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18 Easy Bourbon Cocktails to Make

If you’re looking to add a little flair to your at-home bartending, bourbon cocktails are a fantastic place to start. Easy bourbon cocktails are all about combining the rich, warm flavors of bourbon with simple, complementary ingredients to create delicious drinks without a lot of fuss. Whether you’re a bourbon enthusiast or just someone who enjoys a good cocktail, these recipes are perfect for anyone looking to impress their guests or simply elevate their own drinking experience.

With just a few ingredients and some basic bartending skills, you can whip up a range of bourbon cocktails that are sure to please. From classic favorites to modern twists, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. So, grab your shaker and let’s dive into the world of easy bourbon cocktails!

Kentucky Mule

Kentucky Mule

Start by stuffing ice into a copper mug or a glass in order to make this classic cocktail. Give the glass a slight toss to incorporate the flavors after adding the freshly squeezed lime juice and bourbon. Ginger beer, which gives the mixture a zesty and fizzy flavor, should be added as the final touch. To combine all the ingredients, carefully stir. Last but not least, add a fresh mint sprig as a garnish to give the drink a bit of aroma and freshness. A great fusion of sweet, tart, and spicy tastes makes the Kentucky Mule Cocktail a pleasant option for any occasion. The spicy ginger beer offers a pleasant jolt that lingers on the palate, while the bold flavors of the bourbon are counterbalanced by the tart acidity of lime juice. The mint garnish not only improves the cocktail’s aesthetic appeal, but it also adds a blast of scent that harmonizes wonderfully with the other ingredients. The Kentucky Mule Cocktail is a classic that never goes out of style and is perfect for sipping on a nice summer day or enjoying as a warm winter beverage. Cheers to a tasty and energizing beverage that is ideal for any whiskey enthusiast!


New York Sour

New York Sour
source: foodandwine.com

A traditional cocktail called the New York Sour mixes the robust tastes of bourbon with the tart zing of fresh lemon juice, the sweetness of simple syrup, and the unusual touch of a fruity red wine float. With its brilliant red wine float and lemon zest garnish, this wonderful creation is not only a pleasure for the taste senses but also a feast for the eyes. Start by mixing bourbon, fresh lemon juice, and simple syrup with ice in a cocktail shaker to create this elegant concoction. Shake ferociously to combine the ingredients completely and refrigerate them. Pour the mixture through a strainer into an ice-filled rocks glass, leaving space at the top for the red wine float. Pour your preferred fruity red wine gently over the back of a spoon onto the cocktail’s surface, allowing it to float on top and produce an exquisite tiered look. In order to provide a final scent boost to the cocktail, twist a piece of lemon zest over the glass. This will release the citrusy oils into the drink.


Boulevardier

a glass of boulevardier cocktail

The Boulevardier Cocktail is a warm, robust cocktail that oozes sophistication. This traditional drink, made with bourbon, Campari, and premium sweet vermouth, is a delicious fusion of flavors that dances on the tongue. It’s a cocktail that is visually attractive and tantalizing to the taste buds, garnished with an orange twist. Start by mixing bourbon, Campari, and sweet vermouth with ice in a mixing glass to make a Boulevardier Cocktail. After giving the ingredients a gentle stir to chill and integrate them, pour the concoction into an ice-filled rocks glass. By twisting the orange over the glass, you can impart an orange twist to the beverage, releasing the citrusy oils and enhancing the aroma. To further accentuate the aroma, rub the twist over the rim of the glass, then either discard it or add it as a garnish to the beverage.


Bourbon Sour

Bourbon Sour

A traditional drink, the bourbon sour mixes the rich and smooth tastes of bourbon or rye whiskey with the tart sweetness of fresh lemon juice, a touch of simple syrup for balance, and a smidgen of bitterness from Angostura bitters. This cocktail is a perennial favorite for people who value a well-made, balanced drink. It is topped with a velvety and foamy egg white and garnished with a beautiful orange swath. The result is a drink that is both indulging and refreshing, with the whiskey’s robust and rich flavors blending well with the lemon juice’s crisp acidity and simple syrup’s delicate sweetness. The orange swath garnish offers a blast of flavor and aesthetic appeal, while the egg white adds a luscious mouthfeel and frothy texture.


