This is the best Cosmopolitan cocktail recipe! It’s easy to make and uses only 4 simple ingredients. The vibrant color and flavors make this cosmopolitan drink perfect for parties and year round sipping. It’s also one of our best vodka cocktails to make. Read below to learn fun facts and the history of this go-to cocktail too.
A cosmo is one of our favorite, easy cocktails. Don’t let its bright pink color fool you, as it’s surprisingly lower in calories and sugar. It’s also a cocktail that can be enjoyed year round and perfect for holiday parties or summer get togethers!
Before we dive into the recipe for our cosmopolitan drink, it’s useful to know something about its history! You can use these fun facts to entertain your guests as you prepare their drinks.
Cosmopolitan Cocktail Ingredients
There are 4 main cosmopolitan cocktail ingredients in this cosmo! Just keep these ingredients on hand and you can whip one up anytime.
- Cranberry Juice – Use a cranberry juice that is sweet, like Ocean Spray. The organic, unsweetened cranberry juice will not work when making a cosmo.
- Lime Juice – Always use fresh-squeezed.
- Vodka – See below for some good options.
- Cointreau – You can also try it with triple sec too.
Another option is using cranberry-pom juice blend or a cranberry-apple blend of Ocean Spray!
How to Make a Cosmopolitan Cocktail
Many mixologists add their own flair to their Cosmopolitan cocktail recipe. However, there are certain elements shared by every self-respecting cosmo.
- Combine high-quality vodka, lime juice, cranberry juice, and cointreau into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
- Shake it vigorously for at least 30 seconds. The outside of the shaker should be ice cold just before serving. Use a strainer or slotted spoon to strain the drink into a martini glass.
Garnish with a lime wedge. If you want to put your own spin on the drink, add fresh cranberries for the holidays!
Best Vodka for this Cosmopolitan Drink
- Grey Goose Vodka
- St. George All Purpose Vodka
- Barr Hill Vodka
- Reyka Vodka
- Belvedere Vodka
- Death’s Door Vodka
History of the Cosmopolitan Cocktail
Accounts vary, but many attribute the invention of the cosmopolitan cocktail to a Miami bartender, Cheryl Cook, who worked in Miami’s South Beach during the 70s. She wanted to create a cocktail that would make customers look sophisticated without being difficult to drink. So, she went for something sweet.
When to Serve this Cosmopolitan Drink
This cocktail is perfect for celebrations! Here are some fun ideas:
Are cosmopolitans strong?
Cosmopolitan martinis are strong, but the ingredients make them smooth and quite tasty. Be careful! You can make pitchers of perfectly mixed ingredients or prepare martinis for two for a date night at home.
What does a cosmopolitan drink taste like?
Lime presents a sour flavor that sets the tone for the drink. The Cointreau as a layer of sweetness and refreshing orange flavor. The cranberry gives the cosmopolitan its signature pink hue and adds tartness to the mix. Finally, vodka dilutes the flavors and lifts them for a complex drink profile that has many fans.
Is Cointreau the same as Triple Sec?
Cointreau is a top-shelf orange liqueur. It is a triple sec style of alcohol, although it’s not labeled as one. Grand Marnier is another heavyweight in the triple sec category.
After adding triple sec, she experimented until she came up with the lime and cranberry juice combination which gave it a pretty pink color.
The drink made waves on South Beach where it was the splash hit. It soon became one of the favorite drinks of up and coming professionals in Manhattan as well.
Is a cosmopolitan a woman’s drink?
It depends on who you ask. The Cosmo was the favorite drink of Carrie Bradshaw on the 1990s show Sex in the City, which targeted young urban professionals. Chances are, you will see more women than men enjoying this particular cocktail. However, men are welcome to enjoy the refreshing flavor too!
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Let us know if you try this cosmopolitan cocktail recipe and leave a comment and review below letting us know how it turned out!
- 2 ounces vodka
- 1 1/2 ounces cranberry juice, Ocean Spray brand
- 1/2 ounce lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 1/2 ounce Cointreau, any orange liqueur
- Squeeze the lime to make fresh lime juice.
- Pour in the cranberry juice, vodka, lime juice, and Cointreau into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
- Shake for 20-30 seconds.
- Strain the cocktail into a coupe glass.
- Garnish with a lime wheel, wedge, or twist.