Got Bourbon Cream? Don't know what to do with it? Like Chocolate? If you answered YES to all of these questions, you must make this Bourbon Cream Chocolate Martini! This is one fabulous dessert cocktail anyone can make and you will seriously impress and get your guests giddy if you make them this chocolate martini. It's a deliciously sweet and fun way to celebrate special occasions.
What's the difference between this martini and a regular Chocolate Martini?
Bourbon. This chocolate martini does not have any vodka in it. The base in this chocolate cocktail is bourbon cream and bourbon. A standard chocolate martini has a base of Bailey's Irish Cream liqueur, regular vodka or vanilla vodka and some chocolate liqueur. In this delicious recipe we use bourbon cream instead of Bailey's and bourbon instead of vodka. I find that making a chocolate martini with bourbon and bourbon cream is not over-sweet as a standard chocolatini. Making it this way gives you a warmer depth of flavor with a butterscotch kind of undertone. It's still sweet enough though to satisfy your sweet tooth with the delicious flavors of layered cocoa, cream and chocolate.
What is Bourbon Cream?
Bourbon Cream was inspired many, many years ago when distillers and other members of the community used to enjoy pouring a shot of bourbon onto ice cream...YUM! Hence, the cream with bourbon became one as bourbon cream years later. Here's a little information straight from one of my favorite local Kentucky distilleries that makes one of the best Bourbon Creams I've ever tasted, Boone County Distilling, Co. Their bourbon cream is a complex mix of their signature small batch bourbon and "rich alabaster cream." They suggest trying the bourbon cream over ice cream, Yes, I've tried it and it's amazing! Also, if you want an adult version of a fancy root beer float, add some bourbon cream to some root beer over ice and enjoy! Add it to some hot chocolate, but just don't accidently give it to the kids.
Here's another great article from Inside Hook for those interested in learning more about Bourbon Cream, "What is Bourbon Cream, and How do I drink it?" .
My Introduction to Bourbon & Bourbon Cream
I spent a few years of my 20's working as a bartender in a couple hotels in San Diego, California. I wanted to make extra money to help pay for my college education and bills while living on my own, on top of working as a dental assistant. Those years were quite interesting. I made some amazing friends working those jobs.
While bartending I served up quite a few bourbon cocktails. Some Manhattans, a few old fashioneds, bourbon neat, bourbon and coke and rocks, but honestly never tasted bourbon myself, at least not to my recollection; not till I moved to Kentucky. I usually prefer vodka for cocktails. Now that I live very close to a few distilleries and went on some tours, I can appreciate the history and culture of bourbon. Bourbon is as American as any alcohol can get! You're literally drinking history when you enjoy a bourbon cocktail.
Who would enjoy this Cocktail?
Even though I don't drink bourbon on a regular basis, I have huge respect for the distillers and the time, dedication and heart that truly goes into every bottle of bourbon you see on the grocery shelves. My husband on the other hand has become a huge fan of this historical liquid gold. I promise you, you do not have to love the taste of bourbon to enjoy this beverage. This cocktail is for everyone from whiskey nerds to casual social drinkers. It's just that good!!
How to Make a Bourbon Cream Chocolate Martini
It's simpler than you think to make this adult "chocolate milkshake." It might look fancy, but I guarantee you that if you have the proper ingredients you can totally make this dessert martini and impress! Get creative and let your syrup flow...
Prep your glasses
If you want to add any fine garnishes like flavored salts to the rims of your glasses you just need to dip, gently roll or sprinkle these onto your sticky rim. For this you can use chocolate syrup, simple syrup, honey, maple syrup...you get the point. I like to do my rim 1st and then the inside of the glass.
Measure & Shake
Add a handful of ice to your cocktail shaker. (If you don't have a cocktail shaker you can simply add the ice and ingredients to a tall glass and cover the glass with another glass to fit in a swirl the ingredients instead of shaking them.)
