Light fruity drinks with diverse flavors and notes are on the agenda when you order or make a cocktail for brunch. These are the best flavor combinations, but some people like their drinks a little stronger (the Bloody Mary), and that’s okay too!
You can mix it up and use gin, vodka, tequila, schnapps, and more to create tasty brunch cocktails. There are also tons of variations that you can find to make mocktails in the instance that you can’t or don’t prefer to drink alcoholic beverages.
My favorites are for sure the Mimosa, the Bellini, and the Fuzzy Navel, just to name a few. In addition to giving you ideas of the best brunch cocktails, we also suggest which foods to pair them with. Let’s dive in!
A Bloody Mary is a cocktail that contains tomato juice and vodka. It also contains many other flavorings and spices, including hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salt, black pepper, garlic, olives, celery salt, herbs, horseradish, lemon juice, and lime juice.
Interestingly, some versions of the Bloody Mary go as far as including shrimp and even bacon as garnishes such as the “surf ‘n turf” Bloody Mary. Furthermore, in the United States, Bloody Marys are consumed either in the morning or early afternoon. The Bloody Mary was invented somewhere around the 1920s or the 1930s.
Excellent with any meat dish, the Bloody Mary is strong and won’t disappoint if you’re looking for a kick.
In general, Mimosas are an elegant combination of orange juice and sparkling wine. It’s one of the most common drinks to order at brunch when dining at a restaurant. It’s also a fun and popular choice to serve when hosting friends for homemade brunch.
There are only a few ingredients needed that come together to make a beautiful Mimosa cocktail. As a result, it’s essential to focus on getting quality ingredients to maximize the overall quality of the drink.
For your Mimosa, you’ll need orange juice and sparkling wine. Here are some optional extras that you can add: Chambord, Whiskey, Grand Marnier, and Vodka. The Mimosa is excellent alongside bacon, yogurt, quiche and really any other popular brunch foods!
During peach season, making a delightful Bellini should be on your agenda. It’s one of the most popular brunch cocktails out there. This is a sparkling Italian cocktail made with a couple of simple ingredients: Peach puree and Prosecco.
The Bellini is very refreshing and fizzy. Moreover, because of the puree, this cocktail has more body than your average brunch beverage.
Bellinis are a breeze to make, and they are ideal when hosting brunch outside on the patio while enjoying a gorgeous summer day. This drink is a welcomed alternative to Mimosas, and they feel a bit more sophisticated. Egg frittata with a dazzling Bellini? Yes, please!
Irish Coffee consists of four ingredients: Irish whiskey, hot coffee, whipped cream, and sugar. It’s possible to be a bit heavy-handed with the sugar, causing the drink to be cloyingly sweet and too rich. So, just be careful when sweetening your cocktail.
Another bonus is the simplicity of the drink itself. You don’t need to be a barista or a bartender to make an Irish Coffee. Typically, this drink is enjoyed at restaurants in the morning to give you a boost for the day. They are also served after dinners as a sweet treat to cap off the meal.
The Screwdriver is one of the easiest cocktails to make, and it’s perhaps one of the most enduring as well. Quality ingredients play a significant role here. For starters, the smoother your vodka, the smoother and easier your Screwdriver will go down.
The recipe calls for highball drink glasses, vodka, and orange juice. Although the drink is basic, it should be noted that there are many variations of this drink with different names worldwide, like the Mexican Screw and the French Screw. You could add Sloe Gin, Melon Liqueur, lime juice, or another juice instead of vodka or orange juice.
It goes great with sushi, pork ribs, or something lighter like clams.
Basil-Gin Orange Shandy
A British shandy drink is usually made with beer and citrus or lemon soda. It’s a delicious treat on a hot summer day. Some people may be off-put at the thought of adding basil to a drink, but it actually pairs well. It gives the drink a refreshing aftertaste that isn’t too sweet while spreading a unique flavor throughout.
