Spice Up The Kentucky Derby With These Fun Bourbon Cocktails

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It’s Kentucky Derby time, and there’s no better way to celebrate than by drinking all the bourbon! Whether you’re toasting your favorite racehorse, looking for an excuse to wear a humongous hat, or simply want to drink bourbon (because why not?), we’re celebrating with you! Here are all the best bourbon recipes we’ve found.

The Ultimate Mint Julep Recipe

Thank you Parade for the recipe!Mint Julep


  • 2 cups sugar

  • 2 cups water

  • 16 oz. Kentucky Bourbon 

  • Crushed ice

  • 10 sprigs fresh mint


1. Combine the water and sugar in a pot and bring the mixture to a boil for 5 minutes to make the simple syrup. Cool the syrup and place it in a covered container with 2 sprigs of fresh mint to refrigerate overnight.

2. The day of, start by filling 8 mint julep glasses with crushed ice. Add 1 tablespoon of the simple syrup and 2 ounces of Kentucky Bourbon. Stir rapidly with a spoon to frost the outside of the glass. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint.

Brown Derby

Thank you Liquor for the recipe!brown derby


  • 1 + ½ oz. bourbon

  • 1 oz. grapefruit juice (freshly squeezed)

  • ½ oz. honey syrup

  • Garnish: grapefruit twist


1. Add the bourbon, grapefruit juice, honey syrup, and ice into a shaker and shake until the mixture is well-chilled. 

2. Fine-strain the mixture into a cocktail glass.

3. Express the oil from the grapefruit twist over the drink and drop the twist into the drink to garnish.

The Derby

Thank you Tipsy Bartender for the recipe!
Kentucky derby drinks


  • 1 oz. bourbon whiskey

  • ½ oz. sweet vermouth

  • ½ oz. orange curaçao

  • ¾ oz. fresh lime juice

  • Garnish: mint sprig


1. Shake all the ingredients with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. 

2. Garnish with a mint leaf and serve!

Woodford Spire

Thank you Garnish with Lemon for the recipe!woodford spire


  • 1 + ½ oz. bourbon 

  • 2 oz. freshly squeezed lemonade

  • 1 oz. cranberry juice


1. Add the ingredients to a mixing glass and stir. 

2. Serve over ice and garnish with a lemon twist.

Bourbon Slush

Thank you Tasting Table for the recipe!Kentucky derby drinks


  • 9 cups water

  • 3 black tea bags

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 12 oz. frozen lemonade concentrate 

  • 6 oz. frozen orange juice concentrate

  • 2 cups bourbon

  • 2 liters ginger ale (chilled for serving)


1. In a small saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the tea bags and allow it to steep for 10 minutes. Discard the tea bags and stir in the sugar until it dissolves. 

2. In a large container, combine the brewed tea, lemonade, and orange juice concentrates, remaining water, and bourbon. 

3. Place the container in the freezer for at least 4-6 hours or overnight until the slush is firm all the way through. 

4. Scoop the bourbon slush into a tumbler glass, top with ginger ale, and serve.

Blackberry Bourbon Smash

Thank you Tipsy Bartender for the recipe!blackberry bourbon smash


  • 2 oz. bourbon 

  • 1 oz. ginger beer

  • Juice from ½ lemon 

  • 1 Tbsp honey

  • Blackberries 

  • Mint leaves


1. Add the blackberries, mint leaves, honey, and lemon juice to the base of a mixing glass and muddle. 

2. Add the ice and bourbon and shake well. 

3. Pour the crushed ice into the glass, pour the mix inside, and top with ginger beer. 

4. Garnish with a mint sprig and blackberries. 


Okay, all of the sudden, we’re super excited about the races! Did we find your new favorite drink? Comment below!

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