Alcoholic Eggnog Primer: Easy Recipes & Tips

Festive Egg Nog

Alcoholic eggnog recipes can be simple or complex. For example, you can add a shot of liquor to grocery store eggnog, or you can make everything from scratch. So whether you want to make your alcoholic eggnog recipe from scratch or you're looking for which alcohol goes in eggnog, you'll be ready to enjoy and serve this boozy Christmas favorite.

Alcoholic Eggnog Recipe for a Crowd

Making eggnog from scratch yields a rich and satisfying beverage that's perfect for your holiday parties. Don't skip the step where you temper the eggs; you'll wind up with scrambled eggs instead of nog. This yields about 10 servings.


  • 12 eggs, beaten
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 8 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1½ cups liquor (see different types below)


  1. In a large bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar, vanilla, nutmeg, and salt.
  2. In a saucepan, bring the milk to a simmer on low heat, stirring constantly.
  3. Temper the egg mixture by adding the hot milk, a tablespoon at a time, whisking, until you've added about a cup of milk.
  4. Put the warmed milk back on low heat. In a thin stream, whisk in the tempered egg mixture, stirring constantly.
  5. Cook, stirring, until the mixture reaches a temperature of 160°F. Remove from the heat and place the pan in a bowl of ice water, whisking to cool.
  6. When cooled, whisk in the whipping cream.
  7. Add to a punch bowl with ice. Whisk in the liquor.

Storage Instructions

You can also store the fridge for up to three days. To store, stop after step 6 and refrigerate in an air-tight container. Add to the punch bowl with ice and whisk in the alcohol just before serving.

Single Serving Eggnog Recipe With Alcohol

Want to make a single serving homemade eggnog with alcohol? You can always add 1½ ounces of the liquor of your choice to 8 ounces of pre-made eggnog, or you can make this easy single serving.


  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 4 ounces (½ cup) whole milk
  • 4 ounces (½ cup) heavy cream
  • 1½ ounces liquor of your choice (see below)


  1. In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, vanilla, and nutmeg.
  2. In a small saucepan, heat the milk and cream on low, whisking constantly.
  3. Whisk 4 tablespoons of hot milk and cream mixture 1 tablespoon at a time into the egg and sugar mixture. Return the remaining milk to the stove to low heat.
  4. Pour the egg mixture into the simmering liquid in a thin, slow stream, whisking constantly. Cook until it reaches 160°F, stirring constantly.
  5. Remove from the heat and place the pan in a bowl of ice water. Stir until it cools.
  6. Refrigerate until cool.
  7. Stir in the liquor to serve. Top with additional nutmeg for garnish.

What Alcohol Goes in Eggnog

You can use a number of brown spirits and liqueurs in your eggnog. Some spirits and liqueurs that work well include:

Some Specific Spirits to Try in Eggnog

Looking for something interesting and unusual? Try some of the following spirits:

How Much Alcohol to Add to Eggnog

Whether you're using homemade eggnog or store-bought, the ratio is the same. The ratio of alcohol to eggnog is 1½ ounces alcohol to 8 ounces (1 cup) eggnog.

Garnishes for Alcoholic Eggnog

Make your alcoholic eggnog a little more special with a garnish. Some cocktail garnishes for eggnog include the following:

  • Freshly grated nutmeg (use a rasp style grater)
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Orange zest
  • Fresh cranberries
  • Cinnamon stick
  • Gingerbread cookie
  • Small candy cane
  • Candied ginger
  • Whipped cream
  • Sugar rim
  • Meringue cookie

Non-Alcoholic Eggnog Add-Ins

If you like the consistency of alcoholic eggnog but don't want the booze, you can also add a few ounces of the following to create an eggnog mocktail:

  • Ginger beer
  • Ginger ale
  • Lemon-lime soda
  • Sparkling apple cider
  • Cream soda

Tasty Alcoholic Eggnog Recipes

No matter how you like your eggnog, there's a way to make a delicious version of this festive holiday drink. So give these recipes a try and add some boozy, creamy goodness to your holidays.

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Alcoholic Eggnog Primer: Easy Recipes & Tips