An Apple Cider Moscow Mule is a delicious autumn twist on the classic cocktail with seasonal apple cider thrown into the mix! This post was sponsored by North Coast Organic and Kitchen PLAY, but all opinions are my own.

Last month, our dinner club gathered to tailgate while listening to the Colts on the radio. Fall Alcoholic Drinks kicked off the party, and I fell hard with my first sip of this Apple Cider Mule! The traditional ingredients of vodka, ginger beer, and lime were enhanced with some top-notch apple cider.

Cider Mules in copper mugs with lime and apple garnishes.

Why You Must Make

  • This easy apple cider cocktail was delicious, not too boozy, and perfectly sippable.
  • Copper mugs are classic for a fun presentation, but not necessary as this apple cider mule is yummy in any sort of glass.
  • Our mixologist and cohost served ours in thermal cups, and called them “Oktoberfest Moscow Mules.” They’re perfect for any fall entertaining.

How to Make

As with most cocktails, the procedure is rather simple. It’s always OK to tweak to your own specific tastes.

Step One: Use a chilled copper mug or glass.

Step Two: Fill the mug with crushed ice (or cubes). Mike recommends crushed ice.

Step Three: Add cider, vodka, and ginger beer.

Step Four: Mix, then add a good squeeze of fresh lime to taste (start with 1/4 lime), stir again, taste, and add more lime juice if desired. PRO-Tip: Always use fresh lime juice, never bottled.

Step Five: Garnish with lime slices and/or apple slices. Pomegranate arils add a pop of color and were my addition.

Expert Tips

  • Serve in a copper mug for the ultimate Moscow mule experience. But make sure you buy a brand that sells lined mugs to prevent copper from leaching into the cocktail. Note: Unlined versions are rare to find, but if the deal looks too good to be true, ask before you buy.
  • If you don’t own copper mugs, just use a chilled glass. Place your glasses in the freezer for about 30 minutes before using.
  • Don’t like vodka? Try your mules with gin. See other alternatives below.
  • Make sure to garnish to make your mules extra festive.
  • A cocktail shaker is a great way to chill down your mules, so if you have one, use it.
  • These also can be made by stirring in a pitcher with some ice. The ice will dilute the cocktail, so serve immediately.
Overhead view of two moscow mules.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Moscow Mule?

A Moscow Mule is a cocktail made by filling a glass with ice (Mike recommends crushed ice instead of ice cubes), then a good dose of vodka, then ginger beer, followed by a squeeze of lime juice or even lemon.
Said to have the “Kick of a Mule,” adjust your vodka as needed.

Why Are Mules Served in Copper Mugs?

It all started with a marketing ploy to sell Smirnoff vodka, ginger beer, and copper mugs. Back in the 1940s, the three retailers couldn’t move their products so they invented a cocktail that utilized all of them.
The Smirnoff Mule became quite popular in the 50s and 60s, and then got a resurgence in 1996 when it was reintroduced in a copper bottle. The copper mug became the iconic container for this cocktail since the cold metal keeps the cocktail well insulated and cold.

Are Copper Mugs Safe?

Most copper mugs are lined, so there is little danger of copper getting into your cocktail or beverage. And even if your mug is not properly coated, it’s highly unlikely you’d get copper toxicity from the mugs.
You’d need to drink at least a liter of beverage that had been steeping in copper for a few hours in order for any ill effects.

Besides Vodka, What Other Alcohol Pairs Well with Apple Cider?

Gin, Whiskey, Bourbon, and Gin all go well with Apple Cider if you’re looking to whip up other fall alcoholic drinks.

You May Also Like:

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Cider Mules in copper mugs with lime and apple garnishes

Apple Cider Moscow Mule Recipe

Prep Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 2 minutes
Total Time 2 minutes
Yield 2

A twist on the classic Moscow Mule cocktail with the addition of apple cider for an autumn twist.


  • Crushed Ice
  • 4 ounces ginger beer
  • 3 ounces vodka
  • 4 ounces apple cider (I recommend North Coast Organic brand)
  • Fresh lime use to taste, start with 1 ounce
  • Apple and lime slices to garnish, if desired


  1. Fill mugs with crushed ice.
  2. Stir together ginger beer, vodka, and apple cider. Then add freshly squeezed lime juice to taste.
  3. Garnish as desired and serve.


Use a chilled copper mug for the classic look.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 glass

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 218Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 9mgCarbohydrates: 33gFiber: 4gSugar: 24gProtein: 1g occasionally offers nutritional information for recipes contained on this site. This information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased can change the nutritional information in any given recipe. Also, many recipes on recommend toppings, which may or may not be listed as optional and nutritional information for these added toppings is not listed. Other factors may change the nutritional information such as when the salt amount is listed “to taste,” it is not calculated into the recipe as the amount will vary. Also, different online calculators can provide different results. To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in any given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information obtained is accurate.


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