Tag Archives: drinks

Apple Mules

There’s no easier happy hour cocktail than a mule. Three ingredients and no special tools required! Which also means it’s super easy – and fun – to create variations on this classic drink. Apple Mules are delicious any time of year thanks to apple vodka. Ginger and apple are a delicious pairing, with the lime keeping the sweetness in check. 

Mule drinks are traditionally served in a copper mug. Don’t have one? No problem. A rocks glass or old fashioned glass will work great. 

Makes 1 cocktail. 

2 oz apple vodka 
4 oz ginger beer
¼ of a fresh lime

Fill a glass with ice. 

Top with apple vodka. 

Squeeze ¼ of a lime over the vodka. Add the lime wedge into the glass if desired. 

Top with 4 oz ginger beer. 

Give your cocktail a gentle stir. 

Garnish with thin slices of apple and/or lime. 

Enjoy! 

Tips on Apple Mules

  • If you can’t find apple vodka, make some! Place a cored, chopped apple in a pint mason jar and fill the jar with vodka. Let it sit in a cool, dry place (like your pantry) for 7-14 days, depending on the strength of apple flavor you’d like. Strain the apples out of the vodka and enjoy your homemade apple vodka! 
  • Ginger beer is non alcoholic (like root beer!), and different from ginger ale.
  • Fresh lime is a must in this drink. There’s only 3 ingredients, so fresh juice makes a big difference.  

Happy Hour Snack Pairing

Potato Chips

Enjoy your apple mules with some salty, crunchy homemade potato chips.

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Apple Mules

Apple Mules


  • Author: Katy McAvoy
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

There’s no easier happy hour cocktail than a mule. Three ingredients and no special tools required! Ginger and apple are a delicious pairing, with the lime keeping the sweetness in check.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 oz apple vodka 
  • 4 oz ginger beer
  • ¼ of a fresh lime

Instructions

Fill a glass with ice. 

Top with apple vodka. 

Squeeze ¼ of a lime over the vodka. Add the lime wedge into the glass if desired. 

Top with 4 oz ginger beer

Give your cocktail a gentle stir. 

Garnish with thin slices of apple and/or lime. 

Enjoy!

Notes

Ginger beer is non alcoholic (like root beer!), and different from ginger ale.

Fresh lime is a must in this drink. There’s only 3 ingredients, so fresh juice makes a big difference.

  • Category: Cocktails
  • Method: On The Rocks
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: apple mule, moscow mule, apple vodka, cocktail, vodka cocktail, happy hour, homemade happy hour

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Apple Mules

Lavender Bee’s Knees

Bitters give a cocktail that certain something, and in this Lavender Bee’s Knees they are the key ingredient. The addition of lavender bitters creates a delicious twist on a classic gin cocktail. Garnish with a sugar rim to make your cocktail extra special.

Makes 1 cocktail.

2 oz gin (I love New Holland’s Knickerbocker Gin)⁠
1 oz fresh lemon juice⁠
1 oz honey syrup
4 dashes lavender bitters (I use Scrappy’s)

Combine everything together in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake well. 

Strain into a glass.

Enjoy! ⁠

Tips on Lavender Bee’s Knees 

  • Fresh lemon juice is a must in this drink.
  • Make the honey syrup ahead of time so it has lots of time to chill before you make your cocktail. 
  • Add a little sweetness with a sugar rim. Before you make your cocktail, run a lemon slice on the edge of your glass and dip the glass into a shallow plate of raw or colored sugar.

Snack Pairing

Bacon Wrapped Dates

The tartness of this Lavender Bee’s Knees cocktail goes perfectly with the salty richness of Bacon Wrapped Dates.

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Lavender Bee's Knees

Lavender Bee’s Knees


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

The addition of lavender bitters creates a delicious twist on a classic gin cocktail


Ingredients

Scale

2 oz gin (I love New Holland’s Knickerbocker Gin)⁠
1 oz lemon juice⁠
1 oz honey syrup⁠ 
3 dashes lavender bitters (I use Scrappy’s)


Instructions

Combine everything together in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake well. 

