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Christmas Stovetop Potpourri: Simmer Pot Recipe

With this Christmas Stovetop Potpourri, you are 5 minutes away from your home smelling like Christmas!

It’s time to kick off the holiday season, and what better way than to make your home smell just like Christmas without the fuss of actually having to bake something.   I mean, obviously I love to bake, but sometimes you just want your home to smell like you’ve been busy in the kitchen all day.  This easy Christmas Stovetop Potpourri will fill your home with the nostalgic smell of the season.  You’ll have the spicy smell of cinnamon and cloves, mixed with citrus filling up your home.  The only danger with this potpourri is it’s going to make you hungry, and you’ll likely get asked where the delicious dessert is hiding, but the smell really is worth the potential disappointment haha!

Simmer Pots are so simple to make!

A nice thing about making a stovetop potpourri (also called a simmer pot) is that the ingredients are easily accessible, and chances are you have them in your home already.  In fact, stovetop potpourri’s are a great way to use up old oranges and apples that no one wants to eat…you know the ones…they’re a little (or a lot) hard and shrivelled, but they’re perfect for simmering.

Christmas Stovetop Potpourri 6{A Pretty Life}

The ingredient amounts I use are really very casual, but I’ll give you a basic recipe to start with.  As you make potpourris, you’ll just get more comfortable with adding what you like to get the smells you want. Play with them and enjoy!

Christmas Stovetop Potpourri 5{A Pretty Life}

Just put it on the back burner and let it simmer on the lowest setting while enjoying the smell.  Oh, and these are great to make about a half hour before you have guests come over…your home will smell amazing.

Christmas Stovetop Potpourri

Christmas Potpourri Recipe Tips:

  • Simmer not boil! Simmering is heat just below boiling…so the mixture should lightly rumble (gently bubble), not boil
  • What kind of pot to use? I just use a medium sized saucepan.
  • Lid on or off? Keep the lid off…simmer pots need to release their lovely scent into the room.
  • Stovetop: Let this mixture simmer on the back burner of your stove on the LOWEST setting, for a couple of hours.
  • Slow Cooker: Feel free to let this mixture simmer in a slow cooker on low.
  • Spices: I like to use cinnamon and cloves, but you can also add a pinch of ginger (or a small chunk of fresh ginger)!
  • Food Waste Tip: You can also make this simmer pot with only the peels of the apples and oranges, making it a great way to repurpose food waste.
  • Water Level: When the water level gets low, just top it up with fresh water.
  • Make one before guest arrive! Start your simmer pot about 30 minutes before your guest arrive.
  • How long will the simmer pot last? I will use the same simmer pot for 1 or 2 days, just topping it up with fresh water when it gets low. But I like to make a brand new one after about 2 days.


Christmas Stovetop Potpourri

With this Christmas Stovetop Potpourri, you are 5 minutes away from your home smelling like Christmas!


  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 navel orange (sliced)
  • 1/2 an apple (sliced)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup cinnamon bark or 34 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 tsp whole cloves
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • pieces few small of evergreen tree
  • water


  1. Put all of the ingredients into a medium sized saucepan and top up with water.
  2. Simmer on the lowest setting and enjoy!

Keywords: Christmas potpourri, potpourri, stovetop potpourri

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If you love this, you might enjoy this recipe for a Fall Stovetop Potpourri!

Stovetop Fall Potpourri

Have an inspired day!

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  • Reply
    elaine - visual meringue
    November 25, 2015 at 3:58 PM

    Great idea! I bet it smells fantastic.

    • Reply
      December 13, 2015 at 1:46 PM

      It really does! It’s such a nice way to make your home smell like Christmas!

  • Reply
    Melissa French, The More With Less Mom
    December 3, 2015 at 6:34 AM

    I can smell it now! Thanks for posting. Hello from Treasure Box Tuesday.

  • Reply
    December 3, 2015 at 7:17 PM

    I love doing this with oranges and rosemary. I bet this smells great, too!

  • Reply
    Erin - Suburban Simplicity
    December 5, 2015 at 8:13 PM

    Cute site! Great ideas! Happy holidays 🙂

  • Reply
    Quinn Caudill
    December 7, 2015 at 9:27 AM

    I can imagine how wonderful and festive this makes your home smell. Thanks for sharing with us at Throwback Thursday. Hope to see you again this week.

  • Reply
    December 11, 2015 at 5:29 AM

    It smells and looks so festive.

    • Reply
      December 13, 2015 at 1:47 PM

      Potpourris really do add a nice festive touch don’t they? 🙂

  • Reply
    October 2, 2016 at 3:04 PM

    Hi Thank you so much for the two recipes,cannot wait to make one.

  • Reply
    November 20, 2018 at 11:56 AM

    5 stars
    It’s on my stove as I type this. Thank you ♡

  • Reply
    Jenny Mira-Lambert
    November 27, 2021 at 8:35 PM

    This is the perfect scent to add to any home! I added a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and it smells great!! Thanks so much for this recipe. 🙂

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