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Christmas Sidecar | A Festive Cranberry and Brandy Cocktail

Cranberry and Brandy Cocktail on a white table cloth with limes and a bowlful of cranberries next to it.
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Traditionally a citrus-flavoured cocktail made with cognac, triple sec and lemon juice, Sidecar was always one of my favourites. To give it a Christmassy twist, we added cranberry flavours to the cocktail for a bit of extra festive cheer! We hope you enjoy our Festive Cranberry Brandy Cocktail as much as we do!

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A Special Brandy Christmas Cocktail

We hardly ever make cocktails at home, but when we do, it is for a very special occasion, like Christmas! Whilst my personal favourite is a good old-fashioned Negroni, this Christmas Sidecar comes a close second. With bittersweet triple sec, the woodiness of the brandy and tartness from the cranberries and lime, this cocktail has it all! It’s like Christmas in a glass…

Cranberry and Brandy Cocktail being poured into a christmas-themed martini glass decorated with sugar and lime zest.

Ingredients for Cranberry Brandy Cocktail

What makes a good cocktail? Ingredients that you like, the perfect balance of quantities used, and, most importantly, a good company to have the cocktails with.

  • cranberry juice: you may use the reduced-sugar option in this Christmas Brandy Drink recipe.
  • caster sugar: also known as superfine sugar.
  • brandy: or Cognac.
  • triple sec: like Cointreau.
  • lime juice: freshly squeezed.

My personal favourite is Volare Triple Sec Classic Liqueur paired with good old Courvoisier. Any cranberry juice will do but I do like to crush a few of the fresh ones in with the shop-bought juice to add some extra tartness. You will also need some sugar to make the cranberry syrup.

Scroll down to the recipe card to see a full list of ingredients, quantities and the method.

How To Decorate Cranberry Sidecar Glass?

We love decorating the edge of martini glasses for the WOW factor. To recreate the look in the photos, you will need some granulated sugar (not fine caster sugar) and lime zest. Simply dip the rim of the glass into one of the liquid ingredients (I dipped them straight into brandy), then roll in the sugar and zest mixture.

Equipment Needed

You will ideally need a cocktail shaker to make this Christmas Brandy Drink, but if you don’t have one and can’t justify buying one, here are a few suggestions: 

  • A thermal coffee mug with a lid tightly screwed on
  • A sturdy mason jar 
  • A smoothie maker glass 

Other Christmas Drink Recipes

If you enjoyed our Cranberry Sidecar, let us know in the comments below. For other ideas for this Christmas, have a look at our Christmas recipe collection, here. But if you are looking for more ideas for your Christmas drinks, below are our favourites:

Recipe Card

Cranberry sidecar in a martini glass that has rim decorated with sugar and lime zest.

Christmas Sidecar | A Festive Cranberry and Brandy Cocktail

Traditionally citrus-flavoured cocktail made with cognac, triple sec and lemon juice, Sidecar was always one of my favourites. To give it a Christmassy twist, we have added cranberry flavours to the cocktail for a bit of extra festive cheer!
4.91 from 10 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Drinks
Cuisine American, Christmas
Servings 2 cocktails
Calories 265 kcal

Equipment

  • Cocktail Shaker (or see notes if you don't have one)

Ingredients
 
 

Cranberry Syrup (makes enough for approx. 2 cocktails):

  • 30 ml cranberry juice
  • 30 g caster sugar

For Two Cranberry Sidecar Cocktails:

  • 50 ml cranberry syrup
  • 120 ml brandy
  • 75 ml triple sec
  • 75 ml lime juice freshly squeezed

Instructions
 

Make Cranberry Syrup:

  • Mix cranberry juice and caster sugar in a ratio of 1:1 in a small saucepan. Stir to dissolve the sugar, bring to the boil and take off the heat. Leave to cool down completely.

Make Cocktails:

  • Add all the ingredients to a cocktail shaker with 4 cubes of ice and shake. Pour into martini glasses.

Notes

If you don’t have a cocktail shaker and can’t justify buying one, here are a few suggestions: 
  • A thermal coffee mug with a lid tightly screwed on
  • A sturdy mason jar 
  • A smoothie maker glass 
 
 

Nutrition

Calories: 265kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 0.2gFat: 0.1gSaturated Fat: 0.04gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.01gSodium: 4mgPotassium: 57mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 19IUVitamin C: 12mgCalcium: 6mgIron: 0.1mg
Keyword Christmas Cocktail, Christmas Cocktail Recipe, Christmas Cocktail Recipes, Christmas Cocktails, Christmas Drink Recipes, Christmas Drinks, Cranberry and Brandy Cocktail, Cranberry Brandy Drink, Cranberry Sidecar, Cranberry Sidecar Cocktail, Cranberry Sidecar Cocktail Recipe
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10 Replies to “Christmas Sidecar | A Festive Cranberry and Brandy Cocktail”

  1. 5 stars
    I loved this. Very festive looking and tasting. I made for Christmas eve . As i couldn’t get hold of triple sec I substituted Cointreau. Strong so lasted all evening!

    1. So glad to hear! Good value for money too if one drink lasts all night, right?

  2. Amanda Wren-Grimwood says: Reply

    5 stars
    Cranberry flavour is so good in cocktails and this combination of flavours is perfect. Think I’ve found my Christmas cocktail!

    1. It’s been our Christmas cocktail for a few years now! Really hope you and your family enjoy it just as much! 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    I love cranberry cocktails, and anything with brandy in it. This one looks so good! I may have to enjoy one while wrapping gifts this evening!

    1. Lovely! A nice cocktail whilst wrapping gifts sounds like a wonderful evening to me 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    Anything that has cranberry in is good with me and this cocktail looks delicious and very festive.

  5. 5 stars
    There’s nothing like a festive Christmas cocktail to get you in the holiday spirit and this sidecar delicious! It’s also beautiful.

    1. Thanks, Aimee! very kind 💗

  6. 5 stars
    This is so gorgeous and festive! A must-have for the holidays!

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