Pumpkin Old-Fashioned

pumpkin old fashioned cocktail

The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 5 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Yield: 1 cocktail
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
268 Calories
1g Fat
34g Carbs
3g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 268
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 1%
Saturated Fat 0g 2%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 15mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 34g 12%
Dietary Fiber 8g 28%
Total Sugars 20g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 18mg 92%
Calcium 88mg 7%
Iron 3mg 19%
Potassium 549mg 12%
*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.)

When you're in the mood for a pumpkin whiskey drink, the pumpkin old-fashioned is sure to please. It's surprisingly simple, requires no muddling, and mixes up in minutes. Plus, unlike other pumpkin cocktails, there are no unusual or hard-to-find ingredients that you need to hunt down.

This fascinating twist on the classic bourbon old-fashioned was created at The Boxer Hotel's Finch Restaurant in Boston. It is a simple recipe of bourbon and brandy-based orange liqueur (e.g., Grand Marnier) with pumpkin puree and maple syrup. When making it at home, you can easily find pumpkin puree at any grocery store, or ​try making your own puree just like they do at Finch. It is very easy and the fresh puree makes this drink really special and tasty.

“The pumpkin spice trend continues with this seasonal take on a classic bourbon old-fashioned. The addition of Grand Marnier and a touch of pumpkin puree turn the flavors of an old-fashioned into a delicious autumn cocktail” —Joan Velush

Pumpkin Old Fashioned/Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients,

    ingredients to make pumpkin old fashioned cocktail

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  2. Combine the bourbon, orange liqueur, maple syrup, pumpkin puree, and bitters in a cocktail shaker filled with ice.

    ingredients to make pumpkin old fashioned cocktail

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  3. Shake well and double strain through a fine mesh strainer into a chilled old-fashioned glass filled with fresh ice.

    straining pumpkin old fashioned into a glass

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

  4. Garnish with an orange peel or rosemary sprig. Serve and enjoy.

    pumpkin old fashioned cocktail

    The Spruce Eats/Julia Hartbeck

Tips

  • Give this drink a really good shake for at least 30 seconds to thoroughly mix the ingredients. The maple syrup and pumpkin puree are not as easily mixed as typical cocktail ingredients, so putting a little more effort into it will help.
  • To ensure a clean drink, it is wise to fine-strain this drink. Simply use your normal cocktail strainer and pour through a fine-mesh strainer that's placed over the glass. This should catch any extra pumpkin chunks.
  • For the bourbon, choose a top-shelf whiskey, just like you would for any old-fashioned recipe. This one would actually be best with a really bold bourbon because it will not get lost against the pumpkin. Look for anything that's bottled higher than 80-proof.
  • Pumpkin puree is a great way to transform the flesh into a useful ingredient for food, as well as drinks. If you don't want to use canned, there are a couple of simple ways to make it from fresh pumpkin. The quickest method bakes pieces of pumpkin in a 350 F oven for 45 to 60 minutes. You can also make pumpkin puree in a slow cooker, cooking the pieces on low for about 5 hours. With either, use a food processor or electric mixer to mix the soft pumpkin into a smooth puree.

Recipe Variations

  • Try this recipe with your favorite rye whiskey rather than bourbon. The whiskey's signature spice is a great complement to pumpkin.
  • If you'd like an alternative to maple syrup, mix up a batch of spiced brown sugar syrup. It includes allspice, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg and will give the cocktail a pumpkin pie-like accent.

How Strong Is a Pumpkin Old-Fashioned?

Any variation on the old-fashioned cocktail is going to be relatively strong because the drink is designed to feature bourbon in a slightly dressed up form. This one is no exception. When made with a 100-proof whiskey, for instance, its alcohol content should be around 21 percent ABV (42 proof).

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