One of my favorite parts of this time of year is all the different (and tasty) things we get to do with apples. It starts with caramel and candied apples and ends with delicious apple pie. Well, I have a new way for you to celebrate the almighty apple: slow cooker chai apple cider.
This recipe has two wonderful parts to it: first, it smells amazing. Like an apple and cinnamon scented candle, your house will be billowing with yumminess. And when it is all over, you get to drink delicious homemade apple cider. Plus, this has no added sugar like store-bought versions.
Thirdly — yes there is one more wonderful part — the Rooibos Chai tea pairs so well with the cooked apple. Those spices, much like pie spice, highlight the crisp honey-like flavors. It is so good!
Last, but not least, this cider also tastes delicious spiked with some cinnamon whiskey or bourbon, to serve to guests… or just for yourself.
- 4 pounds apples (I suggest honeycrisp)
- 1 lemon slice
- 3 bags Numi Rooibos Chai tea
- 6 cups water
- Garnish: orange slices, cinnamon sticks
- You’ll need to core the apples and then cut them into slices. You can also peel them but it isn’t required. It will make the final steps a bit easier but hardly changes the taste.
- Add the apples, lemon slice, tea, and water to a crock-pot. The water will not cover them all, and that is ok. As the apples cook down, they will submerge. This makes for a much more intense apple cider.
- Set the crock-pot to medium and let the apples cook for about 4-6 hours.
- Remove the tea bags, giving them a good squeeze. Using a potato masher or a large wooden spoon, mash the apples as much as possible. They should just fall apart at this point. This is where peeled apples fair better. Let the mixture cook for 2 more hours.
- Strain the mixture reserving the liquid. Transfer the mixture back to the crock-pot and add in some orange slices and a cinnamon stick. Keep on low until ready to serve.
- Here’s a pro tip. If you don’t want to waste all that apple fiber, you can puree some of it and mix it into the cider. I recommend you peel the apples for sure if you plan to do this.
For more seasonal favorites from Jerry James Stone, try our Honeybush Hot Buttered Rum and Homemade Chamomile Rooibos Cough Drops.