Caramel Apple Cider Cocktail

When the folks at Smirnoff inquired about my trying some of their flavored vodkas I admit I was a bit hesitant. I love using vodka in cocktails but most often I’m the one that is infusing them with a flavor and I’ve not had much interest in the gazillion vodka flavors I see proliferate liquor store shelves. But then I spied a Kissed Caramel Vodka in the offer and a recipe for a Kissed Caramel Apple-tini. Anything combining caramel and apple makes me go weak in the knees and so I thought I would give it a shot. Or two.

They indul ged me and sent me both of their new flavors. My daughter and her friend Cindy were here the day the package arrived and they were absolutely giddy over both of them. If I’m being honest, the Iced Cake flavor was so sweet it was not for me but those girls quickly poured a glass over rocks and, well, that bottle went home with my daughter Emily. I just know when they see what I’ve done with the Kissed Caramel that they’ll find an excuse to come visit the ‘old lady’ stat!

They even suggested a recipe; combining the vodka with apple juice, lemon juice and simple syrup. My first order of the day was to revise that cocktail a bit; I had  a variety of apples on hand and decided to make some apple cider to use instead of apple juice and I just knew I would eliminate the simple syrup; I wanted the tartness of the cider to come thru.

I have to tell you…this was yummalicious good. Absolutely frivolous and fun and for me, the perfect cocktail for Halloween. I’m not big into Halloween; not even sure why. It’s not a religious thing but I’ve never enjoyed anything scary or spooky and if you know me you might know I hate the color orange ( I mean HATE it!) so though my kids always went out Trick or Treating, without little kids around, it’s just a day. I do dress up on the night of and hand out candy to the neighbor kids…maybe this year I’ll bide that time with a cocktail; this would be PERFECT!

My only drawback to getting it made? I had neither apple juice or apple cider so I made some! Apple cider is so easy to make, especially when you only need a relatively small amount. I had four apples which gave me a bit more than a cup of juice…plenty for several cocktails if you’re inviting friends. Of course it didn’t hurt that I have this fabulous Blendtec blender either…stick around; I’ve got one to give away next week! Simply remove the core from your apples and slice them into chunks; skin and all. Puree in a blender or food processor and then strain the juice from the pulp. I used a combination of my best strainer combined with four layers of cheesecloth. I was impatient and squeezed it out but if you plan better than I did you can let it sit and drip and then just squeeze out the a bit at the end. That’s it…no cooking required! Store in the fridge or if you have a bit too much, freeze it for later.

Once I had the cider made it was easy. I drew a bead of caramel sauce around the rim with a squeeze bottle and garnished it with an apple slice. Want the truth? I am running so far behind, I made this cocktail this morning…and I drank it while I wrote this post. Hey…it’s juice!!  Enjoy!

Caramel Apple Cider Cocktail
Prep time
Total time
Delicious caramel and apple flavored cocktail.
Serves: One cockktail
  • 2 oz. SMIRNOFF Kissed Caramel Flavored Vodka
  • 1½ oz apple cider
  • ¼ oz lemon juice
  • Caramel sauce for rimming
  • Apple slices for garnish
  1. Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake well. Strain into a martini glass.
  2. Garnish rim with a bead of caramel sauce on the inside top edge (I used a handy squirt bottle) and a slice of apple.
Making apple cider is easy; buying it is even easier. Apple juice can be used but try to find the cider; it's so much more flavorful!


    • Creative Culinary says

      I’m not a huge fan of most flavored vodkas but this one was a keeper and everyone just loves this dessert…I mean cocktail! :)

    • Creative Culinary says

      I had a decent blender Kathy when Blendtec asked me to test this one out. At first I thought it was a bummer; then I read the instructions…holy go figure! It has presets that cycle through high and low speeds and do an amazing job or I’m sure it WILL do an amazing job once I get it out of storage (ah, the things I miss; the list is growing!).

    • Creative Culinary says

      Thank you Vannessa…wish I could take credit for that reflection part…it just happened during setup and I thought to take advantage of it! This is good…if you like caramel, you’ll love it!

  1. Pat Mann says

    Oh my gosh, that sounds wonderful because I love caramel. I also hate orange and I am not very fond of Holloween either. I am not much of a drinker but with this drink I might start. Thanks for posting this!

    • Creative Culinary says

      I went in with a lot of trepidation about results and no one was more surprised than me that it was actually tasty. Not for the most sophisticated of occasions but very much a fun libation for the season. It sure did not need any additional simple syrup. I like a sweet cocktail occasionally but not one that is so sweet it hurts your teeth. :)

    • Creative Culinary says

      YAY…a sister! I am most definitely more in the cool group; as in blue, purple, burgundy and teals. I like red only if it’s a real cherry red and most often just go burgundy. Christmas is burgundy and silver to avoid any chance that an orangish red might appear. :)

    • Creative Culinary says

      Thanks Pat…it’s new but should be in distribution all over. It was great for this cocktail I can not lie.

    • Creative Culinary says

      So easy…though there is cheesecloth and then there is cheesecloth. Mine wasn’t really all that sturdy, hence the four layers. Patience is a virtue too but hey, we wanted a cocktail and we had none!

    • Creative Culinary says

      SO easy…especially with a Vitamix or Blendtec. Once I figured out how to use it…doggone directions helped.

  2. says

    This cocktail sounds yummy. I may even have to try to make my own apple cider one day (I own a vitamix) and give this a whirl. I love your pictures too. The last one with the pumpkin reflection in the stem of the glass is totally awesome!
    I’m a little shocked however to hear that you hate the color orange. It’s been my favorite for as long as I can remember and the reason I love fall so much. To me the color is packed with energy (but I digress, LOL).
    Cheers to another great cocktail recipe from you Barb!
    Renee – Kudos Kitchen Most Recent Post: Poppy, Sesame Seed Challah = The Best Egg Sandwich EVER!

    • Creative Culinary says

      Different strokes for different folks right? I have no idea why I dislike it so much but it almost hurts my ‘I love purple and burgundy’ eyeballs! :)

    • Creative Culinary says

      Thanks Rachael. This one was perfect for this cocktail but I have no intention of going flavored vodka crazy…I like infusing them a bit too much with my own stuff!

  3. Skye says

    This looks fantastic! I must make it this weekend, even though the temperature outside has been running in the 80’s-90’s. Maybe it will remind me of cooler weather LOL :) Would Kissed Caramel work as a good base for infusing, to make a “caramel apple” liqueur? Just wondering… :)

    • Creative Culinary says

      Hard to say Skye…I’m not sure it would be the best fit since it’s already got a flavor…if it were me; I would probably start with a plain vodka and hey…if you perfect a caramel apple liqueur, do let me know!

  4. says

    Aren’t you something with the jack-o-lantern too! For someone who doesn’t love Halloween you sure have done a great job. The reflection of the jack-o-lantern in the glass is fantastic. If my kids could walk all the way to your house I’d stop by on the 31st for a glass of this drink! Some other time for sure.
    Holly Most Recent Post: Buñuelos, a recipe from Muy Bueno

    • Creative Culinary says

      Probably the only one that appealed to me and I have to say…I sort of like this drink…adding it to the raw cider toned down some of the sweet element and what can I say. It was good!

  5. says

    Good God! This is one delicious looking cocktail. You are brilliant. Oh, your photographs are too. I love how the pumpkin is reflected in the stem of the cocktail glass in both first and second shots but in the last one it’s pretty much dead center, don’t know if you planned it that way but it’s really cool :)
    Paula Most Recent Post: Decorating Cookies Book Review and Sweepstake

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