12 Frozen Cocktail Recipes to Sip All Summer Long

Boozy Frozen Strawberry Lemonade
Photo: Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Prop Styling by Christina Daley / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall

When temperatures get sweltering, the air feels heavy, and you feel like you might melt, a frozen cocktail can be just the thing to cool you off — and of course, they're fun to drink, too! We've gathered some of our favorite recipes here, whether you're in the mood for a frozen twist on a classic cocktail (hello, Frozen Salted Espresso Martinis), or something that's just as bright and colorful as it is delicious, like the Miami Vice. The frosty spread also includes a recipe for a velvety Mudslide, delightfully named "Fraperol Spritzes" (aka frozen Aperol spritzes), and the Boozy Frozen Strawberry Lemonade of your dreams. So grab your blender, check out all 12 recipes, and get ready for a summer of icy delight.

01 of 12

Frozen Hula Hoop

Frozen Hula Hoop Cocktails
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

A sweet-tart blend of pineapple, raspberry, and lemon adds fresh fruit flavor to this slushy frozen drink from Erick Castro — host of the Bartender at Large podcast and San Diego bartender — spiked with white rum, Aperol, and dry red wine. With plenty of heat from the trio of alcohols, those fresh summer fruits keep the drink well balanced. Make your own raspberry syrup by infusing simple syrup with fresh berries, or purchase a bottle at the liquor store or online.

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Miami Vice

Miami Vice
Photo by Caitlin Bensel / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer / Prop Styling by Christina Daley

Frozen drink expert Thomas Houston, the bar manager at Superior Seafood and Oyster Bar in New Orleans, makes his version of the Miami Vice with Don Q Piña rum to reinforce the pineapple flavor in the creamy Piña Colada component. He soaks frozen strawberries in Regan's bitters, which adds an orange flavor that accentuates the balancing acidity of the Strawberry Daiquiri component. One ingredient you won't find in Houston's frozen cocktails: Ice. "Even though most people consider it a go-to for most frozen drinks, ice is actually detrimental for cocktails. All it really does is water down the ingredients," Houston says. Instead, he leans on frozen strawberries and frozen canned crushed pineapple for "that nice, smooth, blended frozen consistency."

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Frozen Grasshopper

Frozen Grasshopper Recipe
Photo by Victor Protasio / Prop Styling by Christine Keely

Andrew and Briana Volk from Portland Hunt & Alpine Club in Portland, Maine, share their take on the classic Grasshopper. This frozen cocktail is infused with bracing aquavit, bringing a bite of caraway, fruity banana liquor, and cooling crème de menthe, resulting in a balanced but strong drink. Using two kinds of crème de menthe, both white and green, creates the contrast between the stark white whip and minty green drink, but either color can be used in both.

04 of 12


Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Food Styling by Ana Kelly / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

Created in the 1970s at Grand Cayman's Wreck Bar at Rum Point, this potent blend of vodka, Kahlúa, and Baileys Original Irish Cream might taste like a milkshake, but it can't be ordered virgin because all you'd get is a cup of crushed ice. The trio of alcohol blends into a smooth and velvety cocktail just sweet and chocolaty enough without being cloying. A generous drizzle of chocolate syrup and a bright red maraschino cherry with a dusting of ground cinnamon top off each glass.

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Boozy Frozen Strawberry Lemonade

Boozy Frozen Strawberry Lemonade
Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Prop Styling by Christina Daley / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall

Famed pastry chef Claudia Fleming's Boozy Frozen Strawberry Lemonade is sweet, zippy, and irresistibly delicious — exactly the kind of drink you want on a hot summer afternoon. The frozen cocktail is made with lemon vodka, Prosecco, basil, limoncello, strawberries, and lemon sorbet, and can also double as a dessert. Once frozen and blended, make sure to serve the lemonade right away so it doesn't melt.

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Stop the Hourglass

Stop the Hourglass Frozen Cocktails
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

Bartender and sommelier Chantal Tseng's take on a refreshing summer drink pairs juicy, ripe peaches with cool and refreshing mint tea. Amontillado sherry, with notes of vanilla and toasted hazelnuts, adds a sweet, pleasant complexity to this frozen sipper. The fresh peaches and mint tea ice cubes tame the heat of the alcohol and ginger.

07 of 12

Frozen Cucumber Margaritas with Chili-Sumac Salt

Frozen Cucumber Margaritas
Victor Protasio

"My most recent slushy obsession is a tequila, cucumber, and coconut water creation, blended up with cilantro and lime and rimmed with a mix of chili powder, sumac, and salt," Top Chef judge Gail Simmons says of her recipe for Frozen Cucumber Margaritas with Chili-Sumac Salt, which we published in 2019. "It's an ode to my favorite Mexican street snack: fruta con chile y limón, little bags of sliced mango, cucumber, and jicama usually sprinkled with Tajín, a spicy and sour snack seasoning."

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Fresh and Easy Piña Coladas

Fresh and Easy Piña Coladas
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

Coconut milk provides richness that rounds out sweet-tart chunks of frozen pineapple and adds a creamy texture to this lighter take on classic Piña Coladas. Be sure to vigorously shake the can of coconut milk before opening to recombine the coconut liquids and coconut cream.

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Frozen Aperol Spritzes ('Fraperol Spritzes')

Frozen Aperol Spritzes (‘Fraperol Spritzes’)
Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Prop Styling by Christina Daley / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall

The Aperol Spritz — a simple combination of Aperol, Prosecco, and club soda — is easily one of the most celebrated summer cocktails. This recipe is a frozen twist on the classic, and includes orange liqueur for even more orange flavor. Food & Wine's Justin Chapple originally developed a version of the recipe for Pepe's Wharf in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and streamlined it here so it's easy to make in a home blender. For the best results, allow the Aperol cubes to freeze overnight.

10 of 12

Be Cool

Be Cool Negroni Slushies
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

Boozy, bitter, and tart, this vibrant red blended drink sips like a frozen Negroni. It's the perfect not-too-sweet spiked frozen summer slushy. Atlanta bartender Keyatta Mincey-Parker's method of infusing the blanc vermouth with whole dried hibiscus flowers imparts their fruity and floral sweetness without masking the delicate aromas and flavor.

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Frozen Salted Espresso Martinis

Frozen Salted Espresso Martini
Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer / Prop Styling by Hannah Greenwood

If you're an Espresso Martini fan, you'll love this frosty twist. First, brewed espresso is frozen in an ice cube tray; once the cubes are solid, they're processed with coffee liqueur, vodka, and simple syrup in a blender until smooth. The resulting martinis are well-balanced, with notes of caramel and vanilla. The liqueur and syrup give them subtle sweetness, the vodka adds a smooth element, and the espresso brings earthy bitterness. An elegant sprinkle of flaky sea salt finishes the drinks off, and balances the espresso's bitterness. Make sure to chill the glasses before serving and enjoy right away.

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José Mandojana

This zesty frosé starts with a homemade, fruity, and fragrant strawberry simple syrup made with fresh strawberries. Combined with a floral rosé and a splash of tart lemon juice, it all adds up to a boozy yet balanced and elegant slushy. You'll want to keep your freezer stocked with this frosé to keep you refreshed all summer long. The strawberry simple syrup keeps the slushy smooth, not icy. It isn't just delicious in this frosé, either — try it in other cocktails and mocktails, drizzle the pink syrup over fresh fruit salad, or brush it over layers of cooled cake before frosting to add a rosy hue and luscious sweetness.

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