You don’t need to be a bartender to perfect these easy mixed drinks! In fact, these popular mixed drinks can be right at home (and are perfect for impressing guests).
21 Easy Mixed Drinks Anyone Can Master
Originally developed in the 1940s, the Moscow Mule has made a big comeback is now one of the most popular mixed drinks. Could be it’s refreshing taste or that pretty copper mug (or both!).
Directions: Combine 4 cups ginger beer, 2/3 cup lime juice and 1-1/4 cups vodka in a pitcher. Serve over ice. If desired, serve with lime slices. Yield: 6 servings.
Horseradish makes this one of the best Bloody Mary recipes in the world.
Directions: Garnish rim of tall glass with celery salt. Place remaining ice in prepared glass. Add 2 oz. vodka, 1 cup tomato juice, 1 tbsp. lemon juice, 1-1/2 tsp. lime juice, 3/4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 tsp. horseradish, 1/8 tsp. pepper, 1/8 tsp celery salt and 1/8 tsp. hot pepper sauce to shaker; cover and shake. Strain into prepared glass. Garnish as desired. Yield: 1 serving
Pineapple Rum Punch
If you want a taste of the tropics, this is the drink for you. Directions: In a pitcher, combine 3-1/2 cups unsweetened pineapple juice, 1-1/2 cups orange juice, 1 cup coconut water, 1 cup orange-peach-mango juice, 1 cup coconut rum, 1 cup dark rum, 1/4 cup key lime juice (regular limes are OK, too) and 3 tablespoons of grenadine. Just stir and serve over ice! Yield: 12 servings this one’s for a party!
Brandy Old-Fashioned Sweet
The concept of an old-fashioned dates back to the early 1800s. This version is extremely popular in Wisconsin.
Directions: In a rocks glass, muddle 1 orange slice, 1 maraschino cherry, 1-1/2 oz. maraschino cherry juice and 1 teaspoon bitters. Add 1/4 cup ice. Pour in 1-1/2 oz. brandy, 2 teaspoons water, 1 teaspoon orange juice and 3 oz. lemon-lime soda. Yield: 1 serving.
Americano Cocktail Recipe
The cocktail contains the bittersweet taste of Campari paired with sweet vermouth and club soda.
Directions: Pour 1-1/2 oz Campari and 1-1/2 oz sweet vermouth into an ice-filled glass. Then, pour in 3 oz. club soda, and stir well. Yield: 1 serving.
Martinis can be made with either vodka or gin. Our taste panel’s preference was for the gin, but try them both and decide for yourself. Be warned, this is a strong and serious drink.
Directions: Fill a shaker three-fourths full with ice. Add 3 oz. gin or vodka and 1/2 oz. dry vermouth; cover and shake until condensation forms on outside of shaker. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with olives. Yield: 1 serving.
Creamy in texture and rich in taste, the mudslide is basically the equivalent of an adult milkshake.
Directions: In a blender, combine 1 oz. Baileys Irish Cream, 1 oz. Kahlua, 1 oz. vodka, 1 oz. cream and ice. Blend until a smooth consistency is achieved. Pour into a chilled glass.
This party favorite has been around for quite some time. It’s not overly fruity and features a good blend of sweet and sour.
Directions: Fill a shaker three-fourths full with ice. Place additional ice in a rocks glass; set aside. Add 2 oz. light rum, 3/4 oz. triple sec, 1/2 oz lemon juice, 1-1/2 teaspoons lime juice and 1-1/2 teaspoons amaretto to shaker; cover and shake for 10-15 seconds or until condensation forms on outside of shaker. Strain into prepared glass. Garnish as desired. Yield: 1 serving.
Gin and Tonic
This iconic drink is super easy to make.
Directions: Pour 3 oz. gin, 4 oz. tonic water and 1 tablespoon lime juice over ice in a chilled glass. Stir well.
Don’t let the name fool you. Even though cocktail does contain lip-puckering lemon, the simple syrup and bourbon add extra sweetness.
Directions: In a shaker, combine 1-1/2 oz. bourbon, 3/4 oz. simple syrup mixture (using 1 part water, 1 part sugar), 3/4 oz. lemon juice and ice. Shake well, and pour into glass. Garnish with cherry.