Combine bourbon cream, bourbon, crème de cacao & coffee liquor in a shaker or glass and strain to pour into your prepped glasses.
Can I serve this in a different glass?
I personally love the look of this bourbon cocktail in a martini glass. You can serve it in a different glass if you prefer, like a rocks or coupe glass. If it's being served in a rocks glass though, I'd recommend serving it with just one large ice cube instead of several so it doesn't dilute the drink too much. If you want to use a coupe glass you can still strain it into the glass and serve it without ice, just shaken.
Bourbon Cream Chocolate Martini Ingredients
- Bourbon Crème- Use a good one! My personal favorite is local for me, it's made by Boone County Distillery.
- Bourbon- You can use whatever bourbon you have on hand, but I would highly recommend a small batch bourbon for better overall flavor.
- Crème de Cacao- most liquor stores carry at least one type. It's a cocoa bean flavored clear liquor that has a hint of vanilla flavor.
- Coffee Liquor- This would be Kahlua or Godiva Chocolate Liqueur, or any other variation of coffee flavored liquor. It's a little bit more syrypy than creme de Cacao. *Note: In a pinch you can use one or the other if you're out of one of these liquors.*
- Chocolate Syrup- Regular chocolate Syrup from any grocery store or if you prefer a dark chocolate syrup
Variations for this Chocolate Martini
(Disclaimer: I really think you should first try this martini as is with the ingredients listed below on the recipe card, but If you've made these a few times and want a change, these are just some delicious alternative suggestions)
- Swap out the Crème de Cacao for Crème de Menthe for a Peppermint flavored Chocolate Cocktail
- Add a mini candy cane or some candy cane sprinkles to the rim of the glass.
Optional Martini Garnishes
- Candied orange slices or mandarins- with or without chocolate
- Twisted orange peel- for color more than anything
- Grated chocolate- pick a block of some really good quality chocolate for some chocolate shavings
- Whipped cream- to top the drink. I don't think it needs whipped cream, but some love the extra sweet floof on top of the drink.
- Chocolate-covered cherry- on a Cocktail Pick or toothpick
- Maraschino or bourbon cherries- YUM on a cocktail pick or toothpick
- Bourbon Balls- This is a very special Southern treat, kind of like a bourbon chocolate truffle
- Ice Cream- one small scoop
Glass Rim Options (for stickiness)
- Chocolate Syrup- This is my favorite rim option for this cocktail
- Honey or Maple Syrup
Garnish for the sticky rims:
- chocolate sprinkles (white or dark)
- colored sprinkles if you like more color
- crushed candy cane
Check out KY Distilleries
If you ever come through Northern Kentucky be sure to check out Boone County Distilling which was the inspiration for this cocktail. Everyone is always friendly there and you'll get a memorable, very personal tour of the distillery. I highly recommend it! There are just so many great ones throughout KY, so be sure to do the Bourbon Trail if you ever get a chance. I have yet to do it myself.
Have a wonderful Holiday Season, Merry Christmas & Happy New Year! Cheers!!
Bourbon Cream Chocolate Martini
- 8 oz. Bourbon Cream
- 2 oz. Bourbon If you'd like it stronger, you can add another ounce of bourbon
- 1 oz. Coffee Liqueur Kahlua, Cafe Dulce or other coffee liqueur
- 1 oz. Cream de Cocoa
Prep your Glasses
- Gently roll the rim of the glasses in some syrup to coat a thin line for stickiness.
- Drizzle some chocolate syrup inside of the glass as you like with a swirl all around or whatever design you like.
- Gently roll, dip or sprinkle flavored salts or candy cane pieces onto the rims of the glasses
Make your Cocktails
- Add a handful of ice to your shaker or glass you'll be mixing in.
- Add all of the ingredients to that same shaker.
- Give it a little shake or vigorously swirl it to combine.
- Pour into your martini glasses and add your extra garnish of choice on one side of the rims and enjoy!