This fruity Halloween punch recipe looks spooky and impressive! It works for kids, or you can spike it for an alcoholic spin.
Here’s a spooky drink that’s over-the-top fun: Halloween Punch! This blood red cauldron magically bubbles and boils, releasing tendrils of smoke all over the room. If that’s not impressive, we’re not sure what is! On its own it’s a fruity Halloween punch for kids, but turn it into a Halloween alcoholic punch by adding aged rum. It’s so much fun, we wish it was Halloween every month so we’d have another excuse to pull it out!
What’s in this Halloween punch?
Give this Halloween Punch a taste, and there’s really nothing spooky about the flavor: it’s fruity and just sweet enough. This 3 ingredient drink relies on a special ingredient to keep it crisp and sweet tart. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Cranberry 100% juice blend: this blend of juices is available at most grocery stores, and typically blends grape, apple, and pear juice with cranberry juice. Make sure to look for “100% juice” or “no sugar added” on the label, which is key for the flavor.
- Apple juice or apple cider: apple cider is nice, as it adds an even tangier nuance
- Ginger ale: ginger ale has the most mild flavor. You could substitute with ginger beer if you like, for a spicier, stronger ginger bite!
- Dry ice: it’s optional, but it makes a great effect. Review the safety instructions below.
2 ways to make an alcoholic Halloween punch
This Halloween punch is great for kids without alcohol: but what’s better than a spiked punch? Here are a few ways to do it:
- Add aged rum directly to the punch bowl. Aged rum is our top choice for this drink! It blends the best flavor-wise, and the aging adds a sophistication with notes of vanilla and oak. You can also use white rum or dark rum.
- Or, spike the drink afterwards! The better way to make an alcoholic Halloween punch is to spike the drink after you ladle it out of the punch bowl. This makes it work for both kids and adults! The best ratio is 2 ounces rum to 8 ounces (1 cup) punch.
- Bourbon or vodka also work! Bourbon was our second favorite, as it melds nicely with the fruit flavors. Vodka is much more subtle.
Dry ice safety tips!
The best part about this Halloween Punch? Watching it bubble and boil with the dry ice! Everyone will be amazed as the smoke fills the table and spills out into the room. Our 4-year old was positively thrilled! However, there are a few very important notes about working with dry ice, especially if you’re with kids. Review the following safety tips in detail (or read more in our Dry Ice Handling article):
- DO NOT touch dry ice with bare skin! Dry ice is the solid form of carbon dioxide, which forms at temperatures below 110 degrees Fahrenheit. It can give you frostbite because it is so cold. Use gloves when handling it, and use tongs for dropping it into drinks. Holding it for more than 10 seconds is considered very dangerous.
- DO NOT drink dry ice! Tell your party guests not to drink the dry ice, especially kids! For this Halloween Punch, it’s easy to ladle out punch from the top of the bowl without even touching the dry ice. You can place small pieces in glasses for the adults, and the ice cube settles to the bottom of the drink and should disappear in about 5 minutes. You can technically take sips of the drink since the dry ice is in the bottom: just make sure not to let it slide to the top of the glass.
Where to find dry ice, and how to add it to drinks
It’s very safe to add dry ice to drinks once you know the safety precautions: and it’s the best party trick for kids! Here’s what to know about how to handle it once you bring it home. Remember to advise kids not to touch it, since they may want to reach out once they see it in your home. Here are the tips to follow:
- Dry ice is available at most grocery stores. It’s sold in large blocks. Here’s a store finder.
- Buy the dry ice 1 to 2 hours before you plan to serve. Dry ice does not last in the freezer, so you’ll need to use it as quick as possible. Once you get it home, place the plastic bag of dry ice in a cooler with the top off. Keep away from children and pets.
- Right before serving, drop the plastic bag on the ground to make large chunks. This is an easy way to break it up without touching it.
- With goggles and gloves, break it into 4 to 5 inch chunks with a screwdriver or ice pick. You’ll only need 2 large chunks for this drink, which makes it easy. What to do with leftovers? Make one of our other dry ice drinks, the Witches Brew or Vampire’s Kiss!
- Wrap the chunks in a towel and place in a cooler with the top off until serving. Remember not to place it into the freezer!
