Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail

This Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail with Ginger Beer is the perfect Fall libation; plus it’s so easy and delicious!

Two Glasses of Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail with Ginger Beer Garnished with an Apple Slice

It’s been six years since I started doing a cocktail each and every Friday and I’ve been pretty determined to keep on task. Occasionally time gets away from me but I’ve had an epiphany. Friday might not have to be the ‘be all and end all’ as long as I still share favorites like this Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail!

While I want to keep to a schedule, sometimes it just gets the best of me and this year, Spring and Summer gardening projects have been the culprit that waylaid my schedule and I quit fighting it. This won’t be the case every year but I desperately wanted to get some major projects completed and look forward to summer next year I’m anticipating less work and more play.

I left such a beautiful yard when I moved here in 2014; I still whine about it a bit. But while whining I’ve also been hard at work creating an ambiance here; this summer was the ‘Year of the Deck.’

I know I shared this photo before but can I just tell you how much I love this space? Every single meal; right here. I’ve doubled my outdoor space with a whole new section with an outdoor sofa but it’s this space with my grill and table that gets the most use and was worth all the hard work to get it done.

Peyton and Spot love it too…finding shade is everything in Colorado!

Covered Deck

So I’m rebooting this cocktail from half a dozen years ago but honestly, this Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail is one of my all time favorites and many readers missed it during the first go around. It’s simple, not too heavy and just about the perfect cocktail for Fall. New photos don’t hurt; I’ve learned so much in the half a dozen years since this was first published!

If you are a bourbon drinker, you can imagine how wonderful it is paired with apple cider. Real apple cider; try to source it if you can. You can use apple juice in a pinch but the cider is a better complement. There are legions of both food and cocktail recipes that contain the combination  of bourbon and apple cider, quite simply because the two together are fantastic.

Bourbon has a hint of sweetness to it with notes of vanilla and caramel and it can also have some spice, most often nutmeg, cinnamon and sometimes even clove. Bourbon and apple cider together…it’s not unlike an apple pie! The sweetness of bourbon with caramel notes combined with the tartness of apples makes for a match made in heaven.

I love using apple cider for cocktails; especially since realizing how amazingly easy it is to make (and how amazingly good homemade is to drink!). I made this Apple Cider Bellini too; not just perfect for a Fall brunch…I think they are a fantastic cocktail for Thanksgiving festivities!

Apples in a Basket

If you’re not into making your own cider and live in the Denver/Boulder area, I’ve had some great cider from YaYa Farm & Orchard in Longmont, Colorado. If you want to find an orchard near you for apples or cider, check out the Orange Pippin online directory.

Apple cider is really just raw, unfiltered apple juice that has not gone through any filtration to remove the course particles of pulp or sediment like the juice has. In a commercial cider mill, apples are washed, cut and ground into a mash the consistency of applesauce.

The mash is then usually wrapped in cloth and put through wooden racks of a press where the layers are squeezed and the juice is pressed out and put into refrigerated tanks before being bottled. Typically it is not pasteurized like apple juice either so it has a much shorter shelf life…and for me a much more robust flavor.

For all of the cocktails I’ve enjoyed lately with cider, this one is still my favorite. It could not be easier to prepare and the combination of flavors is spot on. The tartness of cider combined with the sweetness of bourbon all complemented with some sparkling ginger ale (or ginger beer) is really pretty perfect.

I have modified my original recipe just a bit this year; I thought a hint of maple syrup might be good and it was. I keep it light, using between 1/2 and 1 teaspoon depending on the tartness of the cider I’ve used. It’s an option but a good one!

When I had a ‘Girls Nite In’ at my house for some new neighbors the first Fall I lived here, I made this the featured drink. Amy, my neighbor across the street hesitated because she professed to not liking bourbon.

I convinced her to at least give it a taste and as a result of her leap of faith, I started her on a journey of discovery and now I’ve got a convert; it’s all about not being heavy handed with this elixir of the Gods!

One Jelly Jar Glass of Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail with Ginger Beer Garnished with an Apple Slice

I think Fall is finally showing itself in Colorado so this is perfect. We’ve been having late summer temps to rival those in July but today it’s cooler and only 68 degrees outside. You know when the world starts to herald the advent of Fall with many proclaiming it their favorite season I don’t get it and maybe today is a good reminder of why.

Fall in Colorado can be fickle and it seems that just when temps start to become more moderate our first snowstorm follows shortly thereafter. We might have a season called ‘Fallish’ but it’s too short and my lamenting the ending of Summer is because winter is just right around the corner.

