Cream liqueur, by definition, is a liqueur that includes dairy cream and some type of flavorful liquor among its ingredients.
(In contrast, liqueurs with names that begin with “Crème de” do not contain cream, but rather have more sugar than regular liqueurs, resulting in a thicker, smoother consistency.) Very often the bastion of dessert drinks, cream liqueurs are actually much more versatile than one might think.
Bailey’s Irish Cream introduced their brand in 1974, and remains in the forefront of the cream liqueur category. Still, many new brands are climbing the cream liqueur category ladder. Today, flavors are as diverse as rice, cinnamon, and vanilla (RumChata), yogurt (Bols), Indian spices (Somrus), and even the fruit of the African marula tree (Amarula), to name just a few.
Cream liqueurs are extremely versatile because they are great straight up or on the rocks, but also have excellent mixability, as you can see from the diverse cocktail recipes below.
- 1 oz. Smirnoff Blueberry Vodka
- 1 oz. Baileys Irish Cream
- 1 tbsp. Cointreau
- 1/4 oz. Light Cream
- Cherry (for garnish)
Preparation: Shake all ingredients with ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain into a rocks glass full of ice. Garnish with a cherry.
Mint Choco Chata
- 1 part RumChata
- 1/3 part Chocolate Vodka
- 1/4 part Green Creme de Menthe
Preparation: Blend ingredients with ice and pour into a glass. Garnish with chocolate shavings.
Red Fruit Smoothie
- 3 oz. Bols Yoghurt Liqueur
- 4 Blackberries
- 4 Blueberries
- 1 cup Crushed Ice
- Strawberry or Blackberry (for garnish)
Preparation: Blend all ingredients until smooth. Pour into a chilled highball glass. Garnish with a fresh strawberry or a blackberry.
- 2 oz. Somrus
- 1 1/2 oz. Aged Rum
- 1 oz. Espresso
- 1 oz. Amaretto
- Cinnamon Stick (for garnish)
Preparation: Add all ingredients to shaker and shake with ice
Strain into a chilled rocks glass and garnish with cinnamon stick stirrer.
Amarula Fiery Dusk
- 2 3/4 oz. Amarula Cream
- 1 Generous Scoop Vanilla Ice Cream
- 1 tsp. Freshly Chopped Chili
- 1 Whole Fresh Chili or Vanilla Pod (for garnish)
Preparation: Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake and strain into a glass and garnish with a whole chili or vanilla pod.