How to Make Homemade Fruit Liqueur — I’ve come up with a quick and easy technique that results in the most intense fresh fruity flavor, and it’s ready to drink in 24 hours — cheers!
I’m really excited to share this with you, I had a blast coming up with my unique liqueurs — and I have to admit, taste-testing them wasn’t too shabby either ;) I developed my own method for infusing bright vivid fruit flavor into vodka, and I think it’s just perfect. These are far and away better than anything off the shelf, and there are no questionable ingredients, just fresh fruit, a touch of sugar, and vodka. Best of all, you don’t have to wait months for your flavor to develop, these beautiful liqueurs are ready to drink the next day.
I chose five different summer fruits to experiment with, and every one turned out fabulous. I used, from left to right above —
- white peaches
- and apricots.
The vodka pulls out all the flavor and vibrant color from the fruit and believe it or not, these colors aren’t enhanced— they smell wonderful, they taste incredible, and they’re so pretty!
So I won’t keep you in suspense, I’ll get straight to the technique. It differs from the traditional method where you cut up fruit and let it steep in the vodka for several weeks. You have to shake it daily, and wait, wait, WAIT. In my method, I chop the fruit and cook it very briefly, just to soften it. I use an immersion blender to puree the fruit, and then I combine it with the vodka and let the mash sit overnight.
The next day I strain it and voila, you’ve got a fully flavored liqueur ready to drink.
One of the reasons I love this so much is that you can create unique flavors…a few deep purple pluots made one of the most memorable., and the pale pink white peach was amazing. These fresh flavors are are so much better than the artificial mass produced versions.
These liqueurs are potent, and very flavorful. I like to serve them over ice, with sparkling water and a squeeze of lemon or lime, but you can get creative and come up with all kinds of fun cocktails.
- 1/2 lb (8 ounces) fruit (choose strawberries, apricots, rhubarb, pluots, white peaches, or a fruit of your choice)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 1/2 cups vodka
- Start with clean fruit. Depending on what fruit you are using, hull the berries, pit the stone fruit, or trim rough ends from the rhubarb. Do not peel stone fruit, much flavor and color comes from the skins.
- Chop the fruit into bite sized pieces and add to a saucepan, along with the sugar. Add 1/4 cup water, and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. If your fruit is dry you may need to add a bit more water. Cook for about 5 minutes, just enough to soften the fruit.
- Puree the fruit with an immersion blender.
- Add the fruit puree to the vodka and give it a stir. Let sit, covered, for 24 hours.
- Strain through a nut bag, or several layers of cheesecloth, squeezing to get all the liquid out. Discard the solids.
- Keep the liqueur in the refrigerator until needed.
- There’s no need to buy expensive vodka for this, use the cheap stuff, because all the flavor will come from the fruit.
- You can use almost any fruit, I think tropical fruit like guava or pineapple would be fun to try, and while I wouldn’t touch a store bought blueberry vodka, I’m excited to make my own, it’s next on my list.
- A nut bag is the perfect tool for this job…it’s a fine mesh bag made for straining out solids when making nut milks, and it works great for this, too. You can find them online here, the ones I like are a very fine nylon mesh that outlasts cloth and rinses clean. I originally tried straining my liqueur through coffee filters, but it took way too long, and coffee filters are so delicate they can split. Cheesecloth is messy and not quite fine enough.
- You don’t technically need the sugar, but I think it helps to bring out the flavor of the fruit.
- Try mixing herbal notes with these liqueurs, rosemary, thyme, sage, and lavender would all go well.