28 Party-Perfect Batch Cocktail Recipes
As the temperature heats up, we're planning for days spent poolside with a thick book, salty snacks, and of course—cool cocktails. And everyone knows sunshine and sips are best when shared, so we've collected our best 28 big-batch cocktails you can make for every occasion this season.
These refreshing big-batch margaritas using entire limes—peel, pith, flesh, and all—take food waste reduction to the next level. Just dump all of your ingredients into a blender, give them a good whirl, and strain into a pitcher for the easiest, and likely most delicious, batch of margaritas you’ve ever made.
Easy Margaritas for a Crowd
Look no further than these large-batch margaritas when you're hosting your next big fiesta and can't spend hours juicing limes. This margarita recipe is a revelation--the secret ingredient is a can of frozen limeade concentrate which, once emptied, doubles as a measuring cup for the remaining ingredients. These margaritas are strong, slightly (but not overly) sweet, and have the perfect note of orange flavor. Oh, and did we mention there's beer involved? We prefer to serve in a large glass drink dispenser with plenty of limes on the side.
Break out the punch bowl for a sparkly, citrusy, pineapple punch fun for crowds of all ages. This also makes a great spiked punch; simply subsitute seltzer chilled vodka.
A sweet (but not cloying) precursor to the martini, this cocktail dates back to the 1880s. At Alfred's Steakhouse in San Francisco, the bar manager, Aaron Paul, scales up the booze and chills it ahead of time, so it's simpler to serve a crowd. For just 1 cocktail, use 2 oz. gin, 3/4 oz. vermouth, 1/4 oz. maraschino, and 2 dashes bitters.
This fruity beer cocktail falls somewhere between a shandy, a margarita, and a radler. Serve with citrus slices and a half-salted rim, if you'd like, or omit the salt for a straight-up refreshing sipper.
Summer Melon Rosé Sangria
For a playful presentation, use a melon baller to scoop the fruit into bobbing orbs.
Cucumber-Lime Infused Gin and Tonic
Make the gin mixture ahead or let stand at room temp 3 hours.
Raspberries and strawberries really brighten up the flavors in one this berry cocktail. Serve it up at a party for a perfectly summery and refreshing sip.
Sugars 18g (est. added sugars 17g)
Thai Basil-Ginger Spritzer
Paired with peppery ginger, the anise flavor of Thai basil gives you a highly refreshing summer sipper. Look for kaffir lime leaves at Asian markets. If kaffir leaves are unavailable, simply omit. This recipe will also work nicely with fresh mint or cilantro sprigs instead of Thai basil.
Marionberries, an exceptionally juicy, slightly tart blackberry variety developed by Oregon State University, are perfect for this fizzy summer refresher. You can also use regular blackberries.
Orange-Infused Rum Gimlets
If you enjoy fruit and light, this refreshing summer cocktail is your new BFF.
The Negroni is a fabulously sophisticated cocktail for a warm summer night and satisfies with just one dose.
Sparkling Elderflower Lemonade
Elderflower liqueur is sweet, delicate, and floral, like nectar from a spring bouquet.
Try a new twist on a classic margarita with watermelon and mint flavors.
Strawberry Hibiscus Cooler
With or without the vodka, this sweet-tart drink deserves a spot at brunch.
Sweet Heat Arnold Palmer
The trick to layering beverages is to add liquids to the glass in order of most to least dense. We put most of the sugar into the lemonade (the denser liquid), so be sure to swirl before swigging.
Vera Kollans Cocktails
This drink is Greg Best's twist on the classic fizzy lemonade cocktail, Tom Collins.
Blood Orange Mimosas
We love the color blood oranges give this classic brunch cocktail. A dash of bitters adds depth. Look for orange bitters--such as Fee Brothers or Stirrings--at liquor stores or specialty grocers. The sugar cube dissolves as you sip, balancing the bitters and giving off bubbles for a festive touch. Juice the oranges and keep chilled up to a day ahead.
Slap the verbena leaves lightly between your palms before you garnish to release essential oils.
Season Creep Cocktails
For this drink, Best uses yellow Chartreuse--an herbal liqueur flavored with saffron and honey. Substitute Strega, an Italian herbal liqueur, if you wish.
Retro Rum Punch
Simply stir together spiced rum, white rum, pineapple juice, cranberry juice, and ginger beer in a punch bowl. Enjoy the spicy mixture over ice with fresh fruit garnishes.
Pear and Pomegranate Bellini
For an elegant and fruity cocktail ready in just 5 minutes, try this easy bellini made with brandy, pomegranate juice and prosecco.
Sparkling Citrus Cocktail
Serve a company-worthy holiday cocktail made with fruit juices, sparkling wine, and sugar.
Sherry-Cava Citrus Fizz
From the Kitchen of…Scott Mowbray, Former Cooking Light Editor
"I wanted the Spanish flavors of Catalonian cava and Jerez sherry to mingle in a holiday punch. The syrup, called an oleo saccharum, pulls essential oils from the orange peel and perfumes the cocktail."
Make this punch up to 4 hours ahead, but wait to add the cava until just before serving.
Celery Gin Fizz
This gin cocktail blend is perfectly light and refreshing. Be sure to add leafy celery hearts for an enhanced cool, crisp sensation and a stellar presentation that will leave everyone buzzing.
Spring Gin Punch
A simple formula makes perfect punch every time.
Raspberry "Sangre" Margaritas
Grapefruit Elderflower Cocktail
Elderflower is the hidden treasure in this rum-spiked take on the traditional Salty Dog.