Homemade Spiced Apple Cider (refined sugar-free)

VeganGluten-FreePaleoNut-FreeSoy-FreeRefined Sugar-FreeEasyKid-FriendlyVegetarianEgg-FreeDairy Free

A warm Refined Sugar-Free Apple Cider boosts your mood and warms you from the inside out! This perfectly spiced recipe can be made in the Instant Pot for a homemade drink that’s comforting and delicious.

As the seasons begin to shift everyone becomes a little more prone to sneezes and sniffles, and this year even the slightest of symptoms feels more stressful than ever! I love having a warm, comforting wellness drink on hand to soothe sore throats and add a boost of vitamins and nutrition when we need it most. This is the most comforting drink ever. It’s free of refined sugar and filled with apple-spiced goodness! You can even add a splash of Fire Cider Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic from Sprouts for the ultimate healing beverage!

Fire Cider Original Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic in Apple Cider

Fire Cider Original Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic is filled with apple cider vinegar, oranges, lemons, ginger, garlic, turmeric…so many good ingredients to elevate your immune system and give a healing boost! Since this tonic has a small amount of honey it isn’t technically vegan, so heads up if you avoid honey strictly.

Apple Cider in the Instant Pot

Cooking with the Instant Pot is the quickest way to have homemade Apple Cider! These ingredients need just 20 minutes of high-pressure cooking before they’re ready to be strained and enjoyed in your most favorite mug.

Health Benefits of Apples

Apples are really, REALLY good for you! They are full of powerful disease-fighting nutrients and health benefits and will even keep you hydrated because of their high water content. Apples are low in calories, fat-free, sodium-free, cholesterol-free, and full of fiber and vitamin C. If you want more information on apples, I wrote an article about them in The Washington Post a couple years ago.

Is Ginger Good For You?

This recipe has two inches of fresh peeled ginger in it! It gives a warm spice to the drink while also adding powerful digestive, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties. If you’re prone to nausea, ginger can help soothe your stomach as well.

Refined Sugar-Free Apple Cider

I sweetened this Apple Cider recipe with pure maple syrup, so it’s free of refined sugar! I love that it’s composed of natural ingredients to soothe your body when you need it most. This cider is free of preservatives, additives, and artificial flavors. It’s a much fresher and healthier option than bottled varieties.

I hope this warm, comforting, spiced drink brings you wellness and comfort over these coming chilly months! I loved partnering with Sprouts to develop this recipe with a splash of Fire Cider Original Honey Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic. It’s a healing, rejuvenating drink when you need it most!

More Vegan and Gluten-Free Apple Recipes

Apple Cake

Easy Apple Nachos

Apple Pie Smoothie

Instant Pot Apple Butter

Easy Apple Crisp


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Homemade Spiced Apple Cider (refined sugar-free)

  • Author: Elaine Gordon
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 30
  • Yield: 12 cups 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


A warm, perfectly spiced Refined Sugar-Free Apple Cider made in the Instant Pot boosts your mood and warms you from the inside out!


  • 10 medium apples (2 pounds), quartered* 
  • 10 C. filtered water
  • 5 cinnamon sticks (or 1 tsp. ground cinnamon)
  • Optional spices:
    • 2 in. fresh ginger root, peeled (see notes)
    • 2 tsp. whole cloves
    • 1 tsp. whole nutmeg (or 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg)
    • 1 tsp. whole allspice (or 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg)
  • 1/4 C. pure maple syrup
  • Optional garnishes: apple slices, orange slices, cinnamon sticks, star anise
  • Optional add-in: Sprouts Fire Cider Original Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic


  1. Add the 10 cored and halved apples in the bottom of the Instant Pot.  Fill will 10 cups of filtered water.  Add 5 cinnamon sticks, 2 inches peeled ginger root, 1 teaspoon whole cloves, 1 teaspoon whole nutmeg and 1 teaspoon whole allspice. 
  2. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and turn the valve to sealed (not venting).  Cook on manual high pressure for 20 minutes.
  3. Quick release the pressure and remove the lid.  Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.
  4. Arrange a nut milk bag over a large mixing bowl with a pour spout.  Ladle the mixture (with the spices and apples) into the nut milk bag.  Use your hands to squeeze and twist the bag in both directions to release the liquid into the bowl.  You want to get all the liquid out.  You may need to do this in two batches.  Immediately invert your nut milk bag to remove the solids.  You can separate the apples from the whole spices and save the cooked apples for smoothies if desired (or discard everything).  Immediately rinse the nut milk bag with water.**
  5. Stir 1/4 cup pure maple syrup into the apple cider mixture in the large mixing bowl with the pour spout.  
  6. Enjoy warmed/hot*** in a mug garnished with apple slices, orange slices, cinnamon sticks and/or star anise if desired.  Taste and add more maple syrup if desired.
  7. To store, pour the apple cider into airtight glass bottles and refrigerate for up to five days.
  8. If desired, add 1 tablespoon of the apple cider vinegar tonic to your mug of hot apple cider.  Stir well to incorporate.  Taste and add more maple syrup if desired.  


*I like to use 8 sweet red apples and 2 Granny Smith apples for a sweet and tart mix.  You can use whatever you have on hand though.

**For best results, use a nut-milk bag.  If you do not have a nut-milk bag you can instead use a large fine mesh strainer.  If using the fine mesh strainer simply pour everything from the Instant Pot into the large fine mesh strainer and use a large spoon to press the cooked apples and spices down against the strainer to release all the liquid.  After all the liquid has been strained, discard the contents of the strainer.

***To reheat the apple cider you can pour it back into the Instant Pot and use the “Keep Warm” feature.  You can serve directly from the Instant Pot if desired.  

To enjoy the apple cider cold chill in your refrigerator for at least six hours.  Pour the mixture over ice cubes and stir with a straw to ensure it is well chilled.  Garnish with apple slices and cinnamon stick if desired.

To make Apple Cider Slushies add 20 ounces of chilled apple cider to your blender.  Add 4 cups of crushed ice and blend for 30 seconds.  Serve into four large glasses with a straw and enjoy immediately.  

If serving to kids I recommend omitting the ginger as it can overpower the drink and make it taste “spicy.”  Or, if you are not a ginger lover you can reduce the amount or omit.  

Squeeze in the juice from a fresh orange if desired.  Stir.

  • Category: Beverage
  • Method: Instant Pot

Keywords: instant pot apple cider

This post is sponsored by Sprouts Farmers Market. All opinions are my own. In addition to nutritious and whole food ingredients, Sprouts also carries all kinds of body care and vitamin products to help you take care of yourself.

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