Holiday Simmer Pot

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When I taught I had a student gift me a simmer pot for Christmas and I have to say at first I will a little skeptical and not sure what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised when I followed the direction and let it simmer on the stove for a few hours.

If you’ve never used one, the idea is quite simple. It is a basic stovetop potpourri made up of spices, dried fruit peels, and/or extracts. There are really an infinite amount of combinations and it is so fun to experiment. Below I’ll share with you several of my favorite recipes.

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To Make a Simmer Pot in a Jar


  • Quart Mason Jar
  • Orange
  • Fresh Cranberries
  • Cinnamon Sticks
  • Whole Cloves
  • Nutmeg
  • Ginger
  • Fresh Pine

To Assembly

In the mason jar put 1 orange, 1/2 cup cranberries, 2 cinnamon sticks, 1 teaspoon cloves, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon fresh grated ginger, and some fresh pine. 

Seal the jar, add some ribbon, and a cute tag. 

I remember using my first simmer pots, the house smelled so good!!  And it put much-needed moisture back into the house. (We heat our house with a wood stove so it can get kinda dry.) The Simmer Pots also lasted a while, as long as I remembered to add more water. 

My simmer pots came in a jar with a gift tag with the recipe so that I could make another one next year. 

This year we made simmer pots to give as gifts and a few for our house. Instead of putting it on the stove like we normally do I cleaned up our cast iron tea kettle and used that on our woodstove.  It was amazing!! The water evaporated quickly, which was awesome and it made the house smell so good!!

holiday simmer pot

How to Use a Simmer Pot

Fill a small saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Add the ingredients from your favorite recipe, continue to boil for a few minutes, then turn the heat down to simmer. Add water as needed, usually every 30 minutes or so.

You can also use a Crock-Pot or other slow cooker to create a simmer pot: Fill the pot most of the way with water, add your ingredients, put on the lid, then turn the slow cooker to high. When there’s steam rolling off the lid, take the lid off and set the slow cooker to a low or simmer setting. Add water as needed to keep it at least halfway full.

Benefits of Using a Simmer Pot

  • Many store bought candles and synthetic fragrances are full of toxins that are capable of causing cancers, birth defects, allergies, hormonal imbalances, and more. Simmer pots are natural ingredients that don’t give off toxins when heated. 
  • Simmer pots have that the distinct, festive Holiday scent but are created without the use of any chemicals using ingredients typically found in a pantry during the Holiday season.
  • The simmer pot also can double as a great gift for a hostess, teacher, neighbor, whoever. It’s also doubly clean as the ingredients look so beautiful and seasonal in a large mason jar so there is no need for wasteful wrapping paper!
  • There are so many benefits to using simmering pots, but my favorite is as a replacement for air fresheners. This simple DIY project will fill your entire home with the most wonderful aroma so easily. It seems to last and last throughout the day, even after you have stopped using the simmering pot.
  • Additionally, Simmering pots are a wonderful way to add moisture to the air. I often leave mine on for an hour or two, replacing the water as needed. All of that extra moisture in the air helps the heat to stay longer and carries the aroma throughout my house. The only downside to a simmering pot is having to clean the pot afterwards! That’s why I have a “dedicated” pot for this very reason. It’s very well loved but not very pretty to look at.

Important NOTE!!!

Be sure to keep your simmer pot on the back burner and replenish with water frequently. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve forgotten about mine only to go into the kitchen and realize that I needed to add water ASAP!

Looking for more Homemade Holiday Ideas? Check out Our Cinnamon Ornaments

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