After a long week of work, stress and responsibilities, it’s time to kick back with a pile of bacon and a bottomless pitcher of pre-noon cocktails. Here, the 15 best brunch cocktails to order or mix up at home, from classic staples to special signatures.
The 15 Best Brunch Cocktails
A simple mix of Champagne and orange juice, the Mimosa is darn near perfect. While many brunch spots will serve you an overly juiced version, home bartenders have the opportunity to achieve reach brunch nirvana by upping the ratio of Champagne to OJ and using ultra-fresh juice.
The Mimosa’s sweeter but equally easy cousin, the Bellini calls for peach purée and a healthy dose of Prosecco. It’s rosy hue is as pretty as the Italian painting that inspired it.
The beauty of the Bloody is it’s endlessly customizable. You can’t go wrong with a classic celery stick-garnished Bloody Mary, made with vodka, horseradish, tomato and lemon juice, Worcestershire and hot sauce. But why stop there? Try the tequila-based Bloody Maria; the briny, Clamato-based Bloody Caesar; or our green, sushi-inspired Maki Mary. Or, let everyone decide for themselves by setting up a Bloody Mary bar.
Forgo the awkwardness of having to order this vodka, sloe gin and orange juice drink at the bar by making it at home. You’ll be rewarded with a cocktail that is more complex than the Screwdriver and edgier than the sweet Fuzzy Navel.
If you’re bored with American brunch staples, take a page out of England’s book with their favorite afternoon sipper: The Pimm’s Cup. The fruity and herbal, gin-based Pimm’s No. 1 liqueur marries beautifully with fizzy lemon-lime soda, a bounty of fresh mint and and a delightful medley of cucumbers, strawberries and citrus. It’s perfect in a pitcher and tastes like a springtime garden in a glass.
Pimm’s No. 1
fresh lemon juice
If you’re one of those people who refuses to speak before you’ve had your morning coffee, this cocktail is for you. It’s all the caffeinated bliss you love with an added kick from a shot of Irish whiskey. If your coffee cravings lean more towards sweeter lattés, try our bourbon-spiked Pumpkin Spice Latté, or our Cognac-spiked Gingerbread Latté.
You haven’t lived until you’ve had bottomless Sangria brunch. A glass of red wine might be a little heavy for the morning, but throw in some fresh fruit and brandy, and you’ve got a sweet, easy-drinking pitcherful of joy. Don’t limit yourself to classic red—experiment with a rainbow of Sangrias from this White Sherry Sangria to this Watermelon Rosé Sangria.
Berries and bubbly are a match made in cocktail heaven, and the Kir Royale proves it. For a darker, richer alternative to a Mimosa or Bellini, simply mix crème de cassis (blackcurrant liqueur) with Champagne. Voila.
Crème de Cassis
This cocktail was inspired by a bartender’s terrible hangover and the one thing she knew could cure it: more booze. This savory and spicy Michelada includes Worcestershire, soy and hot sauces, along with a spritz of lime juice, mixed into a tall glass of lager. Clear your head of Saturday night regrets with this version, a classic Michelada, or any of our other tasty variations.
Start your morning on the sunny side with a tropical homage to the Harvey Wallbanger. This cocktail keeps the fresh orange juice and vanilla liqueur, but it swaps out vodka for gold rum and adds a little allspice dram. It makes any brunch a tiki brunch.
Cold brew coffee is all the rage, and it’s made even better with the addition of spiced rum, creamy orgeat and a flamed orange twist. The crushed ice makes the cocktail as cold as can be, perfect for al fresco brunches on a hot day.
cold brew coffee
The Jungle Bird’s base of blackstrap rum is already reminiscent of maple syrup, but this tiki-tastic take on the classic cocktail ups its brunch-worthy-ness with rich pineapple syrup, amaro and a candied bacon garnish.
Relive your childhood mornings of slurping cereal milk in front of the TV with this smooth punch, which tastes like liquid Corn Flakes. Made with cornsilk-infused coconut milk, aged rum and banana liqueur, it’s a grown-up ode to Saturday morning cartoons.
This refreshing drink is one of the best low-proof cocktails for easy day drinking. A low ABV mix of bittersweet Aperol, sweet apricot liqueur, tart lemon juice, a pinch of salt and cleansing cucumber, it’s extra bubbly and refreshing thanks to both club soda and Champagne.
A classic Caipirinha might be a little too bracing for brunch, but this sweeter twist on the Brazilian cocktail would be welcome at any table. Banana liqueur brings out the banana notes in aged cachaça, along with some help from a homemade banana-lime purée. Add a few dashes of chocolate bitters, and you’ve got an alternative far superior to chocolate and banana pancakes.