Other Halloween punch garnish ideas
Don’t want to bother with dry ice? Or want to make this Halloween punch even fancier? It’s fun to find some floating garnishes for the bowl. Here are some ideas (and please let us know your creative ideas, too!):
- Candy eyeballs
- Plastic spider rings
- Gummy worms
More Halloween drinks
Love parties for Halloween? Us too: in fact, it’s one of my favorite holidays! (Alex not so much.) Here are a few top Halloween cocktails to try:
- Grab a Witches Brew, a tasty bright green drink
- Go for the Vampire’s Kiss, blood red with a berry flavor
- Opt for the rum-based Zombie Cocktail
- Grab a Corpse Reviver or Death in the Afternoon, two classic cocktails with a ghoulish vibe
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 0 minutes
- Total Time: 5 minutes
- Yield: 24 servings 1x
This fruity Halloween punch looks spooky and impressive! It works for kids, or you can spike it for an alcoholic spin.
- 64 ounces cranberry 100% juice blend (with grape, apple, and pear)*
- 64 ounces apple juice or apple cider
- 2 liters ginger ale (or 1 liter ginger ale and 1 750 ml bottle aged rum**)
- 2 4-inch to 5-inch chunks dry ice*** (optional)
- Other garnish ideas: candy eyeballs, plastic spiders, gummy worms, etc.
- Make the punch: Chill the ingredients prior to serving. Add all ingredients to a punch bowl and stir. Garnish with dry ice (instructions below) or any of the optional garnishes. For the alcoholic punch variation, you can add the entire bottle of rum or make the spiked servings to order so the bowl works for kids and adults. Ladle out a 1 cup (8 ounce) serving of punch and add 1 to 2 ounces rum.
- Break the dry ice into 4-inch chunks (if using): Do this as close to the time you’ll be serving the drinks as possible, though you can buy the dry ice a few hours in advance. Start by dropping the plastic bag with the dry ice on the ground several times to allow it break into large chunks. Remember never to touch the dry ice with your bare hands! Put on goggles and gloves. Use a chisel to break the dry ice into smaller pieces using a screwdriver or ice pick. The ideal size is 4-inch to 5-inch chunks. Wrap the small chunks in a towel and place them in a cooler with the top off until you’re ready to serve the drinks. Do not place the dry ice in the freezer.
- Add the dry ice: Using tongs (do not touch the dry ice!), add 2 of the 4 to 5-inch chunks of dry ice to the punch bowl, which will sink to the bottom and immediately make a smoking effect. The smoking will last 5 to 10 minutes. Do not drink the dry ice! For kids, ladle out punch by skimming off the top. If you’d like you can ladle out a small chunk of dry ice into a glass for adults, but wait until the cube disappears before enjoying your drink (or you can take sips with the dry ice in the bottom). Review these Dry Ice Handling instructions.
*This blend of juices is available at most grocery stores: make sure it is 100% juice and not sweetened.
**Or, substitute white rum or dark rum. Bourbon or vodka also work, but rum works is best flavor-wise.
**Dry ice is available at many grocery stores and comes in a large block. Buy it a few hours before you plan to serve the drinks (it does not store in the freezer). Read more about Dry Ice Safety here and review the instructions in the post above.
- Category: Drink
- Method: Mixed
- Cuisine: Punch
- Diet: Vegan
Keywords: Halloween punch, Halloween alcoholic punch, Halloween punch recipes, Halloween punch for kids
Let us know if you have any questions!
After making the punch, how much rum is the appropriate amounts to use? I know it’s at my discretion, but how much do you use??
Hi! We have instructions in the recipe card: swap 1 liter of ginger ale for 1 bottle of rum.
Do you have a rum recommendation?
Would Appleton estate 12yo rum work?
Honestly any rum works great! That one would be lovely. We might save a nice rum for other cocktails and use something a little more pedestrian for a punch, but it’s up to you!
This seems like it would be a little on the weaker side as far as alcholic content goes. Have you found that not the case? And if you have, how would you recommend making it a bit stronger?
Hi! Yes you could double the alcohol for more of a cocktail strength drink — just be careful not to serve too large of glasses.
Hi! Thanks for the awesome recipe! Making it for our party this weekend—quick question: the recipe says to break the dry ice into two 4- or 5-inch pieces, but when it comes time to add the pieces to the punch bowl, it says to add the 1/2- to 1-inch pieces…can you clarify?
Great question! That was a typo. You should add 2 of the 4 to 5-inch chunks to the punch bowl. We’ve updated this — great catch! Hope you love it.