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This easy winter sangria features red wine and orange liqueur mixed with fresh fruit including apples, oranges, pomegranates, and more. The warm winter spices and fresh citrus make this the perfect holiday sangria.

Need another cocktail recipe? Try apple cider sangria, Thanksgiving sangria, or mulled wine next!

a glass of red winter sangria with cinnamon sugar rim, fresh fruit, and rosemary
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Each glass has the perfect balance of winter flavors thanks to the warm spices and fresh citrus! The combination of oranges, cinnamon, rich wed wine, and more fresh fruit combine to make this the best easy cocktail recipe for new year’s eve, Christmas, or a cozy night with friends. 

I’ve been making this recipe for years now and it never disappoints! A good glass of classic red wine sangria is always on my cocktail list (like this Thanksgiving sangria in November) and I always reach for this easy drink. Don’t skip the cinnamon sugar rim—it’s the best part! We have the best cinnamon sugar ratio!


Winter sangria is a variation of the traditional sangria cocktail made with wine, fresh fruit, juices, and other aromatics. Winter sangria takes the base of the classic and adds fruits that are in season during the winter like citrus, apples, pears, and pomegranates. 

We always love to have a festive drink to sip on during the holiday season and this makes an especially good Christmas sangria! Even after the holidays pass it’s great for girls’ night or football games. Red wine is always my variety of choice, so this easy recipe is hands down a favorite cocktail for the cold winter months.

Looking for a white wine sangria recipe? Try this moscato sangria or jump to the recipe notes for a white wine variation.

Need another holiday drink? This Christmas punch recipe features sparkling juices and layer of slushy. Or try this Cranberry Christmas Paloma!

orange, cinnamon, and rosemary in a glas of winter sangria

Ingredient Notes

These are the key ingredients in this winter cocktail. Jump down to the recipe card for exact measurements.

ingredients for winter sangria recipe
  • Red wine: we love a dry Spanish wine for sangria! See the FAQs below or the ingredients notes in the recipe card for specific varieties we like, but a classic pinot noir, red zinfandel, or a red blend are good options
  • Apple brandy: you can find this at any local grocery store, but if you have regular brandy on hand that works too!
  • Grand Marnier: this adds more alcohol and orange flavor to the sangria, but any other orange liqueur, like a Triple Sec, is a good option.
  • Agave syrup: I love to use this because it’s a refined sugar-free sweetener. You can swap this for honey, or maple syrup, or make your own simple syrup to sweeten it.
  • Fresh orange juice: you need 1 cup total, which was about 3 large oranges for us. It would also be delicious to add pomegranate juice.
  • Winter fruit: We’re using a mix of pears, apples, orange slices, and pomegranate seeds. You could add some other winter fruits, including cranberries, tangerines or blood oranges. 
  • Warm spices: whole cinnamon sticks, star anise, and whole cloves.
  • Fresh rosemary: not only does this add a beautiful aroma, but it’s also gorgeous to use as a garnish.
  • Ginger Ale: top each glass with bubbly ginger ale or sparkling water before serving.

How to Make Winter Sangria

Here are the step-by-step photos to make winter sangria so you can see what it’s supposed to look like! Jump down to the recipe card for the full recipe and to watch how to make it.

Prep and slice the fruit: Slice all of the fruit to get it ready for the sangria.

sliced oranges, sliced apples, sliced pears, cinnamont sticks, and rosemary on a cutting board

Add to the pitcher: Add the fruit to a large pitcher with the cinnamon sticks, cloves and star anise.

apples, oranges, pears, rosemary, and cinnamon in a pitcher

Mix the red sangria: Pour the fresh orange juice, Grand Marnier, apple brandy, and wine on top of the fruit and spices. Stir well to combine.

mixing winter sangria in a pitcher

Chill: chill the sangria for at least 2 hours, or up to 24 hours. 

fresh fruit soaking in a pitcher of winter sangria

Cinnamon sugar rim: add all of the ingredients to a shallow plate or bowl and mix well. Run an orange wedge around the outside of each glass then dip it in the spice mixture. 

dipping a glass in cinnamon sugar

Serve: Fill the rimmed glasses with ice and pour the sangria in ¾ of the way full. Top with ginger ale or club soda and garnish with apple slices, orange slices, a cinnamon stick, and a sprig of rosemary.

red winter sangria in a wine glass and a pitcher of sangria next to it

Watch How to Make Winter Sangria (Video)

Recipe FAQs

What type of red wine is good for sangria?