Strain into a glass.

  • Category: Cocktails

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1

Keywords: gin cocktail, lavender bitters, bees knees, lavender bees knees, gin drinks, classic cocktail, classic drink

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Lavender Bee's Knees

Elderflower Margarita

A subtle twist on a classic cocktail, this elderflower margarita will definitely level up your Taco Tuesdays. This is a great cocktail if you’re unfamiliar with elderflower liqueur. The flavor enhances but doesn’t overpower the lime.

Makes 1 cocktail

2 oz silver tequila
1 oz elderflower liqueur (I use St. Germain)
2 oz fresh lime juice (2-3 limes)
1 oz simple syrup
0.5 oz triple sec 
Lime wedges for garnish

Prep your glass: 

Run a wedge of lime around the rim of your glass. 

Pour some salt into a shallow dish and gently run the rim of your glass through the salt. 

Fill your salted glass with ice. 

Set aside. 

Make your margarita:

Combine everything in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake well. 

Pour into the prepared glass. 

Enjoy!

Tips on Elderflower Margarita

  • Fresh lime juice is important here! Don’t use bottled lime juice. Buy some limes and juice them right before you make the cocktail. Roll the limes on the counter while pressing down firmly to get the most juice out of them.
  • Skip the salt if you don’t like it on your rim, or swap the salt for sugar.
  • Love a twist on the classic margarita? Try my Citrus Margaritas and Watermelon Margaritas recipes.

Snack Pairing

Corn and Avocado Salsa

Enjoy your elderflower margarita with this fresh and creamy avocado corn salsa.

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Elderflower Margarita

Elderflower Margarita


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

A subtle twist on a classic cocktail, this elderflower margarita will definitely level up your Taco Tuesdays.


Ingredients

Scale

2 oz silver tequila
1 oz elderflower liqueur (I use St. Germain)
2 oz fresh lime juice (2-3 limes)
1 oz simple syrup
0.5 oz triple sec 
Lime wedges for garnish


Instructions

Prep your glass: 

Run a wedge of lime around the rim of your glass. 

Pour some salt into a shallow dish and gently run the rim of your glass through the salt. 

Fill your salted glass with ice. 

Set aside. 

Make your margarita:

Combine everything in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake well. 

Pour into the prepared glass. 

Enjoy!

Notes

Fresh lime juice is important here! Don’t use bottled lime juice. Buy some limes and juice them right before you make the cocktail. Roll the limes on the counter while pressing down firmly to get the most juice out of them

  • Category: Cocktails

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1
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Elderflower Margarita

Blackberry Bourbon Halloween Cocktail

It’s a Halloween Happy Hour!

This blackberry bourbon cocktail was developed for maximum taste and spooky color without using any food coloring or hard-to-find coloring ingredients.

It’s perfect for your Halloween festivities – whether you’re walking trick-or-treaters around the neighborhood, passing out candy to costumed kiddos, or watching your favorite scary movie. 

Makes 1 cocktail

2 oz bourbon
1 oz honey syrup
0.5 oz ginger liqueur
2 dashes orange bitters 
4-5 blackberries 
0.5 oz fresh orange juice*

Muddle blackberries and orange juice in a cocktail shaker until all of the blackberries are crushed.

Add 3-4 ice cubes to the shaker.**

Add honey syrup, bourbon, ginger liqueur, and orange bitters. 

Shake well. 

Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a glass. (Be patient here! With all those fresh blackberries in your shaker, this step will take longer than usual.)

Enjoy! 

Tips on Blackberry Bourbon Cocktails

  • Fresh squeezed orange juice is important in this recipe! Buy the fruit, not the bottle of juice (no matter how fresh or fancy it is!).
  • You need just enough ice to chill your drink. Don’t load the shaker with ice or it’ll take even longer to strain your cocktail. There’s a lot of blackberry pulp in there!

