Sweet, Spicy and Light Fall Cocktails and Mocktails
These drinks will warm you right up if the fall air gets too chilly!
After a summer spent sipping fruity cocktails and ice cold glasses of lemonade, it's finally time to give a nod to all of our favorite fall spices. And what better way to compliment your fuzzy socks, flannels, pumpkin patch selfies, and crisp evening bonfires than with a hot apple pie cocktail or a refreshing spiced cider margarita? Look no further, for we have scoured the blogosphere to compile a list of the dreamiest, creamiest, spiciest, and, believe it or not, healthiest autumn drinks. Raise a glass to sweater weather, ladies - we know you can drink to that!
Infuse your sangria with the essence of autumn by adding apple cider, spiced apple kombucha, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and cranberries. If you don't make kombucha at home, don't sweat it - unsweetened kombucha is available commercially.
- 1 bottle dry white wine
- 1/2 cup vodka or white rum
- 1 1/2 cups apple cider
- 3 apples or pears or both, chopped
- 1 orange, sliced
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 3 whole cloves
- handful of fresh cranberries
- 2 cups of Spiced Apple Kombucha
- extra ground cinnamon, to taste
Combine everything, except for the kombucha, into a large glass pitcher. Give it time to sit for a few hours, up to overnight, to meld the wonderful flavor of spice and fruit.
When ready to serve, pour in the Spiced Apple Kombucha. Garnish with a cinnamon stick. Mix in extra cinnamon if you think it needs it.
If you don't have time to make the kombucha, or you can't find that flavor, sub in plain kombucha, and add a bit more cider.
We wouldn't want to leave anyone out when it comes to the fruity flavors of fall! This virgin sangria blends black tea and pomegranate to mimic the sweetness, acidity, and tannins of wine. It also comes loaded with fresh citrus and apples, providing a refreshing beverage that everyone can sip and crunch.
- 2 cups boiling water
- 2 black tea bags (or 2 teaspoons loose-leaf tea in an infuser; decaf tea is fine)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 cups pomegranate juice
- 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 medium orange, sliced into thin rounds
- 1 medium lemon, sliced into thin rounds
- 1 medium lime, sliced into thin rounds
- 1 medium apple, cored and cut into 1/2 -inch chunks
- 3 cups carbonated water
Pour the boiling water over tea bags and cinnamon sticks and steep for 5 minutes. Discard tea bags and stir in sugar to dissolve.
In a large jar or pitcher, combine tea, cinnamon sticks, pomegranate juice, orange juice, orange, lemon, lime, and apple. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and preferably overnight.
Just before serving, stir in carbonated water. Serve in glasses over ice.
This "grown up apple cider" is guaranteed to warm you from your beanie to your boots. TY KU Sake provides a lower calorie, cleaner alternative to the average liquor, so you can sip on this one free of guilt!
- 2 ounces TY KU Sake
- 4 ounces apple juice
- 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 dried apple slice (see recipe below)
Slice an apple in 1/4 inch slices. Sprinkle with apple pie spice and bake on cookie sheet at 280 degrees for 20 minutes, turning over slices halfway through.
Combine TY KU and apple juice in small saucepan. Add apple pie spice and heat through.
Pour into mug and top with dried apple slice and cinnamon stick.
No list of fall beverages would be complete without a nod to all things pumpkin spice! This martini also makes use of TY KU sake to lighten the caloric investment without sacrificing the rich, creamy, indulgent fall flavors we all know and love.
- 2 ounces TY KU Sake
- 2 ounces vanilla vodka
- 1/4 cup fat free half and half
- 1 tablespoon Torani pumpkin spice syrup
Fill a cocktail shaker halfway up with ice cubes.
Add sake, vanilla vodka, half and half, and pumpkin spice syrup. Shake well.
Dip the rims of two martini glasses into cinnamon/sugar mixture and strain the cocktail into the glasses. Cheers!
Recipe, courtesy of Eat Yourself Skinny, serves 2
Tequila lovers, rejoice! You may not often think of margaritas when fantasizing about fall-themed beverages, but this spicy and subtly sweet cocktail proves that apple cider knows how to step up its game (especially when mixed with mescal and Grand Marnier).
- 5 ounces spiced apple cider (if you can't find spiced cider, you can always spice your own)
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 ounce Grand Marnier (or Cointreau)
- 1 1/2 ounces mescal or gold tequila
For garnish (optional):
- 2 tablespoons raw sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Cinnamon sticks
- Apple slices
Start by rimming the glass. In a small bowl, combine the raw sugar and cinnamon. Pour a splash of Grand Marnier into a separate bowl. Dip the rim of the glass in the Grand Marnier to moisten it, and then immediately dip the glass in cinnamon sugar. You'll have enough cinnamon sugar for about 4-5 cocktail glasses.
Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until well combined. Pour over ice into your rimmed cocktail glass and serve. Garnish with an apple slice, a cinnamon stick, and a dash of ground cinnamon if you like!
Mulled wine is perhaps the quickest and easiest way to warm and wow a crowd on a chilly October evening. This recipe can be customized with a variety of different wines, liqueurs, sweeteners, and spices (cardamom, anyone?) Bonus: this simmering brew will have your kitchen smelling better than a candle shop! For a non-alcoholic take on this traditional treat, try substituting grape juice, water, and lemon or lime juice in place of wine.
- 1 (750 ml) bottle of dry red wine
- 1 orange, sliced into rounds
- 8 whole cloves
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 star anise
- 2-4 tablespoons sugar, honey, or maple syrup to taste (or your desired sweetener)
- optional add-in: 1/4 cup brandy (or your favorite liqueur)
- optional garnishes: citrus slices (orange, lemon, and/or lime), extra cinnamon sticks, extra star anise
Combine all ingredients in a saucepan, and heat just barely to a simmer over medium-high heat. Be careful not to boil the mulled wine - you don't want to boil off the alcohol! Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and let the wine simmer for at least 15 minutes of up to 3 hours.
Strain and serve with your desired garnishes.
These sweet and spicy drinks are the perfect addition to your fall potluck, post-pumpkin patch gathering, or bonfire under the stars. So this autumn, we urge you to take our advice to slow down, smell the spices, and enjoy a perfectly blended beverage, compliments of your favorite fall trio - pumpkin, apple, and cinnamon.