Bourbon Smash Cocktail Drink

Bourbon Smash

A shot of Gavin Wrigley looking to the camera in a dimly lit room
Written by Gavin Wrigley
Andrea
Tested by
Andrea Ottaiano

In the mood for an enticing cocktail? This Bourbon Smash recipe won’t disappoint! It’s a flavorful drink that you can quickly put together.

Bourbon Smash Recipe

Savor the simplicity of this Bourbon Smash recipe! It's a blend of bourbon, lemon juice, simple syrup, and fresh mint - a vibrant cocktail perfect for fall.

Prep time:

1 minute

Mixing time:

1 minute

Servings:

1

Calories:

210 kl

Ingredients

  • 2 oz Bourbon
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • 4-6 mint leaves
  • ½ lemon, cut into wedges
  • Ice cubes
  • Lemon wheel and mint sprig, for garnish, optional

Equipment

  • Cocktail Shaker
  • Muddler
  • Old Fashioned Glass
  • Measuring Jigger
  • Strainer & Fine-strainer

Instructions

  • Prep Glass: Make sure your service glass gets thoroughly chilled.
  • Muddle: Muddle the lemon wedges in your cocktail shaker.
  • Add Mint: Choose 4-6 mint leaves (green and fresh) and drop them into the shaker.
  • Add Simple Syrup: Measure and pour in 1 oz simple syrup.
  • Add Bourbon: Pour in 2 oz Bourbon.
  • Shake: Fill the shaker with ice and shake vigorously.
  • Strain: Fine strain the mixture into your Old Fashioned glass over fresh ice cubes.
  • Garnish: Garnish with a mint sprig and lemon wheel.

Notes

Substitutes:

  • Bourbon: If you don't have bourbon, rye whiskey or brandy can be substituted. They offer a different flavor profile but still work well in this cocktail.
  • Simple Syrup: Honey or agave nectar can be used as natural sweeteners if you're out of simple syrup. Just remember to adjust the quantity to taste as they are sweeter than simple syrup.
  • Lemon: If you're out of lemons, use limes for a different citrus twist.

Making a Pitcher of Bourbon Smash:

  • Scale: To make a pitcher that serves 8, multiply all the ingredients by 8. That would be 16 oz of bourbon, 8 oz of simple syrup, 4 lemons cut into wedges, and 32 fresh mint leaves.
  • Mix: Muddle the lemon wedges in a large pitcher. Tap the mint leaves to release the aroma, before dropping them into the pitcher. Add the bourbon and simple syrup, then stir well.
  • Serve: Pour the mixture into individual ice-filled Old Fashioned glasses, garnish with a mint sprig and lemon wheel, and serve immediately.

Making it Non-Alcoholic:

  • Bourbon Substitute: Use a non-alcoholic bourbon substitute; these are available in the market and do an excellent job of mimicking bourbon's flavor.
  • Proceed As Usual: Use this non-alcoholic substitute instead of regular bourbon, follow the original steps, and enjoy a non-alcoholic version.

Making it Vegan:

  • Simple Syrup Substitute: Ensure your simple syrup is made with sugar that doesn't involve animal products in its production, or use agave nectar as a substitute.
  • Proceed As Usual: With this vegan-friendly sweetener, follow the original steps to enjoy a delicious vegan Bourbon Smash.

Nutrition Facts

Calories
210
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
0.03
g
0
%
Saturated Fat
 
0.01
g
0
%
Sodium
 
18
mg
1
%
Carbohydrates
 
21
g
7
%
Fiber
 
0.2
g
1
%
Sugar
 
21
g
23
%
Potassium
 
36
mg
1
%
Protein
 
0.1
g
0
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
0.02
g
Vitamin A
 
127
IU
3
%
Vitamin C
 
1
mg
1
%
Calcium
 
11
mg
1
%
Iron
 
1
mg
6
%

 

Bourbon Smash Cocktail Drink

Bourbon Smash Recipe

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Savor the simplicity of this Bourbon Smash recipe! It's a blend of bourbon, lemon juice, simple syrup, and fresh mint - a vibrant cocktail perfect for fall.
Prep time: 1 minute
Mixing time: 1 minute
Servings: 1
Calories: 210

