Wednesday, May 29, 2024
HomeDine & Sip10 Best Thanksgiving Cocktail Recipes That Keep The Peace at Family Gatherings

10 Best Thanksgiving Cocktail Recipes That Keep The Peace at Family Gatherings

Drink these before telling Aunt Edna to "Fuck off!"

Thanksgiving is here. If you are spending it with your family, chances are, you’re gonna need a drink or two. The good news is that whether you need a boozy sip to melt the icy tension in the room or cool you down when you find yourself getting a little hot under the collar, we’ve got Thanksgiving cocktail recipes to help you out. From the wintery hot toddy to a spiced pear bourbon sparkler, get ready to say cheers!

Apple Cider Sangria

Add a little fun to your Thanksgiving dinner with this fall twist on the beloved Sangria!


  • 2 c. apple cider
  • 1 c. apple brandy (I love this one)
  • 750 mL bottle dry white wine, chilled (Find it here)
  • 1 lemon
  • 3 apples, thinly sliced
  • 12 oz. bottle ginger ale

Make It:

This is one of our Thanksgiving cocktail recipes that tastes most like the holiday season. Combine apple cider, apple brandy, dry white wine, and the juice of 1 lemon in a pitcher. Stir in apple slices. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 1 day. Just before serving, pour in ginger ale. Serve over ice.

Spiced Pear and Bourbon Sparkler

This sparkly drink is strong and might even get Aunt Edna to shut the fuck up about how things were so much more civil “back in the day!”

spiced pear sparkler for thanksgiving cocktial



  • 1½ ounces Spiced Pear Simple Syrup
  • 1½ ounces Bourbon
  • ½ ounces lemon juice
  • 1-2 ounces Prosecco
  • Ice


  • 1cup pear juice (not from concentrate or 3 ripe pears blitzed in a blender with ¼ cup of water)
  • 2-inch nub of ginger
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 5 cloves
  • ¼ cup Brown Swerve (Get it here)

Make It:

To make this Thanksgiving cocktail recipe start with the Spiced Pear Simple Syrup. In a pot combine 1 cup pear juice, a 2-inch nub of ginger peeled and sliced, 2 cinnamon sticks, and 5 cloves. Cover and let simmer over low heat for ten minutes. Take off the heat and add 1/4 cup of lightly packed Brown Swerve. Stir until the Swerve is fully incorporated into the mixture. Let cool, and strain. You can make this in advance and store it in the refrigerator for up to one week.

For the cocktail, pour the Bourbon, Spiced Pear Simple Syrup, lemon juice, and ice into a cocktail shaker and shake for 30 seconds or until the surface of the cocktail shaker is cool to the touch. Strain, serve, and top with the Prosecco of your choice.


Pecan Pie Martini

This is one of my favorite Thanksgiving coctial recipes for its ability to sweeten even the most sour conversation with your MAGA Trump-loving, backwood cousins.



  • 3 tbsp. caramel, microwaved until pourable
  • 1/4 c. toasted chopped pecans
  • Cool Whip, for garnish
  • 3 whole pecans, for garnish
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon, for garnish


  • 6 oz. rumchata
  • 6 oz. creme de cocoa
  • 3 oz. Bourbon
  • Ice

Make It:

Place caramel and toasted chopped pecans on separate small shallow plates. Dip the rim of each glass first into caramel and then into chopped pecans to coat. Combine rumchata, creme de cocoa, and bourbon in a large cocktail shaker. Fill with ice and shake until cold, 30 seconds. Pour into martini glasses and top with a dollop of whipped cream, a whole pecan, and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Mulled Wine

thanksgiving cocktails


  • 1 (750 ml.) bottle of red wine (I love this one)
  • 1 orange, sliced into rounds, plus more for garnish
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 3 cinnamon sticks, plus more for garnish
  • 3 star anise
  • 1/4 c. honey
  • 1/2 c. brandy

Make It:

To get started, make this Thanksgiving cocktail recipe in a medium saucepan over medium heat, and combine all ingredients. Bring to a simmer, not a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer gently over low heat for 10 minutes. Serve warm and garnish with more citrus slices and cinnamon sticks.

