These decadent drinks can replace dessert, or complement it.

If you haven't imbibed the fine indulgence that is a dessert cocktail, it's time to pick up that shaker and a long bar spoon. Whether hot or cold, these cocktails can deliver that dose of sweetness you're craving, while also getting you in the spirit for celebrating. They can be dessert—or can accompany dessert.

maple irish coffee

And we're not just talking about sweet riffs on the martini. Think cookies and cake, but in a cup with your favorite liquor—or ingredients like honey, butter, chocolate, star anise, or nutmeg. Some dessert cocktails even offer a caffeinated lift typically reserved for post-dinner coffee.

white russian drinks on countertop

White Russian

A White Russian is a decadent drink. You can tone it down by using whole milk, or go for the gold with cream. It's so easy to make, and it's always a party hit.

candy-cane hot cocoa and honey-buttered hot toddy

Honey-Buttered Hot Toddy

This toasty winter cocktail is hygge in a cup. Bring together butter, honey, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla with whiskey, triple sec, and lemon, and you'll linger by the fireplace just a little longer.



Serve this creamy, minty drink with a little piece of chocolate on the side, even though it already calls for creme de cacao and grated chocolate. (You can never have too much chocolate.)


White Out

Jamaican or Angostura bitters add the finishing touch to this creative combination of gin, cream, creme de cacao, nutmeg, and star anise. Pour into a chilled brandy glass for a delicious nightcap.

Coffee Coquito

Coffee Coquito

With three kinds of milk, rum, and espresso, cinnamon, and nutmeg: the only thing this coffee drink isn't short on is flavor. 

Brandy Alexander, 6100_021111_brandy_alexander_hd

Brandy Alexander

It's a strong dessert cocktail and not for the faint of heart, but the heavy cream tempers the alcohol in this classic. All you need is brandy, cacao, heavy cream, and nutmeg. Swap in Kahlua for dark cacao if you don't have it.


Champagne Gelee Cocktail

This beauty is less cocktail and more dessert, but we're here for the sweet ride. You'll essentially be making a chilled gelatin dessert out of grape juice, Champagne or sparkling wine, and St-Germain liqueur, then sprinkling with pomegranate seeds for a tannic finish.


Champagne-and-Orange Granita Cocktail

Indulge in a grown-up version of an orange pop, Italian-style. It's simple to make, with a final pour of Champagne and St-Germain liqueur over citrusy granita.


Spiked Jones

Reminiscent of hot cocoa, this decadent concoction is a winter delight that brings coffee, Kahlua, chocolate, cream, milk, and sugar together. Don't forget the whipped cream!

maple irish coffee

Maple Irish Coffee

Anyone can add a shot of whiskey to coffee, but our recipe brings a creamy vanilla taste and a touch of maple syrup sweetness to a classic beverage. Cocoa powder warms the drink's flavor, while the whiskey sharpens it.

Honey Syllabub

Honey Syllabub

We didn't know we needed this heavenly British drink-dessert hyrbid until we tasted it. Aromatic bay leaf and nutmeg meld with cream, egg, sugar and mead (or dessert wine like Sauternes, if you prefer). The result is both uniquely interesting and infinitely comforting.


Candy Cane Cocktail

It's never too late to recreate the holidays in your kitchen—this time, for one. Shake up vodka, crème de menthe, cranberry juice, and ice, then add to a glass rimmed with crushed candy canes. 

Raspberry cocktail

Raspberry Chocolate Kiss Cocktail

Serve this dessert cocktail on Valentine's Day, or any day you fancy a drink that starts with a chocolate-cookie-coated rim. The mint doesn't overpower, since it's infused into the simple syrup, and muddled raspberries and cranberry juice mingle with vodka so nicely.

hot chocolate white russian

Mocha Russian

If you love a White Russian, try this delicious variation and make it mocha. A little espresso powder and cocoa will perk up your day, and the swirl of whipped cream on top is just the right indulgence. 


Stout Eggnog

Stout beer and dark rum lend their warm heartiness to a rich eggnog, served as a punch or in individual mugs. Crown your creations with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.


Be the first to comment!