This shandy variation requires a 50/50 mix of gin and orangeade, with a slice of orange and a basil leaf or two. The Basil-Gin Orange Shandy is great for any casual gathering because it’s fun and fruity. It goes great with spicy foods or earthy cheeses.
If you’re looking for a classic cocktail that’s bright, sweet, slightly tart, and has a kick, try the Tequila Sunrise. It originally hailed from Phoenix, AR, during the 1930s, and another was later created in Sausalito, CA, in the 1970s.
You get different notes of berry, orange, and the flavor Tequila that you used. It’s fairly simple to make; grab a tall glass and your three ingredients. Add the ice first, then the Tequila (I recommend Silver or Blanco), orange juice, and grenadine syrup last. Don’t mix! It’s meant to be served as is. The syrup will sink to the bottom and create a beautiful array of colors on the glass.
The Tequila Sunrise goes perfectly with seafood such as shrimp and fish tacos. It also tastes great alongside Indian food and party appetizers.
Raspberry Peach Prosecco
What better way to toast to the warm spring months than to make a pitcher of Raspberry Peach Prosecco for friends and family. It’s one of the easiest cocktails to make because all you have to do is puree frozen peaches and raspberries and add three tablespoons to a glass of Prosecco.
You can also make a mocktail using this same recipe but swap out the Prosecco for Ginger Ale. It’s such a simple mix that gives off fancy vibes!
The rich color of the drink looks nice when placed on a table that has a flower centerpiece. Tulips and sunflowers are my favorites at the moment! You can drink this with pasta dishes or cheeseburgers; basically, you can go upscale or casual, and the Prosecco cocktail will pair perfectly.
New Orleans Fizz
The New Orleans Fizz, originally known as the Ramos Gin Fizz, was created by Henry C. Ramos in the late 1800s. It began in New Orleans and is now amongst the most popular cocktails in the city.
It’s citrusy, creamy, sweet, light, foamy, and a mixture of other complex flavors that complement one another beautifully. To make this cocktail, you will need to mix gin, cream, lime, lemon, orange blossom water, simple syrup, soda water, and egg white.
The New Orleans (or Ramos) Fizz is an original New Orleans drink with gin, cream, and orange flower water. Shake this drink VERY well, to the point it feels like your arm is going to fall off—seriously! Legend has it that the thick foam needed to make this drink authentic required 12 minutes of straight shaking.
Great for any occasion, the New Orleans Fizz is best paired with dessert or breakfast.
All you need is a hot summer day to whip out the pitcher for a tall, green, fruity drink that’s light and revitalizing.
The Melon Patch is one of my favorite brunch drinks because the flavor is subtle but still very pleasant to sip early morning. You only need four ingredients: Triple Sec, Club Soda, Melon Liqueur, and Vodka. You might want to use an orange slice as a garnish at the end, but that’s your personal preference.
Also, when people make pitchers for large gatherings, you may see scoops of different types of melon in the pitcher because it looks nice and adds light flavors. Herbaceous foods are the best pairing with the Melon Patch.
The Fuzzy Navel is one of the most simplistic brunch cocktails you can make. All you need is orange juice and peach schnapps. Mix equal amounts of each, and you’re good to go. It’s fruity. It’s sweet, and it’s buzzy but not too buzzy.
It’s the perfect accompaniment to desserts and cheese platters, or you can pair it with seafood if you swap out the schnapps for vodka. It makes the drink a little bolder, and it stands up to the dishes better.
I’d have to say the Fuzzy Navel is my favorite brunch cocktail for casual dates or hanging out with friends at our favorite brunch spot.
Whether you’re an aspiring mixologist, a bartender, or you’re just whipping up drinks in your home for fun; I hope you’ve been inspired!
Finding the best brunch cocktails can be tricky; some are light and fruity with a slight kick, others are strong, savory, and pack a punch. There are so many tasty combinations that it’s hard to just pick one favorite.
That’s where our list comes in! We’ve given you a variety of flavors and food pairings to create the best brunch experience during any season.
If you know of any brunch cocktails that we should add, just let us know in the comments. You might also like these delicious fall pumpkin cocktails!