White Carnation Drink

White Carnation Cocktail
The Spruce Eats / S&C Design Studios
Prep: 3 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 3 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
171 Calories
1g Fat
7g Carbs
1g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 171
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 1%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 3mg 1%
Sodium 101mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 3%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Protein 1g
Calcium 32mg 2%
*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 white carnation is a simple and tasty drink that has the flavor of an orange cream soda. The ingredients are all standard in the average bar—including the peach schnapps and vodka—so it's very easy to make. Though it has lost some of its notoriety in recent years, it remains a fun cocktail that's worth revisiting.

There's an interesting side note about this once rather popular mixed drink. Until it was replaced in 1998 by Dale DeGroff's variation of the Belmont breeze, the white carnation was the official drink of the Belmont Stakes. Both drinks are worthy of the status associated with the last leg of horseracing's Triple Crown.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a mixing glass filled with ice, pour the vodka, peach schnapps, and orange juice.

  3. Stir well.

  4. Strain into a highball glass filled with fresh ice.

  5. Top with soda water and a splash of cream.

  6. Garnish with an orange slice.

  7. Serve and enjoy!


  • Top-shelf vodka is not absolutely necessary in this drink unless you want to pour it. The heavy fruit flavors mean you can get away with a smooth budget-friendly vodka and likely won't notice the difference.
  • To create the freshest white carnation, use fresh-squeezed orange juice. You can expect to get between 2 and 3 ounces of juice from the average orange, so one fruit is enough for a single cocktail.
  • For the soda water, choose a clean, flavorless carbonated water. Club soda will do if you don't have mineral water or seltzer available.

Recipe Variations

  • While unflavored soda is preferred for the original white carnation, ginger ale or a lemon-lime soda are good choices.
  • Pour a flavored vodka if you like. Citrus and vanilla vodkas would be excellent choices. You can also add a little more dimension with fruit flavors that complement the orange; try berry, grapefruit, pineapple, or pomegranate vodkas.
  • Transform the white carnation into a boozy smoothie! Combine the vodka, peach schnapps, and orange juice in a blender with a scoop of ice cream and a few ice cubes. Blend until smooth.
  • If you skip the white carnation's soda and cream, you have the popular hairy navel cocktail.
  • Give this drink a bliss on the beach twist by splitting the orange juice equally with cranberry juice.

How Strong Is a White Carnation?

The white carnation is a pretty mild cocktail that's as strong as similar vodka juice or soda highballs, including the screwdriver. On average, it should mix up to about 12 percent ABV (24 proof), or the same as a glass of wine.