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This creamy Peppermint White Russian warms you from the inside out! This spin on the classic has a fresh, minty finish to each sip.

Peppermint White Russian

Looking for a stunning wintery cocktail that’s sweet and creamy? Try this Peppermint White Russian! In fact, this spin on the classic might be even more fun than the original. It’s got a bright, minty finish that melds into the Kahlua and cream perfectly. It’s fast and easy to swirl together in a lowball glass, and it’s a total crowd pleaser. Who could resist it?

What’s in a Peppermint White Russian?

The White Russian is a classic cocktail made with vodka, heavy cream, and coffee liqueur that was invented in the 1950’s. It’s a spin-off on another classic cocktail, the Black Russian, invented in 1949 that pairs the simply combination of vodka and Kahlua. You might know this drink from the 1998 movie The Big Lebowski, but it’s got much longer history.

The Peppermint White Russian simply adds peppermint schnapps to this classic recipe to add a minty finish to each sip. It mellows out the flavors into an even more interesting balance, in our opinion! Here’s what you’ll need:

Important: 100 proof schnapps

There are a few types of peppermint schnapps that you’ll find at stores and online: 30 proof (15% ABV), 60 proof (30% ABV), and 100 proof (50% ABV). As you might guess, 100 proof is very strong. If the bottle says 100 proof, skip the quantity in the recipe and add it to taste!

Peppermint Schnapps

How sweet is this drink?

The White Russian is a notoriously sweet drink, because of the Kahlua. This coffee liqueur adds a hefty dose of sugar to the drink! Tia Maria is a more sophisticated version of the coffee liqueur, and it makes a slightly more balanced drink. You could consider this for a classier spin here.

The peppermint schnapps also adds sweetness, but interestingly the minty flavor helps to balance out the sweetness. In our opinion, the Peppermint White Russian tastes more balanced than the classic, but it’s still a pretty sweet drink.

Using milk vs cream

Want to make a lighter version of this Peppermint White Russian recipe? Use 2% milk or whole milk. Here are the pros and cons to using milk instead of cream:

  • Con: Milk is not nearly as tasty as with cream.
  • Pro: It makes this cocktail easier to drink since it’s not as rich, and reduces the calories. We tend to like it with milk for a lighter flavor.
Peppermint White Russian

How to make a Peppermint White Russian

The best part about a Peppermint White Russian? It’s so easy to make! You can build it right in the glass: no need to whip out a cocktail shaker or mixing glass. That makes it perfect for winter entertaining! Here’s how to make it:

  • Add the vodka, Kahlua and peppermint schnapps to a lowball glass. Then pour in the cream.
  • Stir gently to get the swirl effect. Stir the drink right away and it will turn off-white. It’s more fun to get the swirl effect! Stir it gently just a few times, and the cream will swirl in a beautiful pattern.
  • To step it up: use clear ice! Clear ice is crystal clear, instead of cloudy like normal ice. Cut it into large shapes to make the drink look like it came from an upscale bar! It’s easy to make: go to How to Make Clear Ice.

More peppermint drinks

Love peppermint? Outside of the Peppermint White Russian, here are a few more minty drinks that work as holiday cocktails and beyond:

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Peppermint White Russian

Peppermint White Russian

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x


This creamy Peppermint White Russian warms you from the inside out! This spin on the classic has a fresh, minty finish to each sip.


  • ½ ounce 30 proof or 60 proof* peppermint schnapps
  • 1 ½ ounces** vodka
  • 1 ounce Kahlua (or other coffee liqueur like Tia Maria)
  • 1 ounce heavy cream (or whole or 2% milk)


  1. Add the peppermint schnapps, vodka and Kahlua to a low ball glass. Fill it with ice.
    Top with the cream or milk. Stir until cold (or stir just a bit to get the swirl effect).


*Check the bottle before you make this drink! If using 100 proof (50% ABV) schnapps, use half the quantity and customize to taste.

**To convert to ounces, 1 ounce = 2 tablespoons

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktails
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: Peppermint White Russian

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you’ll want to make again and again.

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