Red Wine Sangria is made with wine, brandy, and fresh fruit, like orange, lemon, and green apple. It’s a refreshing make-ahead beverage perfect for any occasion!
I think I should have titled this post Sweet Red Wine Sangria: The Most Interesting Drink in the World. That’s quite a bold statement but, for me, red wine sangria IS a most interesting and versatile drink. Plus, it’s my all time favorite drink recipe!
How to make sangria
The best sangria is made by adding any kind of wine, fruit, and brandy you prefer. For this recipe, I kept it simple by using an unflavored Spanish brandy (Torres 5 Imperial Grand Reserva) and some fruit that is always in my refrigerator. Any variety of fresh or frozen fruit can be used and you can even use a flavor infused brandy, if you wish.
Grand Marnier can also be used as a substitute for or combined with the brandy for a more orange-y flavor. The sangria making possibilities are endless and it can be made a little differently each time. Have fun with this recipe, personalize it, and let your imagination run wild.
Spanish red wine sangria
J and I traveled around Spain years ago and we completely fell in love with it’s beauty. One of my favorite memories of that trip is when we were in Barcelona and it was the first time we drank red wine sangria while in Spain.
On our visit, whenever we wanted a refreshing alcoholic beverage during the day, we would drink a beer. There was always a great beer special to be found because it’s what the locals drink. One day, we decided to be like tourists and go for the big pitcher of sangria. Up until this point, we had only had sangria in the US, and some of it was really bad. You know, like the stuff that’s made of mostly processed fruit juice except for the teeny-tiny-little bit of cheap wine that is just enough to give out a slamming headache the next day.
However, this alcoholic wine/fruit elixir we were enjoying was on an entirely different level of known sangria-ness. The flavors perfectly melded together and my taste buds couldn’t distinguish the individual tastes of wine, fruit, and brandy. Maybe it was the “special” Spanish wine or brandy they used or the fresh fruit or maybe it just tasted better because we were on vacation. Regardless of the reason, once we arrived back home, I immediately went about perfecting my own red wine sangria recipe.
I’m going to say it…red wine sangria is a healthy drink. Okay, maybe I’m stretching the truth a little but it does have fruit in it and fruit is healthy, right? A wonderful benefit to eating your fruit after it has been sitting for hours in wine and brandy is that it ends up tasting really, really good. It’s like an extra bonus treat at the bottom of the glass.
Making red wine sangria sweeter
Note: I don’t add any additional sugar to my red wine sangria because the orange juice makes it sweet enough for me. If you wish to make the sangria sweeter, add a little honey or sugar syrup to taste. Homemade sugar syrup is ridiculously easy to make with only two ingredients. Just take a small saucepan, bring a mixture of half water and half sugar to a boil and stir until sugar completely melts. Remove syrup from the heat and let cool.
However you make this red wine sangria recipe, I hope you enjoy it and serve it at all your summer parties or anytime you need a special red wine drink.
Have you ever had sweet red wine sangria before? Are you going to make your own after seeing this recipe? Let me know in the comments and don’t forget to share with friends and family.
- 1 1.75 liter bottle of a good quality red wine
- 1/2 cup brandy
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1 fresh orange , cut into thin slices
- 1 fresh lemon , cut into thin slices
- 2 fresh green apples , diced
- 1 liter sparkling water , can use flavored or plain
- optional: ice
Combine the red wine, brandy, orange juice, and fruits in a large pitcher, cover, and chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- When ready to serve, add the sparkling water and stir well. Spoon some of the fruit into each glass, add ice (if desired), and pour the sangria over the top. Make a toast to everyone's good health and enjoy!
Any variety of fresh or frozen fruit can be used, such as grapes, limes, melon, mango, pineapple, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, and kiwi, or whatever is in season.