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Christmas potpourri in a white saucepan with water.

How to Make Stovetop Christmas Potpourri (With Printable Gift Tags!)

  • Author: Emily
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 1 Batch Potpourri 1x


How to Make Stovetop Christmas Potpourri – This recipe is like bottling up the Christmas smell! It’s a great way to make your home smell like the holidays and makes a fantastic gift. 


  • 1 cup cranberries (or 1 apple, diced)
  • 1 orange
  • 23 sprigs rosemary
  • 23 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 tsp cloves


To prepare on the stovetop: 

  1. Slice or quarter your orange and place all ingredients in a saucepan with 4-6 cups water.
  2. Bring to a simmer over low heat.
  3. Let it simmer as long as you like, adding more water as needed.

To prepare in the slow cooker:

  1. Place all ingredients in a slow cooker with 4-6 cups water.
  2. Set on HIGH covered and let it cook for several hours or uncovered on HIGH for more scent.
  3. If uncovered, add more water as necessary (when covered, the water won’t evaporate very quickly)

To package for gifting: 

  1. Print your tags using the free printable. Cut out tags and punch a hole in one of the top corners.
  2. Use a large cellophane treat bag to pack the potpourri. Add orange and cranberries first, then add cinnamon, rosemary, and cloves.
  3. Tie a knot in the top with a ribbon. Slide one end of the ribbon through the hole in the tag until the tag is tucked securely at the top near your first knot. Tie a bow to secure the tag.


Swap Your Citrus – You can use many different kinds of citrus for this. I’ve used grapefruit, Cuties (mandarins), tangerines, lemons, etc. Feel free to use what’s on sale, or what’s looking sad in your fridge.

Substitutions – Besides citrus, you can also swap out the cranberries for diced apples, use ground spices instead of whole, or add a splash of vanilla to the pot for some sweetness.

Stock Up! – I don’t use whole spices very often in my kitchen, but they’re easier than ever to find. Sprouts has bulk spice bins that are great for this, or there’s Target or World Market (cinnamon sticks and cloves). Aaaand, I LOVE Amazon (cinnamon sticks and cloves). #amazonforever

  • Category: Potpourri
  • Method: Stovetop

Keywords: christmas potpourri, christmas smell, stovetop christmas potpourri, holiday potpourri, stovetop holiday potpourri