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Beyond The Eggnog: Your Holiday Drink Guide

Whether you have a big holiday party coming up, or just want a little something to make a night at home special, there are lots of fun cocktails and drinks you can prepare to really get into the holiday spirit. Forget another boring mug of eggnog (with or without the rum) and try one of these other great holiday drinks. A few of these are even kid-friendly, so you can make something extra special for your children as you decorate the tree or watch “Miracle on 34th Street” for the hundredth time.

Hot Nutella and Chocolate
This may be the best hot chocolate ever. It’s a smooth, drinkable mug of Nutella and is sure to please even the pickiest people at your next holiday shindig. It’s also a nice sweet treat for the children at your party, or to fill up a hot thermos and take out as you wander the neighborhood checking out all the holiday lights. For the best results, use high quality unsweetened cocoa powder, or you’ll over-load on the sweetness.

Hot Nutella Chocolate
Photo Credit Thinkstock


  • Four cups milk (use low-fat to save a little on the calories if you like)
  • Two tablespoons Nutella (or any chocolate hazelnut spread)
  • Three tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Two tablespoons sugar
  • Mini marshmallows
  • Crushed hazelnuts


  1. In a large sauce pan, heat the milk until it’s warm and begins to steam. Do not boil.
  2. Add the Nutella, sugar and cocoa powder and stir well until completely dissolved.
  3. Bring to a simmer while stirring, then remove from heat.
  4. Serve immediately and top with mini marshmallows and crushed hazelnuts for garnish.

Eggnog Martini
If you’re looking to take the old standby of a cup of eggnog to the next level, this is the perfect holiday drink. This adults-only cocktail is sweet and packed with eggnog flavor, but elevated with the assistance of something other than rum. This is one drink to serve ice cold, and you’ll want to have plenty of the ingredients on hand for your holiday party, because everyone is going to want one.

Eggnog Martini
Photo Credit Thinkstock


  • Three ounces eggnog
  • One ounce vanilla vodka
  • One ounce Amaretto
  • Cinnamon for garnish


  1. Combine all ingredients in shaker over ice.
  2. Shake well.
  3. Strain into a chilled martini glass.
  4. Dust with just a pinch of cinnamon.
  5. Serve immediately.

Related: Jazz Up Your Eggnog With These 3 Holiday Recipes

Hot Buttered Rum
A good hot buttered rum takes lots of time to create, but this amazing recipe can be prepared up to three months in advance. Not that you need three months, but you can make a bunch of the batter ahead of time, then you’ll have it ready whenever you need the perfect holiday drink. This is best served while relaxing on the sofa, curled up with your family, watching your favorite holiday movies in front of a fireplace.

Hot Buttered Rum
Photo Credit Thinkstock


  • One pound butter (unsalted)
  • One pound brown sugar
  • One pound confectioners sugar
  • One quart vanilla ice cream
  • One teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • One tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • Rum
  • Water


  1. In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat.
  2. Add brown sugar and confectioners sugar and stir well.
  3. Remove from heat and add the ice cream and spices, stir well.
  4. Pour into a freezer-safe plastic container and freeze until ready to use.
  5. When you’re ready to serve, measure one tablespoon of the frozen batter into a mug.
  6. Add one ounce of your favorite rum.
  7. Fill the cup the rest of the way with boiling water.
  8. Stir well and sprinkle just a touch of nutmeg for garnish.

Candy Cane Punch
Here’s another kid-friendly drink that everyone will love for the holidays. It’s also super easy, so you can pull this out in a flash if you need something quick. If you want an adult version of this drink, simply add a splash of peppermint schnapps, just be sure to label the child version and the adult versions well, so you don’t mix those two up. A lot of this depends on being able to find candy cane ice cream, which usually appears in most grocery stores near Thanksgiving.

Holiday Punch
Photo Credit Thinkstock


  • One quart eggnog
  • One liter club soda
  • ½ gallon candy cane ice cream
  • Crushed candy canes


  1. Pour the eggnog and club soda into a large punch bowl.
  2. Add the ½ gallon of ice cream to the bowl.
  3. Stir lightly and sprinkle the crushed candy canes in the bowl.
  4. You can also wet the rim of each glass before you serve, then dip in candy cane dust for even more candy cane flavor.

Blue Christmas
This drink is super easy to make, but is also gorgeous to look at and will make any dinner party look like even more elegant. It’s an adults-only cocktail that is perfect for a fancy holiday dinner party, and since it’s bright blue it’s perfect for Christmas, Hanukkah or even New Years. To really make this drink pop, be sure to get some blue sanding sugar from the baking aisle of your local grocer—it will really add a nice garnish to this already pretty cocktail.

Blue Christmas Cocktails
Photo Credit Thinkstock


  • One ounce Blue Curacao
  • One ounce orange vodka
  • Champagne
  • Blue sanding sugar


  1. Dip your champagne glass in water and run the rims in the blue sanding sugar.
  2. Pour one ounce of each the orange vodka and the Blue Curacao into the champagne glass.
  3. Top the rest of the way with champagne.
  4. Serve immediately.

Deborah Flomberg is a theater professional, freelance writer and Denver native. Her work can be found at

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