Your Ultimate Booze-Infused Holiday Menu

by Marion Bernstein

Remember that time we discovered booze-infused ice cream and nearly tailspinned down a glorious rabbit hole of sheer ecstasy? Well friends, prepare yourselves for round two — cause I've got a fever — and the only cure is more booze-infused food. Like, an entire menu of it. In hopes of satiating my hedonistic curiosity, I spent days scouring the Internet for the best alcohol-laden foods, and I am delighted to share the drunken fruits of my labor here today.

Before we begin, let's get meta for a moment, yes? As I combed through each food blog searching keywords, I noticed that my eyes, brain, and belly would light up at the sight of such unified treasures as "pumpkin beer chicken tacos" and "bourbon whipped cream." This immediately led me to wonder: what is it about the booze-food fusion that's so alluring? Because let's be honest, one tablespoon of bourbon per 8-by-14-inch apple tart surely won't get you drunk — especially after all that beer and butternut squash mac and cheese. And booze certainly isn't the cheapest of household ingredients. Why splurge on the $20 port wine when you're well aware that bacon and brie on its own already tastes damn fine?

We do it because we crave that depth of flavor. It's not quite sweet, sour, bitter, or salty. It's depth. It's umami. It's special. We're special. And during this holiday season, we deserve to treat ourselves and loved ones to special ingredients. So if you're looking to add a little something special to your holiday feast this year, go ahead and try one (or three) of these booze-infused recipes below. Just remember to eat and drink responsibly.


Bacon-Wrapped Baked Brie with Port Wine Cranberry Sauce

Thanks to Apron and Sneakers, your guests will come for the brie and stay for the bacon and port wine cranberry sauce. That's really just a long way of saying ohhhmiiiigod.

Whiskey Mussels

This 15 minute dish will fill your home with the comforting aromas of tarragon and shallot, while the added whiskey warms your core. Food Fanatic provides the perfect simple recipe.

Beer Boiled Peel-and-Eat Shrimp

Avoid those run-of-the-mill rubbery, flavorless pre-packed grocery store shrimp, and instead fill your cart with brown ale, onion, celery, and spices. Back to Her Roots teaches you how to boil, strain, and chill these holiday crowd pleasers in 13 minutes flat.

Main Dishes

Creamy Shrimp Pasta with Hard Cider Sauce

Hard cider adds a light effervescence and unexpected sweetness to this creamy shrimp and spinach pasta dish. Luckily, these directions from Food Fanatic encourage drinking while cooking.

Beer and Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

The butternut squash and wheat beer combo adds a smooth, creamy base to this traditional comfort food. Check out the Back to Her Roots recipe where blogger Cassie recommends her favorite branded beer.


Steamy Kitchen provides a detailed step-by-step guide to creating this traditional Mediterranean stew. The saffron-steeped white wine base gives this seafood mélange its distinctive golden color.

Drunken Mushrooms

Drunken mushrooms are the perfect addition to any main dish meat. Vegetarian? Vegan? Not a problem! Ditch the meat altogether, and serve up these tipsy 'shrooms over a plate of mashed potatoes or polenta. Back to Her Roots pairs hers with mashed cauliflower and a reserved glass of red. Yum.

Pumpkin Beer Chicken Tacos

Did someone say tacos? Did someone say pumpkin beer? Did Food Fanatic combine both divine treats in one slow cooker recipe here?

Beef and Mushroom Bolognese Fettuccine

When Kelly takes a break from writing The Gouda Life, she can be found cleaning, drinking, and stirring the pot until her red wine based bolognese is perfect — rich and flavorful, just how she likes it.

Drunk Chicken with Goji Berries and Rice

Table For Two blogger Julie encourages you to break out of your booze-infused comfort zone, calling for out of the ordinary main dish ingredients such as black sesame oil, goji berries, and Chinese cooking wine. If you're not fortunate enough to have a Chinese market around the corner, consult your nearest Google search bar, and bookmark that shit, stat.

Korean-Italian Chili

Ever wonder how to combine Gochujang Korean chili paste, spicy Italian sausage, and dry red wine? Me too. Let's join hands and click on over to Food Nasty's Korean-Italian chili. I've got a feeling football Sundays will never be the same.

Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie

Simmer onions, carrots, parsnips, mushrooms, and turnips in Guinness draught for a vegetarian take on this traditional UK dish. Get Food Fanatic's hearty recipe here.


Rum-Spiked Caramel Apple Cobbler

Watch rum, caramel, and apples snuggle as they bake, bringing this heavenly booze-filled dessert to perfection. Blame The Gouda Life and its decadent recipe for the drool you'll need to wipe off your ugly holiday sweater.

Red Wine Chocolate Cupcakes

Is there anything better than red wine? Yes, and it's called a red wine chocolate cupcake. Red wine adds a delightful moistness and subtle boozy zing to your traditional chocolate cake. And don't worry, Table For Two assures you there's no need to break the bank — any varietal will do — boxed or bottled.

Easy Apple Tart with Bourbon Whipped Cream

Personalize this super simple dessert with a splash of bourbon as you whip your cream and sugar. Steamy Kitchen shows you how in just 30 minutes.

Neapolitan Porter Float

Back to Her Roots says it best: "Chocolate ice cream. Vanilla porter. Strawberry whipped cream. Boom goes the dynamite."

Images: Giphy; Apron and Sneakers; Food Fanatic (4); Back to Her Roots (5); Steamy Kitchen (2); The Gouda Life (2); Table For Two (2); Food Nasty