How to make Sangria - Three Delicious Recipes

How to make Sangria - Three Delicious Recipes

Red Sangria - Photo by TheCulinaryGeek

A chilled glass of fresh, fruity Sangria is the perfect summer beverage for casual entertaining and relaxing. A semi-sweet alcoholic drink, traditionally made by combining wine with citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and limes, it is the most informal of cocktails and, best of all, very simple to make.  As there are no absolute rules to making Sangria you should feel free to experiment with different wines, fruits and liqueurs to develop your own special 'blend'.  But, even with the easygoing nature of this delightful drink, there are still some hints and tips that come in handy in making a truly wonderful Sangria.  In addition to sharing three basic recipes with you, we'll offer some suggestions too that will help you get on your way to making a truly delicious sangria.

The perfect combination

Sweet Fruit and Wine

Fruit and Wine - photo by garryknight

There's something about the combination of fruit and wine that creates magic in a glass. That's what sangria is... magic in a glass!

First, a few basics

...about the wine and the fruit

Cut fruit - Photo by Lisa Clarke

Red wine has long been the traditional wine for making sangria, but white wine and even champagne can create equally wonderful blends as well.  No matter which you choose, it's not necessary to spend a lot of money on the wine - no need for hoity-toity high-priced bottles here. No, no. The wine should be an inexpensive "off the rack" variety, one that will play well with all the delicious companion flavors that it is about to meet.  After all, the whole point of sangria is to blend fresh fruits and their juices together with the wine to create a happy marriage of tastiness.  And this is why it's so wonderful to enjoy sangria during the lazy days of summer - that's when all those luscious fruits are in season!

Speaking of the fruit, this is where the fun really starts.  Each recipe here contains specific fruits to use, but really, you can (and should) try different combinations to find the blend of fruit that suits you and your taste buds.  Of course, the citrus fruits of orange, lemon and lime all play an important role in sangria recipes of all kinds, but think outside the box and consider mango, peach, kiwi, pineapple, grapes, strawberries, melon, blackberries, blueberries and raspberries - they're all welcome additions and will be delicious.

Thinking about buying a pre-mixed bottle of sangria?

Perish the thought!  Those mass-produced concoctions will never measure up to a fresh batch of home-made!

Pitchers and Glassware

You'll need something pretty to serve your Sangria in

A large capacity pitcher and generous glassware are musts for serving your sangria - you'll need room for all that delicious fruit to float around.  A clear glass is also preferable so that you can see all the beautiful colors made by the fruit and wine.

Libbey 7 Piece Sangria Set
Libbey $19.99

Attractive 7 piece set includes pitcher and six 10.5 ounce glasses

Libbey 7 piece Carolina set includes one 90 ounce pitcher and 6 16 ounce footed goblets.
Libbey $25.99

Set of six large 16-ounce goblets with a 90-ounce capacity pitcher.

Amici Rainbow Set of 4 Hiball Glasses, 16-Ounce
Global Amici

Colorful bands of rainbow glass make these mouth blown, hand made glasses the perfect alternative to wine glasses 

Amici Rainbow Pitcher - 75oz
Global Amici

Coordinating pitcher for the beautiful Amici Rainbow Set of Glasses.  75-ounce capacity.

Simple Syrup

A common ingredient in drink recipes

Simple Syrup is so simple!

Simple syrup is commonly used in many sangria recipes and is very simple to make.  It consists of just two ingredients - sugar and water - and serves as a richer, smoother substitute for raw sugar. You can buy simple syrup, also called sugar syrup, in a store, but making your own is much more economical and you can make as small or as big a batch as you wish. Store it the refrigerator in a well sealed bottle and it will last 6 months. So go ahead, make a large batch - just think of all the sangria you can make with it!

Simple Syrup

1 cup white sugar

1 cup water

In a medium saucepan combine sugar and water. Bring to a boil, stirring, until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

A Few More Things to Know

Helpful tips for making Sangria

cold and refreshing - chilled sangria

Before you jump into the recipes below, there's just a few more things that will help make your sangria better and more enjoyable.

Part of the fun of sangria is how alluring it looks with all that colorful fruit. To make it even more appealing, vary the way you cut the fruit, creating different shapes instead of just quartering everything. Peaches, apples, and mangos are adorable cut into cubes. Melons always look yummy when shaped into balls, and oranges, lemons, and limes look their best cut into thin slices, or wheels. To vary it up even more, then cut them in half again to turn your wheels into 'half-wheels'. Go crazy.

