Total Time
Prep 30 mins
Cook 2 mins

Get ready for the holidays!! I know a company that sells these for $7 each but I like to include them in holiday baskets. I like to make these for the kids to have cider during the fall and winter holidays as a tradition in our very new household. They are very cute and great as a gift. Tie with a festive ribbon and attached to a bottle of apple juice along with the directions. Also these can be made inexpensively if you purchase your spices from a store selling them in bulk by weight.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Adult Portion:.
  2. Slices oranges in half and scoop out pulp without breaking the orange rind. Reserve pulp for another use or discard.
  3. Place orange halves cut side up (like a bowl) on a wire rack on a baking sheet. Bake at 250F for 2 hours until dry and hard. Let Cool.
  4. Kid Portion:.
  5. Pack brown sugar firmly into each orange half, mounding slightly.
  6. Arrange spices in the brown sugar to resemble beetles: use a cinnamon stick as the body, a nutmeg as the head, 2 allspice for the eyes (on each side of the head), and 6-8 cloves for the legs/feet.
  7. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator (I keep mine sealed in plastic and in the cupboard).
  8. Directions for use:.
  9. Unwrap the beetle and drop into 1 1/2 quarts apple juice or cider. Simmer 30 minutes. Strain whole spices and orange rind from cider to serve. May add 1/2 cup of Brandy, and heat well. Store leftover cider in the refrigerator.


Most Helpful

I've been making these since Southern Living printed this in 1982! Great for making mulled wine also!

Stellise K. December 24, 2014

I made one to try before making a bunch for Christmas baskets. Everyone in my house gave it 4 stars, so needless to say it's a keeper and I'll be making them for baskets. We tried it with the cider, next we want to try it with juice to see what the taste difference is. Thanks for a great recipe MommyMakes! :o)

bcfdwife November 13, 2007

Made these as Christmas gifts, rearranging spices into a reindeer shape. Only problem was DH snacked on one late at night (thought it was a cookie) and commented it was a little strange! Much better when used to make cider!

Ty's Kitchen August 11, 2007

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