Making a homemade liqueur is a lot of fun and so simple. The ingredients are usually some fresh fruits and spices that you will mix with alcohol (vodka or grain alcohol). Leave them to macerate in a mason jar for a week or longer. Shake it now and then, strain the mixture, add simple syrup (water and sugar boiled together), and ready your homemade drink.
It is also a great gift idea and only takes a little planning ahead. Some recipes are ready in a day, the Coffee Liqueur or the Irish Cream. However, most of these drinks require 1-4 weeks to be steep. The process seems long, but most of this time is only waiting and does not require much effort.
Instead of giving a bottle of wine or any kind of alcohol, why not give a unique homemade liqueur? If you know your friend’s taste, you can make personalized bottles with a handmade card tied around the bottle’s neck with a nice little bow.
1. Homemade Coffee Liqueur
On hot summer days, most of us swap our hot morning coffee for a delicious ice coffee. There is nothing better than a freshly brewed espresso poured over ice and mixed in a shaker. This delicious, refreshing coffee liqueur perfect on hot summer evenings after a great meal. Besides, it only needs 4 days to infuse so you can surprise your coffee-lover friends this weekend!
2. Italian Limoncello
Limoncello is a very popular digestif liqueur in Italy, where it is traditionally made from the zest of Sorrento’s famed lemons. Making your own limoncello is very simple. Soak the lemon zest in vodka for about 7 days, then strain the liquid. Add simple syrup (sugar boiled with water) to the alcohol and leave it for a few days. In 10 days, with a little work, you have a delicious homemade Limoncello! Make sure to use the best quality organic lemons and serve ice cold. It will keep up to 1-2 years!
3. Greek Pomegranate Homemade Liqueur
Greek cuisine is one of the best in Europe and also famous for homemade jams, cordials, and liqueurs. You will need two types of alcohol, brandy and vodka, sugar, cinnamon, and pomegranates, for this recipe. The macerating process makes it a little longer to prepare, but after 20 days, you will have a unique, refreshing drink from the Mediterranean.
4. Homemade Liqueur – Crème de Cassis
Delicious summery, fruity, boozy, liqueur from France that requires patience but totally worths it! It is also possible to make it from frozen black currants as black currant are not always and not everywhere available. Mash the black currants, mix it with vodka and sugar and cinnamon stick, and put it in a mason jar. Keep it in a warm place, and don’t forget to shake it once a week. Then after a month, you only have to strain it, fill the liquid into handsome bottles, and done!
5. Spiced Pear Vodka
The delicious juicy pears will give the vodka a rich and fruity taste that can not be compared with the artificially flavored vodkas you can get in the supermarkets. You will need some pears, sugar, vodka, cinnamon, and ginger for this pear-infused vodka, plus a little patience. The infusion takes one week, but you can leave the mixture to soak until it gets the desirable flavor.
6. Spiced Arancello
Spiced Arancello is very easy to make, and after one week, it is ready to drink. Of course, the more you wait, the more rich taste you will get. Similarly to Limoncello, you will need the zest of the fruit, in this case, oranges. Add ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla and cloves, vodka and leave it in a mason jar shaking every day. After 1 week of strain, the mixture adds the sugary syrup, fills it into bottles, and keeps some nice spices for decoration.
7. Homemade Peppermint Liqueur
A little sip to your hot chocolate or cocktails, and you have a new twist in the flavor. For this recipe, you will need vodka, sugar, peppermint oil, or peppermint extract. It needs to steep for 2 weeks, so make sure you have enough time if it is a gift. If you have plenty of fresh mints growing in your garden or prefer to use fresh ingredients, check out the Creme De Menthe Liqueur recipe.
8. Homemade Irish Cream
Smooth and silky whisky base cream liqueur that you can add to your coffee, ice coffee, milkshakes according to your taste. Another great thing about the homemade Irish Cream that it is very quick to make, so you can prepare it on the same day you will meet the birthday girl/boy! Keep it in the fridge, and it will last for a month.
9. Fennel Digestif
It is a perfect gift for someone who likes black licorice and digestive taste after a filling dinner. You can use either vodka or grain alcohol for this recipe. The mixture needs 1 week to be steep; after this, you can add the syrup and put it in the freezer. It keeps forever.
10. Super Easy Spiced Rum
This recipe is a great idea for a last-minute and still homemade gift. You only need a bottle of good quality golden rum, cinnamon sticks, star anise, vanilla beans, orange zest, and a pretty bottle with a cork. Put a birthday note with a ribbon around the neck of the bottle and ready!