Bourbon Old Fashioned

Bourbon Old Fashioned

The Bourbon Old Fashioned is a traditional cocktail that honors the origins of American whiskey by presenting the rich and smooth tastes of bourbon in a straightforward yet elegant beverage. This classic libation is a true standard in the cocktail world and is made with just a few essential ingredients: sugar, bourbon, Angostura bitters, water, and garnished with orange peel and brandied cherry. With the caramel notes of the bourbon blending with the sweetness and bitterness of the sugar and bitters, the outcome is a drink that radiates warmth and depth. The brandied cherry offers a decadent touch of sweetness that balances the bourbon’s richness, while the orange peel adds a burst of fragrant citrus scents.


Bourbon Sidecar

source: acouplecooks.com

The silky, caramel-rich flavors of bourbon whiskey are combined with the bright, acidic notes of lemon in the traditional drink known as the “Bourbon Sidecar,” creating the ideal harmony of sweet and sour. This drink, a refined take on the traditional Sidecar, is made with bourbon whiskey, Cointreau, lemon juice, and a tiny bit of simple syrup. Bourbon is used in place of the conventional brandy for a heartier and more robust variety. To add the last flourish, spin a lemon twist or peel over the beverage to release the citrus’s aromatic oils, then use it as a garnish. The bourbon’s complex flavors are complemented by the lemon twist’s citrus aroma, which also gives the drink a sophisticated appearance.


Gold Rush

Gold Rush

The rich and nuanced tastes of bourbon blend harmoniously with the sweetness of honey and the brightness of lemon to produce a drink that is both smooth and energizing. While the lemon juice contributes a sharp tartness that creates a pleasant contrast, the honey syrup lends a deep and velvety sweetness that balances the bourbon’s assertiveness. A classy and classic cocktail that is ideal for enjoying on any occasion is the Gold Rush. It is a well-liked option for both casual gatherings and important occasions due to its well-balanced flavors and straightforward preparation. Give yourself a Gold Rush cocktail, and let its silky, sweet, and tangy tastes whisk you away to cocktail nirvana. Cheers!


Bourbon Manhattan

Bourbon Manhattan

The first step in making a Bourbon Manhattan is to add ice to a mixing glass. To the mixing glass, add the bourbon or rye whiskey, sweet vermouth, orange bitters, and Angostura bitters. The end product is a stunning cocktail with a deep amber hue, a strong yet smooth flavor profile, and a rich scent of whiskey and vermouth. Bourbon or rye whiskey and sweet vermouth create the ideal balance of sweetness and bitterness, and bitters give the drink additional richness and depth. With each sip, the Luxardo cherry garnish adds a blast of flavor that contrasts the cocktail’s savory undertones with something sweet and tart.


Mint Julep

Mint Julep

The Mint Julep, a traditional cocktail made with bourbon, simple syrup, and fragrant mint, captures the essence of the American South. This legendary drink is typically connected with the Kentucky Derby, where racegoers have long savored it. It is a true celebration of Kentucky’s finest product, bourbon. Start by adding some simple syrup to a glass along with a few fresh mint leaves. Gently muddle the ingredients to unleash the aromatic aromas of the mint. Crushed ice should be added to the glass before adding the bourbon. Stir the contents until it is well cooled and the glass has frozen over. Add a mint sprig as a garnish to give the drink a fragrant and eye-catching finishing touch.


Whiskey Highball

Whiskey Highball
source: casualfoodist.com

An adaptable cocktail that may be adapted to your personal preferences is the whiskey highball. Use a bourbon for a sweeter, smoother flavor, a whiskey for a stronger, smokier aroma, or a scotch for a peaty, unique aroma. Depending on your preferences for sweetness and carbonation, you can choose between sparkling water, ginger ale, or ginger beer. The outcome is a light and frothy beverage that enhances the whiskey’s flavors while offering a sharp and lively texture. A timeless classic, the whiskey highball is ideal for enjoying at social gatherings, happy hours, or as a cool drink in the summer. The Whiskey Highball is a straightforward yet stylish cocktail that is sure to impress whiskey connoisseurs and cocktail fans alike, whether you prefer it with bourbon, whiskey, or scotch. Cheers!


