1. Place all mulled cider ingredients into a slow cooker. Set on low for 4 hours.
2. While cider cooks, make a batch of caramel. Place coconut milk, vanilla, butter and sea salt in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Turn down heat to low and let simmer, whisking often, for about 30 minutes or until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Take off heat and let cool. Store in the refrigerator until the mulled cider is ready.
3. Pour caramel onto a small, shallow plate.
4. On a separate shallow plate, place crushed pecans.
5. Dip your glass of choice in the caramel until the entire rim is well covered. Dip the caramel rim into the pecan mixture. Pour mulled cider into glasses and spike your drink with the desired alcohol if using, then stir and enjoy!