Peppermint Martini

Trade the traditional olive for some red and white stripes.

peppermints martini
Photo: Photographer: Frederick Hardy II, Food Stylist: Margaret Dickey, Prop Stylist: Christina Daley
Active Time:
5 mins
Total Time:
5 mins

Cool things off with a signature holiday cocktail that's sure to put you in the Christmas spirit. This festive rendition of a classic martini eschews the obligatory olive in favor of candy canes that dangle dashingly from the rim of the glass. For an extra special, minty touch, dip and coat the rim of your glass in crushed peppermint candy crumbs. This will make sure the cool kick of peppermint flavor hits your lips at the very first sip. If you'd rather your candy canes dangle from your tree or decorate your table, you can always use peppermint candies instead of seasonal canes. They're available year round too. Our Test Kitchen pros recommend pouring a round of these Peppermint Martinis as a pre-dinner drink or as an accompaniment to dessert. It's smooth and creamy thanks to the splash of Irish cream liqueur with a minty kick that keeps things refreshing. Cheers!


  • 2 small peppermint candy canes or 4 peppermint candies, plus 1 small peppermint candy cane for garnish

  • 1 ½ tablespoons granulated sugar

  • 1 tablespoon water

  • ¼ cup (2 ounces) peppermint schnapps

  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) vanilla vodka

  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) Irish cream liqueur (such as Baileys)


  1. Place candy canes or peppermint candies in a large, resealable plastic bag. Seal bag and pound using a rolling pin or a heavy skillet until coarsely crushed. Transfer crushed candies to a small plate.

  2. Stir together sugar and water in a small, shallow bowl until well combined. Dip rim of a standard (7½-ounce) martini glass in mixture, then into crushed candies to lightly coat.

  3. Fill a cocktail shaker two-thirds full with ice. Add schnapps, vodka, and liqueur. Place lid on shaker, and shake until well combined and chilled, 1 to 2 minutes. Strain into prepared martini glass. Garnish with candy cane. Serve immediately.

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