Home Ingredients List

Cocktail Ingredients List

This photo shows a variety of cocktail ingredients, with an emphasis on freshness, to get the best tasting cocktails. (© collage/123RF photo)

Use fresh produce and deluxe garnish for better tasting drinks.

The base and modifier liquors are the stars of the cocktail, but they couldn’t perform without a strong supporting cast. The following list is a brief introduction to some of the ingredients that make cocktails possible.

Agave Syrup – nectar from the agave plant used as sweetener

Bananas – fresh, rare in cocktails except Banana Daiquiri

Beef Bouillon – rare in cocktails except Bull Shots

Berry Sugar – fine grind sugar (sucrose) that’s easy to dissolve

Bitters Angostura – an aromatic bitter made from botanicals

Bitters Orange – made from orange peels and spices

Bitters Peychaud’s – an aromatic bitter made from botanicals


Blackberries – fresh berries, juice, used to flavor and garnish

Brown Sugar – medium dark cane sugar used in hot drinks 

Butter – rare in cocktails except Hot Buttered Rum

Celery – sticks used to garnish drinks with tomato juice

Celery Salt – used to rim the lip of tomato based cocktails

Chili Pepper – rare in cocktails with a few exceptions

Cinnamon Sticks – used as a garnish in hot cocktails

Clamato Juice – rarely used mix of clam and tomato juice

Cloves – rare in cocktails except for a few hot cocktails


Coffee – fresh brewed, or espresso, mostly used in hot drinks

Coconut – syrup or cream sweetener used in tropical drinks

Cranberry Juice – fresh or bottled, used in several cocktails

Cream – heavy cream, or half and half, for cream based drinks

Cube Sugar – standard white sugar cube used as sweetener

Eggs – fresh, whole, white or yolk, used in many frothy drinks

Egg Whites – pasteurized liquid egg whites in a gable top carton

Grapefruit Juice – fresh, bottled, used in a few cocktails

Grenadine – pomegranate syrup or juice, used in many drinks


Honey – mild clover flower variety, quick dissolve sweetener

Hot Rum Batter – pre made batter, home made, or commercial

Hot Sauce – usually Tabasco, to add heat to tomato based drinks

Lemon Juice – fresh squeezed, prime ingredient in many cocktails

Lemons – fresh, visually appealing, used to garnish many cocktails

Lime Juice – fresh squeezed, prime ingredient in many cocktails

Limes – fresh, visually appealing, used to garnish many cocktails

Maraschino Cherries – with stems attached, used as a garnish

Maraschino Cherry Juice – syrup poured from the cherry jar


Milk – fresh, whole, or 2%, used in milk based cocktails

Mint – fresh herb only, used as an ingredient and garnish

Nutmeg – whole seed spice, grated on demand as a garnish

Olives – whole green pitted, essential Martini ingredient

Orange Flower Water – rarely used orange scented water

Orange Juice – fresh squeezed, or carton, essential for cocktails

Oranges – visually appealing, used to garnish many cocktails

Orgeat Syrup – thick almond flavored syrup for sweetening


Peaches – fresh, or bottled fresh, used in a few cocktails

Pearl Onions – small sour cocktail onions used as a garnish

Pineapple Juice – fresh, carton or bottled for tropical drinks

Rose’s Lime Juice – rare in cocktails except for the Gimlet

Salt & Pepper – used to season many savory tomato cocktails

Salt Kosher – coarse salt used to rim the cocktail glass

Simple Syrup (Basic) – 1 to 1 mix of sugar and water for sweetening

Simple Syrup (Rich) – 2 to 1 mix of sugar and water for sweetening

Strawberries – fresh for use in Daiquiris and a few cocktails

Tomato Juice – fresh, bottled or canned for tomato based drinks

Whipping Cream – full fat cream, whipped to make a garnish

Worcestershire Sauce – spicy, vinegar condiment for a few drinks


 

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