Mulled Wine Sorbet

This mulled wine sorbet calls for your favorite red wine, some cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and ginger, and sugar. Eat, drink, and be merry, all in one bite. Er, slurp.

A coupe class with three scoops of red mulled wine sorbet

Mulled wine made into dessert. That’s essentially what this tipsy sorbet is. It’s also perfectly spiced. And, as a result, feels much more satiating than you’d expect from sorbet. Those of you who’re wine geeks (or are friends with wine geeks), we’ve got a dinner party game for you. See who can guess which varietal you used. Not that it really matters. We’ve made this with all manner of reds and been quite content each time.–Renee Schettler Rossi

Which Wine To Use?

We’ve all been there. “There” being that infinitely comfy place when you and your BAE just polished off a bottle (or two) of wine, whether supped in its natural state or slurped as sorbet, and are basking in its afterglow, certain that one of you will recall the name or recognize the label next time you see it. But then the next day, you’ve got not the foggiest notion what varietal it was, let alone the winemaker. Next time snap a pic of the bottle—making certain to capture the label. Why else do you think they incorporated cameras into cell phones? Especially take note of those inexpensive bottlings that work well for weeknight sipping as well as recipes, such as this mulled wine. You especially want to remember those.

Mulled Wine Sorbet

  • Quick Glance
  • 15 M
  • 1 H, 30 M
  • Makes 1 to 1 1/2 quarts

Special Equipment: Ice cream maker

4/5 - 2 reviews
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  • 1 whole vanilla bean
  • 1 to 2 cups granulated sugar, depending on your wine and your sweet tooth
  • 3 cups full-bodied red wine, such as a Zinfandel, Cabernet, or Bordeaux
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 thin-skinned orange, preferably seedless, cut into 6 wedges
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole allspice berries or 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice


  • 1. Cut the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and, with the dull edge of your knife blade, scrape the seeds into a smallish stainless steel saucepan with a lid. Toss the scraped pod into the pan along with the remaining ingredients. Bring the mixture to a simmer, uncovered, over medium heat, whisking occasionally, until the sugar dissolves. Reduce the heat to low and let gently simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, cover, and let steep for 30 minutes at room temperature.
  • 2. Strain the mulled wine mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a shallow bowl or pan. Toss the sieve contents into your compost. Place the mulled wine mixture in the refrigerator until thoroughly chilled, 1 to 2 hours.
  • 3. Pour the chilled sorbet ingredients into an ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Using a rubber spatula, transfer the sorbet to an airtight container, cover tightly, and freeze until the sorbet is firm, at least 4 hours, before scooping and serving.

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  1. I made this mulled wine sorbet and it came out way too soft! What did I do wrong? It went for 2 hours in the ice cream maker and did not harden enough. I put it in the freezer overnight but it’s more of a slushy texture. I used a zinfandel and 1 1/4 c of sugar. Less than the recipe called for! Any insight? Also is there any way to make a sorbet harder after it’s already made? Anything I can add to it?

    1. Hi Aliza, was your zinfandel on the dry or sweet side? The sugar is important in development of sorbet’s texture, usually a sugar concentration of 20 to 30% is ideal. I’ve never tried this trick to fix a sorbet, but it might be worth a try. Bring your sorbet back to a liquid state and float a clean, dry egg in the liquid. (yep, an egg). If the sugar to liquid ratio is correct, an area on the egg about the size of a dime will peek above the liquid. More than that showing? Add some liquid. Less than that, add sugar. In this case, I might try adding invert sugar (corn syrup) as it should counteract any icy-ness. Put the whole mixture back (minus the egg) into the ice cream maker and re-churn. Let us know how this works!

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