Snack Pairing

Homemade Potato Chips

Enjoy your Blackberry Bourbon cocktail with some salty homemade potato chips.

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Blackberry Bourbon Cocktail

Blackberry Bourbon Halloween Cocktail


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

This blackberry bourbon cocktail was developed for maximum taste and spooky color without using any food coloring or hard-to-find coloring ingredients.


Ingredients

Scale

2 oz bourbon
1 oz honey syrup
0.5 oz ginger liqueur
2 dashes orange bitters 
4-5 blackberries 
0.5 oz fresh orange juice*


Instructions

Muddle blackberries and orange juice in a cocktail shaker until all of the blackberries are crushed.

Add 3-4 ice cubes to the shaker.**

Add honey syrup, bourbon, ginger liqueur, and orange bitters

Shake well. 

Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a glass. (Be patient here! With all those fresh blackberries in your shaker, this step will take longer than usual.)

Enjoy! 

  • Category: Cocktails
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Blackberry Bourbon Cocktail

Spiced Apple Cocktail

This refreshing spiced apple cocktail is full of cozy fall spices. It’s the perfect sip on an autumn day.

Makes 1 cocktail.

1.5 oz apple vodka
1 oz apple liqueur (I used Du Nord)
0.75 oz brown sugar simple syrup 
0.25 oz fresh lemon juice 
1 oz ginger ale

Combine everything – except the ginger ale – in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake well and strain into a martini glass filled with ice. 

Top with ginger ale. 

Enjoy!

Tips on Spiced Apple Cocktails

  • Swap ginger beer for the ginger ale if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Fresh lemon juice is important in this recipe.
  • If you can’t find apple vodka, follow these instructions – swapping an apple for the strawberries – and infuse your own!
  • Make this cocktail extra fancy with a cinnamon sugar rim! In a shallow dish, mix 1/2 tsp sugar with 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon. Run a slice of lemon around the rim of your glass, then run the rim in the cinnamon/sugar mixture. Add your ice, then you’re cocktail!

Snack Pairing

Potato Chips

Enjoy your spiced apple cocktail with a bowl of homemade potato chips!

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Spiced Apple Cocktail

Spiced Apple Cocktail


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

This refreshing spiced apple cocktail is full of cozy fall spices. It’s the perfect sip on an autumn day.


Ingredients

Scale

1.5 oz apple vodka
1 oz apple liqueur (I used Du Nord)
0.75 oz brown sugar syrup 
0.25 oz fresh lemon juice 
1 oz ginger ale


Instructions

Combine everything – except the ginger ale – in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake well and strain into a glass filled with ice. 

Top with ginger ale. 

Enjoy!

  • Category: Cocktails
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: apple, cocktail, drink, vodka, spiced, cinnamon, fall

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Spiced Apple Cocktail

Apple Orchard Cocktail

Skipping the traditional fall spices, apple vodka and elderflower liqueur keep this Apple Orchard Cocktail fresh and slightly floral.

Makes 1 cocktail. 

2 oz apple vodka
1 oz ginger syrup (recipe below)
0.5 oz apple brandy (I use Long Road)
0.25 oz elderflower liqueur
0.25 oz fresh lemon juice
2 dashes aromatic bitters 

Combine everything in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake up and strain into a glass.

Garnish with an apple slice, if desired.

Enjoy!


Ginger Syrup

¼ cup sugar
½ cup water
1 inch piece of fresh ginger

Heat the water to boiling. Add sugar and stir until sugar is dissolved. 

Peel and slice the ginger. 

Add to the hot water and sugar mixture. 

Allow to cool to room temperature. 

Cover and place in the refrigerator until chilled. 

Tips on Apple Orchard Cocktail

  • The longer you leave the ginger in the syrup, the stronger the flavor. If possible, make the syrup a day or two ahead of making cocktails to allow the ginger more time to infuse the syrup. 
  • Fresh lemon juice tastes best, but you can use bottled juice in this recipe if that’s what you have on hand.

