Try this Holiday Hot Toddy on a cold winter’s night.

If you’re hoping for an extra gift or two under the tree this year, all you have to do is leave Santa a thermos of this warming holiday hot toddy. A seasonal take on one of my favorite classic winter cocktails, orange and freshly squeezed lemon juice are simmered with honey, orange slices, whole cloves and cinnamon sticks before being added to a generous pour of bourbon or whiskey.

Serves: 4


  • 1 1/2 cups orange juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup bourbon or whiskey
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 an orange, end trimmed and cut into 4 round slices
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • Whole cloves


Preheat glasses or mugs by filling them with boiling water and letting them stand. Stud orange slices with 8–10 cloves each.

In a large saucepan, combine orange juice, lemon juice, water, honey, orange slices and cinnamon sticks. Cover and simmer on low for 8–10 minutes.

When ready to serve, pour out the hot water from the mugs. Add 2 ounces (1/4 cup) of bourbon or whiskey to each serving and top with the warm orange juice mixture (about 5 ounces per mug). Garnish with studded orange slices or a fancy orange-peel rose with fresh rosemary.

Photo credit: Elle Penner, MPH RD