Carrot cake liqueur is a delicious after dinner drink infused with sugar and spice and everything nice. It’s easy to craft and perfect for homemade gifts!
We’ve been making liqueurs for quite a while now, so it’s surprising that this homemade carrot cake liqueur is the first to hit the blog! To date, we’ve made limoncello, gin, cherry brandy, homemade Kahlua and even a wild raspberry liqueur. In a clean alcohol base like vodka or rum, the flavors pop so it’s a great way to preserve seasonal produce, herbs or freshly roasted coffee.
In this case, the winter season is perfect for making carrot liqueur! We all know that carrots are cold tolerant but did you know they survive the icy temps by converting some of their starch to sugar? It’s a win for us because winter carrots are sweeter than their summer counterparts. Perfect for an after dinner drink, wouldn’t you say?
This carrot cake liqueur is also one of the quickest I’ve made. It only takes 10 minutes to load the concoction into a jar and there’s a relatively short infusion time. I tested the recipe at one, two and three week infusions and I’d say there isn’t much difference in flavor (good news if you’re in a rush) although the batch that steeped for three weeks was the most colorful.
I’ll say that making the liqueur and eagerly shaking the jar day by day is the fun part. What follows is a tedious process of filtering out all those yummy bits of carrot and spice. I’ll admit that this takes patience. There’s a point about halfway through where you consider eating your liqueur like soup, chunks and all! But the finer you filter the liquor the less chance you’ll have carrot sediment in the bottom of your bottles.
If you have no interest in bottling the carrot cake liqueur (and who could blame you, this stuff begs to be poured), you don’t have to filter as much, just give the liqueur a good shake before serving. The tiny particles of carrot are so small they can really only be seen after they settle to the bottom, kind of like a giant orange snow globe of deliciousness. If your plan is to serve this as a dinner party aperitif, use a fine reusable coffee filter you don’t need to bother with paper coffee filters.
Our recipe makes a small batch, about 18-20 ounces of liqueur, enough for a good dinner party, but it’s very easy to make in larger batches too. Just make sure that whatever jar you use for infusing has room at the top so you can shake or at least swirl the ingredients every now and then.
For Christmas, we made eight batches which filled a dozen 375ml bottles. It’s a lovely gift size and quite elegant when you attach a custom tag with gold threaded baker’s twine! The Fiskars tag maker made this last task super easy and continued the the made-with-love motif.
You’re likely to have leftover ingredients. These holiday recipes will also spice up your holiday season:
Apple Cinnamon Whiskey Smash via Hunger Thirst Play
Smooth, refined 10-year aged rye whiskey meets enhanced fall flavors in this balanced New England take on the whiskey smash featuring WhistlePig 10-Year Straight Rye Whiskey.
Mulled Wine via Foodal
With holiday music in the air, the gift of mulled wine mix in a jar alongside a few special bottles of red is the best way to bring the joy of the season to someone you care for.
Homemade Vanilla Extract
We like to make our homemade vanilla extract the old fashioned way. No additives, just two simple ingredients and time. Your patience will be rewarded with the most deliciously fragrant baked goods you’ve ever made. Make sure to prepare an extra batch for gifts!
Carrot Cake Liqueur
- 2 cups grated carrots
- 1/2 cup turbinado sugar
- 1-1/2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
- 2 tablespoons chopped golden raisins
- 1 allspice berry
- 1 whole clove
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 cups 80 proof vodka
- Combine all the liqueur ingredients in a quart sized jar and cover tightly with a lid.
- Let the liqueur infuse for 1-3 weeks, shaking the jar every couple of days.
- Over a large bowl strain the liqueur through a sieve.
- Wring the leftover solids through cheesecloth. You want every drop of liquor!
- Now run the liquor through the finest sieve you have. A reusable coffee filter works great.
- At this point the liquid will be very orange. You can serve it this way, but over time the tiny particles of carrot will separate and settle on the bottom.
- If you prefer a clearer liqueur, filter again through paper coffee filters. This is a lesson in patience as the carrot particles will quickly clog the filters. For this step, I clean my coffee brewer parts and carafe and use the coffee maker to my advantage. I add about 1/2 a cup of liqueur directly to the filter and let gravity do it's thing. (Do not turn on the coffee maker!)
- Store your liqueur in a nice bottle or decanter.
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