Getting together with the family at Thanksgiving comes along with all the qualities you love and dislike about them.  As questions about the year float around the room, everyone needs just a little something (strong) to sip on.  Here are 11 delicious Thanksgiving cocktails that will remind you of the autumn season.

Pumpkin Pie Martini

sweet, pumpkin
Jocelyn Hsu

The holiday is surrounded by one famed dessert: pumpkin pie. By shaking five ingredients with ice and straining into a graham cracker rimmed glass, you'll mimic the popular flavor in a Thanksgiving cocktail.

1/2 ounce Stoli Vanilla (optional to give it kick)

1 ounce Pumpkin Spice liqueur (such as Hiram Walker)

1/2 ounce Kahlua

1/2 ounce Butterscotch Schnapps

1/2 ounce half-and-half

Crushed graham crackers

Cinnamon stick (garnish)

Cranberry Champagne Cocktail

We all know every holiday needs a toast of champagne to kick off the party.  By pouring champagne over cranberry juice into a flute, you'll add a Thanksgiving cocktail twist to the celebration.

1-ounce cranberry juice (sweetened)

1 wedge lime

Champagne or sparkling wine

Cranberries (frozen)

Spiced Cabernet 

cinnamon, cookie, sweet, candy, chocolate
Natalie Rodriguez

Mulled wine is a staple around the holidays as cold weather creeps in. In a large saucepan, combine Cabernet, cloves, sugar, and cinnamon. Juice the oranges into the mix and simmer. After 30 minutes, the perfect Thanksgiving wine is ready to serve.  

1 (3000-ml) box Cabernet Sauvignon

1 cup sugar, plus more to taste

15 whole cloves

2 small or 1 large cinnamon sticks

1 navel orange

Spiked Apple Cider

Mix together apple cider, dark rum, and cinnamon schnapps to put a spin on the classic apple cider.  Garnish with apple skewers tossed in lemon juice for a flavorful Thanksgiving cocktail.

1/4 gallon apple cider

1/2 cup dark rum

1/2 cup cinnamon schnapps

1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cut into large chunks

1/2 lemon, juiced

Thanksgiving Seabreeze

orange, citrus
Hannah Leverson

Amongst the cooking, cocktails can slide into the background of Thanksgiving. For a quick, last-minute idea, combine orange juice, cranberry juice, and vodka into a chilled pitcher.

1 cup orange juice

1 cup cranberry juice

1 cup vodka

Gingersnap Cocktail

Another famed desert flooding the holidays is the beloved gingersnap cookie.  Combine these simple ingredients and shake into a martini glass.  Garnish with a cinnamon stick to turn your childhood cookie into an adult Thanksgiving cocktail. 

1 1/2 ounces vodka

1 ounce ginger liqueur, such as Domaine de Canton

1 ounce fresh lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon agave syrup

1/4 teaspoon peeled and grated fresh ginger

Pinch ground cinnamon

Pinch ground cloves

Pinch grated nutmeg

Hoppin' Hot Scotch

coffee, chocolate, milk, sweet
Rica Beltran

Pour hot chocolate over schnapps to bring back your favorite childhood memories. Create an almond touch by adding a splash of amaretto. 

2 oz. butterscotch schnapps

8-10 oz. hot chocolate (made with water or milk)

Whipped cream (optional)

Chocolate shavings (optional)

1/2 oz. amaretto (optional, but gives off a warm, almond aroma)

Apple Cider Shandy

Not a champagne fan? No worries. Mix your favorite sparkling cider with a lager beer to create a frosty, sparkling beverage.  

4 (12-fluid ounce) bottles lager beer, chilled (recommended: Heineken)

1 (25.4-fluid ounce) bottle sparkling apple cider, chilled

Bourbon Coolers

The classic combination of maple and bourbon is a staple in the Thanksgiving season.  Shake together bourbon, orange juice, and maple syrup to feel like you're sipping on autumn. 

6 oz. bourbon

6 oz. orange juice   

5-6 tablespoons pure maple syrup

Cranberry-Walnut Martini

Walnuts are easily overlooked, but in this simple martini they take center stage. Combine walnut liqueur and vodka into a shaker with ice.  Garnish with cranberries and a walnut. 

2 1/2 ounces vodka, preferably Ketel One

2 ounces walnut liqueur, preferably Nocello

3 fresh cranberries

1 sprig rosemary

1 walnut, toasted

Peachy Pear Cocktail

Lastly, let's not forget the pear.  Stir together liquid ingredients into a large pitcher to highlight the pear in your Thanksgiving cocktail and the cranberries in your Thanksgiving meal. 

1 can peach nectar

1 can pear nectar

2 cups seltzer water

1/4 cup vodka, optional

1/4 cup peach schnapps, optional


Peach or pear slices, for garnish