Sure, you can say you’re connecting with your Irish roots when you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, but we all know the real purpose of the holiday: getting really drunk on really great beer and drinks (Guinness and Jameson required) before chowing down on traditional Irish fare.
If you want to skip the pricey bars this year and create your own Irish drinks at home, add these cocktails and their ingredients to your grocery list.
Traditional Irish Drinks for the Novice Bartender
There’s no need to be fancy to serve up some Irish drinks to your friends this St. Patty’s Day.
An Irish Trashcan is a green drink with a real kick, and it takes hardly any skill to make. However, you are going to need to have a good mix of alcohol on hand. This drink mixes gin, rum, vodka, schnapps, triple sec and blue curaçao all into one wild concoction. It’s then topped with a Red Bull, just so, you know, you don’t get too tired.
An Irish Car Bomb is truly Irish, there’s no doubt. It mixes Guinness, Jameson and Baileys, the Irish alcohol trinity. It only takes two steps to make, but it is pretty fun to make and then drink. You put Bailey’s and whiskey in a shot glass, fill up a beer glass with half a pint of Guinness and then drop the shot in, glass and all, and chug.
Whiskey-Based Irish Drinks
If whiskey is your liquor of choice, you certainly won’t be left wanting for St. Patty’s Day drinks.
An Irish Whiskey Lemonade is a light and refreshing drink that mixes Jameson with lemon vodka, lemonade, bitters and ginger beer. Even your non-whiskey drinking friends will enjoy this Irish drink.
One of the more traditional Irish drinks, a Jameson and Ginger is one you can pick up in Dublin if you happen to visit the Jameson distillery. If you’re not planning a trip to Ireland any time soon, though, you can make it at home, with this Jameson-approved cocktail recipe.
Another refreshing, Irish drink, The Irish Mule really works with ginger to its advantage, creating a light beverage that, again, even non-whiskey drinkers will enjoy.
Coffee-Based Irish Drinks
Of course, everyone knows Irish coffee. However, there’s more than one way to make one.
For those wanting traditional Irish drinks, you can go with this Traditional Irish Coffee recipe that mixes hot coffee with brown sugar, Irish whiskey and cream. While many Americans only enjoy traditional Irish drinks on St. Patrick’s Day, you should really start looking for excuses to get more Irish coffee in your life. After all, in Ireland, they drink Irish coffee on all the holidays.
For a slightly sweeter version of the traditional Irish coffee, go with the Irish Winter. It has the same whiskey, coffee and cream, but also Kahlua and Bailey’s. You get a bit of a creamier texture and the whiskey isn’t as potent.
Irish Drink Shots
If you plan to throw a particularly crazy St. Patrick’s Day party, then you’re going to need some shots. Thankfully, there are some Irish drinks recipes for those as well, so you don’t necessarily have to settle for just taking shots of straight Jameson (though we wouldn’t blame you if you did that, either).
The Irish Flag Shot isn’t only tasty, it’s also pretty impressive looking when you hand it out to your friends. You only need three ingredients, but you might want to practice this recipe ahead of your party. It can take a few tries to get the “floating” of the three layers of the shot correct. When you nail it, though, you’ll be rewarded with a pretty green, white and yellow layered shot.
If all that floating business sounds a bit too time-intensive for you, go with the single-hued Emerald Green Shooter. Mix melon liqueur with vodka and Goldschlager, mix with ice to chill and then strain into a shot glass.
If you have a real fondness for Shamrock Shakes and Mint Thins, this shot will be right up your alley. The Luck of the Irish Shot is made with Irish cream liqueur, chocolate liqueur and mint liqueur and then topped with whipped cream and chocolate mints.
For those who prefer drinks on the savory or smoky side versus the sweet, the Irish Breakfast Shot fits the bill. Fill a shot glass with butterscotch schnapps and Irish whiskey. Fill another glass with orange juice and top it with a piece of cooked bacon. Drink the shot, then the OJ and then chow down on the bacon.
Lastly, if you want to throwback to your college days with some jello shots, upgrade the experience so that it’s suitable for St. Patty’s Day. Guinness Jello Shots combine Guinness, Bailey’s, coffee and chocolate.
Non-Alcoholic Traditional Irish Drinks
You don’t have to get sloshed to enjoy St. Patrick’s Day, though. If you’re in the mood for some non-alcoholic Irish drinks, you can certainly find them.
For starters, if you can get your hands on it, Cidona makes an awesome addition to your party even as a non-alcoholic beverage. Cidona is pretty much only popular in Ireland and is an apple-based soft drink that’s like a non-alcoholic version of cider.
A Non-Alcoholic Irish Shillelagh is a fruit-based mocktail that combines sugar, peach juice, lemon juice and raspberries.
If you’re craving an Irish Mint Chocolate Shake, you can make a booze-less version of that as well, something closer to the McDonald’s variety.
Planning a St. Patty’s Day Party?
These traditional Irish drinks and cocktails will help make your party one to remember, and you might even get a reputation among your friends for being one talented mixologist.
From Irish trash cans to car bombs to breakfast shots, there are plenty of ways to get a little tipsy this St. Patrick’s Day, without paying for a single high-priced drink at the bar.
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