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Punchy Ponche Recipe

Ponche is a traditional warm fruit punch that is typically served during the Christmas holiday season in Mexico. It is made using water, fresh and dried fruits like tamarind, prunes, hibiscus, sugar cane, cinnamon, and sweetened with Piloncillo. Some ingredients used to make ponche are more seasonal and even exotic.

Fresh tejocotes, known to the Aztecs as Texocotli (stone fruit), are required by most. Tejocotes are the fruit of the hawthorn tree and resemble crab apples; they have a sweet-sour flavor and an orange to golden yellow color. Other ingredients in ponche are prunes, pears, dry hibiscus, star anise, and sugar cane pieces. 

Ponche can be served with or without alcohol. It is a warm and comforting drink that is perfect for cold winter nights and is often consumed during Las Posadas, a 9-day celebration leading up to Christmas

About this recipe

Embrace the festive spirit with Ponche, the Mexican fruit punch that’s a holiday must-have. Keep reading for the ultimate Ponche recipe.

Ponche recipe background

Deep-rooted in Mexican culture, Ponche is the star of any Christmas or winter gathering. It fuses fruits, spices, and warmth in a single pot.

  • Origin: Mexico
  • Primary Flavors: Fruits, spices
  • Recipe Type: Beverage

Why make this recipe?

  • Festive Vibe: Instant holiday in a cup.
  • Crowd-Pleaser: Loved by kids and adults.
  • Versatile: Enjoy it hot or cold.

What does Ponche taste like?

It’s a fruit basket seasoned with cinnamon and cloves, then poured hot into your mug.

What is in Ponche?

Equipment required for this recipe

  • Large pot
  • Ladle
  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Measuring cup


  • 8 cups water
  • 2 cups assorted fruits (apples, guava, etc.)
  • 1 cup cane sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5-6 cloves


  1. Boil Water: Heat water in a large pot.
  2. Fruit Fiesta: Chop fruits and add to the pot.
  3. Sweet Talk: Pour in the cane sugar.
  4. Spice Route: Add cinnamon stick and cloves.
  5. Simmer: Let it all meld for about 30 minutes.
  6. Taste Test: Adjust sweetness if needed.
  7. Serve: Ladle into cups, including some fruits.

How to serve Ponche

  • Glassware: Clear mugs to show off the fruits.
  • Garnish: A cinnamon stick for added flair.

What to serve Ponche with

  • Tamales
  • Biscochitos
  • Buñuelos

My recommendations and tips

  • Opt for fresh fruits for bolder flavors.
  • Feel free to add a splash of rum for an adult version.

Ponche storage ideas

  • Fridge: Good for 3-4 days.
  • Reheat: Gentle simmer on the stovetop.

Potential ingredients substitutes

  • Cane Sugar: Brown sugar or honey.
  • Cloves: A pinch of nutmeg can work.

Nutritional Information


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I make Ponche alcohol-free?
  • Yes, the traditional version is non-alcoholic.
  • What fruits work best?
  • Guava, apples, and pears are popular choices.


Ponche is a celebration in a cup. Whether you’re gathering around the Christmas tree or simply looking to elevate a chilly night, this Ponche recipe is your go-to. Cheers to sips that warm the soul! 🍹

Why not try similar Mexican drinks: Horchata, Jamaica