5 delicious herbal hot drinks for the winter season

We asked Napiers’ the Herbalists, an expert in herbal remedies, to create some recipes for delicious hot herbal drinks for you to enjoy over Christmas and New Year.

Published 24th Dec 2015
Updated 21 st Sep 2023

For many, nothing quite conjures up the feeling of Christmas like the deep aromas and spices of hot, mulled drinks. With their rich flavours and warming qualities, mulled wines and ciders, hot toddies and seasonal drinks feature a number of traditional ingredients with many interesting health benefits.

Napiers’ the Herbalists is the UK’s trusted expert in herbal remedies and have created some delicious drinks recipes featuring key herbal ingredients to be enjoyed across the festive period:

⦁ Recipe 1: Mulled Wine

⦁ Recipe 2: Mulled Cider

⦁ Recipe 3: Easy Ginger Hot Toddy

⦁ Recipe 4: Easy Winter Cheer Hot Toddy

⦁ Recipe 5: Hogmanay Hangover Cure

Mulled Wine and Cider

Whether Glühwein, Glogg, Vin Chaud or Mulled Wine this winter warmer is as Christmassy as mince pies and Rudolf. A festive staple since medieval times, with more recent cider variations, the drink features classic compounds like cinnamon, cloves and orange which can help us stay ship-shape over the silly season.

Red Wine: While it should always be drunk in moderation, red wine contains antioxidants like resveratrol which supports longevity genes, increases HDL or “good” cholesterol, helps reduce stress levels and increases creativity.

Isle of Tiree Distillery to release first single malt whisky

Cider: One of the UK’s oldest alcoholic drinks, good cider, like red wine, when enjoyed in moderation, is packed with antioxidants that help protect against cancer, heart disease and other conditions.

Apple Juice: Apples contain a whole host of vitamins, flavonoids and other health boosting phytonutrients.

Cloves: Cloves are antimicrobial. Commonly used to treat toothaches where they help to anaesthetise the pain as well as providing an antiseptic effect.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon helps to lower and control blood glucose levels. While many spices have this effect, cinnamon is one of the most potent blood sugar regulators, making it particularly good for diabetics and helps to counteract the effects of sucrose or glucose-rich foods. Cinnamon, like many of the other spices, also has pain relieving properties.

Oranges: As well as vitamin C, oranges are a great source of B vitamins including vitamin B1, pantothenic acid, and folate as well as vitamin A, calcium, copper, and potassium. They are also a good source of fibre.

Black Friday deals: 12 whiskies under £100 to buy this November - including Lagavulin and Aberlour

Recipe 1: Mulled Wine

Napiers the Herbalists' Mulled Wine 1


• 750 ml (1 bottle) red wine
• 1 litre of unfiltered apple juice
• 4 whole cloves
• 3 star anise
• 2 long cinnamon sticks
•Zest and juice of 1 orange
• Orange peel to decorate


Christmas 2023: 10 whiskies for under £60

⦁ Put all of the ingredients into a large saucepan or preserving pan.
⦁ Heat until the liquid is hot but not boiling.
⦁ Turn off the heat, keep covered and leave overnight to infuse. The longer the wine infuses, the more the flavour and spiciness develops.
⦁ On the day of serving, heat to a comfortable temperature and serve from a large tureen with a ladle for each cup.

Recipe 2: Mulled Cider


For those looking to mix up the traditional while still capturing the best of those rich festive aromas like winter apple, cinnamon and cloves – hot, mulled cider is this season’s go-to winter warmer. To make the drink, simply switch the red wine for a full-bodied cider or scrumpy, substitute the apple juice addition with brown sugar and – as an optional kick – add a good spike of cider brandy at the point of serving.


• 1 litre full-flavoured cider
• 75g brown sugar
• 4 whole cloves
• 3 star anise
• 2 long cinnamon sticks
• Zest and juice of 1 orange
• Orange peel to decorate
• Good splash of cider brandy (optional, to serve)


⦁ Put all of the ingredients into a large saucepan or preserving pan and cover.
⦁ Slowly heat the liquid to mull the cider.
⦁ Turn off the heat, keep covered and leave overnight to infuse.
⦁ On the day of serving, heat to a comfortable temperature, add the cider brandy (if desired) and serve from a large tureen with a ladle for each cup.

Hot Toddies
Reminiscent of a childhood spent wrapped against the cold and Mum’s watchful eye at even the slightest hint of a cough or cold, hot toddies get the modern treatment for festive cheer. Napiers’ offer two tinctures combining the best of Christmas flavours like vanilla, cinnamon and brandy with boosting compounds like ginger and elderberry.