Ingredients
 

  • 2 oz Bourbon
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • 4-6 mint leaves
  • ½ lemon - cut into wedges
  • Ice cubes
  • Lemon wheel and mint sprig - for garnish, optional

Equipment

  • Cocktail Shaker
  • Muddler
  • Old Fashioned Glass
  • Measuring Jigger
  • Strainer & Fine-strainer

Instructions

  • Prep Glass: Make sure your service glass gets thoroughly chilled.
  • Muddle: Muddle the lemon wedges in your cocktail shaker.
  • Add Mint: Choose 4-6 mint leaves (green and fresh) and drop them into the shaker.
  • Add Simple Syrup: Measure and pour in 1 oz simple syrup.
  • Add Bourbon: Pour in 2 oz Bourbon.
  • Shake: Fill the shaker with ice and shake vigorously.
  • Strain: Fine strain the mixture into your Old Fashioned glass over fresh ice cubes.
  • Garnish: Garnish with a mint sprig and lemon wheel.

Notes

Substitutes:

  • Bourbon: If you don't have bourbon, rye whiskey or brandy can be substituted. They offer a different flavor profile but still work well in this cocktail.
  • Simple Syrup: Honey or agave nectar can be used as natural sweeteners if you're out of simple syrup. Just remember to adjust the quantity to taste as they are sweeter than simple syrup.
  • Lemon: If you're out of lemons, use limes for a different citrus twist.

Making a Pitcher of Bourbon Smash:

  • Scale: To make a pitcher that serves 8, multiply all the ingredients by 8. That would be 16 oz of bourbon, 8 oz of simple syrup, 4 lemons cut into wedges, and 32 fresh mint leaves.
  • Mix: Muddle the lemon wedges in a large pitcher. Tap the mint leaves to release the aroma, before dropping them into the pitcher. Add the bourbon and simple syrup, then stir well.
  • Serve: Pour the mixture into individual ice-filled Old Fashioned glasses, garnish with a mint sprig and lemon wheel, and serve immediately.

Making it Non-Alcoholic:

  • Bourbon Substitute: Use a non-alcoholic bourbon substitute; these are available in the market and do an excellent job of mimicking bourbon's flavor.
  • Proceed As Usual: Use this non-alcoholic substitute instead of regular bourbon, follow the original steps, and enjoy a non-alcoholic version.

Making it Vegan:

  • Simple Syrup Substitute: Ensure your simple syrup is made with sugar that doesn't involve animal products in its production, or use agave nectar as a substitute.
  • Proceed As Usual: With this vegan-friendly sweetener, follow the original steps to enjoy a delicious vegan Bourbon Smash.

What is a Bourbon Smash?

A Bourbon Smash is a whiskey-based cocktail made of bourbon, fresh lemon, mint leaves, and simple syrup. It’s not difficult to make; the process involves muddling the lemon before adding the mint, bourbon, and syrup. The Bourbon Smash is essentially a variant of the classic Mint Julep without the bitters and with an added citrus twist for extra freshness.

A side shot of a Bourbon Smash cocktail in an old fashioned glass on a wooden coaster placed on a dark grey table surrounded by a white cloth, a beige place mat, and a wooden board.

What is a Bourbon Smash made of – The ingredients

Get these ingredients ready if you’re making a Bourbon Smash:

  • Bourbon: The base spirit of the cocktail, bourbon gives the drink its characteristic strong, rich, and slightly sweet flavor.
  • Lemon Wedges: These add a tangy citrus note to balance out the sweetness of the bourbon and sugar.
  • Fresh Mint Leaves: Mint leaves provide a refreshing herbal undertone that complements the other flavors.
  • Simple Syrup: This sweetens the cocktail, enhancing the natural flavors of the bourbon and lemon.
  • Cubed Ice: Used to chill the drink during shaking and after it’s served.

Bourbon, simple syrup, half a lemon, and mint leaves laid out on a white bar table

How do you make a Bourbon Smash?

Our clear instructions will teach you how to make a Bourbon Smash:

1
<p>Start by chilling an old fashioned glass.</p>

Start by chilling an old fashioned glass.

2
<p>Cut half a lemon into wedges and muddle them into a shaker.</p>

Cut half a lemon into wedges and muddle them into a shaker.

3
<p>Add 4-6 mint leaves to the shaker.</p>

Add 4-6 mint leaves to the shaker.

