten our cider individually by cup rather than in the crock pot. Maple syrup is the secret sweetener to making your cider spectacular. It gives the cider so much depth. I get my syrup from a local farmer, but if you don’t have access to fresh maple syrup then be sure to buy Grade B at your grocery store. This is so important. Grade B maple syrup is thicker and darker than the syrup you’re probably used to pouring on top of your pancakes. It has caramel undertones and everyone knows caramel and apples make an excellent pair. This syrup can take your cider from incredibly decent to very decadent.

Homemade Apple Cider

Homemade Apple Cider

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  • 12 smallish local or organic apples use a mixed variety of apples, washed and chopped
  • 2-4 Cinnamon Sticks I used 2 pieces of cassia (stronger flavored cinnamon)
  • 15 Cloves whole
  • 1 whole Nutmeg
  • water enough to cover your apples
  • Organic Maple Syrup to taste


  • Put chopped apples and spices in crock pot and pour just enough filtered water to cover the apples.
  • Set crock pot on high 4-8 hours.
  • Strain cider before serving.
  • Add maple syrup to taste, and enjoy!


Don’t overdo it with the water in your crock pot. You can always add water to your cider if you think it’s too sweet but it is harder to fix diluted cider.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @myheartbeets on Instagram and hashtag it #myheartbeets!

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Find out more about my cookbooks Indian Food Under Pressure and South Asian Persuasion.

About Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley. Thanks for being here! I truly believe that food brings us closer together. Gather around a table with good food and good people, and you’ll have the ingredients you need to create some happy memories. My hope is that you find recipes here that you can’t wait to share with family and friends.


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  1. Dee Dee says

    How long after its cooled down is it good for? We are going on a road trip so I would love to bring this on the road with us for a couple days. We have a cooler so it’ll be on ice.

  2. Aysha Faith says

    So, in case you did add too much water …

    How do you fix this? Mine has been going … ohhhh … 5 hours now, and it’s watery as hell. 🙁

    • My Heart Beets 5 says

      Aysha, aww man. I’m sure it’s still good? You can try adding more apples and letting it cook longer in the crockpot if you have the patience to wait!

  3. Elise says

    Thanks for posting this. I just tried this and used my pressure cooker for 1/2 hour to speed up the cooking process. I added a good 2 inches of sliced fresh ginger, and it tastes great with a bit of honey added to my cup for extra sweetness. I didn’t have any nutmeg, only cloves & cinnamon. I have a bit of stomach complaints since yesterday and today, and this made my tummy feel good. I understand that apple pectin is good in cases like this, so this is the perfect remedy!

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