Nothing says, “happy holidays,” quite like familiar tastes and aromas of the season. From big family feasts to early morning mimosas before gift exchange, celebrations and traditions are centered around, not only, family and fun, but, also, food and drink. We understand that planning for the big holidays ahead may feel different all thanks to the woes of 2020 and COVID-19, but that does not mean you have to miss out on the indulgences of the season. Although the menu may be a bit the same each year when it comes to main and side dishes, try mixing it up when it comes to the drinks. Serve up a little extra taste of the holidays with our top 5 favorite holiday cocktails.
When we think of holiday drinks, eggnog tops the list for the most versatile and satisfying option. Don’t you agree?
This is our go-to ingredients list to enjoy this treat all holiday season:
- 6 egg yolks (large eggs)
- ½ cup of sugar
- 2 cups of 2% or whole milk
- 1 cup of heavy cream
- ½ tsp. of nutmeg
- ¼ tsp. of vanilla extract
- Ground cinnamon for garnish
To make, mix the egg yolks and sugar until creamy. Over medium-high heat combine the milk, nutmeg and heavy cream until simmering. Add the egg mixture to the saucepan slowly, whisking rapidly until it has thickened. Remove the mixture from the stove, stir in the ¼ tsp of vanilla and stir until well-mixed through. Add the eggnog to your favorite pitcher or storage container and refrigerate thoroughly to ensure thickening. When serving you can garnish with cinnamon, sprinkles, peppermint pieces, chocolate shavings or your favorite whipped topping. To enjoy this as a cocktail add in whiskey or brandy. To give it a bit of a festive boost you can also opt for peppermint schnapps or spiced rums. Enjoy as a cocktail or mocktail to relish in the season.
Hello, all 5 senses. This classic not only satisfies the taste buds, but it looks and smells amazing. Your entire home will smell of cinnamon and honey while this delicious wine heats up.
To enjoy we suggest the following ingredients:
- 2 bottles of red wine
- 4 cups of apple cider
- ½ cup of brandy
- ¼ cup of honey
- 6-8 whole cloves
- 4-6 cinnamon sticks
- 2-3 oranges sliced into circles
- 10-12 peppercorns
Combine all ingredients into a large pot and simmer on low for 12-15 minutes. Prior to serving remove the black peppercorns and cloves. For extra pizazz, add a stick of cinnamon or an orange slice to your holiday cup.
Talk about a hug in a mug, right? When it comes to holiday drinks, a hot chocolate, spiked or classic, is the right amount of warmth on a chilly fall or winter day. The classic taste of milk chocolate paired with the warm milk is the right balance of sweet and savory.
Enjoy your crowd-pleasing, easy crockpot recipe for this classic.
- 6 cups of 2% or whole milk
- 1 ½ cups of heavy cream
- 1 can of sweetened condensed milk
- 2 cups of chocolate chips (milk, dark, white or semi-sweet based on preference!)
- 1 tsp. of vanilla
Combine all ingredients into a 5-quart crockpot and cook on low for 2 hours, stirring occasionally until the chocolate chips are fully melted and combined with the milk. Once all ingredients are thoroughly combined switch to a “low” or “keep warm” setting until serving. Serve in fun holiday cups and garnish with your favorite toppings, from peppermint to whipped cream, personalize to make it your own delicious treat. Add in your favorite liquor to booze up this perfect dessert-like drink.
Hot Buttered Rum
There is just something so comforting about a warm drink on a cold day. You can make these individually in a mug or over the stovetop for a big group of people.
To enjoy individually combine the following ingredients in a mug and stir together to enjoy:
- 2 tsp. of melted unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp. of light brown sugar
- 2 tsp. of powdered sugar
- Ground cinnamon and/or nutmeg to taste
- 1 cup of heated milk (whole or 2% preferably)
- 1.5 oz. of rum
Sparkling Cranberry Mocktail
Cranberry is the go-to fruit option for the holiday season and is this star in this family-favorite mocktail. If you’re looking for a delicious and fun drink to add to the menu, for all ages, this is our favorite. Simply combine cranberry juice with unflavored sparkling water and serve. For added cheer, serve in a fancy wine glass, rub the rim with lime and dip in granulated sugar. Add whole cranberries and mint leaves to the mix for older kids and teens to enjoy. To turn this holiday classic into a real-deal cocktail, add a shot of your favorite cranberry vodka or spritzer.
With the holiday season in full swing, adding simple yet delicious touches to our at-home menus can boost nostalgia and get everyone into the spirit. Serve up drinks that excite all ages and don’t forget to enjoy them yourself, with or without the alcohol. Cheers!