Snack Pairing

Bacon Wrapped Dates

This crisp cocktail pairs deliciously with creamy, salty bacon wrapped dates.

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Apple Orchard Cocktail

Apple Orchard Cocktail


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

Skipping the traditional fall spices, apple vodka and elderflower liqueur keep this Apple Orchard Cocktail fresh and slightly floral.


Ingredients

Scale

2 oz apple vodka
1 oz ginger syrup 
0.5 oz apple brandy (I use Long Road)
0.25 oz elderflower liqueur
0.25 oz fresh lemon juice
2 dashes aromatic bitters 


Instructions

Combine everything in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. 

Shake up and strain into a glass.

Garnish with an apple slice, if desired.

Enjoy!

  • Category: Cocktails

Keywords: vodka, apple, elderflower, st germaine, cocktail, martini, drink, drinking, homemade happy hour

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Apple Orchard Cocktail

12 Easy Vodka Cocktails

Vodka is a super versatile liquor and one people often have on hand. Whether it’s your favorite spirit or you’re just starting out with vodka, give one of these vodka cocktails a try.

Did you give one of these a try? Leave me a comment on the recipe or send me a message! I’d love to know your thoughts.

Bee’s Knees

This classic gin cocktail is a crisp blend of tart and sweet. It pairs well with rich appetizers or a hot summer day. Three ingredients make a Bee’s Knees simple and perfectly refreshing.

Makes 1 cocktail.

2 oz gin (I love New Holland Knickerbocker)
1 oz honey syrup
0.75 oz fresh lemon juice

Place all ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.

Shake it up and strain into a glass.

Enjoy!

Tips on Bee’s Knees

  • Fresh juice is important in this drink. Squeezing 1 lemon should give you more than enough juice for this cocktail. Roll the lemon on the counter while applying pressure from your palm to soften the fruit and release the juice.
  • Pick your favorite gin for this one. If you’re new to gin, try a more neutral flavored gin like Beefeater or Aviation. My favorite in this cocktail is New Holland’s Knickerbocker Gin, made right here in West Michigan. New Holland also makes a Blueberry Gin that creates a delicious variation for this cocktail.
  • Be sure to make your honey syrup ahead of time so it has time to chill before you make your cocktail.

Snack Pairing

Bacon Wrapped Dates

Enjoy your Bee’s Knees with smoky, sweet bacon wrapped dates.

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Bee's Knees

Bee’s Knees


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

Three ingredients make a classic Bee’s Knees simple, and perfectly refreshing.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 oz gin
  • 1 oz honey syrup
  • 0.75 oz fresh lemon juice

Instructions

Place all ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.

Shake it up and strain into a glass.

Enjoy!

  • Category: Cocktails
  • Method: Cocktail Shaker
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: lemon, honey, classic cocktail, bee’s knees, gin drink, drinks, homemade happy hour, gin

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Bee's Knees

Strawberry Lemonade

This refreshing strawberry lemonade is all grown up! You can easily keep it all ages by leaving out the vodka.

Makes 1 cocktail

2 oz vodka
2 oz strawberry syrup (recipe below)
0.5 oz fresh lemon juice
3-4 oz club soda
Mint sprig

Fill a tall glass with ice. 

Add vodka, strawberry syrup, and lemon juice. 

Give the mint a clap between your hands, then add it to the glass. 

Top with club soda. 

Stir and enjoy!

Make it a mocktail

Leave out the vodka, increase the strawberry syrup to 3 oz and the lemon juice to 1 oz.


Strawberry Simple Syrup: 

1 ½ cups fresh ripe strawberries
½ cup sugar
½ cup water

Clean the strawberries. Remove the tops and slice the berries in half.

Combine berries, water, and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.

Bring to boil, reduce to simmer and cook over low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool for 10 minutes.

Place a fine mesh strainer over a large bowl.

Carefully pour strawberry mixture into the strainer. (It splatters!)

Using a spatula, gently press the berry mixture into the strainer until all berries are crushed and all liquid has been pressed through to the bowl below.

