Cranberry Kiss Cocktail Recipe

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Cranberry Kiss Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Cranberry Kiss cocktail is a delightful and refreshing drink that originated in the 1990s. It quickly gained popularity due to its vibrant color and fruity flavor, making it a favorite among those who enjoy a lighter, fruitier cocktail. The drink is often associated with holiday gatherings and festive occasions.

  • Originated in the 1990s
  • Gained popularity due to its vibrant color and fruity flavor
  • Often associated with holiday gatherings and festive occasions

How Cranberry Kiss Tastes?

The Cranberry Kiss cocktail is a perfect balance of sweet and tart flavors, with a hint of citrus. The cranberry juice provides a tangy, fruity base, while the orange liqueur adds a touch of sweetness and a subtle citrus note. The drink is light and refreshing, making it an ideal choice for those who prefer a less potent cocktail.

Interesting facts about Cranberry Kiss

  • The cranberry is one of only three fruits native to North America that are commercially grown.
  • Cranberries are often harvested by flooding the fields, allowing the berries to float to the surface for easy collection.
  • The Cranberry Kiss cocktail is sometimes referred to as a 'Cranberry Cosmo' due to its similarity to the popular Cosmopolitan cocktail.


Cranberry Juice

Cranberry Juice (2 oz): The tartness of cranberry juice balances the sweet and citrus flavors, making for a refreshing drink. Too much will overpower, too little and you'll miss the signature cranberry kiss. Skip it, and well, it wouldn't be a cranberry cocktail anymore, would it?

Emma Rose

Orange Liqueur

Orange Liqueur (1 oz): The sweet and complex orange flavors from the liqueur add depth. Overdo it, and you might as well call it an orange punch. If you leave it out, the cocktail might lose its seductive whisper of citrus and sweetness. Triple sec is a common alternative, albeit with a slightly less nuanced flavor.

Mary Mitkina

Fresh Lime Juice

Fresh Lime Juice (0.5 oz): This is the zesty zing that brings it all together. Too little and the drink is flat, too much and your face puckers more than kissing your aunt at Thanksgiving. No lime? No harmony.

Alex Green


Ice (1 cup): Not just a chilling factor, it's integral to the dilution process, which actually helps in balancing flavors. No ice, no chill, no cheer.

Emma Rose

Orange Twist

Orange Twist (1): It's like the curl on a beautifully wrapped gift—a final touch and a whiff of zest. No twist might not break the drink, but you'll miss that fresh citrus scent with every sip.

Mary Mitkina


Mint Sprig (1): Refreshing and aromatic, mint is the green flag that signals 'this beverage is ready to be sipped!' Without it, the cocktail is like a garden without flowers—still nice, but something's missing.

Alex Green

Recipe. How to make Cranberry Kiss Drink

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice
  2. Add the cranberry juice, orange liqueur, and fresh lime juice
  3. Shake well until chilled
  4. Strain the mixture into a chilled cocktail glass
  5. Garnish with an orange twist and a sprig of mint

Pro Tips

  • Shake the cocktail shaker vigorously to ensure all ingredients are well mixed.
  • Always use fresh lime juice for the best flavor.
  • Chill the glass before pouring the cocktail to keep it cool for longer.

Perfect Pairings


  • Cheese platters: Soft cheeses like Brie or Camembert
  • Crostini: with Goat Cheese and a drizzle of honey

Main Courses

  • Roast Turkey: balances the savory flavors with its fruity notes
  • Grilled Seafood: particularly shellfish like shrimp or scallops


  • Chocolate desserts: especially dark chocolate, as the bitterness complements the cocktail's tartness
  • Fruit tarts: where the crust and cream can contrast nicely with the citrus and cranberry notes of the drink

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What you could change in Cranberry Kiss

  • Cranberry Juice: Can be replaced with pomegranate juice for a different flavor profile.
  • Orange Liqueur: Triple sec or Cointreau can be used as alternatives.
  • Fresh Lime Juice: Lemon juice can be used as a substitute.

Explore all drinks starting with C here

And of course - twists🍹

Cranberry Kiss Royale

Ingredients: Add 0.5 oz of Champagne Recipe: Follow the original recipe, then top the cocktail with Champagne. How it changes: Adds a luxurious effervescence and a celebratory twist. Perfect for special moments when a simple kiss won't do.

Berry Citrus Kiss

Ingredients: Substitute orange liqueur with raspberry liqueur Recipe: Follow the original recipe, replacing orange liqueur with the same amount of raspberry liqueur. How it changes: Introduces a berry twist that's a bit more playful and vibrant, a flirty variation if you will.

Spicy Cranberry Kiss

Ingredients: Muddle 2 slices of jalapeño in the shaker before adding ingredients Recipe: Muddle the jalapeño, add the rest of the ingredients as usual, and shake well. How it changes: Adds a spicy kick that's sure to heat things up! For those who like a little fire with their sweetness.

In case you forgot basics how to make Cranberry Kiss

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Cranberry Kiss

What type of orange liqueur is best for this cocktail?

You can use any high-quality orange liqueur, but Curaçao or Grand Marnier is often preferred for their rich flavor.

Can I use bottled cranberry juice for this cocktail?

Yes, you can use bottled cranberry juice, but be aware that it may have added sugar which could alter the taste of the cocktail. Fresh cranberry juice is always recommended for the best taste.

Is the Cranberry Kiss a good cocktail for beginners to make?

Absolutely, the Cranberry Kiss is fairly simple to make, requiring only a few ingredients and steps. It's a great choice for those just starting to experiment with cocktail making.

What other garnishes can I use for the Cranberry Kiss cocktail?

You might consider adding a few fresh cranberries on a cocktail stick for a festive touch. A slice of lime would also complement the flavors.

Are there any non-alcoholic substitutes for the orange liqueur?

You can use a non-alcoholic triple sec syrup or orange extract mixed with a little simple syrup to replicate the flavor.

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