10 Traditional Christmas Cocktails to Keep the Season Bright

  • 01 of 11

    Get a Taste of Christmas Tradition

    Rum Holiday Eggnog
    Eggnog, wassail, and the Tom and Jerry... Enjoy a little Christmas tradition, cocktail style. jeff giniewicz/E+/Getty Images

    Christmas cocktails abound: there are thousands of recipes to choose from and each year we create new ones that are fun to explore, taste, and share with family and friends.

    However, Christmas is also steeped in tradition and there are many times when we just want to recreate a favorite memory or reintroduce a sense of the simpler days. When it comes to cocktails, these are the recipes that are true to tradition.

    Each of these recipes has a legacy spanning years. Eggnog, wassail, and even the Tom...MORE & Jerry have survived over a century of holiday parties and continue to exude the spirit of Christmas. They could even be considered our inheritance in the world of holiday drinks.

    While you may not mix them up every year, it is always fun to remind ourselves of the good times we had while sharing them with family and friends.

    Explore More Holiday Cocktails...

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  • 02 of 11


    Homemade Eggnog
    If you love eggnog, try this homemade eggnog for a traditional Christmas cocktail. Jim Jurica/E+/Getty Images

    Get a taste of real, homemade eggnog.

    Few drinks are as iconic as Eggnog when December rolls around and the great news is that there are many ways to make it.

    While this recipe is a basic, made-from-scratch version to serve a crowd, The Eggnog Collection has a number of easier recipes, some of which require only eggs or store-bought eggnog.

    Homemade Eggnog recipe...

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  • 03 of 11


    Brandy and sherry in a traditional holiday Wassail.
    Brandy and sherry in a traditional holiday Wassail. Helene Toresdotter/Nordic Photos/Getty Images

    Sing-along time: "Here we come a-wassailing among the leaves so green..."

    Christmas tradition once included a visit to the neighbors' houses, complete with caroling and, as one popular song suggests, a lot of Wassail. It was a fun time for all who wanted to share the holiday spirit with family, friends, and neighbors, and we have disconnected from that in our modern culture.

    That takes nothing away from the greatness of the drink itself and there are a number of ways to make this traditional...MORE punch. From this brandy and sherry recipe, to one with rum and beer, there is a wassail recipe for everyone.

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  • 04 of 11

    Hot Buttered Rum

    Hot Buttered Rum - Popular Warm Rum Cocktail Recipe
    Smooth, creamy, and comforting, the Hot Buttered Rum is a popular cocktail for those cold nights. Richard Jung / Photolibrary / Getty Images

    Warm, soothing comfort in a buttery mug.

    The Hot Buttered Rum has to come to mind when we talk about comforting drinks during the holidays. It is warm and spicy, and buttery smooth and there's rum, so it is very hard to resist.

    It's a tradition you can enjoy on your own or with a few close friends and the recipe is unbelievably simple. You can even take one evening to make up a large batch of the butter batter and have it on hand for a quick drink for days to come.

    Hot Buttered Rum recipe...

    Rum...MORE really not your thing? Try this Hot Buttered Whiskey recipe instead. It has all of the great flavors, just with a little of your favorite whiskey.

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  • 05 of 11

    Tom and Jerry

    Classic Tom and Jerry Holiday Cocktail
    A holiday classic, you will find steaming mugs of Tom and Jerry throughout the Christmas season. James And James / Stockbyte / Getty Images

    Warm milk is great. Add a little brandy and rum and it's even better.

    There are still bars out there that carry on the tradition of mixing up a batch of Tom and Jerry on a chilly winter night. It is the perfect social drink and is fun to share while reuniting with friends over the holiday trip home.

    In true tradition, and just like Eggnog, it does require raw egg. Some people have an issue with this, but one taste of this warm milk punch should make you forget all of that.

    Tradition is tradition...MORE and few have lasted as long as this one.

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  • 06 of 11

    Hot Toddy

    Classic Hot Toddy Recipe
    Always a favorite in the winter, the Hot Toddy is so easy and you can make it with most things already in the kitchen. Susie Cushner/Photolibrary/Getty Images

    Enjoy the warm, soothing taste of the iconic Hot Toddy.