Apple Cider Mimosas

This is one of those Thanksgiving recipe’s you’re gonna want when the day starts early. The earlier you get that first drink down, the less likely you are to tell your homophobic parents to “fuck off”.


  • Gold and Silver Sprinkles
  • Apple Cider
  • Champagne 
  • Apple Slices

Make It:

Dip the rim of each champagne flute into the water, then dip in sprinkles to coat. Pour apple cider about halfway into each champagne glass. Top with champagne. Garnish with an apple slice.

Pumpkin Spice White Russian Cocktail

This is the only thing that needs to get spicey a the Thanksgiving dinner table. Make yourself two.


For the Drink

  • 3 ounces 2 shots vodka
  • 3 ounces 2 shots pumpkin spice creamer
  • 1.5 ounces 1 shot Kahlua
  • Whipped Cream and pumpkin pie spice for garnish

For the Rim

  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar or sparkling sugar
  • 3 tablespoons crushed graham crackers

Make It:

Mix the ingredients for the rim together on a shallow plate. Dip the edge of two glasses in water and then dip into the graham mixture. Press to coat. Set the two glasses aside. Pour vodka, creamer, and Kahlua into a large cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake lightly until combined and cold. Pour into glasses and top with whipped cream and pumpkin pie spice.

thanksgiving cocktail

Pomegranate French 75

This gorgeous Thanksgiving cocktail recipe will help keep things cool when your youngest sister tells the family she’s born again.


  • 2 ounces gin, (such as Hendrick’s)
  • 2 ounces of pomegranate juice
  • 1 ounce simple syrup
  • Champagne or Prosecco, for topping off the drink
  • Pomegranate seeds, for garnish

Make It:

Combine the gin, pomegranate juice, and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake for about 15 seconds until chilled. Strain the mixture into two champagne glasses and top with champagne. Garnish with the desired amount of pomegranate seeds.

Chai Tea Recipe with Bourbon

Sometimes you just gotta say “Fuck it!” and spike your tea while the teetotallers carry on about, whomever they are gossiping about this year.


  • 3 cups hot water
  • 4 black tea bags
  • 4 green cardamom pods crushed
  • 4 whole allspice berries crushed
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 whole cinnamon sticks
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups vanilla almond milk
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • ½ cup good quality bourbon

Make It:

In a medium saucepan, combine the water, tea bags, spices, ginger, and vanilla. Bring to a boil over medium/high heat and then reduce to a simmer. Stir in the almond milk and honey, whisking to combine. Remove from the heat and allow to sit for 10 minutes to steep. Strain through a fine mesh sieve to remove the bulk spices and tea bags, making sure only the liquid remains. Pour into a heat-proof serving pitcher and stir in the bourbon.

Apple Cider Bellini

This is a classy-ass cocktail that will sneak up on you. Trust me, your relatives will be telling stories about the scene you made on Thanksgiving Day for years to come. I say, have five!


  • 1 ounce apple cider
  • 1 ounce apple vodka 
  • Champagne or Prosecco
  • Apple slices for garnish

Make It:

Add cider and vodka to a champagne flute, then top off with champagne and an apple slice.

Turmeric Ginger Hot Toddy

Warm up that cold, hard heart of yours with a hot toddy.


  • 3 cups water
  • 2 bags turmeric ginger tea
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Ginger liqueur, to taste
  • ½ orange, sliced
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Make It:

Combine the water, tea bags, and cinnamon sticks in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes. Combine the sugar and cinnamon and spread them on a small nonstick pan. Place it on the stove over medium heat and arrange the orange slices on top. Cook for about a minute on each side, or until caramelized. Serve the tea hot, add ginger liqueur to taste and garnish with orange slices. You can also dip the glass or mug rim in the tea and cinnamon sugar.

Please follow and like us:
Annette Benedetti
Annette Benedetti
Annette is a writer, editor and photographer from Portland, OR. Her work appears in a variety of publications including Bust, Red Tricycle, Motherly and Domino. When she’s away from her desk she can be found teaching women yoga at wilderness retreats, exploring new cities across the states and hiking the trails at Mt. Rainier—one of her favorite places on earth.
- Advertisment -

Most Popular