Bourbon Rickey

Bourbon Rickey

The first step in making a Bourbon Rickey is to fill a glass with ice. Add a liberal amount of bourbon and squeeze some lime juice on top. Fill the remainder of the glass with sparkling water, then gently whisk it to combine the flavors. The end result is a bubbly, energizing beverage that expertly strikes a balance between the sweetness and warmth of whiskey, the tanginess of lime, and the fizz of sparkling water. The Bourbon Rickey is a flexible drink that may be tailored to your personal tastes. Create the ideal flavor profile for your palate by using your preferred bourbon, whether it be a fiery and robust rye whiskey or a sweet and mild bourbon. To get the right amount of tartness and carbonation, change the ratio of lime juice to sparkling water.


Suffering Bastard

Suffering Bastard

The end result is a cocktail with layers of tastes, from the warmth and richness of whiskey to the herbaceous and botanical notes of gin, the tanginess of lime, the spice of Angostura Bitters, and the zing of ginger beer. The mint sprig enhances the drink’s scent and provides a blast of freshness to balance the other flavors. The Suffering Bastard is a sophisticated and characterful cocktail that’s ideal for anyone who likes daring and strong flavors. It’s a terrific option for formal events, get-togethers with friends, or just whenever you want a distinctive and interesting beverage. Cheers to the Suffering Bastard’s courageous and intrepid attitude!


Blackberry Bourbon Lemonade

Blackberry Bourbon Lemonade
source: foxvalleyfoodie.com

The Blackberry Bourbon Lemonade is a wonderful beverage that blends the tanginess of lemonade, the sweetness of blackberries, the freshness of mint, and the warmth of bourbon whiskey. It’s the ideal summer beverage and offers a flavorful fusion, making it a great option for drinkers who enjoy fruity and alcoholic concoctions. Fresh blackberries and mint should be muddled in a cocktail shaker to begin making a Blackberry Bourbon Lemonade. Fill the shaker with lots of ice and add the bourbon whiskey and a little lemonade. Shake ferociously to mix the flavors and cool the beverage. Pour more lemonade on top after straining the mixture into a glass with new ice. Stir it just enough to combine the ingredients, then add some blackberries and a mint sprig for decoration.


Arnold Palmer Bourbon Cocktail

Arnold Palmer Bourbon Cocktail
source: healthyseasonalrecipes.com

The Arnold Palmer Bourbon Cocktail is a delectable variation on the traditional Arnold Palmer that combines bourbon’s warm and silky overtones with the light, refreshing flavors of lemonade and iced tea. The balanced combination of sweet, tart, and alcoholic tastes in this delectable beverage makes it the ideal pick for any occasion. Making a honey simple syrup by combining equal parts hot water and honey can help you make an Arnold Palmer Bourbon Cocktail. Combine the honey simple syrup, freshly squeezed lemon juice, bourbon, and ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake briskly to incorporate the flavors and cool the beverage. Pour iced tea on top of the mixture after straining it into a glass with fresh ice. Gently combine the ingredients together, then add a lemon wheel or mint sprig for some added freshness.


Whiskey Smash

Whiskey Smash

Start by muddling a few fresh mint leaves and several sizable lemon slices in a cocktail shaker to produce a Whiskey Smash. The mint and lemon flavors are released during the muddling process, giving the cocktail’s base a fragrant undertone. After that, add a little bit of simple syrup for sweetness and bourbon or whiskey. To chill the beverage and further infuse the flavors, add ice to the shaker and shake vigorously. Pour the liquid through a strainer over new ice in a glass. Garnish with a mint leaf for flavor. The outcome is a revitalizing cocktail that is sweet, tangy, and bursts with fresh mint taste. A well-balanced and enjoyable beverage is made by combining the bourbon or whiskey with the tart lemon and sweet simple syrup. The Whiskey Smash is a cool beverage that is ideal for enjoying on a warm day, as well as at happy hour or social gatherings with friends. The Whiskey Smash is a classic drink that never goes out of style and is sure to impress with its bright tastes and alluring presentation. Cheers to a savory, energizing beverage that is delightful and refreshing!


