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18 Grenadine Cocktails to Try in 2024

August 14, 2023 by Anna-Bet Stemmet

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If you love drinks with bold colours and memorable flavours, odds are you’ll love our line-up of gorgeous grenadine cocktails. Let’s dive into the bright and tangy world of this popular cocktail ingredient and paint the town red.   

What is grenadine syrup?

Editorial image of pomegranates against a pink background

Grenadine syrup is a sweet and flavourful syrup that’s commonly used in a variety of beverages and cocktails to add a burst of fruity goodness. It’s not only delicious but also adds a lovely touch of colour to your drinks.  

What flavour is grenadine? Excellent question. See, grenadine syrup boasts a delightful balance of sweetness, with just a hint of tartness. Its primary flavour comes from pomegranate juice, giving it a fruity and refreshing taste that works wonders in both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. 

Traditionally, grenadine syrup is made from pomegranate juice, sugar, and water. Some variations might include additional flavourings or citrus juices to enhance the taste. It’s worth noting that while authentic grenadine is made from pomegranate, some commercial brands might use artificial flavours or other fruit juices. 

One of the most appealing aspects of grenadine syrup is its vibrant red colour. This captivating hue adds a visual appeal to your drinks, making them look even more tempting and enjoyable. The intense red shade comes from the natural pigments present in pomegranate juice. 

What is grenadine used for?

Bottle of homemade grenadine and grenadine cocktail

Grenadine syrup is incredibly versatile and can be used in various ways: 

Cocktails. It’s a staple ingredient in classic cocktails like the Tequila Sunrise, Shirley Temple, and Zombie. The way it blends with other spirits and mixers creates both delicious and visually stunning drinks. 

Mocktails. For those who prefer non-alcoholic beverages, grenadine syrup can be added to lemonades, sodas, and fruit punches to give them a sweet and tangy twist. 

Desserts. Beyond beverages, grenadine syrup can be drizzled over desserts like ice cream, cakes, and pancakes to give these treats a delightful fruity sweetness. 

Cooking. Some recipes call for grenadine syrup as a flavour enhancer in sauces, marinades, and even glazes for meats and poultry. 

TOP TIP! The key to using grenadine syrup effectively is moderation. Since it’s quite sweet, a little goes a long way.

How to make grenadine syrup at home

Pot of homemade grenadine and wooden spoon

To make your own homemade grenadine, combine two cups of pomegranate juice and two cups of granulated sugar in a saucepan. You can also use cherry juice in a pinch. Bring it to a slow boil, stirring constantly until all the sugar is dissolved then reduce the heat and cover. Allow the mixture to simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.   

Remove the syrup from the heat, let it cool, and pour it into a small glass bottle or decanter with a tight-sealing lid. Add a dash or two of orange flower water (or Grand Marnier if you want a bit of kick) to the bottle, give it a few shakes, and store until you are ready to use it in a cocktail or mocktail of your choice.  

Learn more: Easy Syrup Variations for Cocktail Making  

Here are a few of our favourite cocktails with grenadine to try at home:  

1. Tequila Sunrise

Top Shot of A Refreshing Tequila Sunrise Cocktail

One of the best beachside cocktails ever, the picture-perfect Tequila Sunrise combines tequila, orange juice, and grenadine syrup in a tall glass. These ingredients layer prettily on top of one another, which makes it a very photogenic cocktail, that also happens to be super tasty. Win-win!  

2. Mexican Firing Squad   

Mexican firing squad

Featuring Espolòn Tequila Blanco, lime juice, and bitters as a striking base, the Mexican Firing Squad cocktail is thoughtfully sweetened with a dash of grenadine. If you’re looking for a zingy Mexican cocktail that really packs a punch, with just a hint of sweetness to round it all off, this is the one for you. 

3. French Kiss  

French Kiss cocktails

The French Kiss cocktail is a delicious reminder that life can be sweet and spicy all at once. It’s a gorgeous combination of zesty orange juice overlayed with delightful hints of star anise, fennel, coriander, and mint, laced with the sweetness of grenadine.    

4. Squashed Frog

Row of green, yellow and red Squashed Frog cocktails

Layered into a shot glass from the bottom up, a Squashed Frog shot contains grenadine, melon liqueur, and Advocaat (a liqueur made with brandy, egg yolks, and sugar). Because the Advocaat is quite heavy, it sinks into the green melon liqueur, creating the illusion of something green and squashed (and frog-like) in the center of the shot. 

5. Azalea Cocktail

An Azalea Cocktail served in a stylish glass, garnished with a lemon twist.

If you love drinks with a flowery vibe, we cannot recommend the Azalea Cocktail highly enough. It’s a blushing pink gin drink infused with tropical pineapple and balanced with lemon juice and grenadine. Named after the 13th hole at the US Masters and Georgia’s state flower, this easy sipper is enjoyed by patrons every year at the tournament. 

6. Rum Punch

Rum punch cocktails

Rum Punch is a classic tropical cocktail that has been enjoyed for centuries, and for good reason. This delicious drink is made with a blend of rum, fruit juices, grenadine, and citrus, creating a flavour profile that is both sweet and refreshing. It’s the perfect drink for hot summer days, beach vacations, or any occasion that calls for a little bit of paradise in a glass. 

