Who else loves Halloween? I know. Just a few posts ago, I was practically crying over the loss of summer, and now I'm all giddy over Halloween. I'm weird like that. Well, Halloween month is here, so I'm ready to embrace it. I can't think of a better way to kick-off the celebration than whipping up this spooky Zombie Brains Halloween Cocktail. Not only is this cocktail delicious but it's also plenty festive and will have you feeling the Halloween spirit in no time.
Before we dive into the details of this festive Zombie Brains Halloween Cocktail, can we take a minute to chat about why Halloween is oh-so fun? Here are a few reasons I love Halloween month.
- Costumes --- so fun! My childhood and adult Dorothy costumes remain my favorites because "The Wizard of Oz" will always be the greatest movie of all time. And don't even get me started on animal costumes. The adorableness overwhelms me. (Shoutout to my mom who reads the blog and made my childhood Dorothy costume. Thanks, Mom!)
- Fall baking. That's obvious for a food blog, right?
- I play "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" soundtrack on repeat. Dancing and singing along included.
- The return of "The Walking Dead." I know a lot of people jumped off the bandwagon, especially after the terrible Glen scene, but it still captivates me.
- Scary movies. As you can tell from this Halloween cocktail's name and the above bullet point, I especially love a good zombie flick. "28 Days Later" and "Dawn of the Dead" are a couple favorites, despite scaring the bejesus out of me.
So what say you? What's your favorite part of Halloween? Let me know!
To make this Zombie Brains Halloween cocktail, we need vodka, Chambord, pomegranate juice, freshly squeezed orange juice, raspberries and ginger ale. The pomegranate juice gives this cocktail that deep ruby color, and if you ask me, raspberries resemble miniature brains. As folklore tells us, zombies live on a brain-heavy diet, so the two seemed like natural ingredients.
Grab your cocktail shaker, throw in a handful of raspberries and muddle until they break down. Not only does this give our cocktail plenty of fresh raspberry flavor but it also turns those little zombie brains into a juicier consistency that I imagine zombies enjoy.
In fact, if you serve these at a Halloween party, you can muddle raspberries and put them on a tray by your cocktail glasses, and it'll look like innards. See the innards in the photos? Those are actually smashed raspberries. As the raspberries sit, they continue to release their juices and get even oozier, making for the perfect Halloween decoration.
After you muddle the raspberries, add the vodka, Chambord, pomegranate juice, freshly squeezed orange juice and a handful of ice. Pop on the top and give it a good shake. Strain into ice-filled glasses and pour a splash of ginger ale on top.
You'll notice the recipe makes one drink, but you can easily scale it up to make a punch. Simply multiple the ounces listed by how many servings you'd like, and then divide the ounces into cups. Eight ounces makes 1 fluid cup. For the ginger ale, I'd estimate about half of an ounce per drink and pour it on top of the punch right before serving. Rather than using a cocktail shaker, you can muddle and combine the ingredients in a mixing glass or bowl.
Is It Safe to Put Dry Ice in Your Drink?
Dry ice makes for a fun Halloween cocktail, especially if you're serving this drink at a party. But is it safe to put dry ice directly in your drink? Technically, yes, you can put dry ice directly in a drink.
That said, ingesting dry ice is dangerous, so I recommend telling your guests to sip from the top until it stops steaming or wait until it stops steaming completely before sipping, which should take about five minutes. You also shouldn't touch dry ice with your bare skin, so wear gloves or use tongs when handling, and store in a portable cooler with the lid slightly ajar --- not your refrigerator or freezer.
If you want to play it safe, I have a few ideas to get that spooky effect without the risk.
- Place the dry ice in a cauldron with water and use the cauldron as tabletop decor in the serving area. The fog will trickle around the cocktail glasses and shaker.
- If you're making punch, use a large chunk of dry ice and place it in the punch bowl. Dry ice is dense and will sink to the bottom. Just periodically check to make sure the dry ice doesn't melt so small that someone could accidentally scoop it into their glass.
- Get a cauldron large enough to house a punch bowl. Although placing dry ice in a punch bowl is generally safe, this gives you an extra layer of protection if you're paranoid. Plus, you don't have to worry about the dry ice melting and watering down your punch.
Given that this is a Halloween cocktail, we need a recipe that screams fall. A roasted rosemary pork loin with a side of mashed sweet potatoes is perfect. You could also go with a pan-seared pork chop and roasted butternut squash. Pork and pomegranate make for a great pairing, and I love how the sweetness from the sweet potato or butternut squash counters the acidity in the pomegranate juice.
Turn on your favorite horror movie --- bonus points if it involves zombies --- and pour yourself this Zombie Brains Halloween Cocktail. You'll quickly feel the Halloween vibes with this delicious cocktail in hand. Please leave me a comment sharing your favorite moments of Halloween month as well as any recipe thoughts and don't forget to sign up for my newsletter.
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Zombie Brains Halloween Cocktail
- Cocktail shaker
- Citrus juicer
- Jigger or small measuring cup
- ¼ cup raspberries
- ¼ cup pomegranate juice
- 2 ounces orange juice preferably freshly squeezed
- 2 ounces vodka
- 1 ounce Chambord
- Dry ice optional, for spooky effect (see notes for safety recommendations)
- Splash of ginger ale
- In a cocktail shaker, muddle raspberries until they break down.
- Add the pomegranate juice, orange juice, vodka, Chambord and ice. Put on the top and shake vigorously for 15 seconds.
- Strain into ice-filled glasses if just using regular ice. If using dry ice, use gloves and tongs (not your bare skin) to drop in a piece of dry ice. Let you guests know not to ingest the dry ice -- sip from the top until it stops steaming or wait until it stop steaming completely before sipping. Top with ginger ale. Enjoy!
- Do not touch dry ice with bare skin or ingest it. Make sure to use tongs to transfer the ice. Gloves are also a good idea. The ice will drop to the bottom of the glass. Either let your guest know to sip the cocktail from the top until it stops bubbling, or set the cocktail out to show off the fun effect but don't serve until the bubbling stops, about five minutes.
- I prefer freshly squeezed orange juice, but you can also use store-bought orange juice, especially if you scale this up to serve a crowd.
- Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.