Discard the berry remnants left in the strainer. 

Refrigerate syrup until ready to use. 

Tips on Strawberry Lemonade

  • Fresh lemon juice is SUPER important here. Take the time to juice fresh lemons. Roll the lemon on your kitchen counter while applying a little pressure to get as much juice out of it as possible.
  • You can substitute thawed, frozen strawberries for the fresh berries in the syrup.
  • Be sure to make your strawberry syrup ahead of time so it’s completely chilled when you make your cocktail.

Snack Pairing

Homemade Potato Chips

A simple cocktail deserves a simple snack. Pair strawberry lemonade with some homemade potato chips!

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Strawberry Lemonade

Strawberry Lemonade


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

This refreshing strawberry lemonade is all grown up! You can easily keep it all ages by leaving out the vodka.


Ingredients

Scale

2 oz vodka
2 oz strawberry syrup 
0.5 oz fresh lemon juice
3-4 oz club soda
Mint sprig


Instructions

Fill a tall glass with ice. 

Add vodka, strawberry syrup, and lemon juice. 

Give the mint a clap between your hands, then add it to the glass. 

Top with club soda. 

Stir and enjoy!

Notes

Make it a mocktail by leaving out the vodka and increasing the strawberry syrup to 3 oz and the lemon juice to 1 oz.

  • Category: Cocktails

Keywords: strawberry, lemonade, vodka, cocktail, drinks, drinking, mocktail

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Strawberry Lemonade

Blackberry Vanilla Martini

Blackberry and vanilla are a perfect pair. Adding lime to the mix creates a refreshing, tart cocktail in this blackberry vanilla martini.

Makes 1 cocktail.

2 oz vanilla vodka
1 oz simple syrup
0.5 oz fresh lime juice
5-6 fresh blackberries
4-5 fresh mint leaves

Muddle mint, blackberries and lime juice in a cocktail shaker.

Add ice, simple syrup and vodka. 

Shake well. 

Pour through a fine mesh sieve held over a coupe or martini glass.* 

Enjoy!

Tips for Blackberry Vanilla Martini

  • *This step keeps the blackberry seeds and mint pieces out of your cocktail. If you don’t mind some berry and mint pieces in your drink, feel free to skip it. 🙂
  • Don’t have a cocktail shaker on hand? Use a mason jar with a tight fitting lid.
  • It will take 10-15 seconds to get all of the liquid to drain out of your cocktail shaker. This is due to the mint leaves, ice, and pieces of blackberry contained in your shaker. Tip your shaker upright, then pour at an angle a few times to make sure you get all of the cocktail in your glass.
  • Use regular vodka in this drink if you don’t have any vanilla vodka on hand.
  • Fresh juice is important in this drink. Take the time to squeeze half of a lime for your cocktail.

Snack Pairing

Corn and Avocado Salsa

Creamy, cool Avocado Corn Salsa pairs deliciously with this tart martini.

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Blackberry Vanilla Martini

Blackberry Vanilla Martini


  • Author: MittenGirl
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Total Time: 5 min
  • Yield: 1 cocktail 1x

Description

Blackberry and vanilla are a perfect pair. Adding lime to the mix creates a refreshing, tart cocktail in this blackberry vanilla martini.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 oz vanilla vodka
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • 0.5 oz fresh lime juice
  • 56 fresh blackberries
  • 45 fresh mint leaves

Instructions

Muddle mint, blackberries and lime juice in a cocktail shaker.

Add ice, simple syrup and vodka. 

Shake well. 

Pour through a fine mesh sieve held over a coupe or martini glass.* 

Enjoy!

Notes

*Straining through a fine mesh sieve is optional. 

  • Category: Cocktails
  • Method: Cocktail Shaker
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1

Keywords: blackberry vanilla martini, vanilla vodka martini, vodka cocktail, vanilla vodka cocktail

Recipe Card powered byTasty Recipes

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Blackberry Vanilla Martini