7. Shirley Temple

Two Shirley Temple grenadine cocktails with lemon, mint and cherry garnish

The Shirley Temple mocktail is named after the famous American child actress, Shirley Temple. It was created in the 1930s and became popular as a non-alcoholic drink option for children, thanks to Temple’s wholesome image. Today it’s a fun mocktail enjoyed by people of all ages. 

8. Dirty Shirley

A pair of pretty Dirty Shirley cocktails in rocks glasses, garnished with fresh cherries, placed on a white surface

If you plan on offering your guests a Shirley Temple as an alcohol-fee option it’s as simple as adding 60ml of SKYY Vodka to the glass to turn it into a naughty but nice Dirty Shirley. When you have quite a few people over it’s nice to have an easily adaptable drink like this on the menu that can be scaled to suit various tastes.   

More mocktails: Easy Mocktails for Simple and Clean Sipping   

9. Pornstar Martini Mocktail

Close up of pornstar martini cocktail

The more wholesome cousin of the Pornstar Martini, the tasty Pornstar Martini Mocktail combines alcohol-free vodka, passionfruit purée and juice, vanilla syrup, lime juice, and a dash of grenadine. Served with a sidecar of alcohol-free Prosecco or sparkling apple juice, it’s a jazzy non-alcoholic option for non-drinkers who enjoy a mocktail with a bit of pizzazz.  

10. El Presidente

El Presidente Cocktail

As its name suggests, the El Presidente cocktail was first stirred up in honour of a statesman, likely José Miguel Gómez, who was the leader of Cuba between 1909 and 1913. But as Cuban cocktails tend to go, this one takes the road less traveled, veering from a classically sour profile to the sweet, boozy end of the flavour spectrum, putting a delightful spin on the classic Manhattan cocktail template.   

11. Black Magic

Black Magic cocktails with Halloween décor

If you like to go all out for Halloween, it might be time to apply a splash of the dark arts to your Old Hallow’s Eve party drinks menu. Simply mix up some ghoulish Black Magic cocktails to wow your guests and get the party started. 

12. Hurricane

Three Hurrican Cocktails on a tray

Featuring light rum, dark rum, lime juice, orange juice, passionfruit purée, simple syrup, and grenadine as ingredients, the Hurricane cocktail is one of the best beach drink recipes for sure. It is traditionally garnished with a slice of orange and a maraschino cherry, which is said to mimic Mardi Gras décor.    

13. Blushing Bride

Blushing Bride Cocktail

The Blushing Bride cocktail is one of those drinks that looks too pretty to be true. Bright, cheerful, and delightfully bubbly, it’s a natural choice for celebratory occasions like weddings, bachelorette parties, and other events where plenty of toasting is called for. 

14. Red Dragon

Red Dragon cocktail with blood orange wheel garnish

Inspired by the iconic dragon on the Welsh flag, the Red Dragon cocktail is a roaring mix of sweet and tart flavours. The base spirit is Bulldog Gin, which is topped with Grand Marnier, blood orange juice, lemon juice, and grenadine. It’s bright and fruity but don’t be fooled by its sweet nature—the Red Dragon has a zesty bite.     

15. Zombie

Two Zombie cocktails with lime wheel garnish

The Zombie cocktail features an alluring blend of fruity and tropical flavours that packs a powerful punch. With its potent combination of rum, citrus juices, grenadine, and a hint of spice, this delicious cocktail is the perfect choice for anyone wanting to add a bit of excitement to their cocktail repertoire.   

16. Poison Apple

Halloween-themed Poisoned Apple cocktail

This seriously delicious apple cider cocktail is all about flavour and aesthetics, using the sheen of glitter for a cinematic swirl effect. All you need to make a Poison Apple cocktail is apple cider, cranberry juice, whiskey, grenadine, and edible glitter. It comes together quickly and goes down a treat.  

17. Palmetto

A classic Palmetto cocktail with lemon peel garnish

Rum, sweet vermouth, and grenadine are the star ingredients of the Palmetto cocktail. This complex drink originated at the turn of the 19th century but has recently stepped back into the spotlight. We highly recommend serving it as a sweet, sophisticated after-dinner drink at your next party. 

18. Peppermint Martini

Two Peppermint Martinis with candy rims against a snowy backdrop with Christmas decorations to the side

The lush and velvety Peppermint Martini is a delectable dessert-in-a-glass that will be the cherry on top of any festive menu. Creamy and minty fresh, this jolly cocktail is great to sip with canapés, desserts, and everything in between. 

Such fun, right? If you would like to learn more about the exciting world of DIY cocktail making and get tips on hosting like a pro, sign up for our newsletter. It’s a quick and easy read filled with lots of tasty things —just what you need to keep the inspiration flowing.  

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Grenadine is crafted from a blend of pomegranate juice, sugar, and water, offering a sweet-tart flavour profile. While traditional recipes stick to pomegranate juice as its base, some commercial versions might include other fruit juices or artificial additives.

Grenadine's history traces back to the Mediterranean region, where pomegranates were abundant. Originally, grenadine was a syrup made from pomegranate juice and sugar, often used as a sweetener in cocktails. Over time, its popularity spread globally, and today, it's a cherished ingredient in various beverages and culinary creations around the world.

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