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7 Apple-Inspired Cocktails To Keep The Doctor Away

These are just oh-so delicious!

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photo of apple cocktails and some ingredients
Shana Novak (Prop Styling: Megumi Emoto)
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With so many enticing apple varieties filling our local stores, I finally asked myself: “Why do I always reach for the Granny Smith?” So, I went on a wild grocery store adventure and bought one of each to see what I have been missing out on (my project did not amuse the checkout clerk). Of course, apples are great by themselves, but they absolutely shine when paired with alcohol. So, get ready for fall. From Braeburn to Gala, Honeycrisp to Pink Lady, here are seven tart and sweet cocktails to try out with some of that newfound fruit. 


When I think of apple cocktails the first thing that comes to mind is a tart appletini, and this best-ever appletini recipe by Lena Abraham does not disappoint. The martini is 100 percent alcohol and a great way to get to know Calvados, a type of brandy made from apples. This sour apple-inspired martini works best with a tart green apple, such as Granny Smith, so if you want to stay in your comfort zone this one is for you!

Apple Pie Martini

If the appletini is a little too sour but you are not ready to give up on the alcohol, try this delicious apple pie martini courtesy of Ree Drummond. The cinnamon sugar straw brings all the flavors together; it’s like drinking an apple pie fresh from the oven. If you are looking for an apple reminiscent of pie, give Braeburn a try. The Braeburn is a challenging apple, but it pairs well with cinnamon and is perfect for this aromatherapeutic beverage.

Honeycrisp Crush

Not ready to let go of summer just yet? Try this orange crush-inspired beverage. We all love the satisfying crunch of a Honeycrisp apple, and this cocktail captures the zeitgeist of this variety. To enjoy this cocktail, make a refreshing apple juice from two large Honeycrisps; the nectar can be made ahead of time and is delicious on its own. Then combine with vodka and ginger beer. It is so delicious, it has to be healthy!

Apple-Soju Cocktail

If you haven’t tried soju, this recipe courtesy of Bobby Flay is an excellent introduction to the Korean rice liqueur. I recommend adding the seltzer water at the end and pairing it with a Pink Lady apple slice on top. Geonbae!

Apple & Gin Autumn Cocktail

This apple and gin cocktail from No Spoon Necessary goes all in with the apple. It’s not just a garnish in this beverage. Fill the cup with apples sliced into thin matchsticks before adding the gin of your choice. Feel free to mix and match a few different apple varieties in the glass, and I recommend a Gala and Golden Delicious dyad to give some color to your cup. Finally, garnish with fresh thyme and a cinnamon stick. This cocktail will help you to embrace autumn in all its glory.

Candy Appley Cocktail

This recipe shared on the Spruce Eats is like no other cocktail I have experienced. Shredded coconut around the rim gives a nice air of sophistication. But watch out, it packs a punch! Although the recipe calls for a caramel moonshine, you can substitute unflavored moonshine or even whiskey. The cranberry juice and apple liquor give this cocktail a tart flavor that balances out nicely with a Sugar Bee apple, a relatively new variety related to the Honeycrisp. 

Spiked Apple Cider Cocktail

This recipe from Aaron McCargo Jr. is reminiscent of the holidays, but it is embodied in a refreshing iced beverage. The skewers provide a lovely visual treat and an easy way to eat the alcohol-infused apples. Why not try a new apple or two on the skewer? Fuji or Jazz would be a great addition to this glass. 

An apple a day

Next time you are at the store, mix it up by trying out some new apple varieties; remember, an apple a day! To learn more about the different apples, check out this website from the Washington Apple Commission — they know their apples! Each variety has a unique texture and flavor, and you are sure to find the perfect one for your cocktail. Treat yourself to a taste of autumn with these apple-inspired cocktails. Bottoms up!