The Ultimate Thanksgiving Cocktail Guide for the Most Festive Holiday Celebrations

All of the most cheerful and seasonal cocktails to serve at Thanksgiving this year.

Need inspiration for your Thanksgiving cocktail menu? We’ve got you covered. Emma Burleigh for Observer

While turkey and pumpkin pie are two of the most talked-up Thanksgiving dishes, let’s not forget about the crucial cocktail portion of the meal. Stuffing, gravy and mashed potatoes are lovely, but why not add a festive drink to liven up the celebrations? The holidays are the perfect time to work on your bartending skills, and whether it’s a pre-dinner aperitif, dessert treat or a mid-meal cocktail, a cheerful Thanksgiving-inspired drink is sure to elevate the menu and add a little something extra to the festive atmosphere.

Yes, it turns out that Thanksgiving is nearly upon us, so it’s time to finalize that menu and, along with the turkey, make sure you include a cocktail or two for the special celebration. We found all the best recipes for the most delicious Thanksgiving cocktails that you’ll be *so* grateful for this year—below, see our favorite concoctions to whip up for the holiday table.

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Ciroc Autumnal Appletini.

Cîroc Autumnal Appletini

Ingredients:

1.5 oz Cîroc Apple
.75 oz fresh lemon juice
.75 oz simple syrup
Apple slices

Directions:

Combine all ingredients (except for apple slices) into a shaker with ice. Shake well; strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with apple slices.

Pumpkin, Spice and Everything on Ice.

Pumpkin, Spice and Everything on Ice

Ingredients:

1.5 oz Broken Shed Vodka
1 oz pumpkin maple coffee syrup
Pumpkin maple coffee syrup (mix equal parts cold coffee, maple syrup and pumpkin purée)
Star anise pod

Directions:

Add all ingredients into a shaker; shake with ice. Double strain into a rocks glass with one large ice cube; garnish with a star anise pod.

Maple Margarita.

Maple Margarita

1.5 oz Patrón Silver
.75 oz Patrón Citrónge Orange
.25 oz Ilegal Mezcal Joven
1 oz maple syrup
1 oz lime juice
Maple leaf

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin; shake with ice to chill. Strain into a coupe glass rimmed with salt. Garnish with a maple leaf.

Pumpkin Spice Margarita.

Pumpkin Spice Margarita

Ingredients:

1 oz Cointreau
2 oz tequila
.75 oz fresh lime juice
2 tbsp pumpkin puree
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tbsp honey
Cinnamon stick, for garnish

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a shaker, add ice and shake. Fine strain over ice into a glass. Garnish with cinnamon stick.

Templeton Maple Toddy.

Templeton Maple Toddy

Ingredients:

2 oz Templeton Rye Maple Cask Finish
3/4 oz lemon juice
1/2 oz maple syrup
Cinnamon bark, for garnish

Directions:

Add maple syrup, hot water, whiskey and lemon juice into a mug, stirring until combined. Garnish with a cinnamon bark and serve warm.

Melbourne Apple Sour.

Melbourne Apple Sour

Ingredients:

2 oz Starward Two-Fold Whisky
.75 oz fresh lemon juice
.25 oz simple syrup
.5 oz egg white
Apple cider

Directions:

Combine all ingredients except for the apple cider into a shaker without ice. Shake vigorously to whip the egg whites. Add ice and shake again until very cold. Double strain into a coupe glass; top with apple cider.

Noilly Toddy.

Noilly Toddy 

Ingredients:

1.25 oz Noilly Prat Rouge
.5 oz D’usse VSOP
.5 oz demerara syrup
.5 oz lemon juice
3 oz black tea
2 dashes chocolate bitters
1 dash angostura bitters

Directions:

Add all ingredients except for the tea into a glass. Top with hot tea and garnish with a cinnamon stick.

Cranberry and Apple. Kyle Ford

Cranberry and Apple

Ingredients:

1.5 oz Jaja Reposado
2 oz cranberry cocktail
Dry hard apple cider
Apple slice, for garnish

Directions:

Add tequila and cranberry cocktail into a rocks class filled with ice cubes. Top with apple cider and garnish with apple slice.

Campari Boulevardier.

Campari Boulevardier

Ingredients:

.75 parts Campari
.75 parts 1757 Vermouth di Torino Rosso
1.5 parts Russell’s Reserve 10-Year-Old Bourbon
Orange slice

Directions:

Combine Russell’s Reserve 10 Year Old Bourbon, 1757 Vermouth di Torino and Campari in a glass, stir until combined. Pour over a large ice cube. Garnish with orange slice.

