Cranberry gin cocktail: an unusual version of cosmopolitan

Cranberry gin cocktail: an unusual version of cosmopolitan

When the words “cranberry” and “cocktail” come together, the first one that comes to mind is the popular cosmopolitan cocktail made with lemon vodka and cranberry juice. But what I will give you now is not your usual cranberry gin cocktail or a classic cosmopolitan cocktail. This is a tweaked version with lemon drizzle gin, instead of vodka.

What is a cosmopolitan cocktail?

The definition says that you make a cosmopolitan, or, informally, a cosmo with vodka, Cointreau, cranberry juice, and freshly squeezed or sweetened lime juice. You will see that most of the recipes use vodka citron to make this delicious drink, rather than a plain one.

If you dig a bit deeper, you can come across another cranberry and gin cocktail. It’s a cosmopolitan daisy, listed on an old cocktails book from the early 20th century. But this also is not the drink that I’m going to give you the recipe for. This one is actually a very easy recipe.

Which cranberry juice to use

a basket of fresh picked cranberries on a wooden table, some cranberries are spread on the table.

Using fresh and 100% fruit ingredients for your cocktails make a huge difference. I used to find Ocen Spray‘s 100% fruit-pressed pure cranberry juice until recently but I can’t anymore. Recently, I started using Biona organic cranberry juice and it’s doing a better than okay job for me.

If I could find fresh cranberries easily, I’d definitely be making my own fruit juice. I do this with other berries such as blueberries, raspberries… etc. As I always say, using homemade ingredients makes a very good difference. Ultimately, these are all homemade cocktails that I’m sharing the recipes of!

Difference between gin and vodka

The main difference is juniper. Vodka has a more neutral taste whereas gin leaves a juniper berry flavour (mostly) in your mouth. This makes quite a difference in cocktails, too. Depending on the type you use, you’ll get a good amount of herbal flavours, too.

Vodka is easier to integrate with any other mixers or drinks. Gin, on the other hand, needs more consideration while mixing with anything. You need to be careful about its flavour and make sure that it’s not dominating the cocktail you’re making. Or the other way around. In the end, the reason I love using lemon drizzle gin in a cranberry gin cocktail is the flavours.

How to make a cranberry gin cocktail

It’s not hard to guess the replacement. You can just use lemon drizzle gin instead of the vodka citron in a cosmopolitan cocktail. But if you prefer elevating the cranberry flavour, I’d recommend you reduce the cranberry juice. Put it on low heat for 10-12 minutes and use the juice less watery. Keep an eye on the juice while doing this, you won’t want to end up with syrup. What we’re looking for here is a more dense flavour. And use the usual amount on the recipe to have an elevated cranberry gin cocktail.

To further enhance the visual and aromatic appeal of your drink, consider incorporating fresh cranberries as a garnish. If you can find them, of course. For an extra layer of sophistication, rimming the glass with a sugar or citrus zest mixture can complement the sweet and tangy notes of the cocktail.

Cranberry gin cocktail recipe

This is a very simple recipe that will take you not even 5 minutes to prepare. As usual, I give you the measurements with parts instead of millilitres or ounces. I suggest you measure your glasses and make sure that you’re making the drink enough for everyone. This allows you to use any cup or glass as a measuring cup.

Hope you will like this recipe. Let me know what you think. And if you like cranberry gin cocktails, take a look at the City Rickey cocktail, a tweaked version of classic gin cocktail Gin Rickey, flavoured with cranberry juice. Cheers!

Cranberry gin cosmopolitan cocktail close up

Cranberry Gin Cocktail

A delicious gin based version of the famous cosmopolitan cocktail
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Cocktails
Cuisine American
Servings 1


  • 3 part Lemon drizzle gin
  • 2 part Triple sec
  • 2 part Cranberry juice Use the same amount for reduced juice
  • 1 part Fresh lime juice
  • 1 Lemon to garnish Twist a piece of peel


  • Put all your ingredients in a shaker, add lots of ice and shake well until the outside of the shaker is ice cold.
  • Pour the drink into your cooled martini glass.
  • Peel a strip from your lemon, cut to shape and twist to garnish your glass. Enjoy!
Keyword cranberry, gin, lemon, lime, triple sec

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