14 Vegan Booze Brands and Recipes for Christmas

13 Vegan Booze Brands and Recipes for Christmas

Christmas is often a time of indulging, and for many, it means cracking open a bottle of bubbly or adding a little extra something to after-dinner coffee. If you’re looking for the perfect vegan-friendly beverage to treat yourself to this festive season, here are the best vegan alcohol brands and cocktail recipes to consider.

Is Alcohol Vegan?

Contrary to popular belief, not all alcoholic beverages are vegan. While spirits tend to be animal product-free — although watch out for ingredients like honey — beer and wine can be filtered using animal products like isinglass (an ingredient derived from fish bladder), egg whites, and gelatin (derived from animal bones).

According to vegan alcohol guide Barnivore, “these products grab onto the impurities and make it easier to catch them in the filters, though there are many animal-free alternatives in use.”

Animal-free alternatives include limestone, carbon, bentonite clay, plant casein, and kaolin clay.

So, What Alcohol Is Vegan?

Barnivore is a helpful guide to finding vegan-friendly booze. It has more than 45,000 entries, all of which have been checked (and sometimes double and triple checked) by its regular users. If you know of a beverage that is or isn’t vegan and it’s not on the site, Barnivore is also open to submissions.

Fortunately, the majority of hard liquors, like gin, vodka, bourbon, whiskey, and rum, are vegan. The same goes for distilled spirits. Just keep an eye out for added ingredients, like honey or dairy.

Yes, vegan Bailey’s exists. | Baileys

6 Vegan Alcohol Brands

1. Absolut

Vodka makes up the basis of many cocktails, you can make martinis, cosmopolitans, and even Moscow mules. Absolut Vodka is a completely vegan brand, according to a post on its website from 2017. A representative confirmed, “all Absolut products are vegan, thus they do not contain any animal products, and no such products are used in the production process.”

They noted that the ingredients for Absolut Vodka are grain, enzymes, yeast, and water (which they obtain from their very own well). The brand offers a number of flavored vodkas — including vanilla, strawberry, apple, and rhubarb. For all of its flavored products, Absolut uses only “natural ingredients from berries, fruits, and spices.”

2. Hendrick’s

Hailed by many as one of the world’s best-tasting gins, Hendrick’s is 100 percent vegan. This Scotland-based brand carries a unique botanical flavor featuring notes of Bulgarian Rosa Damascena, elderflower, chamomile, juniper berry, lemon and orange peel, caraway seeds, orris and angelica root, yarrow, cucumber, and is hand-crafted in batches of 500 liters at a time. It’s best served with tonic water over ice or with elderflower cordial and soda water. Check it out here.

3. Baileys

For many years, Baileys couldn’t be enjoyed by anyone who didn’t wish to consume dairy. But in 2017, the drink brand debuted vegan Baileys Almande, and everything changed. Just like the original, the dairy-free alcoholic drink has a creamy texture. It’s made with almond oil, almond essence, and real vanilla. According to Baileys, it’s a “naughty delicious indulgence,” served best in a cocktail, coffee, or over ice.

4. Freixenet

Headquartered in Catalonia, Freixenet has been making wine since 1861. According to Barnivore, some of its beverages are vegan. Add its bubbly Organic Cava or Prosecco Extra Dry to a cocktail — like a bellini or a mimosa — or simply enjoy it on its own.

5. Sailor Jerry Rum

According to Sailor Jerry Rum, its liquor is made the “traditional way” and it doesn’t include any animal products. Its recipe was inspired by sailors, who used to blend spices into their rum to make it more palatable. Drink it on its own, with a mixer, or add to a variety of cocktails, including a dark mojito. If you fancy it, you could also add to a hot chocolate or creamy coffee.

6. Wolffer Estate Brandy

Based on the North Fork of Long Island, all of Wolffer Estate specializes in wine (which are vegan with the exception of its Sagaponack Red), but it also offers brandy. According to the company, its brandy is made by distilling chardonnay and is aged for a minimum of three years in Hungarian Oak and Ermitage Cognac barrels. It has a smooth finish and flavor profile of vanilla and toasted almonds, dried apricots, orange jam, and a layer of creamy chardonnay, all complemented by orange zest, crème brûlée, and toffee. Oh, and the brand also makes pink gin. Check it out here.

8 Vegan Christmas Cocktail Recipes

1. Candy Cane Martini

A candy cane martini is a sweet and festive way to enjoy the holidays. They’re also quick and easy to make, and your guests will love them.

Get the recipe here.

13 Vegan Booze Brands and Recipes for Christmas
Vegan hot chocolate with a little something extra. | Dietitian Debbie

2. Spiked Vegan Hot Chocolate

There’s nothing like sitting by the fire and enjoying a cozy hot chocolate on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day evening — even better if that hot chocolate is spiked with bourbon. Pop on a holiday movie and curl up with this recipe for a tasty spiked vegan hot chocolate.

Get the recipe here.

3. Cranberry Sage Cocktail

This cranberry sage cocktail is a sleek drink to serve party guests before dinner. It looks all the more impressive thanks to the addition of candied sage. If you don’t have time on the day to candy the sage, you can do this up to three days before and keep it in the fridge.

Get the recipe here.

13 Vegan Booze Brands and Recipes for Christmas
“Moskau, Moskau, deine Seele ist so groß.” – Dschinghis Khan | Half Baked Harvest

4. Christmas Moscow Mule

Simple and sophisticated, this wintery Moscow mule features ruby red grapefruit, peppermint, and pomegranate. It’s spicy, citrusy, minty, and oh-so-seasonal.

Get the recipe here.

5. Hot Toddy

What’s winter without a hot toddy? Just swap the honey in this recipe with a plant-based liquid sweetener, like agave nectar or simple syrup, and garnish it with a cinnamon stick and lemon slice.

Get the recipe here.

13 Vegan Booze Brands and Recipes for Christmas
Pour that (vegan) eggnog. | Two Spoons

6. Vegan Spiked Eggnog

Just because you’re avoiding animal products doesn’t mean you have to miss out on eggnog. This decadent vegan spiked eggnog cocktail is made with a trifecta of cashews, almonds, and coconut flakes, resulting in an ultra-creamy beverage that you can serve warm or chilled.

Get the recipe here.

7. Christmas Cosmos

Whether you’re hosting a party or just sitting in with your feet up, these Christmas Cosmos are the perfect festive treat. All you need is vodka, orange liqueur, cranberry juice, lime juice, and some lime slices to garnish.

Get the recipe here.

8. Cranberry Orange Mimosa

A must-have for your vegan Christmas brunch, this festive mimosa is made with cranberry cocktail, triple sec, and champagne. Garnish it with fresh cranberries, an orange wedge, and a sprig of sage. Cheers!

Get the recipe here.

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