Orange juice is by far the most popular juice used in alcoholic beverages on the planet. And the thing about orange juice cocktails is that there are so many recipes, with new ones being discovered almost every day!
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How did orange juice become popular? It began in Florida in the latter part of the 1920s. Before that, orange juice was considered to be a luxury beverage, but at that time Florida orange groves saw the chance to capitalize on their delicious product when the health benefits of oranges became known.
Alcoholic orange drink recipes stand out because of the sweet, tart, citrus flavor orange juice brings to the table.
OJ is genuinely a top-notch mixer that can take any cocktail to the next level, and so far, I’ve yet to find a liquor that doesn’t blend well with orange juice.
One of my favorite types of orange juice is blood orange, which really brings a sweeter flavor and darker color to your drinks.
Below we’ve gathered 17 fantastic alcoholic drinks with orange juice guaranteed to please.
1. Italian Margarita
Most folks associate the Margarita with Mexico. However, an intriguing Italian version also reimagines this classic cocktail using just a few simple ingredients, such as lime juice, orange juice, tequila, and amaretto.
The amaretto really adds a warm and nutty taste that adds rich complexity to the already sophisticated flavors of the tequila. In contrast, the orange juice adds a bright, fruity sweetness, and the lime rounds the drink out with a sour finish.
And did you know Margarita was created by accident?
Back in 1936, Daniel Negrete, a bartender at the Garic Hotel in Puebla, Mexico, made the drink by accident when his girlfriend asked him to make a Magnolia. However, not knowing what spirit to use, Negrete used tequila instead of gin and later claimed he misheard what she said, saying he thought she said, “Margarita.”
2. Harvey Wallbanger
The Harvey Wallbanger is an orange juice alcohol drink that’s a unique twist on the classic Screwdriver and is one of my favorite orange vodka drinks.
Now when it comes to this orange cocktail’s origin story, there’s quite a lot of debate. Many believe the drink came about in the 1970s, but one theory places the drink’s origins in Los Angeles during the 1950s. Then another origin story claims that a Galliano importer called Mckesson Imports Company invented the cocktail in the early 1960s to promote Galliano alcohol.
As for Galliano, it’s an Italian herbal liqueur developed during the 1890s, and it really gives this drink a new complexity with a unique herbal finish like nothing else.
3. Alabama Slammer
The Alabama Slammer is a legendary college cocktail that sounds more like an excruciating old-school pro wrestling finishing move.
However, there’s nothing uncomfortable about this beverage, which uses Southern Comfort, amaretto, gin, orange juice with an orange slice or wedge garnish.
As for the drink’s history, it came about during the excellent amaretto resurgence of the 1970s when bartenders were creating drinks featuring the Italian liqueur left and right. It’s believed the cocktail was invented close to the University of Alabama, and even today, it remains a beloved drink on that campus.
4. Ward 8
One of the more intriguing cocktail juice mixed drinks with orange juice is the Ward 8 cocktail. This rift on the classic whiskey sour has a unique character and history.
The cocktail was created in Boston, Massachusetts, back in 1898 at a restaurant called “The Gilded Age.” The drink was named in honor of a Democratic politician named Martin M. Lomasney, who held political power in the city for nearly 50 years. Boston’s ward 8 is said to have been the decisive precinct that delivered him victory in a state senatorial election.
The drink contains rye whiskey, orange juice, lemon juice, grenadine with cherries, and an orange wedge for garnish.
5. Amaretto Stone Sour
A refreshing, sweet, light, citrusy drink, Amaretto stone sour is perhaps one of the most popular OJ drinks behind the Screwdriver. This drink is ideal for lazy summer afternoon brunches or just sitting out in the backyard with some good friends and conversation.
The drink has a tart-sweet taste with just the right nutty amaretto flavor. Many folks are shocked when they learn this drink barely has anything to do with the Ameretto sour. In fact, the Ameretto Stone Sour has an entirely different history.
The drink was traced back to a 1917 book titled “The Ideal Bartender.” It was a cocktail recipe book written and published by an African American author named Tom Bullock. The original stone sour recipe used lemon and orange juice, gin, and rock candy syrup.
However, this modern version uses sour soda (like squirt), amaretto, orange juice, and ice.
The Madras cocktail is an orange juice alcohol-based beverage with tons of color and personality.
If there’s anything we’ve learned time and time again concerning cocktail history, a lot of drinks have close ties to others. This is especially true when it comes to vodka-based beverages that came out after 1945.
And if you look closely at the recipe for the Madras, you’ll find a lot of similarities with the Cape Codder, also known as Vodka cranberry. The Madras is also called the “Mattress Cocktail” since both words sound alike (especially when said with slurred speech).
The ingredients for this beverage include vodka, cranberry juice, and orange juice.
7. Classic Screwdriver
By far, the most popular of all the orange vodka drinks have to be the classic Screwdriver. This drink is as simple as it gets, mixing orange juice and vodka.
The Screwdriver also happens to be one of the few drinks not concocted by a mixologist or bartender. The inventors of the drink are believed to have been workers on an oil rig!
During the 1940s, workers on an oil rig in the Persian Gulf used to sneak some vodka onboard by hiding the banned drink in their orange juice. It’s said they used to use screwdrivers to mix things up.
The legendary cocktail known as the Mimosa is a staple at many baby showers and Sunday brunches. This bright and exciting alcoholic beverage blends bubbly champagne and orange juice for an unmistakable flavor experience.
While the exact origins of the Mimosa are unknown, many believe the drink was made during the 1920s at the Ritz hotel in Paris, France.
9. Rum and Orange Juice
For an alcoholic OJ drink that feels like a celebration, you’ve got to try rum and orange juice. This classic combo delivers a big-time tropical flavor with only two ingredients – rum and orange juice.
