Savory Beef Broth and Vodka Bull Shot

Savory Beef Broth and Vodka Bull Shot

The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

Prep: 3 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 3 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Yield: 1 drink
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
481 Calories
10g Fat
79g Carbs
21g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 481
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g 12%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 9mg 3%
Sodium 22173mg 964%
Total Carbohydrate 79g 29%
Dietary Fiber 19g 70%
Total Sugars 31g
Protein 21g
Vitamin C 357mg 1,787%
Calcium 239mg 18%
Iron 5mg 29%
Potassium 1355mg 29%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

The bull shot is a drink for acquired tastes—one that you will either love or hate—though it has many devoted fans. It was created in the early 1950s and is often attributed to the Caucus Club in Detroit. Though it was a big hit through '70s (even making an appearance in "A Clockwork Orange" in 1971), the bull shot's making a surprising comeback as it appeals to drinkers looking for that retro vibe.

What is this popular concoction? Well, if you take the tomato juice out of the ​bloody mary and replace it with beef broth or consommé, you have a bull shot. Just like that favorite brunch drink, it can be spiced and flavored to your taste.

You may even want to join bull shot fans who enjoy it warm in the winter. In that aspect, it's a lot like drinking spiked soup.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Savory Beef Broth and Vodka Bull Shot ingredients

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  2. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice, pour vodka and beef bouillon. Add lemon juice, Worcestershire and Tabasco sauces, and celery salt (if using).

    Savory Beef Broth and Vodka Bull Shot ingredients in a cocktail shaker

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  3. Shake well.

    shake the cocktail shaker

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  4. Strain into an old-fashioned glass filled with ice.

    Strain cocktail into an old-fashioned glass filled with ice

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar

  5. Top with a bit of fresh ground pepper and garnish with a lemon wedge.

    Savory Beef Broth and Vodka Bull cocktail

    The Spruce / Madhumita Sathishkumar


  • There's no need to be fancy here: The canned beef broth from Campbell's is the most common version of bouillon used in the bull shot. The story goes that this drink's creation was actually a marketing plan developed by the Caucus Club's owner, Lester Gruber, and an "ad man" named John Hurley who had an account with Campbell's.
  • For the lemon juice, you can simply squeeze the juice from a lemon wedge into the shaker.

Recipe Variations

Every ingredient in the bull shot can be adapted to your individual taste, and you can add all sorts of savory ingredients:

  • Build the ingredients directly in the serving glass and stir rather than shake. You can also roll the drink between two glasses to mix it.
  • Use another variety of hot sauce rather than Tabasco, or skip this sauce entirely.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne pepper or a teaspoon (or two) of horseradish.
  • Add a pinch of salt.
  • Soak celery salt with the Worcestershire sauce, then top the drink with vodka and broth before adding the other ingredients.
  • Dilute canned broth with water using 2 parts broth and 1 part water.
  • Add a dash of Angostura Bitters. This was reportedly a part of the Caucus Club's "spice mix."
  • Warm all of the ingredients, except the vodka, in a small saucepan. Pour the vodka into a mug, add the hot broth, and stir.
  • Switch to another kind of stock. Vegetable broth is a popular option and vegetarian-friendly, though some people will make a shrimp stock.

How Strong Is a Bull Shot?

The bull shot is big on flavor but relatively light on the alcohol. This drink should mix up to about 12 percent ABV (24 proof) when made with 80-proof vodka. That's equivalent to a glass of wine, though this is definitely not wine!

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