Averie Cooks

Cosmopolitan

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Cosmopolitan Cocktail — This classic Cosmopolitan recipe is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Cosmopolitan Cocktail

It wasn’t the late 90’s and early 2000’s without Sex and the City, Carrie Bradshaw, and Cosmos. I tuned in faithfully every week and waited patiently for the start of each new season.

I was living in Chicago at the time and thought New York City was so much cooler, and therefore so were Cosmopolitans, and they became my drink of choice for awhile, too.

They’re refreshing, taste light but pack a definite punch, not too sweet, and look fancy and elegant served in a martini glass.

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

What Is in a Cosmopolitan Cocktail? 

To make a refined yet simple Cosmopolitan drink, you’ll need the following basic and common ingredients:

  • Ice
  • Vodka
  • Cointreau Triple Sec (or other orange liqueur)
  • Lemon juice (optionally can use lime juice)
  • 100% cranberry juice
  • Lemon twist, for garnishing (optionally can use lime)
  • Maraschino cherry, optional for garnishing

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

How to Make a Cosmopolitan Cocktail

Let’s get nostalgic and make a classic Cosmopolitan recipe by filling a shaker with ice, adding vodka, Cointreau, lemon juice, cranberry juice, and shake vigorously for 20 seconds until the shaker is chilled to the touch.

Strain the mixture into a martini glass and squeeze a piece of lemon peel over the glass to release the oils and add more citrus flavor.

Then, slice the lemon peel into thin strips and garnish your pretty drink with a lemon twist and a maraschino cherry.

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping! 

A Few Notes About Making Cosmopolitans…

This Cosmopolitan drink recipe is as easy as it gets! However, there are a few notes I wanted to share about this classic cocktail. 

  • Originally, Cosmopolitans were made with citron vodka, but many bars and at-home liquor cabinets don’t keep it on hand. Therefore, adding fresh citrus juice with regular vodka has become a popular variation.
  • Cosmopolitans can be made with either lemon juice or lime juice and garnished with either lemon or lime as well.
  • A double is being prepared in the photographs in the shaker to fill both glasses.
  • Maraschino cherries aren’t a traditional garnish, but they’re eye-catching, fun, and flirty – everything a cosmo is!

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Can I Add More or Less Cranberry Juice? 

Yes! The hue of pink is dependent on how much cranberry juice is added. Recipes may call for anywhere from a splash to 1 ounce. This truly comes down to the drinkers’ personal preference.

I used 1 ounce per serving for this recipe and photos for a deep pink color and fruity flavor, but it can be adjusted to taste.

What Type of Cranberry Juice Should I Use? 

Make sure to use 100% cranberry juice or L&A brand and not cranberry juice cocktail because it will add a lot of sugar to the drink and destroy the flavor balance. 

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Can I Use Low-Sugar Cranberry Juice? 

Yes, I’ve also made cosmopolitans with sugar-free or 5-calorie-per-serving cranberry “juice” and I am totally fine with that.

However, I also use sugar-free products when they don’t tend to jeopardize the intended flavor balance or profile of a recipe. Do as you prefer.

What Garnishes Are on a Cosmopolitan? 

I garnished with lemon peels and maraschino cherries, but orange peels, lime slices, and cranberries are also common garnishes.

Maraschino cherries are not common but they help make the drink unique and are fun for the photos.

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Can This Recipe Be Made in Advance? 

No, I recommend preparing the Cosmopolitan drink just before you plan on serving it. The ice will melt otherwise and your cocktail will be watered down. 

Can I Make This as a Batch Cocktail? 

I bet you could stir together the vodka, triple sec, lemon juice, and cranberry juice in a pitcher (use the measurements below as ratios) and pour over ice later on. 

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Tips for the Best Cosmopolitan Cocktail

Where I really tend to be more of a purist though is with bottled citrus juice. In a cocktail, I always opt for freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice rather than bottled.

I garnished with lemon peels and maraschino cherries, but orange peels, lime slices, and cranberries are also common garnishes.

For bonus points, plan in advance, and serve your cosmopolitan cocktails in a chilled glass by placing the martini glasses in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes.

However, as a bit of trivia, it’s interesting to note that cosmopolitans are  not a martini even though they are served in a martini glass. They are actually part of the sour cocktail family.

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Cosmopolitan – This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Cosmopolitan Cocktail — This classic Cosmopolitan recipe is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Cosmopolitan - This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!
Yield: 1

Cosmopolitan

Prep Time 3 minutes
Additional Time 15 minutes
Total Time 18 minutes

This classic cocktail is made with vodka, orange liqueur, lemon juice, and cranberry juice. It’s flirty and flavorful yet refined and simple. Tart cranberry juice blends with fresh lemon juice to smooth out the vodka and enhance the triple sec for a balance and refreshing cocktail perfect for sipping!

Ingredients

  • Ice
  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce Cointreau Triple Sec (or other orange liqueur)
  • ½ ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice (optionally lime juice may be used)
  • 1 ounce 100% cranberry juice
  • Lemon twist, for garnish (optionally may use lime or orange)
  • Maraschino cherry, optional for garnish

Instructions

    1. Fill a cocktail shaker about ⅔ full with ice.
    2. Add in the vodka, Cointreau, lemon juice* (See Notes), cranberry juice (I like Ocean Spray or L&A. I have also made with 5-calorie cranberry 'juice' without issue), and shake vigorously for 20 seconds, or until the shaker is chilled to the touch.
    3. Strain the mixture into a martini glass (chilled is preferred - place in the freezer for 15 minutes) and squeeze a piece of lemon peel over the glass to release the oils and add more flavor.
    4. Then slice the lemon peel into thin strips and garnish** (See Notes) with a lemon twist and optionally a maraschino cherry.

Notes

* In a cocktail, I always opt for freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice rather than bottled.

**I garnished with lemon peels and maraschino cherries, but orange peels, lime slices, and cranberries are also common garnishes. Maraschino cherries are not common but they help make the drink unique and are fun for the photos.

***Recipe is intended for those whom alcohol is legal and appropriate.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

1

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 367Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 9mgCarbohydrates: 32gFiber: 3gSugar: 25gProtein: 1g

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    3 Comments on “Cosmopolitan”

  1. Brilliant Concept!! Keep up the Good Work!!

    Rating: 5
  2. Love Cosmos❣️  What brand of 100% cranberry juice do you use. I have used the cranberry juice cocktail and my drink has an “off” taste not quite right. 
    I’ve also used the 5 calorie juice when I want less calories but it’s just okay. 

    Looking forward to making your Margarita as well another tasty favorite 🤩 

    • Just went in and linked to the cranberry juices that I can vouch for. As a whole, if you’re not used to unsweetened cran juice, it may taste a bit intense. However I don’t like sweet drinks so it’s perfect for me. You can make this with regular cranberry juice that you can buy anywhere, however for me, that gets too sweet.