But, hold up, that’s not the end of the story. Because there are several types of rum to choose from, and each brings its own special magic to this cocktail.
For example, you have dark rum, which is aged longer than white rum and has a more developed flavor.
Then there’s spiced rum, dark rum but infused with more spices such as vanilla, cinnamon, or range. Depending on your tastes, this rum can be a bit overpowering in this recipe.
And last, the most popular type of this cocktail is malibu rum, which has a unique coconut flavor that’s a staple in many tropical cocktails.
10. Blood and Sand Cocktail
For an orange cocktail with one of the most fantastic names of all time, the Blood and Sand cocktail definitely delivers the goods.
The cocktail was named in tribute to a silent movie made in 1922 called “Blood and Sand,” starring Rudolph Valentino. The actor played a young Spaniard who became a famous matador.
The drink has fruity notes with a faint suggestion of smokiness. It’s a very approachable cocktail for those who are unsure about drinking scotch.
The ingredients include blended scotch, sweet vermouth, cherry liqueur, fresh orange juice, ice, and an orange wheel for garnish.
It’s a very classy and sophisticated drink with lots of depth that even non-scotch drinkers can enjoy.
11. Hurricane Cocktail
The hurricane is one of the most popular cocktails you’ll find ordered on Bourbon St and other South Coast bars.
And the drink has a history as colorful as its appearance. It was invented in the 1940s by Pat O’Brien, founder of the world-famous New Orleans establishment Pat O’Brien’s bar.
The drink is made using dark and light rum, orange juice, passion fruit syrup, and grenadine. Pat was said to have invented the drink because he needed to use up his surplus of rum. He served the cocktail in glasses shaped like a hurricane lamp, and it’s been a crowd favorite ever since!
When it comes to foo-foo drinks with colorful names, the fuzzy navel is at the top of the list.
This sweet and fruity party drink was created in the 1980s and represents the perfect union between orange juice and peach schnapps. It’s a highball cocktail made as a marketing trick by Dekuyper Peachtree Schnapps in 1984. The fuzzy part comes from peach fuze, and the naval referees to the navel on an orange.
Of course, people have other theories, but that’s the best explanation to use in polite company.
The recipe uses peach schnapps, orange juice, vodka, raspberry or cranberry juice, and lime juice.
You can also substitute cranberry juice for grenadine.
13. Golden Dream
The Golden Dream is one of those orange alcoholic drinks that really sets some high expectations and never fails to deliver.
This dreamy, creamy after-dinner drink is a sophisticated spin on the popular creamsicle, with notes of vanilla and orange.
The Golden Dream is made with Galliano, triple sec, orange juice, cream, and crushed ice.
The drink was invented by a Miami bartender named Raimundo Alvereze during the 1960s, and that’s about all we know about this tasty drink, except he is said to have dedicated it to the actress Joan Crawford. Many say the Golden Dream is a slight variation of the Golden Cadillac, which features creme de cacao.
It still amazes me how many cocktails have interesting backstories that can be made into a book or movie. The Garibaldi, also known as Dante’s Garibaldi, is one of those drinks. It’s made with only two ingredients; blood orange and Campari; a colorful, bitter Italian apéritif made with many herbs and spices.
The Italian cocktail is named after a revolutionary general named Giuseppe Garibaldi, who helped lead to Italy’s unification back in 1871. The concept is that the Campari liqueur hails from Northern Italy while the blood orange comes from the south.
The drink strikes a perfect balance between sweet, bitter, and tangy notes, all mingling together to create a taste like nothing else out there!
15. Orange Margarita
Orange margaritas are like traditional margaritas with an orange flavor that’s dialed up about a thousand percent, give or take.
The cocktail has fresh-squeezed Cara Cara Orange juice (or any variety), silver tequila, Cointreau, fresh lime juice, and simple syrup.
16. Tequila Sunrise
The beautiful Tequila Sunrise is a very lovely-looking cocktail that perfectly creates the appearance of a gorgeous sunrise over a sandy Mexican beach.
There’s nothing complicated about this cocktail, which uses just three ingredients; tequila, grenadine, and orange juice. However, the incredible flavors present are genuinely mind-blowing.
The original version of this cocktail was made in the e1930s but featured creme de cassis, soda water, and lime. The version we enjoy today is dated back to the 1970s at a hotel in California (probably not the Hotel California).
You have the sweet tanginess of the orange juice along with the tart and fruity finish of the grenadine and earthy pepper flavors of the tequila.
Variations of this recipe include using lime for extra tartness, a dash of orange liqueur such as Cointreau for even more complexity, and replacing the grenadine with blackberry brandy.
17. Sour Sunrise Cocktail
Earlier, we looked at the famous tequila sunrise. This cocktail called the Sour Sunrise adds a unique twist by introducing bourbon and some extra tartness to really liven things up.
The ingredients include bourbon whiskey, lemon juice, orange juice, grenadine, and simple syrup.
Unlike the sunrise cocktail, you don’t use ice to filter the grenadine. Instead, you pour it around the glass instead of n the middle to help it sink.
Also, you’ll only need one lemon to produce enough juice for this drink. Actually, the lemon is more than enough for four drinks.
And you can chill your glass without using the freezer by placing ice in the glass while mixing your drink, then just throw out the ice when you’re ready to pour.
Tasty Orange Juice Cocktails (+Italian Margarita )
- 2 oz. white tequila
- 1 oz. Amaretto
- 1 oz. fresh lime juice
- 1 oz. fresh orange juice
- 1/2 oz. homemade simple syrup
- Lime wedges for garnish
- Sea salt
- Ice cubes
- Add the liquid ingredients to a cocktail shaker and shake until chilled.
- Rim the glass with salt.
- Pour in the contents.
Organize all the required ingredients.
Enjoy the food.
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