Skip to main content

Let bourbon warm you up in all new ways with these delicious fall drinks

These are the best bourbon cocktails to make this fall

Let’s be real — bourbon is pretty damned wonderful any time of the year. But come fall, there’s just something especially delicious about this spicy-sweet nectar. Warming to the fingertips, bourbon’s characteristic flavor is not only luscious on its own, but also complemented beautifully by other warm and cozy fall flavors, mixed into festive drinks. These are a few of our absolute favorite bourbon cocktails for fall.

Maple Cranberry Bourbon Cocktail

Inspired by Charm

(From Inspired by Charm)

Melding fall and winter flavors with its decadent combination of maple and cranberry, this is a cocktail you can enjoy straight on through to Christmas. We adore how the acidic burst of cranberry is accented and tamed with the rich coating of maple and nuttiness of bourbon.


  • 4 ounces bourbon
  • 3 ounces cranberry juice
  • 2 ounces maple cranberry syrup (recipe below)
  • 2 ounces seltzer or club soda
  • Maple cranberries and rosemary sprigs for garnish

Maple Cranberries:

  • 1/2 cup real maple syrup
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries


  1. In a small saucepan, stir together the syrup and cranberries. Simmer until the cranberries begin to burst, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool completely. You will have enough maple cranberries and syrup to make 5-6 cocktails.
  2. Add ice to two rocks glasses. Top each with a tablespoon of the maple cranberries and set aside.
  3. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add bourbon, cranberry juice, and maple cranberry syrup. Shake vigorously.
  4. Strain into prepared glasses. Top each with a splash of seltzer water. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary, if desired.

Spicy Bourbon Pumpkin Smash 

Half-Baked Harvest

(From Half-Baked Harvest)

When you’re in the mood for a romantic night, curled up by fireplace, with a sexy someone on the sofa next to you, this is the drink to serve. Invoking all of the warm, intimate feelings, this bourbon cocktail will get you into the pumpkin-spiciest of moods.


  • 1-2 ounces spiced pumpkin syrup (recipe below)
  • 2 ounces bourbon 
  • 1/2 ounce orange juice
  • 1-2 dashes orange bitters
  • Ginger beer for topping, optional

Spiced Pumpkin Syrup:

  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Sea salt


  1. In a small pot, mix together the Spiced Pumpkin Syrup ingredients and bring to a boil. Cook for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  2. In a cocktail shaker, combine 2-3 tablespoons pumpkin syrup, bourbon, orange juice, and orange bitters. Add ice and shake. Strain into a glass. Top off with ginger beer, if desired.

Bourbon Apple Cider

Tidy Mom

(From Tidy Mom)

This adults-only apple cider will make cleaning the leaves out of the rain gutters a much more enjoyable experience. The tart taste of apple cider in this drink pairs perfectly with the malted barley notes of bourbon. Made with just a few simple ingredients, this easy fall cocktail will spice up any chilly afternoon.


  • 3 ounces apple cider
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • Squeeze of lemon
  • Thyme and cinnamon sticks, for garnish


  1. Fill cocktail shaker with ice. Add cider, bourbon and lemon juice. Shake for 30 seconds and strain into ice-filled rocks glass.

Maple Honeycrisp Bourbon Cocktail

The Chunky Chef

(From The Chunky Chef)

Deliciously blending the crisp bite of tart apple with the syrupy sweetness of maple, this bourbon cocktail is absolutely perfect for fall. Its accent of peppery thyme is a surprising burst of freshness, and adds a complexity to the cocktail, making it one of our top choices.


  • 3 medium honeycrisp apples, sliced
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup apple cider
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 – 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2/3 cup bourbon
  • Honeycrisp apple slices, for garnish
  • Thyme sprigs, for garnish


  1. In a blender, pulse together apples, water, cider, lemon juice, maple syrup and sugar. Process until smooth.
  2. Place a fine mesh sieve over the top of a pitcher and pour mixture through, pressing with a rubber spatula to get all liquid into the pitcher. Discard solids.
  3. Stir in bourbon and chill for at least an hour. Serve over ice. Garnish with apple slices and thyme sprigs, if desired.

