‘Tis the season to give your holiday cocktail menu a sweet and jolly flair with this decadent peppermint-chocolate martini! Featuring cooling peppermint schnapps, rich chocolate liqueur and crème de cacao, this Christmas dessert martini is a favorite cocktail for any holiday party. After one sip, you’ll want to make this festive martini a Christmas tradition.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Dessert in a glass: Love a sweet treat? This martini is your dream cocktail. It’s bursting with chocolate flavor with just the right touch of sweet peppermint. You won’t find a more perfect after-dinner drink for the holiday season.
Batching option for your holiday parties: While you can certainly shake up a couple cocktails at a time, you also have the option to scale up the recipe to keep your hosting responsibilities light on party day. You have good company to enjoy.
Quick and simple: You don’t need to be an advanced bartender to make this Christmas martini, and this easy cocktail requires very little hands-on preparation time.
Chocolate liqueur: Not only does this give us an intense chocolate flavor but it also adds a creaminess with its silky finish. I used the Godiva brand in the milk chocolate variety. Mozart is another popular brand. If you'd like to make this into a white chocolate-peppermint martini, simply substitute the milk chocolate variety for white chocolate liqueur.
Crème de cacao: While this is a chocolate bean-flavored liqueur, it’s distinctly different from the above ingredient, which is sweeter with more of a creamy, syrup-like texture. You’ll see it in both dark and white varieties. This recipe was specifically tested with the white crème de cacao, which shows off vanilla notes as well.
Vanilla vodka: You’ll love the way the vanilla complements the peppermint schnapps and adds another layer of sweet flavor. That said, you can substitute plain vodka if need be. Some peppermint martini recipes use peppermint vodka, but I don't think it's necessary with the schnapps.
Heavy cream: This gives our holiday martini a decadent touch. You can also substitute this for half and half.
Peppermint schnapps: It doesn't take much to get that strong peppermint flavor, so we just need a small amount. Don't pour with a heavy hand here.
Chocolate sauce and peppermint bark: We use these two ingredients to make that festive garnish. Although the garnish is optional, it adds some extra holiday fun.
Step 1: Let’s begin by preparing our martini glasses with that peppermint bark garnish. For this step, we swirl the rim of the glass into the chocolate syrup and then dip it into the grated peppermint bark on a shallow plate (photo 1). Our chocolate rim is now ready.
Step 2: In a cocktail shaker, we add the chocolate liqueur, white crème de cacao, vanilla vodka, peppermint schnapps, heavy cream and a handful of ice (photo 2).
Step 3: Now we put the cocktail shaker top on the glass and shake well (photo 3). About 20-30 seconds works well here.
Step 4: All that’s left is to strain the chocolate-peppermint martini into the glass (photo 4). If you'd like, you could even add a peppermint stick to go along with the chocolate-rimmed glass for even more holiday cheer.
In four easy steps, we now have the most festive Christmas martini ready for sipping. Put on some Christmas music and enjoy those holiday vibes!
This process is easy as can be — simply run the peppermint bark along a box grater. I used the big holes, but you can use the small holes if you prefer a smaller grate, more like a dusting of peppermint bark. This process also works for grating chocolate.
Absolutely. To make this peppermint-chocolate martini ahead of party time, stir together the chocolate liqueur, white crème de cacao, vanilla vodka, peppermint schnapps and heavy cream in a pitcher and keep it in the refrigerator covered for up to two days. When you’re ready to serve, pour 4 ½ ounces per drink into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. The standard cocktail shaker can handle two drinks at a time.
If you don’t want to bother shaking, I recommend adding a handful of ice to the pitcher, stirring for about 30 seconds and then using a slotted spoon to remove any ice. Without shaking, you’ll miss out on the dilution, but this gives you some of that. Stir again before serving. Please note that I recommend shaking for best results.
This drink goes down oh-so smoothly, but the vanilla vodka, chocolate liqueur, crème de cacao and peppermint schnapps all have a kick. Sip slowly, friends.
Serve in a chilled glass: Since this peppermint martini recipe calls for serving it straight up without ice, a chilled glass keeps your sipping experience nice and cool. For a perfectly chilled glass, keep it in the freezer for 30 minutes ahead of serving.
No worries if you forget, though. You can instead fill the martini glass with water and ice cubes while mixing. Stir the water and ice for about 30 seconds before straining, dump the contents, and you’re left with a chilled glass.
Use the proper shaking technique: For the proper shake, we want to use two hands and hold the glass at an angle.
Buy a miniature bottle of peppermint schnapps: A little bit of peppermint schnapps goes a long way. If you don’t drink it very often, you can save a few bucks by buying one of those miniature bottles instead of a full-size handle.
Get creative with garnishes: While I love grated peppermint bark, you have other fun options. For instance, you can use crushed candy canes, shaved chocolate, cocoa powder or holiday sprinkles.
This sweet martini calls for dessert, and I have two perfect recipes for you — this peppermint bark ice cream and peppermint chocolate chip cookies. They have all the pepperminty goodness to match our drink. A rich, chocolatey dessert would work just as well, and these ultra fudgy brownies are perfect.
For the most luscious holiday cocktail, I hope you try this peppermint-chocolate martini. Every sip is sure to make you feel some Christmas cheer.
Get More Christmas Cocktails
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.
- Cocktail shaker
- Jigger or small measuring cup
- Chocolate sauce for garnish, optional
- Grated peppermint bark for garnish, optional
- 1 ½ ounces chocolate liqueur such as Godiva or Mozart
- 1 ounce white crème de cacao
- 1 ounce vanilla vodka
- ½ ounce peppermint schnapps
- ½ ounce heavy cream
- If desired, dip the rim of the serving glass into the chocolate sauce and then swirl it in the grated peppermint bark. Set aside.
- Add the chocolate liqueur, white crème de cacao, vanilla vodka, peppermint schnapps, heavy cream and a handful of ice to a cocktail shaker.
- Put on the top and shake vigorously, about 20-30 seconds.
- Strain into the martini glass. Enjoy!
- Serve in a chilled glass. For a perfectly chilled glass, keep it in the freezer for 30 minutes ahead of serving. If you forget, you can instead fill the martini glass with water and ice cubes while mixing. Stir the water and ice for about 30 seconds before straining, dump the contents, and you’re left with a chilled glass.
- Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.