4
<p>Pour in 1/2 ounce of simple syrup. This will add a sweet touch to balance the lemon's tartness.</p>

Pour in 1/2 ounce of simple syrup. This will add a sweet touch to balance the lemon's tartness.

5
<p>Next, add 2 ounces of your favorite bourbon to the shaker. This is the show's star, so choose a bourbon you enjoy.</p>

Next, add 2 ounces of your favorite bourbon to the shaker. This is the show's star, so choose a bourbon you enjoy.

6
<p>Fill your cocktail shaker with ice cubes and shake vigorously for around 10-15 seconds. </p>

Fill your cocktail shaker with ice cubes and shake vigorously for around 10-15 seconds. 

7
<p>Fine strain your mixture in your chilled old fashioned glass over fresh ice.</p>

Fine strain your mixture in your chilled old fashioned glass over fresh ice.

8
<p>Finally, garnish your Bourbon Smash with a sprig of fresh mint and a lemon wheel. This adds a pop of color and fresh flavor right before you take your first sip.</p>

Finally, garnish your Bourbon Smash with a sprig of fresh mint and a lemon wheel. This adds a pop of color and fresh flavor right before you take your first sip.

Bourbon Smash Variations

Give one of these variations a try if you want to change up your Bourbon Smash game:

  • Peach Bourbon Smash: Bourbon mingles with fresh peaches, mint, and lemon juice in this refreshing mix. The sweet notes of ripe peaches enhance the deep flavors of bourbon, creating a bright, summer-like sensation. I love how the natural sweetness of the peaches uplifts the bourbon’s profile, offering a cheerful and enjoyable experience.
  • Maple Bourbon Smash: Bourbon pairs with maple syrup and a dash of lemon in this concoction, often adorned with a lemon twist or a sprig of thyme for extra aroma. Maple syrup brings a comforting sweetness that melds wonderfully with bourbon’s woodsy taste. The zest from the lemon balances out the sweetness, providing a warm and inviting feel.
  • Cherry Bourbon Smash: Bourbon joins forces with either fresh or frozen cherries and mint, topped off with a splash of soda water. The rich fruitiness of the cherries makes a striking contrast with the crisp mint. I’m particularly fond of how the tartness of the cherries robustly complements the spicy bourbon notes.
  • Apple Bourbon Smash: Bourbon swirls with apple cider, a squeeze of lemon, and a pinch of cinnamon, crafting a spiced, fruity essence. The apple cider enhances the sweet vanilla and caramel flavors inherent in bourbon, while the cinnamon introduces a comforting spice.

A Bourbon Smash cocktail, shot from above, in an old fashioned glass on a beige surface surrounded by Bourbon, simple syrup, half a lemon, and mint leaves

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FAQ

How many calories does a Bourbon Smash contain?
A standard Bourbon Smash cocktail contains approximately 200 calories. However, this can vary slightly depending on the specific ingredients used and their quantities.
How strong is a Bourbon Smash?
The strength of a Bourbon Smash primarily depends on the bourbon used. Generally, it has an Alcohol By Volume (ABV) of around 20% 40%, translating to 40 80 proof. This makes it a moderately strong cocktail.
What type of alcohol is used in a Bourbon Smash?
As the name suggests, a Bourbon Smash uses bourbon as its primary alcohol. The choice of bourbon can significantly influence the flavor profile of the drink.
In what kind of glass is a Bourbon Smash served?
Traditionally, a Bourbon Smash is served in an old-fashioned or rocks glass. These glasses are ideal for showcasing this cocktail's vibrant colors and textures.
What does a Bourbon Smash taste like?
A Bourbon Smash offers a delightful balance of sweet, sour, and strong flavors. The sweetness comes from the simple syrup, the sourness from fresh lemon juice, and the strength from bourbon. Additionally, mint leaves add a refreshing touch to this cocktail.
What is the ratio of ingredients in a Bourbon Smash?
The typical ratio for a Bourbon Smash is 2 oz of bourbon, 1 oz of simple syrup and the juice from half a lemon. A handful of fresh mint leaves is also added for extra flavor.
How is a Bourbon Smash served with respect to ice?
A Bourbon Smash is usually shaken and served over cubed ice.

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