The Original Eggnog


When she published this recipe in her first book, Entertaining, Martha wrote that this eggnog was "so rich it needs no accompaniment." This original recipe is made with plenty of bourbon, cognac, dark rum, heavy cream, and a dozen eggs—good thing it serves a crowd.


  • 12 large eggs, separated

  • 1 ½ cups superfine sugar

  • 1 ½ quarts heavy cream

  • 1 quart whole milk

  • 3 cups bourbon, such as Maker's Mark

  • ½ cup dark rum, such as Mount Gay

  • 2 cups cognac, such as Rémy Martin Grand Cru

  • Freshly grated nutmeg, for serving


  1. In a very large bowl, beat egg yolks until thick and pale yellow. Gradually add sugar to yolks. With a wire whisk, beat in milk and 1 quart cream. Add bourbon, rum, and cognac, stirring constantly.

  2. Just before serving, beat egg whites until stiff. Fold into mixture. Whip remaining heavy cream until stiff and fold in. Sprinkle with nutmeg.

    original eggnog
    Alpha Smoot

Cook's Notes

This original recipe packs quite a punch, so feel free to scale down the alcohol amounts by a quarter to a half, if you like. If you’re concerned about the use of raw eggs, pasteurized eggs work in this recipe as well.

Related Articles