Cranberry Martini Recipe

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A pretty Cranberry Martini garnished with fresh cranberries, against a white backdrop studded with pine cones and ginger biscuits in the shape of stars

We love this Cranberry Martini recipe for two important reasons – it looks very fancy, and it’s very easy to make. After all, who doesn’t adore a showstopper drink that’s simple to shake up?  

So, if you are on the lookout for a festive drink to pretty up your tablescapes over Christmas, here is our tried and tested recipe for a Cranberry Martini that tastes as delicious as it looks.



Try a citrus-flavoured vodka for extra zest!


Sparkling rimming sugar makes for a very festive look


Blueberry juice takes this drink into an equally interesting flavour space



1 Person

30 Ml

1 Oz

1 Parts

SKYY vodka
15 Ml

0.5 Oz

0.5 Parts

Grand Marnier
30 Ml

1 Oz

1 Parts

100% cranberry juice
15 Ml

0.5 Oz

0.5 Parts

lemon juice
1 teaspoon of simple syrup per drink
Fine sugar for the rim
To garnish, fresh cranberries and a lemon wedge



Rim the serving glass with sugar


Add all the ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice, and shake until cold


Strain into the sugar-rimmed glass, garnish with cranberries and a lemon wedge, and serve

Variations of the Cranberry Martini to try

As great cocktails tend to do, the Cranberry Martini recipe has inspired quite a few spin-offs in its time. Here are a few you can try if you feel like taking the road less travelled:  

Gin and Cranberry Martini

Vodka is a classic choice when it comes to a Martini, but if you are a gin lover, you should definitely try switching out the vodka for a London Dry Gin like Bulldog. It adds a lovely green note to the drink that draws the zest from the Grand Marnier into firm focus.  

More gin vibes: The Best Gin Cocktails Ever Invented 

Spiced Cranberry Martini

The Spiced Cranberry Martini is a very popular batch drink around the festive season. You’ll need 200g cranberries, the juice of two limes and one orang, 100g caster sugar, 1 wine-mulling spice bag, a few slices of root ginger, 1 cinnamon stick, a squeeze of lime for the glass rims, 6 tablespoons of chilled vermouth, 180ml vodka (or gin), chilled soda water and cranberries to garnish.  

Add the cranberries, lime and orange juices, sugar, wine-mulling spice bag, root ginger, cinnamon stick, and 300ml water to a pan, and simmer for 15 minutes. Sieve it over a pan, leave it to cool, and put it in the fridge to chill. Serve up in 6 sugar-rimmed glasses. Add one teaspoon of vermouth and two tablespoons of vodka (or) gin to each. Top with chilled soda water and garnish with cranberries. 

Another zesty classic: Slide Over Here and Meet Our Sidecar Cocktail 

How to do a sugar rim

Adding a sugar rim is one way to up the ante on this Cranberry Vodka Martini recipe in one simple step. It’s also very easy to achieve. Add sugar to a saucer – we like using the super fine kind – and cut a notch in a lemon wedge.   

Run the lemon wedge around the rim of the glass and then tilt the glass and roll its outer rim in the sugar. The goal here is to only get the sugar on the outside of the glass so none of it drops into the drink itself.  

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Unsweetened VS sweetened cranberry juice

Cranberry juice is a very interesting ingredient that adds a zingy bite of sweetness with a slight bitter edge to any drink. Since this recipe already contains simple syrup, we like to use unsweetened cranberry juice because it’s purer and the colour is more vibrant.  

However, if you have a sweet tooth, or only have sweetened cranberry juice at hand, feel free to use it, and only add half of the recommended simple syrup instead.  

Keen to go healthier? Are Mocktails Healthy? Here’s the Skinny! 

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A Vodka Cranberry is a simple cocktail that combines vodka and cranberry juice. However, there are variations on the theme that include the Cranberry Martini, which features Grand Marnier, lemon juice and sugar syrup as further ingredients.

Yes, whiskey can be combined with cranberry for a lovely drink. The smooth, woody notes of a whiskey like Wild Turkey 101 and the sweetness from the cranberry juice make a great combo.