Blood Orange Amaretto Cocktails are the kind of drinks that go down easily. Too easy. This cocktail is the best way to put blood oranges to good use. Amaretto and vodka mixed with sweet blood orange, citrus, and sugar -a Bree(ed) version of a classic amaretto sour!
When I spot blood oranges in the store, I stock up. They are a beautiful mystery that I simply cannot resist. Sometimes I cut into one to find a deep red (almost purple) color and sometimes I cut into one to find the gradient colors of a gorgeous sunset.
Speaking of the sun, during those dreary winter days, we need as much brightness as we can get, so I try to stock up on plenty of blood oranges while they’re in season. That, and winter citrus makes me happy.
The juice from blood oranges is beautiful as well, resembling the vibrant color of ruby red grapefruit juice. The flavor is slightly tarter than a regular orange.
Believe it or not, I’m not a huge drinker. I love a good cocktail but they don’t really love me. I’ll spare you the details, but let’s just say the hangovers are BRUTAL. That said, I REALLY have to be in the mood for a drink, and when I am -this easy amaretto recipe is exactly the kind of drink I crave.
FOR THE LEMON SYRUP
- Fresh Lemon Juice & Sugar – These ingredients are made into a lemon-flavored simple syrup. Use the remaining syrup to flavor different beverages, like club soda and iced tea.
FOR THE COCKTAIL:
- Vodka – You can get away with using a cheaper brand here. There are so many other things going on in this drink, I can assure you no one will know the difference.
- Amaretto – Disaronna is hands down the best.
- Blood Orange Juice – the tart flavor of blood oranges is great mixed with amaretto.
- Lemon Syrup – helps cut a bit of the sweetness, making a full-bodied crave-worthy cocktail.
- Sparkling Water – adds bubbles and fizz.
How to Make // The Steps
Step 1. Prepare lemon syrup. In a small saucepan, add freshly squeezed lemon juice and sugar. Heat over medium-heat until the liquid just begins to boil. Lower heat to a simmer and cook until the syrup thickens (about 10 minutes). Let cool.
Step 2. Mix drink. In a pitcher, large lidded mason jar or a giant shaker add vodka, amaretto, blood orange juice and lemon syrup. Stir or shake until well mixed.
Step 3. Optional garnish & serve. Fill rocks glass with ice and pour liquid over ice. Top with a splash of sparking water and garnish with a slice of blood orange or lemon twist (garnish optional).
Tips & Tricks
- Can’t find blood oranges? That’s okay. Give ruby red grapefruits or oranges a try. If the drink is too sweet with these sweeter fruits, balance it out by adding a bit more lemon juice.
- No need for a full bottle of amaretto? Buy a couple of mini bottles instead. That also saves a few dollars on top shelf amaretto by buying mini bottles instead of purchasing a full-size bottle of liqueur at a premium price.
- Speaking of top-shelf/premium liqueur, Amaretto Disaronna is THE BEST. It makes all the difference in amaretto cocktails.
- I like to make a pitcher of this instead of single cocktails. It would also make a great beach bevvie.
Why is Blood Orange Amaretto Cocktail So Good?
- This is an easy one -no previous bartending skills required.
- Cool and refreshing – the perfect cocktail to sip poolside.
- These drinks are not overly sweet nor overly sour. They’re the perfect balance of sugar and tang. That said, they go down easy. You’ve been warned.
- These drinks are SO pretty, they are almost TOO pretty to drink. Almost
- Not a fan of vodka? How about bourbon? Feel free to swap out the vodka for your favorite sweet bourbon. Doing so transforms this beverage into an old fashioned of sorts, and it’s amazing.
- Next time, I’m going to add some basil to my lemon syrup. I think that it would be a perfect combination in this drink.
- If you have bitters on hand, add a dash or two to each drink before serving for a little added bonus.
- Blood orange amaretto cocktails can also be served martini style. Shake or stir drink over ice to chill and then strain into a martini glass. Top with a splash of sparkling water before serving.
- Try lemon-lime or orange-flavored sparkling water or soda instead of plain sparkling water.
How to Store //
Amaretto mixed drinks are best if enjoyed soon after preparing as the flavors will begin to change over time. Once prepared, cocktails with fresh fruit juices should be stored in the fridge and consumed within 4 to 5 days.
Make-Ahead and Freezer Options
To make ahead, mix everything together the night before omitting the alcohol. Stir vodka and amaretto in right before serving.
Amaretto is a slightly sweet and slightly bitter almond-flavored liqueur. Some say it tastes exactly like marzipan. Other spirits are mixed with amaretto because it’s sweet and nutty flavor lessons the potent bite of straight liquor.
The nuttiness of amaretto goes great with all things citrus (hence the popularity of amaretto sours), but it’s also great mixed with cola (it tastes like Dr. Pepper). In all honesty, Disaronna and its dessert-like flavor is good enough to sip on the rocks.
Absolutely. Make a pitcher of just the juice mixture and sparkling water, so non-drinkers have something to sip on. For those that want the boozy version, simply add 3/4 ounce of amaretto and 3/4 ounce of vodka to a glass, top with ice, pour juice mixture over ice, stir and serve.