So today, with the breeze and coolness in the air I’ll enjoy this brief moment in time with this absolutely perfect Fall libation and you need to join me.

If Amy likes it…betting you will too! Plus…want more Apple Cider Cocktails? I’ve got you covered!

More of our Favorite Apple Cider Cocktails!

PIN ‘Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail’

Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail

Two Glasses of Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail with Ginger Beer Garnished with an Apple Slice

The perfect fall cocktail with the flavors of apple, bourbon and ginger.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 2 ounces Apple Cider, chilled
  • 1 ounce Bourbon
  • 1/2 to one tsp maple syrup, optional
  • 2 ounces Ginger Beer, chilled
  • Apple wedges for garnish


  1. Combine the cider, bourbon, and maple syrup in a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake until very cold (if serving a crowd, combine these two ingredients in a pitcher and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  2. Strain mixture into an ice filled glass and top with the chilled ginger beer. Stir gently.
  3. Garnish with an apple wedge and serve.


About that apple slice.

I love the cute star shape in the center of an apple as much as the next guy but for practicality sake, well, you have to get to the center of the apple and only get maybe two good slices. I don't advise wasting most of the apple for that effect. Simply use apple wedges instead of slices!

I've made this cocktail several times since this post and have taken to putting a rim on it with sugar and cinnamon.

Mix a combination of 2 Tablespoons of sugar with a teaspoon and a half of cinnamon on a flat plate.
Rub the edge of the glass with maple syrup or cider, and dip it in the cinnamon/sugar mixture.
Proceed according to above directions.

Nutrition Information:

Serving Size:

1 grams

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 483Unsaturated Fat: 0g

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  1. Hello,
    I’m Jackson, I’m a chef who loves food, I’m always interested in new foods. Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail is great! I just finished them tonight, taste is great and i had a great dinner with my little family. Thanks for your sharing.
    Sincerely grateful!

    1. I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed them Jackson. It’s seriously my favorite drink from about the 1st of September all the way through the end of the year.

  2. Greetings from Sutton, Massachusetts.

    What a quintessential American combination- cider & bourbon!

    I’ll be skipping the ginger beer and combining my Jack Daniels with a ginger-infused cider made by Citizen Cider.

  3. Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail are awesome! I just finished it last night and the result was unexpected, my wife and daughter both liked it, which made me happy. Thanks for your recipe

  4. This is amazing and delicious recipe of cocktail to make it at home. I really like it. SO easy and quick way to cook, thank you for sharing this wonderful article.

  5. Wow, so easy and tasty apple cocktail recipe to make at home, I really enjoy this reading and great article. Thank you for sharing this article.

  6. I’m looking for some cocktail recipes for this weekend party.
    Your recipe seems easy and delicious. I’m going to try it out tonight.
    Thank you for your sharing, Barb.

  7. Wow, your recipe is so awesome. I have never known this recipe. Thanks for sharing. I will try to follow your recipe and I hope it looks delicious as your picture. I will share this recipe for my friends and my family. I think they love it too.

  8. Thank you very much. This cocktails looks awesome. I hope I could try this cocktails. I will try your recipe to make this cocktails for my family and my friends. I think they will love it. I hope you create more recipes like this. Thanks

  9. For some reason, I love cooking your recipes. It looks delicious, for sure this Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail is going to be on my table tonight. Thank you, for this simple yet delicious looking recipe. !!

    1. So glad you enjoyed it Emily; it is my absolute favorite bourbon cocktail and my most popular on the blog as soon as we start to see some cooler weather. Fall and apple cider are meant to be married…adding bourbon to the family was perfect!

  10. Looks great! The recipe is quite simple and easy to prepare, added to the menu for this weekend. Hope to enjoy the best Bourbon and Apple Cider Cocktail with my family. Thanks and have a nice day!

  11. Great guide! thanks you much for sharing, I did it and am waiting for trying it. I hope its taste will be good!

  12. My mom loves to enjoy cocktail so much and your recipes give me a lot useful ways to prepare the the party at the end of the weekend. Thank you so much for your sharing.

  13. I like ciders but this type in particular! I think that your recipe is very clear and easy to make – thank you very much for sharing it!

    1. No, that would not be a good substitute Melissa. Ginger Beer is not really beer at all, it’s a more ‘gingery’ version of ginger ale, so if you need to substitute, try ginger ale or worst case scenario, just a Seven-Up type soda or plain sparkling soda. Even a dry prosecco would work. But no beer. 🙂

  14. For summer tasteful drink, apple cider cocktail. Very refreshing and cooling. My dear friends love this recipe also. Please share more recipe like this. So yummy and easy to prepare. Thank you.

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