There’s nothing like the perfect cocktail — or two! — to make your holiday party a little merrier (and greatly increase the chances of an end-of-night singalong). While we love eggnog (with or without booze), mulled wine, and mulled cider, we also think that holiday drinks can go beyond.
We found tons of holiday cocktail recipes that can make the perfect signature drink at your party, or just a nightcap around the tree. And, of course, we included fab holiday mocktail recipes, too, because an amazing holiday sip doesn’t necessarily require alcohol.
Top: Milk Punch Two Ways at Jelly Toast
Holiday Cocktail Recipes
Okay, I know that I said we need to go beyond mulled wine, but I meant that we should be prepared to serve something in addition to mulled wine, because you can’t holiday without this classic. Especially when it’s as easy as the one in our tutorial for how to make mulled wine. Make a big pot of this at the beginning of your party, leave it on the “keep warm” setting, and forget about it — except for the amazing aroma filling your house, of course.
If you want to impress your guests with a sophisticated drink that’s also full of holiday cheer, try this Merry Manhattan at Foodess. Plus, when you’re done, you can use the excess simple syrup — infused with fall spice! — to sweeten extra festive baked goods, coffee, or tea.
I’m already a big fan of Black Russians and White Russians, but a Gingerbread White Russian? Yes! So much yes. Thank you to Catherine at Bijoux & Bits for coming up with this decadent drink.
If you’re burnt out on sweet holiday flavors, this delightfully strong Espresso Martini at Heinstirred is the antidote. Serve it with dessert to balance out the sugar or just make it your NYE drink of choice. Because this one will keep you awake, trust us.
I’ve always adored a good Moscow Mule, but I tend to think of them as more of a summer drink. Not so with this Apple-Cranberry Moscow Mule at Heather Christo! The cranberries and apple give the drink a nice wintery twist. Plus, you can make this ahead and have guests help themselves to the pitcher for extra easy entertaining.
My cousin brought home a milk punch recipe from a New Orleanian friend one Christmas, and now it is an absolute essential for our yearly holiday dinner party. Our recipe is still a family secret (shhhh!), but I was excited to find this recipe for Milk Punch Two Ways at Jelly Toast. Because everyone needs to try this drink ASAP.
This Hot Spiced Cranberry Sangria at Sarah ‘n Spice is even more proof that your favorite cocktails don’t have to be confined to one season. I love the festive cranberry twist on this classic.
I have to admit that I was already done rounding up recipes when this gorgeous drink popped up in my Instagram feed. And you know there wasn’t a chance I was going to leave out something called The North Pole Cocktail, especially since it’s from proven food goddess Tieghan at Half Baked Harvest. This one makes me want to put on Elf, make a fire, and feel all the cozy holiday feels.
Holiday Mocktail Recipes
Pomegranates are a bit of an unsung holiday hero if you ask me, so I couldn’t ask for a more beautiful mocktail than this Holiday Pomegranate Mojito Mocktail at The Butter Half. This is especially great for those of us spending the holidays in a warmer climate.
Kid-Friendly Eggnog Soda | Community Table
It turns out that you don’t have to use alcohol to put a fun twist on plain eggnog. While rounding up eggnog recipes with and without alcohol last year, we found a recipe for kid-friendly Eggnog Soda at Community Table that’s like a holiday version of an egg cream and so, so delicious!
I’m loving the simple, classic vibe of this Cider, Thyme + Tonic Mocktail at Offbeat + Inspired. Especially with the homemade thyme simple syrup. Yes, please — I’ll take two.
Punch doesn’t always have to serve up a big, well, boozy punch — at least not when you spike it with scoops of fruity sherbet! Besides being delicious to sip on, this Christmas Sherbet Punch at The Casual Craftlete is gorgeous to look at too. I mean, does it get more perfect for a Christmas party?