Let’s give a favorite classic cocktail an extra jolt of citrus with this fresh blood orange Moscow mule! Mixed with freshly squeezed blood orange and lime juices and topped with a citrusy ginger beer, this mule is even more refreshing than the original version and comes together in fewer than five minutes. You can make it as a single drink or a large pitcher for parties. No matter how you serve it, this is one crowd-pleasing cocktail that’s perfect for any and all occasions.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
Celebrates blood orange season: Fresh blood oranges aren’t with us year round, so when these beauties start hitting the grocery store, we need to take advantage and make plenty of seasonal winter citrus cocktails. You’ll love how this delicious drink beautifully shows off that blood orange flavor.
No advanced bartending skills required: Not an expert bartender? You’re in luck. If you can stir, you can make this drink.
Makes entertaining super simple: Whipping up one blood orange mule only takes a few minutes, but we can make your hosting duties even easier with a pitcher option.
Vodka: I recommend using the best vodka that fits your budget. Low-quality vodka makes for a harsh drinking experience. If you need some recommendations, here’s a list of vodkas to keep in your spirit cabinet.
Blood orange ginger beer: I absolutely love this flavored ginger beer from Fever Tree. It really amps up that citrus flavor. You can substitute plain ginger beer, but you’ll be very happy if you can track down this blood orange variety.
Lime juice: We want freshly squeezed lime juice, not bottled juice, for the brightest, most citrusy flavor. Fresh lime juice makes a giant difference in the final drink.
Blood orange juice: Like the lime juice, we want to use freshly squeezed blood orange juice.
Step 1: Moscow mules are built right in the serving glass, so we don’t need a cocktail shaker. Instead, we simply pour the vodka, blood orange juice and lime juice into a copper mug with a handful of ice (photo 1).
Step 2: Using a bar spoon, we stir the mixture for about 15-20 seconds (photo 2). This both chills the drink and gives us a touch of dilution. You’ll notice the outside of the mug will start to build condensation as it rapidly chills.
Step 3: Now that the base of our drink is properly chilled, we top the mule with our spicy ginger beer (photo 3). To combine, we gently stir again.
Step 4: For the final step, we garnish our mule with a slice of blood orange (photo 4). This is optional, but that beautiful blood orange is too pretty to not show off its vibrant red hue.
Now raise the glass, take your first sip and savor all that citrus goodness. Refreshing, isn’t it?
How to Make a Pitcher
Let’s review how to make a pitcher of blood orange Moscow mules. You’ll find the exact proportions in the recipe card.
- We add the vodka, blood orange juice, lime juice and a handful or two of ice to a large pitcher.
- Now we stir the mixture for about 15-20 seconds.
- Using a slotted spoon, we remove the remaining ice. This accounts for the dilution we’d get making it with the traditional method.
- We cover the pitcher and refrigerate it for up to 24 hours. After that, the citrus juices start to lose that bright flavor.
- Right before serving, we pour in the blood orange ginger beer, and your guests can pour themselves a perfectly crafted mule.
Another option when entertaining is to make the mules fresh but juice the limes and blood oranges the morning of your party. You can keep the juices in a squeeze bottle. With the juices already squeezed, mixing goes much faster.
Generally, you can find blood oranges from December to May. See? The season is short, so we need to make as many blood orange mules as possible between now and May. Life is hard.
Besides the unmistakable hue, blood oranges are sweeter and not quite as tart as navel oranges. Both are delicious, but you’ll love that softer, more mellow flavor of the blood orange.
Absolutely, to make this a nonalcoholic mule, simply leave out the vodka. You can also use a nonalcoholic vodka. These nonalcoholic spirits have gained a lot of popularity over the years as mocktails continue to gain favor.
If you don’t have a copper mug to make a mule, you can use a highball glass or double old fashioned glass. The copper is great for keeping your drink icy cold, but don’t miss this drink just because you don’t have the traditional glassware.
This is a sparkling fermented beverage that’s made with fresh ginger and sugar. Traditional ginger beer did include alcohol, but most varieties these days are nonalcoholic, so you don’t have to worry about it making your drink too strong.
Important note: Do not mistake ginger beer for ginger ale. They're very different products. Ginger ale is much sweeter and less spicy.
A cocktail with a twist is always fun, so here are a few ways you can jazz up this drink.
- Use another spirit — for example, bourbon for a Kentucky mule, gin for a London mule or Irish whiskey for an Irish mule.
- Swap regular vodka for a blood orange vodka for even more citrus flavor.
- Try another citrus juice — Cara Cara orange juice works nicely.
- Lightly muddle jalapeño slices for a spicy kick or some fresh mint or basil for an herbal touch.
Select ripe limes: A ripe lime should have a bit of give when you press your fingers into the peel. If it feels like a rock in your hand, the lime is dried out.
Chill your ginger beer: This prevents our ice from melting too quickly.
Freeze any extra blood orange juice: Since blood oranges have a short shelf life, this is a great way to enjoy blood orange cocktails all year long.
Add extra blood orange juice if using regular ginger beer: I’d add 1 ounce more than the recipe calls for to get that extra citrusy boost.
Use a citrus juicer: I love using a citrus juicer to maximize my juice output. If you use a handheld juicer, the blood orange likely won’t fit, but you can cut it into wedges, and that will take care of the size issue.
Freeze your mugs: While the copper mugs chill quickly when stirring, this makes our drinks even icier and more refreshing.
I don’t think there’s a more perfect match than enjoying this winter citrus mule with my blood orange salmon. We slow roast this salmon to absolute perfection and then finish it with a ginger-infused blood orange glaze. The two recipes were meant for each other.
If you have a sweet tooth, my spiced orange tres leches cake is also a delicious option. The spiced cake pairs beautifully with the ginger beer, and the two orange varieties meld together nicely.
I hope you make the most of blood orange season. Sipping on this blood orange Moscow mule is the perfect way to celebrate.
Get More Blood Orange Cocktail Recipes
If you love this recipe, please leave a comment with a five-star rating — or simply hit the five-star button in the recipe card. Don't forget to sign up for my newsletter, and you can follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and TikTok.
Blood Orange Moscow Mule
- Copper mug
- Citrus juicer
- Jigger or small measuring cup
- Bar spoon
- 2 ounces vodka
- 2 ounces freshly squeezed blood orange juice
- ½ ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
- 6 ounces chilled blood orange ginger beer (see notes)
- Slice of blood orange for garnish, optional
- Add the vodka, blood orange juice, lime juice and a handful of ice to the copper mug.
- Using a bar spoon, stir the mixture until chilled, about 15-20 seconds.
- Top with chilled blood orange ginger beer. Gently stir to combine.
- If desired, garnish with a blood orange slice. Enjoy!
- If using regular ginger beer, add 1 ounce more than the recipe calls for to get that extra citrusy boost.
- Pick limes that have some give when you squeeze them to ensure they're ripe.
- To enjoy blood orange cocktails all year long, you can freeze the juice.
- For an extra refreshing drink, you can stick the copper mugs in the freezer 15-30 minutes before serving.
- Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.