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Here are the secrets to making a limoncello spritz, a delightful Italian cocktail bursting with sunshine lemon flavor and a delightful fizz. It’s easy to prepare and guaranteed to transport you to a carefree summer state of mind.

Limoncello spritz in stemmed glass with mint.
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Here’s an Italian cocktail that’s bubbly and flavored with pure lemon: the Limoncello Spritz! Limoncello is a liqueur that’s often sipped for after-dinner shots, but this ultra strong lemon elixir shines in mixed drinks, too.

Why we love this recipe: This spin on the popular Aperol spritz is full of bright lemon flavor from the limoncello. As two cocktail experts and certified mixologists, we think it’s even better than the original! It’s bubbly and effervescent, with a searing citrus bite.

What’s a spritz?

The spritz is a drink invented in Italy that combines three ingredients: liqueur, sparkling wine (usually Prosecco) and soda water. You can make a spritz of any type using these two ingredients and any mixer of your choosing. The basic spritz ratio is 3 parts sparkling wine, 2 parts liqueur, 1 part soda water.

Ingredients in a limoncello spritz

The limoncello spritz is a spin on the popular Aperol spritz, an Italian aperitif. While the spritz concept has been around for hundreds of years, it wasn’t until the 1950’s that the Aperol spritz took the form it has today. The limoncello spritz just substitutes limoncello for Aperol, an Italian amaro.

Spritzes are trending in popularity, so it’s not a surprise that this sunny spin is a top choice when it comes to summer cocktails. Here’s what you need to make a limoncello spritz:

  • Limoncello: A sweet, lemon-flavored liqueur originating from southern Italy.
  • Prosecco: A sparkling white wine from Italy’s Veneto region, known for its delicate flavor and light bubbles. You can use any type of champagne if desired.
  • Soda water: Use club soda or unflavored sparkling water (we use our SodaStream to make it at home). Avoid tonic water, since it is flavored with quinine and lightly sweetened.

🍾 Tip: A 750 ml bottle of Prosecco is 25 ounces, enough for 8 drinks. If you’re making 2 drinks, a mini bottle is perfect—it holds 187 mL or about 6 ounces!

How to make a limoncello spritz

The limoncello spritz is an incredibly easy to make drink! The spritz requires no cocktail shaker or juicing of citrus: you can build the drink it right in the glass. This makes it a great choice for entertaining, especially in the summer. Here are the basic steps for how to make a limoncello spritz:

Step 1: Add the limoncello to a glass with ice. Add Prosecco and soda water.

Step 1: Stir 2 oz limoncello in a glass with ice to make it cold. Add 3 oz Prosecco and 1 oz soda water.

Step 2: Garnish with mint and serve the limoncello spritz.

Step 2: Garnish with fresh mint and serve.

More about limoncello

If you’ve ever visited Italy, you know limoncello. But what actually is it this ultra strong yellow liquid?

  • Limoncello is an Italian lemon liqueur made by infusing lemon peels into vodka or other neutral spirits. It’s got a searing, straightforward lemon flavor and is the second most popular liqueur in Italy after Campari. You can get it everywhere in Italy, and it’s often served as shots after a big meal.
  • How much does limoncello cost? Limoncello has become very popular in the US, so you should be able to find it easily at your local liquor store. It costs about $20.
  • What else can limoncello be used for? The most popular use for limoncello is drinking it as shots, but it’s equally as good in cocktails! Try it in a Limoncello Mojito with lime and rum, or a Limoncello Martini with vodka and lemon juice.

Step it up: try clear ice!

Want to take your limoncello spritz to the next level? Try making clear ice! This type of ice is crystal clear and looks like what you’d get at a fancy bar. But you can make it at home! All you need is a cooler and 24 hours. Go to How to Make Clear Ice.

Limoncello spritz in stemmed glass with mint.

Other spritz recipes

The spritz is one of the most refreshing cocktails of all time! There are lots of different styles of spritz recipes to try after you try this limoncello spritz:

More lemon cocktails

Lemon flavored cocktails are some of the most refreshing alcoholic drinks! They’ve earned a place in our hearts for their forward citrusy flavor. Here are a few more lemon cocktails if you love limoncello:

Frequently asked questions

What is a Limoncello Spritz?

This refreshing Italian cocktail is a delightful blend of limoncello, prosecco, and soda water. It’s a close cousin to the Aperol Spritz, but with a brighter lemon flavor.

Is a Limoncello Spritz strong?

Compared to some cocktails, it’s on the lighter side. The prosecco has a lower alcohol content than some spirits, and the limoncello typically has less alcohol than rum or vodka. However, always drink responsibly.

What’s the ideal ratio for a Limoncello Spritz?

The classic ratio is 3 parts prosecco, 2 parts limoncello, and 1 part soda water. Feel free to adjust these proportions to your taste preference.

Do I need a special glass for a Limoncello Spritz?

Not at all! A stemmed wine glass or a tumbler filled with ice works perfectly.

What are some fun garnishes for a Limoncello Spritz?

A lemon wedge is a classic and refreshing choice. You can also get creative with a sprig of fresh mint, a few raspberries, or even a thin slice of orange.

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Limoncello spritz

Limoncello Spritz


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5 from 1 review

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x

Description

Want a bubbly citrus cocktail? Try the limoncello spritz! Here are the secrets to making this delightful Italian cocktail, bursting with sunshine lemon flavor and a delightful fizz. It’s easy to prepare and guaranteed to transport you to a carefree summer state of mind.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) limoncello, chilled if possible
  • 3 ounces (6 tablespoons) Prosecco or other sparkling wine, chilled
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) soda water
  • Ice (try clear ice!)
  • For the garnish: mint, lemon rounds

Instructions

  1. Add the limoncello to a glass filled with ice and stir.
  2. Top with the sparkling wine and soda water. Add mint and serve. 
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Poured
  • Cuisine: Cocktails
  • Diet: Vegan

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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2 Comments

  1. Helen says:

    Loving your website for cocktail recipes! Do you have recommendations for limoncello? I’ve tried 2 that were very sweet —one from a local maker and one common store brand. I noticed you showed Luxardo in your photos ( beautiful label BTW), but I don’t know if I’ve ever seen that in my big box liquor stores. Thanks!






    1. Alex Overhiser says:

      We do like luxardo. Overall, I agree that they can be too sweet!