Fresh Lime Margaritas
This basic margarita recipe is easy to modify to your tastes.
Directions: In a pitcher, combine 1/2 cup tequila, 1/2 cup Triple Sec, 1/4 cup lime juice, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 2 tablespoons superfine sugar; stir until sugar is dissolved. Moisten rims of four margarita or cocktail glasses with lime wedges. Sprinkle salt on a plate; dip rims in salt. Serve in prepared glasses over crushed ice. Yield: 4 servings.
It wouldn’t be Kentucky Derby Day without mint juleps! But, really, this cocktail is good anytime.
Directions: Make mint simple syrup. Cover and refrigerate syrup for at least 2 hours or until chilled. For each serving, place ice in a metal julep cup or rocks glass. Pour 1/4 cup mint syrup and 1 oz. bourbon into the glass; stir until mixture is well chilled. Garnish with mint sprig. Yield: 10 servings.
This tropical drink will be a sure crowd pleaser at any beach themed parties or tiki bars.
Directions: Combine 1-1/2 oz. golden rum, 1/2 oz. white rum, 1 oz. dark rum, 1 teaspoon papaya juice, 1 teaspoon pineapple juice, 1 teaspoon superfine sugar and 1 oz. lime juice over ice in a glass. Stir well. Pour 1/2 oz. 151-proof rum into mixture, stirring it in. Yield: 1 serving.
A velvety-smooth texture and taste of the tropics are what this pina colada delivers.
Directions: In a 2-qt. pitcher, combine 2-1/4 cups pineapple juice, 1 can cream of coconut and 1-1/2 cups rum. Chill. For each serving, place a generous cup of rum mixture and 1 cup ice in a blender. Cover and process until smooth. Pour into a chilled hurricane glass. Garnish each with a pineapple wedge. Yield: 6 servings.
This amber drink is a champagne twist on the traditional old-fashioned.
Directions: Place 1 sugar cube in a champagne flute or cocktail glass; sprinkle with 6 dashes of bitters. Add 1/2 oz. brandy; top with 1/2 cup chilled champagne. If desired, top with rosemary and cranberries. Yield: 1 serving.
Hailing from the busy streets of New Orleans, the Sazerac cocktail is ideal for whiskey lovers.
Directions: Rinse out a glass using absinthe. In a separate glass, stir 1 sugar cube, 2 dashes Angostura bitters and 3 dashes Peychaud’s bitters. Pour in 2 oz. rye whiskey, then fill the glass with ice.
Stir the mixture, then strain into the rinsed out, prepared glass. Place the lemon peel over the top of the drink, and discard once oils have been extracted. Yield: 1 serving.
Creamy Irish Coffee
My maternal grandma was never a drinker, beyond a glass of champagne at Christmas, but she couldn’t resist Bailey’s Irish Coffee. —Rebecca Little, Park Ridge, Illinois
Directions: Divide 2 cups hot strong brewed coffee and 4 oz. Irish cream liqueur among four mugs; stir. If desired, top with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.Yield: 4 servings.
A standard offering at brunches, Mimosas are as pretty as they are tasty.
Directions: Pour 2 oz. champagne into a champagne flute or wine glass. Pour 1/2 oz. Triple Sec and 2 oz. orange juice into the glass. Garnish as desired. Yield: 1 serving.
One thing is for sure: The Vesper is not for the faint of heart. The simple cocktail is created using three types of liquor, making the drink a very potent one.
Directions: Stir 1 oz. vodka, 3 oz. gin and 1/2 oz. Lillet Blanc in a glass filled with ice. Strain, then pour into a chilled glass. Rub lemon peel along the rim of the glass, and drop it in. Yield: 1 serving.
The boulevardier cocktail is a great option for serving at a formal dinner party or more elegant event.
Directions: Stir 1 oz. sweet vermouth, 1 oz. Campari and 1-1/2 oz. bourbon whiskey in a glass filled with ice. Strain, then pour into a chilled glass. Yield: 1 serving.
Bitter and sweet flavors coexist peacefully in the negroni cocktail.
Directions: Pour 1-1/2 oz. sweet vermouth, 1-1/2oz. Campari and 1-1/2 oz. gin in a glass filled with ice. Stir well. Yield: 1 serving.