Apple Rye Punch

November 3, 2011

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes:

My roommate and I made this punch for a recent housewarming party. The temperature had just dropped outside, and apple cider was abundant all over New England. Wanting an easy party drink that tasted just like fall, we immediately grabbed rye whiskey as our base spirit. A one-two punch of fresh pressed apple cider and the hard stuff (for bubbles). We found some great maple flavored bitters at a cocktail shop in Somerville, MA, but any bitters you like should work fine. We used Old Overholt Rye; no need to grab super fancy stuff for this drink.

Kate Williams

Food52 Review: This is fall in a tumbler. Rye gets your blood running hot, two kinds of cider sweeten and spice it up, and a few dashes of bitters give it depth. All it takes is four ingredients and a quick stir -- naturally, it will be our new any night cocktail. - A&MThe Editors

Serves: 10-20, depending on your tolerance!
Prep time: 10 min


  • 6 cups Apple Cider
  • 750 milliliters Rye (we love Rye, but any whiskey will do)
  • 25 dashes Maple Bitters, or other bitters like Angostura
  • 20 ounces Hard Cider
  • 6 cups ice
In This Recipe


  1. Mix together apple cider, whiskey, and bitters in large punch bowl. This mixture can be held for up to a day or two before serving.
  2. Right before serving, stir in hard cider to taste and add ice mold, if using. Season punch to taste with extra bitters. Serve punch with additional ice.

More Great Recipes:
Cocktail|Punch|Drinks|Apple|Fruit|Whiskey/Whisky|Serves a Crowd|Make Ahead|5 Ingredients or Fewer|Winter|Christmas|Fall

Reviews (40) Questions (1)

40 Reviews

erin October 14, 2017
When I made this, <br /><br />When I first made this for the adults of Halloween, I had no idea if I liked Rye, I used Crown Royal Apple. It was a big hit! I also used ice rings using the punch filled with Halloween inspired fruit shapes. I'm making it again this year.<br /><br />
MiChal December 26, 2016
This punch was a big hit at our Christmas night white elephant. Lots of rich bourbon flavor. But my ice ring quickly fell apart. I need an ice ring tutorial.
Melissa C. December 19, 2015
I made this last weekend for my annual holiday party. I made a double batch, as we were expecting a crowd. And it was GONE almost immediately. A total hit! Super-easy, super-delicious. I LOVE this drink and its flavors and it's now on the short list of go-to cocktails 'round these parts. Simply perfect.
Carla December 12, 2015
Where did you get the glass in the picture?
Megan October 20, 2015
Mmmm this is so good and so simple.
mrslarkin October 16, 2015
I made this yesterday for a library reception. It was easy, delicious, and quite the hit with the literary crowd. Will definitely keep it on the fall/Thanksgiving/Christmas rotation. Thanks for the great recipe!
Jesse M. November 8, 2014
This was so tasty, and easy to half for a smaller gathering. You're right - we will be making this again... and again.. and again. Thank you!
Cialina N. October 8, 2014
I just made individual cocktails of this to "test" it out before my party. I used 1 oz rye with 2-3 oz of apple cider, 2 dashes of bitters, and topped it off with just a little bit of hard cider. <br /><br />It's super tasty, but also super potent - the rye I got was 100 proof. <br /><br />Needless to say, I will be making the full batch for my party. Now, I'm thinking about doubling the recipe because it is THAT GOOD.
t3ch November 20, 2013
Anyone try this hot?
juleeclip November 12, 2013
Made this for a birthday party, threw in two bottles of ginger beer I had in the fridge. Was a huge hit... lo and behold, we never did make it to our tavern destination later that evening.
nunyer September 15, 2013
This and a squirt of lemon juice helped cure my grandma's herpes. Meemaw is now almost disease free!
Womenfest January 2, 2013
Served this at my New Year's Eve party. Loved it and so did my guests!
Michael H. December 13, 2012
Just made this for the Food52 holiday party. It's a hit!
Midge November 10, 2012
I brought this to a baby shower today and wow was it ever a hit. It does pack a punch.
Madame S. October 31, 2012
I would like to test this out as a single serving before hand...any thoughts on how to adjust to make a single cocktail?
francielynn February 19, 2013
take each amount and divide by 10 or so and you will have your amount for each one
gingerroot December 19, 2011
Made this last night for a holiday party and everyone loved it!! So easy, delicious, and packs a sneaky kick. A good friend sent me some Allspice, Ginger and Black Pepper bitters for Christmas, so I used those with great results. Thanks for a fabulous recipe!
Waverly November 28, 2011
Well done, Kate!! Congratulations!
lorigoldsby November 26, 2011
Congrats Kate! Love the double ciders!
Midge November 26, 2011
Congrats Kate!
fiveandspice November 25, 2011
Yippee! Congrats Kate! Such a well deserved win. Yum.