Select Cranberry Paloma.

Select Cranberry Paloma 

Ingredients:

1.5 parts Milagro Select Silver
3/4 part fresh lime juice
3/4 part cranberry juice
1/2 part thyme simple syrup
2 parts pink grapefruit soda
Cranberries, for garnish

Directions:

Combine all ingredients, except for soda, in shaker and shake well. Strain into highball glass with fresh ice. Garnish with cranberries.

Pumpkin Patch.

Pumpkin Patch

Ingredients:

1.5 oz Crystal Head Vodka
1 tsp honey
.75 oz coffee liqueur
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
.75 oz heavy cream (or non-dairy alternative, such as oat milk creamer or coconut milk creamer)
2 or 3 ginger snap cookies

Directions:

Crumble the ginger snap cookies; place crumbs on a plate. Rub the rim of a rocks glass with honey. Dip your glass in cookie crumbs to coat the rim. In a shaker, combine vodka, coffee liqueur and pumpkin pie spice. Shake with ice. Pour contents of shaker into a rocks glass over ice and top with the heavy cream or non-dairy milk of choice.

Grey Goose Apple Martini.

Grey Goose Apple Martini

Ingredients:

1.5 oz Grey Goose La Poire Vodka
.5 oz calvados
.33 oz Ancho Reyes chilis
.5 oz lime juice
1.5 oz fresh apple juice

Directions:

Shake all ingredients over ice and strain into a chilled martini glass.

The Botanist Blood Orange Negroni.

The Botanist Blood Orange Negroni  

Ingredients: 

1.5 oz The Botanist Islay Dry Gin 
.75 oz bianco vermouth  
.5 oz Italian bitter aperitif  
.25 oz blood orange bitters 
Blood orange slice

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a mixing glass with ice. Stir to incorporate. Strain over fresh ice into a double old fashioned glass. Garnish with blood orange slice.

Bemelmans Bar’s Elaine’s Smoky Martini.

Bemelmans Bar’s Elaine’s Smoky Martini 

Ingredients:

2.5 oz gin
.5 oz Lagavulin 16 whiskey
.5 oz Noilly Prat vermouth
lemon peel

Directions:

Add ingredients into a cocktail shaker over ice, stir and then strain into a martini glass. Finish with the essence of a lemon peel twist, and then garnish with lemon peel.

Corralejo Pumpkin Pie.

Corralejo Pumpkin Pie

1.5 oz Corralejo Reposado
1/4 oz Montenegro
3/4 oz pumpkin puree
1 oz fresh lemon juice
Whipped cream, for garnish

Directions:

Combine all ingredients into a shaker and shake. Pour into a wine glass and top with whipped cream.

BC Affogato.

Montage Deer Valley’s BC Affogato 

Ingredients:

.5 oz Frangelico
1 oz espresso
1 medium scoop bourbon caramel ice cream
Caramel sauce

Directions:

Drizzle caramel sauce in stripes inside a chilled martini glass. Add the medium scoop of Bourbon caramel ice cream. Pour over the espresso and Frangelico.

Like Thursday Morning.

Like Thursday Morning

Courtesy Suzy Tweten

Ingredients: 

1.5 oz El Bandido Yankee Reposado Tequila
1/2 oz Laird’s Applejack
3/4 oz maple cinnamon syrup
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
2 dashes ginger bitters
Cloves, for garnish

Directions:

Combine all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with cloves.

Maple Oak Sour.

The Beverly Hilton’s Maple Oak Sour

“The Maple Oak Sour is a festive drink to serve during Thanksgiving, with notes of apple and pomegranate,” said Piero Procida, the Beverly Hilton’s Director of Food and Beverage.

Ingredients:

1 oz George Dickel No 12
1 oz Lairds Applejack Brandy
.75 oz fresh lime juice
.75 oz pomegranate grenadine
.5 oz egg whites
Apple slices

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a shaker tin, add ice, shake and fine strain into a coup glass. Garnish with three apple slices.

Far East.

Far East

Ingredients:

1.5 oz D’Usse VSOP Cognac
0.5 oz amaretto liqueur
3 oz chai tea
0.5 oz vanilla syrup
0.5 oz almond milk
2 dashes cardamom bitters

Directions:

Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake and then strain into a highball glass filled with ice. The Ultimate Thanksgiving Cocktail Guide for the Most Festive Holiday Celebrations