Ginger: Ginger is an extremely good antibiotic, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral and, alongside its distinctive flavour in foods, is used to treat a wide variety of conditions. A ginger and honey gargle can be helpful in throat infections and the root is especially lauded as a digestive aid, relieving things like morning sickness in pregnant women.

Capsicum: Known by all curry-lovers, capsicum helps clear the sinuses and regular ingestion can even help keep cluster headaches and migraines at bay. Capsicum offers fantastic flavouring to gin, vodka and other infusions.

Elderberry: Elderberry is extremely high in vitamin A and contains vitamin C and minerals potassium, iron and calcium, as well as other attributes to keep the body in the best of health throughout the winter months.

Rose: The perfect accompaniment to elderflower or other gentle flavours and brought to life with a squeeze of lemon, rose is calming, mildly sedative and stress reducing – the perfect antidote to Boxing Day sales anxiety.

Recipe 3: Easy Ginger Hot Toddy

Napiers the Herbalists' Hot Toddy Tincture


• 1 litre of water
• 1 lemon, sliced
• 2 long cinnamon sticks
• 4 whole cloves
• 100ml brandy or whisky
• 30ml of Napiers’ Ginger Cordial - a hot and spicy blend of ginger and capsicum


⦁ Add water, cinnamon sticks, cloves, cordial and lemon slices into a saucepan, cover and bring to a light simmer
⦁ Simmer for 10-15 minutes.
⦁ Turn off the heat and add whisky or rum measure. Stir.
⦁ Remove cloves and pour liquid and all remaining ingredients into a heavy jug for a festive look.

Recipe 4: Easy Winter Cheer Hot Toddy


• 1 litre of water
• 1 lemon, sliced
• 125 ml Crème de Cassis (or a bramble or currant cordial)
• 120ml The Botanist Gin
• 50ml of Napiers’ Winter Cheer Hot Toddy - A mixture of elderberry tincture with rose and a touch of ginger
• 1 tablespoon runny honey (optional or to taste)
• Dried rose petals for presentation


⦁ Add the water, lemon, Crème de Cassis, Winter Cheer Hot Toddy and honey into a saucepan, cover and bring to a light simmer
⦁ Simmer for 10-15 minutes.
⦁ Turn off the heat and add gin measure. Stir.
⦁ Pour liquid, including ingredients, into a heavy jug or bowl with ladle. Sprinkle with dried rose petals to serve.

Hogmanay Hang-over Cure

Napiers the Herbalists' Hogmanay Hangover Cure Bloody Mary

Whether post-Christmas Party, post-Christmas or to follow your biggest Hogmanay celebration in years, if you've got one hell of a hangover you need some serious help with Napiers’ own Hangover Cure Bloody Mary containing Best British Bitters.

Milk Thistle: The liver’s best friend, Milk Thistle is the ultimate herbal hangover buster.
Herbal Bitters: Used in both apéritifs and digestifs, they help to settle the stomach before or after a meal. Herbal bitters are very helpful to aid digestion after overindulgence in alcohol, rich or spicy food, shellfish and other minor digestive challenges.
Meadowsweet: Nature’s aspirin packed full of natural salicylates.
Dandelion: A great diuretic and known to the French as ‘pis-en-lit’, Dandelion helps to flush the body.

Ingredients (per glass):

• 4 ice cubes
• 1 measure (25ml) vodka
•1 measure (25ml) Napiers’ Best British Bitters
150ml tomato juice
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
6 dashes Worcestershire sauce
2 dashes Tabasco sauce
salt and black pepper

⦁ Put the ice cubes into a tall glass
⦁ Add the vodka and the Best British Bitters
⦁ Add the tomato juice, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco.
⦁ Stir well.
⦁ Grind rock salt and black pepper on to it to taste.
⦁ Drink gently while nursing head!

Napiers’ the Herbalists is home to a full herbal dispensary, with more than 300 types of herbs available online at www.napiers.net or at its stores in 18 Bristo Place, Edinburgh and 61Cresswell Street, West End, Glasgow.
Napiers has been providing herbal remedies, supplements and skincare to those seeking natural treatments for 155 years, now with 20,000 clinic appointments across its Glasgow and Edinburgh locations annually. Led by its clinics, Napiers’ approach and product range are fully informed by the experience and expertise of the company’s practitioners.
Issued by: Hayley Angell, Stripe Communications, 0141 378 0077, email napiers@stripecommunications.com

Copyright ©2023 National World Publishing Ltd
Cookie SettingsTerms and ConditionsPrivacy Policy
crosschevron-down linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram