Bloody Mary Recipe

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Cocktail Type


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Bloody Mary cocktail. Alcoholic drink with vodka in a glass

Hey there, party animals, are you looking for a decent Bloody Mary recipe? The hair of the dog? The fix-me-upper?  If your friends are about to knock on your door for brunch, we’ve got you covered with the famous morning-after-the-night-before cocktail. 

Bloody Mary cocktail tips and tricks

To make your Bloody Mary recipe really great, choose good quality tomato juice—it should be thick and rich. You can also add freshly pressed red bell pepper juice for a fully-rounded flavor. For a more complex flavor, pair the tomato juice with other veggie juices. To balance out the acidity and spices of the cocktail, you can add a bit of dill pickle juice or a dash of maple syrup. 

If you have vegan and vegetarian friends, don’t use Worcestershire sauce as it contains anchovies. Opt for soy sauce to add that lovely deep umami taste. When adding heat to your Bloody Mary, err on the side of caution. Remember you can always add more spice and seasoning, but you can’t take it out once it’s in there. And remember: don’t shake it but rather build the ingredients in a mixing glass, pour it out into another mixing glass, and repeat. This helps balance all the flavors.

Bloody Mary garnish ideas

There are loads of Bloody Mary garnish variations, so have some fun! From classic celery and lemon to stuffed olives, crispy bacon, shrimp, and even buffalo wings. If you stick to hors d’oeuvre-style garnishes, the sky is the limit!  

For the best brunch cocktails, serve your Bloody Marys with a tray filled with different garnish options so your friends can create their own taste sensation. 

Top tip: You can mix up a big pitcher to easily serve your friends when they arrive.   

Why is this cocktail called Bloody Mary?

The Bloody Mary recipe was born somewhere between the 1920s and 1930s. There are a few different claims about where it originated, and you can choose which story you prefer.

One popular theory is that it was developed in 1921 at The New York Bar in Paris (a popular hangout for Ernest Hemingway and fellow Americans in France). Apparently, the original Bloody Mary cocktail ingredients were spontaneously mixed and consisted only of vodka and tomato juice. This version was known as Bucket of Blood. Yikes!

Another story is that this cocktail was named after Queen Mary Tudor and her bloody rule over England. The tomato juice is meant to signify bloodshed. Double yikes! Then finally, an ad from the era claims the Bloody Mary was named after comedic entertainer George Jessel’s friend, Mary Geraghty. We prefer this one.   

Bloody Mary ingredients and recipe

Now that you know its origin and some handy tips to make the best Bloody Mary recipe, it’s time to get creative and kickstart your day.   



To make a Bloody Mary really great, choose good quality tomato juice—it should be thick and rich.


To balance out the acidity and spices of your Bloody Mary recipe, you can add a bit of dill pickle juice or a dash of maple syrup. 


If you’re entertaining vegan and vegetarian friends, don’t use Worcestershire sauce as it contains anchovies.



1 Person

2 Oz

60 Ml

2 Parts

4 Oz

120 Ml

4 Parts

Good quality tomato juice
Teaspoons horseradish  
Dashes of Tabasco sauce (or your preferred hot sauce)  
Dashes of Worcestershire sauce (or vegan alternative)
Dashes of pickle juice 
Pinch of salt (or celery salt if you prefer)
Pinch of cracked black pepper 
Pinch of smoked paprika (optional) 
Lemon wedge
Celery stalk and 3 stuffed green olives to garnish
Old Bay seasoning to rim your glass 


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Add some Old Bay seasoning to a plate


Run a lemon wedge along the outer rim of your glass, then dip it into the seasoning, fill with ice, and set aside 


Build all the ingredients in a large mixing glass and add ice, pour it into your cocktail shaker, and then back into your glass. Repeat, and then once it’s back in the cocktail shaker, strain the Bloody Mary into your prepared glass


Add the lemon wedge to the drink, pop in a celery stick, and balance three skewered stuffed olives on top 

What liquor is in a Bloody Mary?

In its most traditional form, a Bloody Mary recipe contains vodka, but there are many delicious versions of this classic. 

  • The Red Snapper: Uses gin instead of vodka 
  • The Virgin Mary: An alcohol-free mocktail version 
  • The Caesar: Made like you would a classic Mary, but with the addition of clam juice 
  • The Michelada: A Mexican cocktail that contains beer, lime juice, spices, tomato juice, and chili 
  • The Bloody Maria: Use tequila instead of vodka for big, bold flavors 

How to make a big batch of Bloody Mary

The best brunch cocktails should be done in batches to please the crowd, so go ahead and whip up a jug before your friends arrive for brunch. You will need 32 oz tomato juice, 16 oz SKYY Vodka, 2 tablespoons horseradish, 1.5 oz Worcestershire sauce, 1.5 oz pickle juice, ½ oz Tabasco, 2 teaspoons of each salt and pepper, and 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika. Add all the ingredients to a large jug, stir until mixed and add ice just before serving. 

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These two cocktails are basically the same, except for one thing: to make a Caesar, you'll swap out the tomato juice for clamato juice—which is equal parts clam juice and tomato juice combined.   

For the best Bloody Mary recipe, use 2 oz vodka to 4 oz tomato juice. Do the same if you're using gin or tequila.