Want to take a gin and tonic and turn it into a Christmas cocktail? This Cranberry Gin Cocktail is a simple drink that's absolutely packed with holiday flavor. Plus, it has the perfect color scheme for Christmas celebrations!
'Tis the season for Christmas cocktails! And all things cranberry. Combine the two together and you have a recipe for the perfect December evening.
Cranberry gin cocktails by the fire while you wrap gifts, decorate the tree, or watch Christmas movies. It's nights like these that make me truly love the holiday season.
Of course, cranberry gin cocktails are also perfect for serving at holiday parties.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
This drink is SO easy to make! Once you've made the cranberry simple syrup, it should stay good in your fridge for about a month, so whenever you get a craving, just pull out your cocktail shaker and mix one of these babies up in under 5 minutes.
If you're a fan of gin drinks and love all things cranberry, this will quickly become a favorite cocktail for you.
If you're not a fan of tonic water, you can replace it with soda water and your cocktail will be just as delicious!
Of course, you're also going to love the pretty color of this drink. And once you had a lime wedge garnish, cranberry gin cocktails are vibrantly red and green and will fit wonderfully into your Christmas color scheme.
The ingredients of this cocktail are quite simple as it's technically a cranberry gin and tonic. Or if you replace the tonic water with soda water, it's a cranberry gin and soda. Either way, it's easy!
Here's what you need:
- Cranberry Simple Syrup
- Lime Juice
- Tonic Water (or Soda Water)
I also highly recommend garnishing the cocktails with sugared cranberries (here's a great tutorial for making them) and lime wedges.
How to Make Cranberry Gin Cocktails
There's nothing complicated about making these cocktails. The toughest part is making the cranberry simple syrup, but this can be done in advance and stored in your fridge until you're ready to use it.
The syrup is very easy to make and consists of just simmering together water, sugar, and fresh cranberries. See my full tutorial here.
If you prefer to purchase cranberry simple syrup instead, you certainly can. Here's a great option.
Now that you've made or obtained your syrup, it's time to get shaking!
Simply put cranberry syrup, gin, and lime juice in an ice-filled shaker and shake well.
Make sure you have your sugared cranberry garnish ready to go if you're using one.
I like to put the cranberries on skewers so they retain their sugar coating. If you drop them right into the drink, it's like the sugar will dissolve off.
Pour the drink into an ice-filled glass and top off with the tonic water.
Add the cranberry garnish and serve with lots of lime wedges.
And take a sip of your gorgeous Christmas cocktail while marveling at the fact that it's both totally festive and incredibly refreshing.
How to Make Big Batch Cocktail
If you're having a party and would rather not stand at the counter making these cranberry gin cocktails one at a time, you can easily make it a big batch cocktail by mixing it in a pitcher.
To serve 8, I recommend mixing: 2 ½ cups gin, 1 ½ cups cranberry simple syrup, and ½ cup lime juice. Add 3 cups of tonic water just before serving.
Or you can nix the adding the tonic water and have a bottle of tonic water and a bottle of soda water on the side, allowing guests to add the sparkler of their choice after they pour their drink.
What if I Don't Like Gin?
Considering this is a cranberry gin cocktail, something tells me you won't likely be reading this post if you don't like gin... But if gin isn't your favorite or if you're serving this drink to someone who isn't a fan, you can easily replace the gin with vodka.
Whether you're enjoying this as a cranberry gin and tonic or a cranberry vodka soda, it will be absolutely delicious!
It seems that a lot of Christmas cocktails are unnecessarily complicated with long lists of ingredients or liquors that aren't common. I love that this one is so simple.
Yes, you have to make a cranberry simple syrup, but once you make it, you're going to realize you want a jar of it in your fridge all holiday season long!
More Christmas Cocktail Recipes
If you're looking for drinks to help you celebrate the holidays all season long, I've got you covered! Lots of my drinks involve cranberry, but I also have a whole host of other flavors. Here are some of my favorites:
- Cranberry Jalapeño Margaritas
- Holiday Spiced Honeycrisp Apple Cocktail
- Cranberry Pomegranate Sparkler
- Cinnamon Pear Sangria
- Cranberry Mojitos
- Pomegranate Rosemary Gin Sparkler
- Hot Spiced Cranberry Cocktail
- Pear Old Cubans
- Sugar Cookie Martinis
- Tropical Cranberry Sangria
- Apple Cider Bourbon Slush
- Candy Cane Jello Shots (SO fun for parties!)
- Grinch Cocktails (from Amanda's Cookin')
Seriously, you could make your own advent calendar for all of December with all the Christmas cocktails I have!
Also, isn't that the best idea ever?
Though I've been making cranberry simple syrup for years, this is the first cranberry gin cocktail I've made with it and it's already become a holiday staple in my house.
I hope it joins the regular holiday cocktail rotation at your house, too!
What Christmas cocktail do you make the most at your house?
Cranberry Gin Cocktail
- 2 ½ oz. gin
- 1 ½ oz. cranberry simple syrup
- ½ oz. lime juice
- 3 oz. tonic water (or soda water)
- Sugared cranberries and lime wedges, optional
- Put gin, cranberry simple syrup, and lime juice into an ice-filled shaker and shake well.
- Pour drink into ice-filled glass and top off with tonic water. If you prefer to use soda water, you can.
- Garnish with sugared cranberries and lime wedge, if desired.
- To make a big batch cocktail that serves 8, mix together in a large pitcher: 2 ½ cups gin, 1 ½ cups cranberry simple syrup, and ½ cup lime juice. Add 3 cups of tonic water just before serving (or keep on the side for party guests to add themselves).
- If you prefer to purchase cranberry simple syrup, here is a good option.
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