Home » 3 Ideas for the perfect ponche navideño

3 Ideas for the perfect ponche navideño

In need of the perfect ponche navideño (Mexican Christmas punch)? I have three for you!

Here is an easy way to create this delicious traditional holiday beverage. Once you have the basic recipe, then it is time to work your creative magic!

the perfect ponche navideño

This Mexican Christmas Punch makes the holiday season even more enchanting! It’s loaded with a combination of flavors that range from fruity to festive.

Cloves, apples, oranges, cinnamon, guava nectar – and my the secret ingredient? Green tea!

What is ponche?

The perfect ponche navideño

Ponche, often referred to as Ponche Navideño (Christmas Punch) in Mexico, is a traditional warm fruit punch that is a staple during the Christmas season, especially during the celebrations of Las Posadas. 

Ponche Navideño is more than just a warm drink; it’s a part of the festive celebrations and a symbol of hospitality and community. It’s commonly served during the nine days of Las Posadas, a period leading up to Christmas Eve, symbolizing the journey of Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem.

The punch is a rich mixture of fresh and dried fruits, often including ingredients like tejocotes (Mexican hawthorn), guavas, apples, pears, oranges, prunes, and raisins. It’s sweetened with piloncillo (unrefined cane sugar) and flavored with cinnamon sticks and other spices. Some versions also include a small amount of tamarind or hibiscus flowers for added tartness.

While traditionally non-alcoholic, it’s not uncommon for adults to add a splash of rum or brandy to their cup of ponche, making it a warming and festive cocktail.

How to serve ponche

Ponche is typically served hot, making it a comforting and warming treat during the cooler winter months. Serving ponche to guests is seen as a gesture of warmth and welcoming, an essential aspect of the hospitality shown during Las Posadas and other holiday gatherings.

Drinking ponche is often a social activity, bringing family and friends together. It’s common for people to gather around the pot of simmering ponche, chatting and enjoying each other’s company, reinforcing the communal spirit of the holiday season.

Ponche is usually prepared in large pots and ladled out to guests in cups or mugs. The fruits in the ponche are often eaten along with the liquid, making it both a drink and a treat.

While the basic concept of ponche is similar throughout Mexico, there are regional variations in the recipe, with different fruits and spices used depending on local availability and tradition.


This holiday beverage below is inspired by the traditional Mexican recipe for ponche navideño. Typically served hot, with or without alcohol, and during the holiday season, the punch’s cinnamon and fruit fusion create an aroma perfect for warming you up during the holidays.

Not only does it taste yummy, but it also looks beautiful as well! And it has only 40 calories per serving!

Ingredients for the perfect ponche navideño

the perfect ponche navideño


  • 20 whole cloves
  • 2 oranges, thickly sliced
  • 1 1/2 quarts water
  • 1 apple, cut into bite-size chunks
  • 1 pear, cut into bite-size chunks
  • 8 pitted prunes, halved
  • 8-10 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 Tbsp. firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 6 green tea bags
  • 1 cup guava nectar


My twist is I doubled the cinnamon, you can adjust it to your liking as well!

Make the punch!

Stick cloves into the skin of orange slices. Put water, orange slices, apple, pear, prunes, and cinnamon sticks in 4 qt. pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes for the fruit to soften and for flavors to develop.

Stir in brown sugar. Remove from heat and add green tea bags; cover and steep 5 minutes. Remove tea bags and stir in nectar.

Ladle punch and fruit into mugs.

Fruit and 100% juices are an excellent way to add sweetness to beverages without the need for added sugars (i.e. granulated sugar). This recipe uses apples, pears, dried prunes, and guava nectar.

RELATED: Ultra festive DIY posada candy bags(Opens in a new browser tab)

See? You now have the perfect ponche navideño! Now that you know how to make the perfect ponche navideño, let’s use some creativity to make it even more special for the season. 

ponche punch

3 ideas for ponche!

Ponche-Infused Gelatin Dessert:

Ingredients: Prepared Ponche Navideño (strained to remove fruits), gelatin powder, sugar (if needed), and the cooked fruits from the ponche.
– Heat a portion of the ponche in a saucepan until it’s warm but not boiling.
– Sprinkle gelatin powder over the warm ponche and stir until completely dissolved.
– Taste and add sugar if more sweetness is desired.
– Place the cooked fruits from the ponche into a mold or individual cups.
– Pour the gelatin mixture over the fruits.
– Refrigerate until set, usually a few hours or overnight.
Serve chilled as a festive dessert. It’s especially appealing to kids and adults alike.

Ponche Sorbet:

Ingredients: Ponche Navideño (strained and fruits set aside), sugar or honey (to taste), lemon or lime juice.
– Blend the strained ponche with sugar or honey and a squeeze of lemon or lime juice. Adjust the sweetness and tartness according to your taste.
– Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
– For a no-churn version, place the mixture in a shallow dish and freeze, stirring every 30 minutes until it reaches a sorbet consistency.
Serve the sorbet as a refreshing dessert, garnished with small pieces of the ponche fruits.

Ponche-Flavored Panna Cotta

Ingredients: Heavy cream, sugar, gelatin powder, prepared Ponche Navideño.
– Heat the heavy cream and sugar in a saucepan until the sugar is dissolved. Do not let it boil.
– Soften the gelatin in cold water and then mix it into the warm cream mixture until fully dissolved.
– Stir in the Ponche Navideño.
– Pour the mixture into molds or glasses.
– Refrigerate until set, which usually takes at least 4 hours.
Serve the panna cotta chilled, topped with some of the fruits from the ponche for an added festive touch.

These recipes offer innovative ways to enjoy the traditional flavors of Ponche Navideño, adding a unique and delightful twist to your holiday celebrations. Each recipe can be adjusted according to personal taste preferences and the availability of ingredients.

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