If I had to make a list of my favorite weekend activities, Sunday brunch would be pretty close to the top—second only to taking a long stroll through my neighborhood, hot coffee in hand.
Of course, catching up with friends over smoked salmon eggs Benedict and a zesty bloody Mary at our favorite restaurant isn’t really an option at the moment. But mixing up a brunch-worthy cocktail for yourself and setting up a virtual hangout with a couple of pals is well within reach, depending on what’s in your bar cart. (Don’t forget the food, either.)
Here are 20 of our best brunch cocktail recipes to make at home this weekend, from tried-and-true favorites (looking at you, mimosa) to new-fashioned sips (welcome to the party, spring sangria).
1. Classic Mimosa
Nothing says brunch quite like a sunny, bubbly mimosa—this version is our very best, with a few ideas for mixing it up with different fruit juices, too.
2. Rick’s Picks Bloody Mary Mix
If you’re in the mood for a drink that’s more savory and spicy than sweet and fruity, this zingy bloody Mary recipe—complete with beef bouillon, hot sauce, and horseradish root—is the way to go.
This margarita recipe feels just as at home on the dinner table as it does at brunch, especially when it’s paired up with a bright, punchy dish like red chilaquiles with fried eggs.
4. Aperol Spritz
This ultra-refreshing, wonderfully bitter Italian cocktail is exactly what you want to be drinking during a leisurely mid-afternoon meal, be it savory or sweet.
5. Pimm’s Cup
This quintessentially British drink (it is the official refreshment for Wimbledon, after all) just might be my favorite cocktail. Ever. It’s particularly well-suited for brunch thanks to its effervescence and fresh, crisp flavors
6. The Desert Bird Cocktail
Bacanora, an agave-based liquor from Sonora, Mexico, is the star of this Texas-born cocktail. But if you don’t have it on hand, mezcal or tequila would make an excellent stand-in.
7. Honeyed Peach Melba Bellinis
This fancied-up riff on a classic Bellini (which is typically just Prosecco and peach purée or nectar) brings a honeyed peach sorbet and raspberry simple syrup into the mix for a drink that’s anything but typical.
8. SM Jenkins Cocktail
This pared-back variant on a Pimm’s cup is just the drink for those who want less fruit-forward flavors, and more cool, cucumber notes.
9. Breakfast of Champions
The secret ingredient that makes this creamy bourbon cocktail sing: Honey Nut Cheerios–infused milk.
10. Strawberry Juice & Champagne Cocktail
When strawberries are in season, there’s no better brunch cocktail than this strawberry juice and Champagne number.
11. Mint Julep
It doesn’t need to be Derby Day to mix up a mint julep—it just so happens to make a perfect brunch plus-one all year long.
12. Spring Sangria with Strawberries & Mint
Traditional red sangria might be a bit much for a Sunday brunch, but this spring-ready version (with dry white wine, vodka, and lemon juice) is just right for the occasion.
13. Irish Coffee
Cozy up with a big stack of waffles, crispy bacon, and a warm cup of creamy Irish coffee (with a splash of Irish whiskey, of course)—now doesn’t that sound nice?
This limey mint mojito might take a bit more effort to make than say, a two-ingredient mimosa, but the end result makes it more than worth it.
15. New Long Island Iced Tea From Rustun Nichols
Consider this modern, well-balanced take on Long Island iced tea a chance at redemption for what’s often considered an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink cocktail.
16. Bloody Mary With a Tequila Twist (Bloody Maria)
Bloody Marys are an essential brunch cocktail and they only get better the more fun you have with them. Instead of the usual vodka, this one is made with silver tequila. A little lime juice is incorporated into the fold because what good is a shot or two of tequila without it?
17. Rosemary Paloma
Wake me up when September ends…and immediately put this brunch cocktail in my hand. It still has the juicy citrus flavors that we love from the summer months, but the fresh rosemary gives it an earthy essence that signals the fact that fall is here.
18. Bourbon Strawberry Spritz
It might seem like bourbon and strawberry don’t belong together, but I promise you, they do. Fresh strawberry purée, Aperol, cherry liqueur, and freshly squeezed lemon juice bring so much juiciness to bourbon that it just makes sense. Better yet, the strawberry purée is made with frozen berries, so you can make this brunch cocktail anytime of the year.
19. Alex Valencia’s Mexican Coffee
This is for the non-early birds: For anyone still trying to wake up at brunch, there’s this caffeinated cocktail. It’s got both coffee liqueur and brewed coffee, so you’ll be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed in no time.
20. Tequila Sunrise From Rustun Nichols
Even if you slip in, you can still enjoy the effect of a tropical sunrise, in the form of this classic brunch cocktail—with silver tequila, smoky mezcal, fresh squeezed orange juice, and a touch of grenadine.
What’s your go-to brunch cocktail recipe? Share it with us in the comments below!
This roundup was updated in May 2022 by our editors with even more delicious brunch cocktail recipes.