    Right up there with Eggnog, few recipes are as easy or iconic as the Hot Toddy and this is one that everyone really will love.

    Whiskey, rum, or brandy with hot tea, a little lemon and honey... that is all you need to make this basic, comforting winter drink. It's probably all right there in your kitchen right now so there is no excuse not to enjoy this holiday favorite.

    Easy Hot Toddy recipe...

    As demonstrated in The Hot Toddy Collection, this...MORE recipe also begs for experimentation, so have fun with it. 

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  • 07 of 11

    Mulled Wine

    Mulled Wine
    Always a favorite for the holidays, Mulled Wine is a tradition that is worthy of keeping. Alexey Ivanov/Vetta/Getty Images

    The coziest way to enjoy your holiday wine.

    Cozy is the perfect description of Mulled Wine. This is the perfect drink to pull together after a day on the slopes or anytime when your group needs a little comfort while sitting by the fire.

    A bottle of red wine, a hint of brandy, and some holiday spices will quickly fill your home with the Christmas spirit of days gone by.

    Mulled Wine recipe...

    Looking for a slightly modern twist? Try this Mulled Pomegranate Warmer recipe that replaces the brandy with...MORE PAMA liqueur. It's delicious!

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  • 08 of 11


    Smorgas Chef's Glogg Warm Winter Cocktail
    Glogg is a traditional Scandinavian drink that is a lot like Mulled Wine and it is just as fantastic. Photo Courtesy: © Smorgas Chef

    Filled with booze and wine, this aromatic punch is an old favorite.

    A Christmas tradition in Scandinavian countries, Glogg is similar to Mulled Wine and Wassail, it just has a few twists. Most notably, cardamom pods are added to the spice mix and almonds and raisins are used as a garnish.

    This particular Glogg recipe mixes either spiced rum or brandy with red wine, a touch of vodka and a whole host of fresh, seasonal spices. It is a flavorful warm punch and one that your guests will be delighted...MORE with.

    Keep a bowl of Glogg warming throughout the day and allow its aroma to fill your home.

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  • 09 of 11

    Brandy Alexander

    Brandy Alexander Cocktail
    The Brandy Alexander has long been a favorite cocktail and this creamy brandy mix makes an excellent nightcap. Rob Lawson / Photolibrary / Getty Images

    Simple, delicious, and a fantastic Christmas nightcap.

    We have to get away from the punches for a minute to share a creamy delight that should tickle everyone's palate at least once this season.

    It is the Brandy Alexander and there are few drinks as satisfying as this after a long day of doing whatever holiday event you've been busy with. The mix is simple - brandy, cacao, and cream - and it comes together so perfectly that you would think it is more complicated than it is.

    As a classic holiday...MORE nightcap, few drinks will ever beat the Alexander.

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  • 10 of 11

    English Christmas Punch

    English Christmas Punch
    Served warm, this English Christmas Punch is a great addition to any holiday party. Fotosearch / Getty Images

    Brew a bit of tea for this rum and wine punch.

    Another warm punch, this recipe is very similar to the rest and can quickly become your own holiday tradition. The mix includes dark rum and red wine with tea and citrus to brighten things up.

    It's a fantastic taste to share, easy to mix up, and worthy of any holiday party you may be hosting.

    Do you like to play with fire? The English Christmas Punch can also be lit up to add a little flare to the party. Just be sure to keep it away from the tree!

    Englis...MOREh Christmas Punch recipe...

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  • 11 of 11


    Poinsettia Champagne Cocktail
    Easy, refreshing, and one of the best Champagne cocktails for parties of any size, the Poinsettia is a true classic. Steven Morris Photography / Photolibrary / Getty Images

    Add a touch of bubbly to the holiday party.

    Holidays are about celebrating and sometimes you have to bring out the bubbly and do it up in style. That is where the Poinsettia comes in and few sparkling drinks have stood the test of time like this one.

    The recipe requires just three ingredients and it is a shining star within the holiday traditions that can be memorable for years.

    Poinsettia recipe...

    Switch up your Poinsettia with this Pomegranate Poinsettia recipe. The two drinks would be a perfect...MORE pairing.

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