Perfect Cosmopolitan Cocktail Recipe

Not overly sweet or too tart, our cosmopolitan cocktail recipe is perfect to shake up for one or even prepare in advance for a crowd. Jump to the Cosmopolitan Cocktail Recipe or watch our quick recipe video showing you how we make it.

While there are many variations, ours comes from what we (and most of our friends) keep stocked in our pantry. Good vodka, triple sec (we like to use Cointreau) and fresh lime. A twist of sweet fragrant orange peel and you’re set.

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Making our Cosmopolitan Cocktail Recipe

When choosing the vodka, go for something mid to high range. We’ll usually stock Stolichnaya or “Stoli,” but use what you know you enjoy. The other thing to remember, here is to use fresh lime juice – not the bottled stuff. We realize it’s a little more work, but the taste is so much better.

How to Make the Best Cosmopolitan Cocktail Recipe

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Lastly, we love adding a little orange peel to this. Sure, it may look like an unnecessary garnish, but if you do it right, it’s adds a little sweetness and as you go into to take a sip of the cosmopolitan cocktail, you’ll get orange essence, which hides the strength and scent of the vodka.

When you add the orange peel, peel it over the drink. This way, any oils that spray out from the orange, fall into the drink. Rubbing the edges of the glass doesn’t hurt either.

Perfect Cosmopolitan Cocktail Recipe

It’s such a fresh, bright and happy drink. Don’t you think?

TAKE A LOOK: You may also like these cocktails Ginger Cosmopolitan Cocktail or this Champagne Cosmopolitan Recipe

Perfect Cosmopolitan Cocktail Recipe

Recipe updated, originally posted December 2012. Since posting this in 2012, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear and added a quick recipe video. – Adam and Joanne

Perfect Cosmopolitan Cocktail Recipe

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Not too sweet or too tart, this cosmopolitan cocktail recipe is perfect to serve one or many. We like to use unflavored or citrus flavored vodka in this. If you can, since there is quite a lot of vodka in the recipe, choose vodka that is medium priced or that’s even top-shelf. We like to use Stolichnaya. We love adding a little orange peel to this. Sure, it may look like an unnecessary garnish, but if you do it right, it’s adds a little sweetness and as you go into to take a sip of the cosmopolitan cocktail, you’ll get orange essence, which hides the strength and scent of the vodka. When you add the orange peel, peel it over the drink. This way, any oils that spray out from the orange, fall into the drink. Rubbing the edges of the glass doesn’t hurt either.

Makes 1 drink

You Will Need

2 ounces (1/4 cup) vodka

1/2 ounce (1 tablespoon) triple sec

3/4 ounce (1 tablespoon + 1 1/2 teaspoons) cranberry juice

1/4 to 1/2 ounce (1 1/2 teaspoons to 3 teaspoons) fresh lime juice

One 2-inch orange peel/twist

Ice

Directions

    Fill a cocktail shaker with ice then add vodka, triple sec, cranberry juice and lime juice. (We like the extra bite of extra lime juice, so we use 1/2 an ounce in our cosmopolitan cocktails. However, use what is best for your taste). Shake the cocktail shaker for about 30 seconds until well chilled. Then, strain into a martini glass.

    Garnish with orange peel/twist. For an extra burst of flavor, peel the orange twist over the filled cocktail glass. This way, the orange oils spray into the glass.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • To make 4 drinks at one time, add 1 cup vodka, 1/4 cup triple sec, 1/3 cup cranberry juice, and 2 to 4 tablespoons of fresh lime juice to a pitcher. Stir and adjust to taste. Refrigerate. When ready to serve, pour into four martini glasses and garnish with orange peel/twist.
  • Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values.

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste

Nutrition Per Serving: Calories 205 / Protein 0 g / Carbohydrate 13 g / Dietary Fiber 0 g / Total Sugars 9 g / Total Fat 0 g / Saturated Fat 0 g / Cholesterol 0 mg
AUTHOR: Adam and Joanne Gallagher

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64 comments… Leave a Comment
  • carolinagirl August 20, 2017, 5:01 pm

    Delicious Cosmopolitan. I used a bit more “real” cranberry juice cocktail than the recipe, and the twist of orange at the end, I squeezed the peel first. It made it special and smelled great. I almost left out the orange peel, but then decided what the heck and was very glad I added it!

    Reply
  • PizzaG June 17, 2017, 11:10 am

    I made this Cosmo but found I didn’t like how the lime juice tasted in it, so now I omit that. I didn’t have any triple sec so I used Gran Marnier. My cranberry juice was 100% juice and I did not find it necessary to add sugar or simple syrup. It was delicious – I had three!

    Reply
  • Ryan Richmond May 13, 2017, 2:10 pm

    This was a little too strong as written. I changed it up as follows, and my wife loves it now. 1.5 ounces Orange Vodka, 1 ounce Triple Sec, 2 ounces Cranberry Juice (100% juice, not cocktail and not pure cranberry juice, which is bitter), 1 tsp. fresh lime juice, or to taste (too much ruins the drink) – I cut a lime in half and use one half for two drinks. That’s it! This is my wife’s favorite drink now!

    Reply
  • Benjamin April 8, 2017, 10:44 pm

    Not a light drink!
    The type of Cranberry juice really matters. BUY JUICE COCKTAIL, for the added sugar. Or sub in a touch of agave syrup as others suggest.

    Reply
  • Cindy March 29, 2017, 7:28 am

    I tried my first Cosmo just the other night when I was having dinner out. Loved it!! So I bought all the supplies and used your recipe last night and it was delish!! Thank you!!

    Reply
  • Carolynn March 16, 2017, 12:17 pm

    Delicious using Rose’s Sweetened Lime Juice (found in grocery stores) too. Also added green food coloring for a pretty kelly green drink for St. Patrick’s Day party. Great drink to make for any party.

    Reply
  • Chris March 12, 2017, 10:09 am

    I added 3/4 oz Pom juice too. I enjoy cranberry & pomengrate together.

    Reply
  • Christine January 21, 2017, 3:08 pm

    Perfect every time. Made this cocktail a lot over xmas! Big hit with guests! Wouldn’t alter anything. Thank you so much for recipe!!

    Reply
  • Whit December 19, 2016, 8:46 pm

    Thank you for a delightful cosmo recipe. I love them but it is hard to find a place that truly knows how to craft one. So, thanks to you, I can stay home and enjoy one.
    Side note…. bc I juice fresh cranberries, that is what I used plus equal part simple syrup then used correct measurement from that for recipe.

    Reply
  • Destend2b February 2, 2016, 6:26 pm

    Wow this Cosmo is soooooo good. Had to sub Cointreau for Triple Sec and it is fantastic.

    Reply
    • JDM March 12, 2017, 4:21 pm

      Cointreau is a brand of Triple Sec. It is the industry standard for good Triple Sec. It’s like saying I had to Substitute Stolichnaya for Vodka.

      Reply
  • Coral November 12, 2015, 5:47 pm

    Perfect!

    Reply
    • M. Kuebler December 24, 2015, 7:24 pm

      Delicious! Thank you for the Cosmopolitan recipe! I give it 5 stars! It’s xmas eve and I needed something to start it off with!

      Reply
  • Meg November 11, 2015, 7:50 pm

    Delicious. Finally found a good Cosmo recipe

    Reply

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