Purple Haze: 4 Ways to Make the Fun Vodka Drink

Purple haze cocktail with blackberries and mint garnish
The Spruce
  • Total: 3 mins
  • Prep: 3 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1 serving

The purple haze is a fun and popular mixed drink. It's an easy one to mix up and there are many recipes to try. Whether you're in the mood for a refreshing highball, a casual lowball, a fancy martini, or a quick shot, there's a purple haze for you. (And yes, it's easy to make at home, but it's a cool drink to order at a bar because it's so visually striking.)

Essentially, "purple haze" is a popular name for a great variety of purple-colored mixed drinks. Typically, the recipes include vodka with a fruit liqueur and possibly a splash of soda. You can also find recipes that contain absinthe or sambuca and some that resembled a purple Long Island Iced Tea.

To narrow down your options, we'll stick with four common recipes. This beverage even comes with its own soundtrack, so queue up some Jimi Hendrix, and let's start mixing.

A Cranberry Purple Haze Recipe

There are not many purple-colored liqueurs in the bar so a little color chemistry is required to get the drink's signature color. In this recipe, we'll add a raspberry liqueur such as Chambord to cranberry juice to produce a deep purple. The drink is sometimes called the vampire.

It's one of the more pleasant purple haze recipes because it builds on the popular vodka-cranberry base that is the Cape Codder. The liqueur adds a sweetness that intensifies the drink's fruitiness. It's a simple addition that can break up a routine.

Some might find this a little too sweet, but you can instantly make it more refreshing by adding a splash of soda. Ginger ale is the perfect option, though almost any clear soda will do the trick.

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Watch Now: Cranberry Purple Haze Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 ounces ​vodka
  • 1/2 ounce​ black raspberry liqueur
  • 2​ ounces cranberry juice (more or less)
  • Optional: fresh mint garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Purple haze drink ingredients
    The Spruce 
  2. Pour the vodka and black raspberry liqueur into a cocktail shaker with ice.

  3. Strain into an old-fashioned glass filled with fresh ice.

    Purple haze being poured through a strainer.
     The Spruce
  4. Top with cranberry juice.

    Purple haze cocktail topped with cranberry juice
     The Spruce
  5. Serve and enjoy!

Recipe Variations

  • Lemonade Purple Haze: Pour 1 1/2 ounces vodka and 1 ounce Chambord into a highball glass filled with ice. Top with equal parts lemonade and lemon-lime soda. Stir and garnish with a lemon wedge.
  • Purple Haze Martini: Shake 1 1/2 ounces vodka, 1 ounce blue curaçao, and 1/2 ounce grenadine in a cocktail shaker. Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a lime twist.
  • Purple Haze Shooters: There are two popular purple haze shot recipes. One follows the vodka-Chambord-soda combination used in the lemonade recipe above. Simply mix equal parts of the three ingredients and fill a shot glass or two. This second purple haze shot is much different. In this recipe, you will mix grape and peach schnapps with rum. The three ingredients mix up for a pretty tasty shooter. To make the shot, shake and strain 1 ounce grape schnapps (e.g., Grape Pucker) with 1/2 ounce each rum and peach schnapps into a chilled shot glass.

How Strong Are the Purple Haze Drinks?

The purple haze drinks vary greatly in style and the amount of alcohol they contain. If you're looking for a softer drink, the lemonade recipe is probably the way to go. The martini and shooter will be your strongest versions. Here's how they weigh in, compared side-by-side.

  • Lemonade Purple Haze: 15 percent ABV (30 proof)
  • Cranberry Purple Haze: 19 percent ABV (36 proof)
  • Purple Haze Shot: 23 percent ABV (46 proof)
  • Purple Haze Martini: 26 percent ABV (52 proof)