Berry Mint Julep Cocktail Recipe (Twist on a Classic)

Berry Mint Julep in tall highball glass with mint sprigs and some berries with a berry simple syrup on the side with a bottle of bourbon
Posted On: May 2, 2024
Last updated: May 4th, 2024

What better way to enjoy Derby Day or a hot summer day than with a refreshing, slightly sweet and cool mint julep cocktail?  Make it even better by turning it into a “Berry” Mint Julep cocktail. Grab a highball glass and let’s make the best berry mint julep!  If you like berries and the oaky taste of bourbon this Berry Mint Julep might just be the cocktail for you!  

Hand holding up a berry mint julep with red finger nails and a green forest background

What is a Mint Julep Cocktail?

First and foremost the classic mint julep cocktail is the official drink of the Kentucky Derby, the Super bowl of horse races that’s held every first Saturday in May .  This traditional derby day drink is not a cocktail for everyone.  It’s a strong cocktail consisting of only the base spirit, bourbon, simple syrup, and muddled mint leaves.  If you enjoy the warm caramel taste of bourbon and mint flavor you might enjoy it. If not, this might not be your cocktail of choice.

Berry Julep in double layer glass in front of bourbon bottle and a silver cocktail shaker with stirrer and berries around on wooden table

The origin of the mint julep has many versions out there.  Some even say it started in the middle east. This old fashioned cocktail served as a medicinal drink for farmers for their aches and pains. It was a morning drink believe it or not;  the bourbon for pain, the mint to help open the eyes.  

The tie in with the Derby has many different versions, but one story seems to ring true throughout.  In the early 1800’s sterling silver cups, called “julep cups” were awarded to 1st place jockeys.  This tied together KY bourbon and the world famous horse race.

Steps to make Berry Mint Julep in 5 photos

How to Make this Berry Mint Julep Cocktail

Since you’re making a “berry” flavored mint julep, start by making your “berry” simple syrup.  I like blackberry or blueberry simple syrup the most for this recipe.  Once your syrup is fully cooled off, grab a few mint leaves, gently tear them, helping to release the essential oils and add them to your highball or julep glass.  

Add the simple syrup to the leaves and muddle for about 30 seconds. Pour in your bourbon and top with crushed ice. Use a stirrer to mix it all together gently and garnish with 1 or 2 mint sprigs. An optional finish to to add just one more drizzle of your berry simple syrup on top and drop in a couple berries for looks.

Ingredients & Tools shown for making Mint Julep with Berry Simple Syrup

Ingredients for a Berry Mint Julep

  • Bourbon- Use your favorite and best really good bourbon for this cocktail.  The better the bourbon, the better the drink.  I personally recommend a KY bourbon, but I’m a little biased being a Kentuckian now.
  • Berry Simple Syrup- I like Blackberry or Blueberry Simple Syrup the most for this drink.
  • Fresh Mint- Use only fresh mint leaves, not dried mint.  
  • Crushed Ice- If you don’t have crushed ice or have no way of making any, just use the smallest ice cubes. I do not have crushed ice with my refrigerator so I really love this ice crushing bag with mallet.
Blueberry Mint Julep in glass topped with mint sprigs and some berries on wooden deck next to bottle of bourbon in front of green forest


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Berry Mint Julep in tall highball glass with mint sprigs and some berries with a berry simple syrup on the side with a bottle of bourbon

Berry Mint Julep Cocktail Recipe (Twist on a Classic)

This recipe is a twist on the classic strong bourbon cocktail.  With a little Berry flavored simple syrup you can enjoy a berry mint julep.  Make it with your best bourbon for the best refreshing flavor.  It's best served with crushed ice, so if you do not have crushed ice, just crush your own for a rustic, delicious boozy cocktail. 
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Beverage
Cuisine American
Servings 1
Calories 172 kcal


  • 2 oz. Bourbon
  • 1/2 oz. Berry Simple Syrup (Blackberry or Blueberry) *See in Notes Below
  • 4 Mint Sprigs
  • Ice Crushed


  • Water Splash
  • a couple berries (garnish)


  • Remove and tear a few mint leaves from a couple mint sprigs (I usually use about 7 or 8 depending on their size) to your glass along with 1/2 oz. of berry simple syrup. 
  • Using a cocktail muddler or a small wooden spoon, Muddle the mint with the simple syrup really well to release the essential oils in the mint (for about 30 seconds).
  • Add 2 oz. of Bourbon to the glass and top with crushed ice.  
  • Give it a good stir so everything disperses throughout the glass, rub the top of the glass with one of the remaining mint sprigs and then garnish the drink with 1 or 2 sprigs and enjoy!
  • Cheers!


  • You can add a little drizzle of berry syrup atop the finished cocktail for looks and garnish with a couple berries
  • You can add a splash of water if it's too strong for you or just wait for some of the ice to melt.


Nutrition Disclaimer:

The nutritional information provided is only an estimate based on a third party nutritional plugin. Different online calculators may give different results depending on their own sources. The estimates may also change based on the ingredients you use. If you have dietary restrictions and need to accurately calculate the nutrition of this recipe, Whole Made Living recommends consulting a professional nutritionist.


Serving: 1cocktailCalories: 172kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 0.1gFat: 0.04gSaturated Fat: 0.01gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.02gSodium: 10mgPotassium: 33mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 170IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 12mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Bourbon, Cocktail, Derby Day, mint
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


  • 5 stars
    Wow, this recipe looks absolutely delicious! I can’t wait to try it out this weekend. Thanks for sharing 🤗!I recently discovered FoodHub, and it’s been a game-changer for me! I love how easy it is to find new recipes, meal ideas, and even local restaurants all in one place. It’s like having a personal foodie guide at my fingertips!

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