Brown Derby

Brown Derby

A traditional cocktail called the Brown Derby combines bourbon’s robust tastes with the tart sweetness of grapefruit juice and honey syrup. Due to its distinctive flavor combination and refreshing profile, this cocktail—which bears the name of the renowned Los Angeles restaurant the Brown Derby—has grown to be a favorite among drinkers. Start with mixing whiskey, freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, and honey syrup in a cocktail shaker to produce a Brown Derby. The sharpness of the grapefruit juice is balanced by the sweetness of the honey syrup, which also contributes a rich and luscious richness, and the smoothness and strength of the bourbon. Pour the drink into a chilled glass after giving the mixture a brisk shake with ice to chill and mellow it down.


Blueberry Whiskey Lemonade

Blueberry Whiskey Lemonade
source: jawnsicooked.com

Pour the cocktail over ice in a glass, then add plain seltzer water on top for a bubbly and cooling finish. For a splash of color and flavor, garnish with a handful of fresh blueberries and lemon slices. The Blueberry Whiskey Lemonade strikes the ideal harmony between sweet, tart, and boozy flavors, making it a popular choice for events or just sipping on a lazy afternoon. Fresh blueberries give the mixture a burst of natural sweetness, and lemon juice gives it a zesty sharpness that balances the bourbon whiskey’s richness. Seltzer water gives the beverage a revitalizing effervescence that lifts it, making it the ideal thirst-quencher for hot days. Savor the delicious fusion of blueberries, lemon, and bourbon as you indulge in the cocktail’s bright flavors.


Old 97 Cocktail

Old 97 Cocktail
source: thecocktailproject.com

Start by blending Jim Beam Bonded bourbon, simple syrup, cherry maraschino liqueur, and bitters in a mixing glass with ice to make the Old 97 Cocktail. To integrate the components and chill the cocktail, carefully stir the mixture. The Old 97 Cocktail is a classic that has stood the test of time. Its rich and smooth character is enhanced by the sweetness of cherry liqueur and the intricacy of bitters, showcasing the adaptability of bourbon. While the garnish of orange peel offers a blast of aroma that improves the whole drinking experience, the addition of simple syrup adds just the proper amount of sweetness to balance the flavors. The Old 97 Cocktail is a classy option for individuals who value the classic appeal of a well-made bourbon cocktail, whether it’s taken as an aperitif or a nightcap.


A single, elegantly presented Bourbon Cocktail, specifically an Old Fashioned, in a classic lowball glass. The cocktail has a deep amber color, signifying its bourbon base, and is garnished with a twist of orange peel and a single large ice cube. The glass rests on an antique wooden bar counter, with a vintage bourbon bottle and a crystal decanter subtly positioned in the background. The ambiance is warm and inviting, with dim, ambient lighting and a backdrop of a cozy, old-fashioned bar with shelves of various liquor bottles.

18 Easy Bourbon Cocktail Recipes

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
See also  Top 15 Award Winning Bourbons to Try

Instructions

  1. Pick your favorite recipe
  2. Gather all the needed ingredients
  3. Prep an easy bourbon cocktail in less than 5 minutes

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18 Easy Bourbon Cocktails to Make
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Paul Kushner

Written by Paul Kushner

Founder and CEO of MyBartender. Graduated from Penn State University. He always had a deep interest in the restaurant and bar industry. His restaurant experience began in 1997 at the age of 14 as a bus boy. By the time he turned 17 he was serving tables, and by 19 he was bartending/bar managing 6-7 nights a week.

In 2012, after a decade and a half of learning all facets of the industry, Paul opened his first restaurant/bar. In 2015, a second location followed, the latter being featured on The Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

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