Holiday Recipes: Winter-Themed Cocktails

Image courtesy of Camilla Lichti.

Fall had us whipping up delicious pumpkin martinis and butterscotch apple cider floats. Now that we’re well into December, though, it’s time to move on to eggnog, peppermint, and all the other festive flavors of the season. Here are four winter-themed cocktails (plus one mocktail) sure to help you feel all warm and cheery from the inside out.

For Any Day: Classic Eggnog
This holiday treat is a favorite in my house. We tend to just pour two or three (usually three) fingers of rum into a glass, then fill with store-bought nog and top with a pinch each of nutmeg and cinnamon. But you can also make your own in the blender if you have heavy cream, sugar, brandy, eggs, and nutmeg on hand.

For Bitterly Cold Nights: Hot Buttered Rum
I tried several variations before figuring out the hot buttered rum secret ingredient: vanilla ice cream. Mixed with butter and both white and brown sugars, the ice cream gives this steamy drink a smooth finish that most other recipes are lacking.

For After Work: Peppermint Martini
The peppermint martini is another classic holiday cocktail, and one of my winter happy-hour favorites. Just pour 5 ounces vanilla vodka, 2 ounces white crème de menthe, and 1/2 ounce peppermint schnapps into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake, then strain into a martini glass. I love to garnish the rim with crushed peppermint first, but adding a candy cane to the glass works just as well.

For Parties: Jingle Juice
If you’re hosting a holiday party, a signature cocktail is a must – and Jingle Juice readily meets that need. For 1 1/2 quarts of tasty, holiday goodness, just mix 5 cups orange juice, 1 cup vodka, 1/3 cup orange liqueur (I use triple sec), 1/4 cup lemon juice, and 1/2 cup maraschino-cherry juice (or grenadine), then pour over ice and garnish with cherries, orange slices, and fruit-flavored candy canes.

For the Kids (and Non-Drinkers): Merry Berry Christmas, Sugar!
Help non-drinkers and merrymakers under the legal drinking age feel included in every aspect of the holidays with this fun, fruity mocktail. Just muddle raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and mint leaves in a shaker with some agave nectar, lime juice, ice, and water. Shake, then pour into a 16-ounce highball glass and top with ginger ale (and even more berries).

By Jess Huckins, Staff Writer

Do your holiday traditions include cocktails? Share a favorite recipe in the comments below, or tweet us at @ruelala.

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