20 Scary Good Halloween Cocktail Recipes
Whip up these delectable Halloween drinks for your haunted happy hour. From candy-inspired creations to gruesomely garnished libations, these recipes will thrill.
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Every Halloween I look forward to hosting a "Scary Movie Marathon Night." It's really the only party I go all out for in theme and decor. Christmas? Yawn. I like making my guests scream out in horror during the movie screening and with delight over my Halloween-themed bites and cocktails.
My costumed companions will be sipping on well-balanced Halloween drinks that boast frightfully fun presentations. I've served up dark red Negronis in blood bags.
If you're as picky as I am and looking to show your own Halloween party guests a spooky good time, peruse these potent potables. There are even some non-alcoholic options for the kiddos.
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Halloween drinks Q&A
Explore these frightfully common questions about Halloween drinks before you head to your laboratory, er, kitchen to start mixing
How does one make Halloween-themed cocktails?
All you really need to craft your own spirited potion is seasonal ingredients, creepy garnishes such as a bloody-red sugar syrup rim or lychee eyeballs, and a spine-tingling name, preferably after your favorite horror movie or Halloween treat.
What are some good Halloween drinks?
So many tasty, fun drinks for celebrating this chilling season, from classics such as the mind-numbing Zombie to scrumptious candy-inspired libations such as a peanut butter cup martini.
What's an easy Halloween drink to make?
The classic Dark and Stormy cocktail is one of the easiest to make. Add a dark rum and lime juice to an ice-filled highball glass, top with ginger beer, and then garnish with a lime wedge and maybe a spooky swizzle stick. Or for something potent and super simple, try the Death in the Afternoon cocktail, which is only two ingredients: chilled champagne and absinthe.
Halloween treat cocktails
These candy-inspired boozy treats are definitely not for kids, but they are for you!
This decadent mix of chocolate vodka, peanut rum, chocolate liqueur, and cream is the perfect sipper to cap off an evening of fearsome festivities. Of course it wouldn't be complete without that garnish of everyone's favorite candy, the peanut butter cup, so try not to demolish the entire bag before preparing this potion.
Got hordes of thirsty party guests breaking down your liquor cabinet? Fix up this easy-to-make witches brew. All you have to do is stir a cauldron full of pecan-flavored vodka, apple cider, cinnamon sticks, and apples; chill; and then ladle into a vessel. Top each drink with chilled sparkling wine and a caramel-dipped apple slice.
Pumpkin spice latte lovers will go mad for this martini version of their beloved drink. It combines pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, maple syrup, half and half, vanilla extract, and, of course, vodka for a delicious grownup PSL.
If you're a fan of dessert drinks such as the Brandy Alexander and the Mudslide, you'll fall under the spell of this candy bar cocktail. Its potent sugar rush of caramel vodka, Irish cream, chocolate liqueur, and heavy cream with the nuttiness of amaretto emulates a Snickers bar.
You'll need to plan ahead when making the star ingredient of these boozy slushies: Jolly Rancher-infused vodka. Simply pick out your five favorite Jolly Rancher flavors and drop 10 of each unwrapped candy in five separate jars with a cup of vodka in each, leaving them to marinate for 24 hours. For a kid-friendly, non-alcoholic slushie, use water in the place of vodka.
Prepare this drink before a crowd. The act of pouring the mix of grape juice and vodka over a tuft of cotton candy will captivate your audience as it melts away the sugary treat. Not a fan of vodka? Sub in a clear spirit of your choice, such as gin or white rum. To make this non-alcoholic, leave out the booze.
There are plenty of candy corn jello shot recipes on the Internet, but this one, which uses cake-flavored or vanilla-flavored vodka and sweetened condensed milk, comes closest to replicating the flavor of the ubiquitous tri-colored Halloween candy.
You can never go wrong with longtime favorites, especially those with hair-raising names
Named more for its purported hangover-curing powers than an ability to raise the dead, this bright botanical cocktail of gin, white aperitif wine, Cointreau, lemon juice, and absinthe will be a welcome addition to any treat-heavy Halloween party menu.
Every time the Zombie appears on a tiki cocktail menu, it's usually accompanied with a warning that one must not consume more than two. Its dangerous combination of potency and quaffability — due to its mix of three rums, anise liqueur, grenadine, lime juice, and the tropical-flavored liqueur falernum — make it oh-so easy to overindulge.
If you're short on Halloween party prep time, throw together this traditional highball cocktail. All you need is a dark rum, lime juice, and ginger beer. But for a lighter version, switch out the ginger beer for ginger ale.
The classic Manhattan is made delightfully gruesome with a blood-dripping rim. This striking cocktail flourish is created either by reducing the liquid from maraschino cherries or mixing Karo syrup with red food coloring. Not to fear, it won't over-sweeten the classic whiskey cocktail.
The introduction of chilled champagne to absinthe activates ghostly whispers of white in the mixture. The result in the cocktail glass is a beautiful and eerie milky green, which is perfect for toasting the haunting holiday.
Horror story tipples
Be afraid, be very afraid of how terrifyingly delicious these classic horror-story-inspired drinks are
Batch up a punch bowl's worth of this vanilla blackberry champagne cocktail — named after the ultimate bridezilla — as a welcome cocktail for your Halloween party. The Champagne here can be switched out for more affordable options such as prosecco or any budget-friendly sparkling wine.
You'll lose your head over this "autumn margarita" made with tequila, pomegranate juice, honey, cinnamon, and orange bitters, and garnished with a smoldering rosemary sprig. If you prefer, you could also trade mezcal for the tequila and cranberry juice for the pomegranate.
This hauntingly beautiful pisco sour gets its name from the wisps of dry ice, which resemble the long, flowing gown worn by the wailing ghost of Mexican folklore. The cocktail's taste won't be diminished if you don't use dry ice, but you'll want that spooky effect for an impactful presentation.
Warning: These gruesome cocktail garnishes are not for the faint of heart
This Spanish Coffee cocktail made with vanilla-infused brandy, coffee liqueur, Grand Marnier, and espresso takes a dark turn. Crushed Oreo cookies (minus the creamy center) are sprinkled across its whipped cream surface to resemble a freshly dug grave. But the tiny shovel, which you can pick up on Amazon or a craft store, is what makes it extra creepy.
One martini with eyes staring back at you on the rim of your cocktail glass is ghoulish enough as it is, but what about a whole Halloween punch bowl filled with floating eyes? They're actually delicious garnishes crafted with lychees and blueberries that complement the lychee matcha and blood orange cocktail. For super creepy ice cubes, place the "eyeballs" in ice trays and fill with coconut water.
Sure, making the shrunken heads for this recipe takes longer than throwing together the apple cider and spiced rum punch bowl cocktail itself. But it's all worth it just to hear your guests gasp at the little floating faces smiling up at them. For a mocktail version, simply leave out the rum.
The killer move with this super dry gin martini recipe, which makes four drinks, is stabbing a pickled baby red beet with a cocktail skewer and letting it drip into the cocktail. Imagine how macabre a toast with that faux-gory detail would look.
Even those suffering from arachnophobia won't be able to resist this creamy White Russian cocktail, which features a waiting spider near its spiderweb. To set this scene, grab a black gel icing tube and toothpicks to draw the web on the cocktail's surface and a fake spider to place on the cocktail glass's rim.
More Halloween fun
Check out these spooky-licious Yummly articles for more scary good recipes.