Festive and Flavorful: Christmas Sangria for the Holiday Season

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I'm a Certified Health Coach, longtime blogger, and host of Elizabeth Eats on YouTube. In addition to writing recipes (I love to eat!), I'm a strong believer that life is too short to settle for anything less than living your best life.


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This low-sugar Christmas Sangria was a hit at my ladies’ night holiday party! A signature holiday drink instantly makes any gathering feel more special.

It’s not too sweet and not too strong. It’s a great beverage to welcome your guests with as they arrive at your party.


  • 2 bottles dry rosé wine, chilled
  • 8 ounces premium vodka, chilled (omit for a lighter drink)
  • 2 (12-ounce) cans of club soda, chilled
  • 1 cup pomegranate simple syrup from the recipe below (completely cooled)
  • Floating garnish:
    • 1/2 cup whole cranberries
    • 1 orange, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
    • 1/2 of a green pear, chopped
    • extra pomegranate seeds from the pomegranate used to make the simple syrup
    • 5-6 two-three-inch fresh rosemary sprigs, plus more to garnish glasses if desired

How to make Christmas Sangria:

  1. Combine all chilled ingredients in a large serving container about 20 minutes before your party starts. Keep it chilled (I’ve put a bag of ice inside that I can pull out right before the party, you don’t want the ice to dilute the drink.)
  2. Add the floating garnish just before serving.


  • For a sweeter sangria, add more pomegranate simple syrup to taste.
  • For a spicier sangria, add a cinnamon stick to the pitcher before serving.
  • If you don’t have any pomegranate simple syrup, you can substitute 1 cup of pomegranate juice.

Pomegranate Simple Syrup Recipe

Makes about 1 1/2 cups

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • juice of one pomegranate (about 1/2 cup of strained pomegranate juice)

Method: Add the water and sugar to a sauce pan, bring to a simmer then stir until the sugar is completely dissolved (about 3 minutes). Remove from heat. Stir in the juice of one fresh pomegranate. To extract the pomegranate juice, gently roll your pomegranate on the counter until you feel the inside seeds (aka arils) crack—this will release the juice. Cut the pomegranate in half (do this in a bowl as the juice will start to run everywhere) then squeeze each half to get as much juice out as possible. Strain to remove the sides and pith. You should end up with about 1/2 cup of pomegranate juice (more or less depending on your fruit).

Let the simple syrup mixture cool completely before adding it to your sangria. It will take at least an hour to cool. This step can be done up to three days ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator.

You’ll need a punch bowl or large beverage container like I have here in the photos; I realized my jar was way too big once I had everything in but since I don’t have a punch bowl I just went with it. I used a big ladle to serve and it worked out perfectly. Try to use something large and clear—this drink is so pretty that you’ll want to show it off.

Christmas Sangria Elizabeth Rider

Chill all of the ingredients at least four hours ahead of time if possible; chilled sangria is always better than warm sangria. I try to not water it down with ice.

To choose the wine, I asked the wine store for a nice dry rosé at a good price. She picked out one from France that was a super reasonable price (around $12/bottle). You don’t have to spend a fortune, just choose something that would taste great on its own since it’s the base of your sangria. Just like all food, the quality of your ingredients determines how your dish turns out. A dry rosé really works here, or you could use another dry white wine. When in doubt ask your local wine store for help.

Christmas Sangria Elizabeth Rider

This drink is simple and impressive. It’s definitely my new holiday party go-to.

I like to leave the vodka out because hard liquor makes me feel like a train hit me the day after I drink it, but you do you. You can leave it out of the main serving container and let guests add a little to their liking, if desired.

Christmas Sangria Recipe

Christmas Sangria Mocktail Recipe (Alcohol-Free Version)

Makes about 20 5-ounce servings
Easily halved for smaller crowds


  • 1 1-liter bottle natural lemon-lime soda, chilled (or three 12-ounce cans) – I prefer to get this at the natural grocery store to avoid high fructose syrup
  • 24 ounces (2 cans) of club soda, chilled
  • 1 1/2 cup pomegranate simple syrup from the recipe above (completely cooled)

Floating garnish:

  • 1/2 cup whole cranberries
  • 1 orange, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
  • 1/2 of a green pear, chopped
  • extra pomegranate seeds from the pomegranate used to make the simple syrup
  • 5-6 two-three inch fresh rosemary sprigs, plus more to garnish glasses if desired

Method: Mix all chilled ingredients in a large serving container about 20 minutes before your party starts.

Sending you tons of love for your next holiday gathering!



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Hi, I'm Elizabeth

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