Celebrate New Year’s by Turning Classic Drinks into Blueberry Cocktails

Welcome the new year with these recipes that turn traditional Manhattans, Sours, Mojitos and more into tasty Blueberry Cocktails.

Most people choose to ring in the New Year with drinks and spitits. This year, start the new year off right with these blueberry cocktails that put a blueberry spin on classic cocktails. We’ve rounded up four classic drink recipes that have been turned into blueberry cocktails by the blueberry connoisseurs at the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council.

Classic Drinks Turned Into Blueberry Cocktails

Blueberry Cardamom Manhattan

A Manhattan is a cocktail with a long history made of whiskey, vermouth and bitters. This recipe uses bourbon, homemade blueberry bitters and ground cardamom to create a blueberry cocktail that will be the hit of your party.

Blueberry Bitters Ingredients and Materials

  • 1 mason jar with lid

  • Cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer

  • 1 cup high-proof spirit (high proof vodka or Everclear – at least 100 proof or 50% alcohol by volume)

  • 1 cup fresh blueberries

  • Peels of one orange

Blueberry Cardamom Manhattan Ingredients

  • ½ cup frozen blueberries, thawed

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom

  • 3 ounces bourbon

  • 1 ½ ounces sweet vermouth

  • 4-6 dashes bitters or Blueberry Bitters*

  • Blueberries for garnish

Blueberry Bitters Instructions

  1. In a sterilized and completely dry mason jar, combine alcohol, blueberries and orange peels; seal tightly.

  2. Store in a cool dark place for at least one week, shaking once a day to keep ingredients mixed.

  3. Depending on infusion preference you can leave for up to 3 weeks, tasting as you go, until personal flavor is achieved.

  4. Strain mixture with a cheesecloth or fine mesh into a small serving jar and store in a dark cool place for up to 3 months.

Blueberry Cardamom Manhattan Instructions

  1. In a cocktail shaker, using a wooden spoon, muddle blueberries and cardamom to release juices.

  2. Add bourbon, vermouth, bitters and ice.

  3. Stir and pour into 2 chilled martini glasses, dividing evenly. Garnish with more blueberries.

Number of servings (yield): 2 Cocktails

Cinnamon Blueberry Old Fashioned

An Old Fashioned is another cocktail that has been around for a long time, and is made with muddled sugars and bitters, and spirits like whiskey or brandy. This one combines cinnamon simple syrup and blueberries for a new-fashioned twist on an old favorite.

Cinnamon Simple Syrup Ingredients

  • 1 cup water

  • 3⁄4 cup coconut sugar or brown sugar

  • 2 cinnamon sticks

Blueberry Old Fashioned Ingredients

  • 1 ounce bourbon

  • 1 ounce blueberry juice (mash 3⁄4 cup defrosted frozen blueberries through a fine mesh strainer using the back of a spoon)

  • 1 ounce cinnamon simple syrup

  • 2­-3 dashes bitters

  • 5-­6 frozen blueberries

  • Sparkling water to top off the drink

  • Ice

Cinnamon Simple Syrup Instructions

  1. In a small saucepan over medium high heat, whisk together water and sugar; add in cinnamon sticks.

  2. Bring the mixture to a boil and continue to boil for about 5 minutes or until syrup has thickened slightly.

  3. Remove syrup from heat and let cool.

  4. Extra syrup can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Blueberry Old Fashioned Instructions

  1. For each drink, fill a highball glass with ice. Pour in the bourbon, blueberry juice, 1 ounce cinnamon simple syrup, and bitters; stir until combined.

  2. Add in frozen blueberries and top with sparkling water. Garnish with cinnamon stick, if desired.

Number of servings (yield): 1 cocktail

Blueberry Bourbon Sour

A sour is a family of drinks that includes a sour citrus, a sweetener and a base liquor. Margaritas, daquiris and mojitos are classified as sours, but this sour blueberry cocktail is based off a simple sour recipe, with blueberries added, of course!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup blueberries

  • ¼ cup dark brown sugar

  • 3 ounces bourbon (optional)

  • 4 ounces lemon juice

  • ¼ cup water

Instructions

  1. In a cocktail shaker, muddle the blueberries and sugar

  2. Add the bourbon (if desired), lemon juice, and ¼ cup water

  3. Shake vigorously, strain, and pour into two glasses filled with ice

Number of servings (yield): 2 Cocktails

Variations

For a mocktail version, skip the bourbon.

Bleau Mojito 

Mojitos are in the sour cocktail family, but the added mint leaves make mojitos in a league all their own. This recipe get a kick from blueberries in a few different ways, making it a truly memorable blueberry cocktail.

Ingredients

  • 14 mint leaves, divided

  • 1 tablespoon Blueberry Compote, purchased or recipe below

  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

  • 1 tablespoon simple syrup

  • 1-1/2 ounces rum

  • 1 ounce club soda

  • 12 fresh blueberries

  • Mint leaves for garnish

Bluebery Compote

  • 2 tablespoons sugar

  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch

  • 1 pound (3 cups) frozen blueberries, not thawed

Instructions

  1. Place 8 of the mint leaves in a Tom Collins glass; with a muddler or a wooden spoon, crush the mint leaves until fragrant; set aside.

  2. In a cocktail shaker, combine Blueberry Compote, lime juice, simple syrup, remaining mint leaves and rum.

  3. Add ice, cover and shake to mix.

  4. To the Collins glass, add club soda. Fill glass with fresh blueberries and ice; strain shaker mixture into glass. Garnish with mint.

Number of servings (yield): 1 cocktail

 

Recipes and photos courtesy of The U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council.

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