Want to make your own vibrant liqueur from fresh fruit? I’ve come up with a quick and easy technique that results in the most intense fresh fruity flavors, and the best part? It’s ready to drink in 24 hours ~ cheers!
I had a blast coming up with my unique homemade fruit 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.
fresh fruit to use for homemade liqueur
I chose five different summer fruits to experiment with, and every one turned out fabulous. I used, from left to right above:
- white peaches
- pluots ~ a hybrid between a plum and an apricot
- and apricots.
the vibrant colors (and flavors) are all natural!
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! I’ve never liked artificial fruit flavors, so it’s incredibly satisfying to be able to fuse the real deal into alcohol like this.
technique for making fresh fruit infused liqueur
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. My method is way better 🙂
- In my method, I chop the fruit and cook it very briefly, just to soften it, and bring out the juices and flavors.
- 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 homemade fruit liqueur ready to drink.
how does it work?
Vodka, at about 40% alcohol, is a very effective flavor extractor. In this case I’m actually fusing the fruit with the alcohol, which gives the process a big boost! Vodka is flavorless and colorless, so nothing interferes with the vivid fruit flavor and color, although you can use other alcohols like rum or gin, as well.
you’ll never buy an artificially flavored liqueur again
You can see the difference after the mash has been strained, the liqueur is clear and beautiful, ready for cocktails!
get creative with your flavors
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.
other fruits to try
how to use your homemade fruit liqueur
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.
Love the idea of making your own liqueur? Try out these other recipes ~
How to Make Homemade Fruit Liqueur
- 1/2 lb fresh fruit (choose strawberries, apricots, rhubarb, pluots, white peaches, or a fruit of your choice)
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 1/2 cups vodka (any brand will work)
- 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 using an immersion blender, a regular blender, or food processor.
- Add the fruit puree to the vodka and give it a stir. Let sit on the counter, 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. Note: these liqueurs need to be refrigerated because of the fresh fruit component, and should be consumed within 2 weeks.
- 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.