Smoked Old Fashioned

Aubrey's Kitchen

(From Aubrey’s Kitchen)

The process of smoking food and drinks adds a savory, smokey campfire component that’s hard to achieve with any other method or ingredient. Sure, we all love smoked brisket and fish. Even a toasty marshmallow is delicious with a bit of smokey flavor. But if you’ve yet to try a smoked cocktail, you’re in for a treat. The addition of smoke in this drink adds not only an outstanding flavor, but also a gorgeous visual experience.


  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • 2-3 dashes angostura bitters
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon water
  • 1 orange peel, for garnish


  1. Pour water, bitters and sugar to a rocks glass, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add bourbon and ice.
  2. Using a cocktail smoker, fill and cover glass with smoke. Allow smoke to remain in covered glass for 1-2 minutes (depending on desired smokiness). Allow smoke to release and enjoy.

Editors' Recommendations

Lindsay Parrill
Lindsay is a graduate of California Culinary Academy, Le Cordon Bleu, San Francisco, from where she holds a degree in…
The Borg drink is a viral Gen-Z favorite that’s really not all that new
Sorry, kiddos. "Borg" has been around for a while. We just call it something else.
borg drink recipe

Every new generation thinks they've invented the wheel when it comes to anything trendy. We're sorry to say, Gen-Z, but "flared leggings" are called yoga pants, most of us were using flip phones before you were born, and don't even think about talking to us about pop punk unless you know who Billie Joe Armstrong is.
When it comes to drinks, most generations have a hallmark party beverage that defines their college years, holding the power to flood them with a rush of nausea and fuzzy memories even decades later. For Gen-Z, that drink is called "Borg." What they haven't realized yet, though, is that this falsely fruity concoction has been around for years under the name "Jungle Juice."
While Jungle Juice was originally invented by U.S. soldiers during the Second World War, it was Millenials who made it the truly trashy, hangover-inducing party swill it is. Most stereotypically mixed in a large bucket or something else that can be found in a dorm garage, Jungle Juice is a mixture of vodka and a cheap, fruity mixer such as Kool-Aid. Naturally, there aren't any hard and fast recipe rules, but that's the usual gist of Jungle Juice.
The Gen-Z twist, Borg, does have some clever upgrades, and for that, we give them due credit. Firstly, the rather gross-sounding name is actually a witty acronym for "Black Out Rage Gallon." We love that there's no beating around the bush with this generation. They know how to call a spade a spade. Second, unlike the communal trough that's used to dole out Jungle Juice, Borg is made and served in individual plastic jugs, cutting down on germ spread. We can appreciate that growing up in the days of COVID has made for some much healthier thinking. We also love that Borg can be capped, making it much more difficult for potential predators to tamper with a drink.
Of course, the optional addition of new ingredients like Liquid IV also help to curb the hangover that will undoubtedly come with drinking vodka from a plastic jug. That sure would have been nice back in the day.

Borg drink recipe

Read more
This fish cooking trick gives you perfect crispy skin without messing up the pan
How to cook fish: The secret is something you probably already have in your pantry
parchment paper tip for cooking fish salmon

Fish is one of those foods that a lot of us don't often cook at home. It's finicky, sometimes tricky to get just right, and often sticks in a way that makes you want to just throw the damned pan in the garbage can instead of the sink for two days of soaking. If these frustrations are familiar to you, take a deep breath. We're here with a solution.

This clever little hack from ChefSteps is here to save your cookware and your sanity with just one quick and easy addition to your fish cooking process — parchment paper. Parchment paper, that humble little sheet that helps your cookies bake perfectly, can also save your pans from a sticky fish fiasco.
How to cook fish with perfectly crispy skin and zero frustrating clean-up

Read more
4 delicious casserole recipes to try right now (it’s the comfort food you need)
These casserole recipes are classics for a reason
pizza cassserole.

Casseroles. How does one describe a casserole? For some, it conjures up the image of mothers placing a big pan of something or other on the table for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. For others, it's comfort food that is loaded with different ingredients. Even yet, others may not even realize what a casserole is. That's why we had to do a little digging.

Turns out, casseroles are more than that tuna noodle casserole some of us terrifyingly remember, or maybe it's that green bean casserole that seems to make its way to the Thanksgiving or Christmas table. Not many people use the word casserole anymore but make no mistake, they still exist – they just go by another name.

Read more