DIY Cranberry Liqueur

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‘Tis the season for cranberries! This homemade cranberry liqueur has a bright flavor and beautiful color, making it a delightful DIY holiday gift. It’s easy to make yet still impressive enough to share.

You can play with flavors a bit by adding vanilla or cinnamon to your batch. Use it in a Cosmopolitan or a creation of your own! (For ideas on how to design your own drinks, check out DIY Cocktails.)

This recipe makes about 2 cups.


2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1 ¼cups sugar
½ cup water
1 ½ cups vodka
1 orange (zest only)


Boil the cranberries, sugar and water until the cranberries start to burst and get soft (about 7 minutes). Then blend or puree this syrupy mixture and transfer it to a sealable glass jar. Add the vodka and orange zest, then seal and shake the jar. Refrigerate for at a minimum of 4 days and up to 3 weeks (taste along the way to see when your desired flavor is achieved). Once you’re happy with the flavor level, line a fine-mesh strainer with cheesecloth and strain out the solids. (You can keep the strained out fruit as a cranberry relish or dessert topping.) Store the liqueur in a glass container in the refrigerator. It should keep for about 2 months.

Photo by Rachel Tayse.

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