Our favorite red wine for sangria is a semi-dry Spanish red wine. The best options are a Garnacha or Tempranillo because it’s somewhat fruity and is low in tannins (bitterness). You can find this type of wine at any grocery store and it’s usually in the $10 range. You could also use a cabernet sauvignon or merlot if that’s what you prefer. Check out this great post for other red wine options.

Should sangria be cold or warm?

Sangria can be served hot or cold! I prefer it chilled the majority of the time, but you can also serve it warm in mugs. Mix everything together in a crock pot and warm for an hour.

How far in advance should you make sangria?

The best time range to soak fruit in sangria is between 2-24 hours. The closer to a day in advance the sangria chills in the fridge, the better it will be. I don’t recommend going over 24 hours because the fruits can bread down too much and taste bitter.

What fruit is good in sangria?

You can’t go wrong with any fruit in a sangria recipe, but my favorite is a mix of seasonal fruit to highlight ripe and fresh ingredients.

Summer: strawberries, peaches and other stone fruits are great.
Winter: apples and citrus fruit like oranges are delicious. That’s why we’re using those two in this winter sangria recipe!

hand holding a glass of winter sangria

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5 from 4 votes

Winter Sangria

Prep: 15 minutes
Chill Time:: 2 hours
Total: 2 hours 15 minutes
This red winter sangria is a festive addition to any meal. It's mixed with apple, oranges, cinnamon and brandy for a citrus-spiced flavor to help you celebrate the season.

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Servings: 4 glasses


Red Winter Sangria

  • 1 bottle semi-dry red wine (I like Spanish Red Wine) (Note 1)
  • 1/2 cup apple brandy
  • 1/3 cup Grand Marnier or other orange liquor
  • 2 tablespoons agave, maple syrup or simple syrup
  • 1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice (about 3 oranges)
  • 1 apples cored and sliced
  • 2 pears sliced
  • 1 orange, sliced with the peel
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 6-7 cinnamon sticks
  • 1-2 whole star anise
  • 2 sprigs rosemary plus more to garnish
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • Ginger Ale, soda water or ginger beer to top

Cinnamon Sugar Rim

  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon


  • Place all of the ingredients, except for the soda water or ginger ale, in a large pitcher and stir to combine.
  • Store in the fridge for 1-2 hours. The longer it sits, the more flavor it will have, but don’t let it sit longer than 24 hours.
  • If you’re making a sugar rim, add all of the ingredients to a shallow plate and mix well. Rim each glass with an orange to wet the sides then dip it in the spice mixture.
  • When you’re ready to serve, fill the rimmed glasses with ice and pour the sangria in 3/4 of the way full. Top with ginger ale or soda water and garnish with soaked fruit, extra cinnamon sticks or rosemary.
Last step! If you make this, please leave a review letting us know how it was!


Note 1. Red Wine. There’s no need to break the bank here. Your favorite red wine will do. I personally like Spanish red wine for sangria. The best option is a Garnacha or Tempranillo because it’s somewhat fruity and is low in tannins (bitterness). You can find this type of wine at any grocery store and it’s usually in the $10 range. Check out this great post for other red wine options. 
Note 2. Apple Brandy. You don’t have to purchase an entire bottle if you don’t have this on hand, but it is delicious. You can use regular brandy or apple cider as alternatives.
White Sangria: swap the red wine for your favorite dry white wine, like sauvignon blanc. 
Warm Winter Sangria: Add all of the ingredients to the slow cooker and cook on high for 1 hour. Do not go over or the fruit and orange rinds will start to taste bitter. When the hour is up, turn the heat to “warm” and serve with fresh fruit and cinnamon sticks.



  • Wine Glasses or Mason Jar
  • Large Pitcher or Punch Bowl


Serving: 1glass | Calories: 172kcal | Carbohydrates: 22.3g | Protein: 0.3g | Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 23mg | Sugar: 20.1g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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