12 Delicious Thanksgiving Cocktail Recipes to Gobble Up This Year

It’s Thanksgiving time and that means, for better or worse, you’re probably spending some time around at least some people that you don’t really want to. Maybe it’s because your sibling who picked on you mercilessly lives across the country, or this is the one time of the year that old Aunt Karen deems your family worthy enough for her presence. Regardless of the reason or person, you’re going to need a drink. While there are plenty of beers and wines for you to down during the Thanksgiving meal, it’s nice to have a cocktail or three before sitting down to discuss the fact that yes, you are perfectly happy not having kids any time soon and that it is indeed your choice to do so.

Below, check out our picks for the best Thanksgiving cocktail recipes you can make this holiday. (There’s also Shotsgiving if you want to do away with cocktails and get right to the boozing.)

Ruffino Jack of Spades

Ruffino Jack of Spades
  • 2 parts Ruffino Prosecco
  • .5 parts cognac
  • 1 part apple cider
  • .75 parts lemon juice
  • .5 part honey syrup (2:1 honey to water)
  • Apple slices

Method: Shake the cognac, lemon, apple cider, and honey syrup. Strain into a lowball glass with ice and top with Ruffino Prosecco. Garnish with an apple slice.

The Howdy’s Dram

The Howdy’s Dram
  • 750 ml Craigellachie 13 Year Old
  • 300 ml Palo Cortado sherry
  • 250 ml herbal liqueur
  • 400 ml spearmint tea (or favorite tea flavor)
  • 10 dashes of Angostura bitters

Method: Steep tea bags in boiling water. Let cool before using. Combine all ingredients together in a punch bowl. Garnish with a healthy bouquet of mint and as big of an ice cube* as you can find to fit your punch bowl. Dust the mint leaves with a bit of powdered sugar to add some pizzazz. 

*Note: If you’re using smaller cubes, wait to add until just before your least fashionably late guest arrives.

Bendt Cranapple

Bendt Cranapple
Blackall Photography

Method: Half-fill shaker tin with ice. Add all ingredients except bitters. Gently shake for 5-7 seconds. Strain into old fashioned glass over fresh ice. Top with orange bitters. Garnish with speared fresh cranberries and/or rosemary sprig.

Fernet Egg Cream Soda

Fernet Egg Cream Soda

(Created by Jessica Braasch, Bible Club, Portland)

Method: Build/shake like a Ramos gin fizz. Pour into fizz appropriate glass, top with soda, creating frothy “head” rest straw, mint sprig, and grated nutmeg on top.

Vegan Buttered Rum

Vegan Buttered Rum
Lucy Beaugard

(Created by Ky Belk, Bar Director, Vital Root, Denver, Colorado)

  • 1.5 oz aged rum
  • 5 oz strong spicy chai tea, heated
  • 2 oz cashew milk, heated *For non-vegans, use whole milk*
  • 1 tbsp Coconut or MCT oil
  • Cinnamon stick

Method: In a blender, combine all ingredients until oil is fully incorporated. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.

Cranberry Bramble

Cranberry Bramble
  • 1.5 oz Beefeater Pink
  • 1 oz cranberry sauce
  • .75 oz lemon juice
  • .5 oz orange juice

Method: Build in tin. Add ice. Shake and strain.

Cuatro Presidente

Cuatro Presidente

Method: Stir all ingredients with plenty of ice until very cold, strain into a coupe glass.  Garnish with orange peel.

East Indian Gimlet

East Indian Gimlet

Method: Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour in the gin, lime juice, and ginger syrup. Shake until well chilled. Strain into cocktail glass. Garnish with fresh rosemary.

*Ginger simple syrup: Bring .75 cup sugar, .25 cup chopped peeled ginger, and .75 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and let sit 20 minutes. Strain into a jar, cover, and chill.

Honey I Shrunk the Fig

Honey I Shrunk the Fig
  • 1.5 oz The Botanist Gin
  • 1 oz fino sherry
  • .75 oz lemon juice
  • .5 oz burnt honey fig syrup (figs included)*

Method: Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake. Fine strain over ice into a rocks glass. Garnish with fig.

*Burnt honey fig syrup: Bring honey in a saucepan to medium heat and bring to a gentle simmer. Add 3 sliced figs and reduce heat to low until the honey turns to a deep amber color. Remove from heat and let cool before serving. Use figs in shake to reduce waste and to add more flavor.

Whitley Neill Blood Orange Spritz

Whitley Neill Blood Orange Spritz

Method: Top with soda water and garnish with a blood orange wheel

Cascade Cider

Cascade Cider

Method: Shake whiskey and cider over ice. Strain into cup with fresh ice. Squeeze a small orange wedge into the drink and drop into cup. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.

Belvedere Champagne Punch

Belvedere Champagne Punch

Method: Add all ingredients, except Moët & Chandon Imperial Brut, to a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a glass mug, add ice and top with Moët & Chandon Imperial Brut. Garnish with a dusting of fresh nutmeg.

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