These brilliant fall cocktails highlight the best flavors of the season! Apple, pear, cranberry, cinnamon, and nutmeg: these drinks are positively cozy.
Once there’s a chill in the air: it’s time. Time for fall drinks! Autumn brings with it some of the most beautiful flavors: fruits like apples, pears, and cranberries, and spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. There’s no better time to be mixing these up into tasty drinks!
Here are the best fall cocktails to make for this season! There’s a brilliant two-toned fall sangria, laden with cinnamon-spiced fruit, red wine and sparkling cider. Cozy up to a glass of mulled cider, or mix cranberry and champagne for a festive bubbly glass. There’s something for everyone…and you’re going to want to taste them all!
And now…the top fall cocktails to try this season!
Looking for a fall cocktail that exudes all the cozy vibes? Try this apple cider cocktail! Cider pairs perfectly with sweet and spicy bourbon in this sophisticated drink. It’s got a hint of lemon and a surprise ingredient that rounds out the flavors into a meld that’s intriguing, complex and highly drinkable.
Here’s a festive fall cocktail: the apple cider mule! Everyone loves a classic Moscow Mule, and this seasonal spin is even more fun. It pairs apples and ginger in a bubbly, effervescent mix that looks perfectly cozy nestled in a copper mug. Why stop drinking the mule when fall hits? This autumnal variation is ideal for when the temps start to drop.
Here’s another cozy fall cocktail: hot buttered rum! Even just saying the name makes you warm inside. This historic drink has been around for centuries. Modern takes on it get a little wacky, so we’ve gone back to its roots to bring you the “real” way to make it. This version is subtly sweet, cozy-spiced with cinnamon and allspice, and spirit-forward with boozy dark rum. Oh: and there’s just enough butter to make it lightly creamy. It’s enough to warm your toes…and your soul.
Here’s a fall cocktail for gray days and chilly evenings by the fire: spiked apple cider! Not only will it lift your spirits, it makes your kitchen smell like a candle shop. Everyone gathers around the pot, cupping their hands around the warm mugs. Spike it with rum and it's warming and cozy.
Our favorite fall cocktail: apple cider sangria! When the air gets a chill and you start pulling on chunky knit sweaters, you don’t have to stop drinking sangria! Classic red sangria and white sangria are usually reserved for summer months. But this fall sangria pairs the flavors of fall (apple and cinnamon) with dry red wine to make a Spanish-style autumnal spin on this drink. It's warm, cozy, and fall-spiced.
Meet a favorite fall cocktail: the Cranberry Margarita! This bright red drink is absolutely stunning to look at, and the sweet tart flavor is crisp and refreshing. It’s got all the character of the classic margarita, but a beautiful new look and nuance to the flavor.
Looking for a cozy fall cocktail for a brunch or a lazy afternoon? Try an apple cider mimosa! This spin on the traditional mimosa is all fall: crisp, bubbly and apple forward. The best part? The cinnamon sugar rim on the glass gives a hint of spice and sweetness to each sip. These drinks are great for fall parties of all kinds or just sipping with a few friends.
This fall cocktail is part drink, part dessert, and 100 percent irresistible! This Amaretto Coffee has one of those flavor combinations that’s years beyond the sum of its parts. The amaretto brings a nuttiness and spice to the coffee that’s hard to quantify in words. Topped with frothy whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon, it’s truly to die for.
Need a warming drink for cold weather? Try the Hot Toddy! The hot toddy is something altogether different than spiced mulled cider and fancy cocktails: it's less for entertaining and more for sipping by the fire. Pour boiling water over a shot of bourbon, then top off with lemon and spices. It’s bourbon forward and perfect for sipping on chilly evenings.
Here's a fantastic fall cocktail that's perfect for entertaining! This cranberry champagne cocktail has a brilliant color and cozy vibe, and the flavor is tart and refreshing. While it's most suitable during fall and winter, you can serve it any time of the year, too! It uses only a few simple ingredients: cranberry juice (make sure to find 100% juice), Cointreau, and champagne.
Mulled wine is red wine that’s been infused with spices like cinnamon and cloves, and it’s always served warm. It’s been popular in Europe for centuries and is one of the coziest fall cocktails. This recipe features cinnamon, allspice, and orange, but you can step it up with fancy flavors like anise, nutmeg, vanilla, and more.
Last up, a creamy fall cocktail you can drink in any season: milk punch! It's served cold, but the spices are delightfully cozy. This tasty drink is one of the oldest cocktails there is, featuring brandy, bourbon, milk and sugar. It’s a popular brunch drink in New Orleans and in the American South. And the concept sounds baffling until you try it. Then you realize the genius of it: the creamy, cool milk against the spice of the brandy and the nuance of vanilla extract and fresh nutmeg.
More autumn cocktails
We’ve got cocktails for every season! In the summer, these Summer Cocktails are where it’s at. If you need more autumnal inspo, here are a few more favorites that could pass as fall cocktails:
Manhattan Cocktail Add style to your evening with this easy classic whiskey cocktail made with just three ingredients.
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.