And always remember sangria is best when it has been allowed to age a little bit.  Whenever possible, make your sangria the day before you plan to drink it so it has time to develop all its wonderful deep flavors.  The best sangria is a one where the wine and fruit and other ingredients have been mixed, tightly covered, and placed in the refrigerator overnight. If you don't have time to wait that long, at the very least give your sangria a minimum of several hours to blend before drinking.  It will make all the difference in the world.  And to keep it refreshing, always keep your sangria cold, and serve it cold - usually over ice.

Basic Red Sangria Recipe

The traditional favorite

Red Sangria - Photo by imcountingufoz

This simple Spanish sangria is a basic recipe that can be modified, added to, and played with over and over again.

1 bottle red wine

1/4 cup cognac

1/4 cup orange curacao

1/4 cup simple syrup 

2 oranges, cut into half-wheels

2 peaches, cut into cubes

2 lemons, cut into half-wheels

Place all of the ingredients in a large glass pitcher and stir well. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Serve over ice in large capacity glass. Garnish with additional fruit if desired

Basic White Sangria Recipe

A variation that's light and bright

Pitcher of White Sangria -Photo by Laura Padgett

2 (750-ml) bottles dry white wine, like Pinot Grigio

1 1/3 cup orange juice

1/2 cup triple sec

1/4 cup brandy

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 oranges, sliced

1/2 lemon, sliced

1/2 apple, cubed

Large bunch grapes, stemmed

In a large pitcher, whisk together the wine, orange juice, triple sec and brandy. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and continue to whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved. Add the sliced orange, lemon and apple, along with the grapes. Cover pitcher with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.  Serve over ice with fruit slices as garnish.

Mango Strawberry Sangria Recipe

A yummy personal favorite!

Mango Strawberry Sangria

This recipe comes courtesy of Tony Abou-Ganim and the National Mango Board.

3/4 cup mango puree  (from a ripe mango)

6 large strawberries, pureed

1 ounce simple syrup

3/4 cup fresh orange juice

3/4 cup fresh lemon juice

2 cinnamon sticks

1 bottle Prosecco (or other sparkling wine)

1/2 cup orange liqueur (such as Cointreau or Grand Marnier)

1/2 cup lime-flavored vodka

Lemon-lime soda, as needed

1 ripe mango, cubed

Fresh strawberry, orange and lemon slices, for garnish

Mint sprigs, for garnish

Place the first nine ingredients into a glass container; cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. When ready to serve, pour into an ice-filled pitcher until it’s two-thirds full. Add fresh sliced fruits and top with lemon-lime soda; stir gently. Serve over ice in large Bordeaux glasses with mint sprigs and fresh fruit.

Makes one pitcher (about 10 6-ounce servings)

Now that you have the Sangria, why not have a party?

Custom invitations with a Sangria theme

Want to try more?

Pick up a book full of wonderful recipes

There are literally thousands of recipes for Sangria out there that are just waiting for you to give them a try (yes, that's a tough job, but someone's gotta do it).

To get your creative juices (and wine) flowing, here's some wonderful books that will help you on your way!

Sangria: Fun and Festive Recipes
Mittie Hellmich $13.85

Full of delicious, simple and easy to follow recipes for sangria and tapas as well. Highly recommended.

101 Sangrias and Pitcher Drinks
Kim Haasarud $14.71

Award-winning mixologist, author and beverage consultant, Kim Haasarud give us 101 different delicious ways to get your sangria party started. A must have.

We know I love Sangria...

It's pretty obvious that I just love sangria and think it's the best drink ever.  But what about you?

Time to get started...

What are you waiting for?

Photo by Robert S. Donovan

Photo by Robert S. Donovan

Great Gift Ideas for Wine Lovers

Photo by Wojtek Szkutnik

Need a gift for someone who loves wine? You could, of course, give them a bottle of wine.  But why not make your gift a little more ... Read more

Have you ever made your own Sangria?

What do you think about making homemade Sangria?

Even if you're not much of a bartender when it comes to mixed drinks, Sangria really can be a fun thing to venture into - you really can't go wrong!  So do you think you might give it a try?  Do you have a favorite recipe to share?  We'd love to hear from you!


49 leaves
51 forum posts
You really can mix up a batch with just about anything! I had a impromptu gathering at my house last night so I just pulled together what I had on hand in my kitchen; some leftover white zinfandel, apples, apricots, simple syrup (from my stash in the fridge), apple-flavored vodka and triple-sec. Added a splash of ginger ale to each glass - and it was delicious!
102 leaves
2130 forum posts
bill on said:
I've never tried Sangria, but it sounds tasty. Welcome to Zujava!

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