How to Batch Cocktail Recipes

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Easy steps for how to prep cocktails in bulk

Rinse, drink, repeat

Prepping cocktails in bulk for a party doesn't have to be a headache—save that for the next morning. (Kidding, we're all about choosing quality ingredients and moderation to avoid the hangover... but you do you). If you’re ready for the ultimate hosting how-to, get ready to batch your cocktails. You read that right: What you may have thought impossible, difficult, or just downright obnoxious in the past—we’ve simplified for all your hosting (read: drinking) needs. With just three steps and a few pro tips thrown in, you’ll be stirring and shaking up cocktails at your next party without even thinking about it. Scroll on for how to make cocktails in bulk. For your parties large or small. No matter how big your guestlist is… we’re not asking how many people your rather large batch recipe is serving. 

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Steps for Prepping Batch Cocktails

We weren’t kidding about three steps for prepping. Ok, maybe add in picking your drinks and shopping for ingredients. From there, carry on, cocktail connoisseur. 

1. Figure out how many drinks you'll serve

Generally, you can estimate 3-4 drinks per guest. Some will drink more, some less. Since you’re prepping these cocktails in a batch, you can simply multiply the number of servings your cocktail recipe calls for to get your total number needed. #cocktailmath

2. Figure out total volume of drinks

Meaning, calculate the total(ish) fl. oz. so you can pick the necessary pitchers. If the cocktail recipe serves 2, calls for 2 oz of vodka and 4 oz of pineapple juice, and you want to serve 16: Your total fl. oz. = 8(2 oz vodka) + 8(4oz pineapple juice) = 48 fl oz.

3. Pick your pitcher

Your easel to  display your work of art, if you will. If you have pitchers but don’t know how many ounces they hold, use a measuring cup. Fill it with water, pour it in your pitcher. Record how many times you fill your pitcher to solve the pitcher-holding mystery.

Fruit cocktail being poured into a glass
Pro Tip: If you have ample pitchers to choose from, you can mix the ingredients in a large (clean) bucket or mixing bowl. Measure the amounts you need, mix, and then fill pitchers accordingly.

A Timeline for What to Prep, When

If you’re on the sourdough train, or you’re not, we promise that prepping your cocktails ahead of time is simpler than kneading dough or feeding your starter. See tips below for when to take on certain (very simple) cocktail prepping tasks.  

woman sitting in a robe drinking a cocktail and reading a magazine
How you'll look... when your cocktails are batch prepped an entire week in advance

Up to 1 Week Before

  • Mix cocktail ingredients in a pitcher - without the ice.
  • Cover pitcher with plastic wrap and store in the fridge.

24-48 Hours Before

  • If your cocktail has fresh fruit juice, mix 24 - 48 hours before partytime. If you mix it earlier than that, it may lose a bit of flavor.

1-2 Hours Before

  • Mix carbonated liquids in. Think soda water, tonic water, spritzer of any type of 7-Up.

Time to Serve

  • Stir ice in. This one’s important to wait for - otherwise you’ll dilute your masterpiece.
Lemon being squeezed into a cocktail

How to Serve Pre-Batched Cocktails

Now, the moment you’ve worked, measured, and toiled toward: The serving and cheersing.

1. Serve in chilled glasses!

This calls for less ice, and gives an elite drinking experience.

  • Keep glasses in the fridge or freezer for 3-4 hours ahead of party time. 
  • After the first round of glasses are used, rinse glass, and stir ice around empty glass to chill it again. Pour ice out, and drink #2 in. 

2. If the drink calls for shaking or stirring, assemble drinks individually come party time. 

Pro Tip: Make it interactive! Set a notecard in a frame with written instructions. i.e: Pour 1 part mix & 1 part soda over ice. Sip up!
moscow mule cocktails in glassware

Suddenly, batching cocktails in bulk became eons easier. Be warned: We understand it may be quite satisfactory to succeed in the cocktail batching department. Must you prep strong cocktails in a batch for every gathering here on out? We’ll let you decide… it is an art form. You’re the artist. 

Try out your new expertise on our Top 5 Favorite Pre-Batched Cocktail Recipes

Other Cocktail Tips & Tricks

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