The Bloody Mary is a classic cocktail, traditionally crafted with vodka and tomato juice, along with a few other key ingredients. It seems that everyone who enjoys a good Bloody Mary has their own secret to making the best Bloody Mary mix, but in truth, there are so many different variations, and there is more than one best Bloody Mary recipe.
Classic Bloody Mary Recipe
Tried & True Bloody Mary
Sometimes, simple and classic are best, as is illustrated in this Tried and True Bloody Mary by TastingTable. This recipe features all the classic ingredients and is a great recipe for the “purists.”
This basic Bloody Mary recipe is simple tomato juice that’s complemented by a bit of lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco Sauce, and a few seasonings, like salt, black pepper, and celery salt.
This recipe uses the gold standard of vodka, but you could easily use tequila for a Bloody Maria instead.
Spicy Bloody Mary
Spicy Bloody Mary with Fresh Jalapenos
by Daily Meal
If your idea of the perfect Bloody Mary is one with a little extra kick, let us introduce you to the Spicy Bloody Mary by Daily Meal. This is a really good spicy base with plain tomato juice, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, celery salt, and jalapeno.
In this recipe, the jalapeno is added to the glass with the rest of the ingredients, but we tried a little variation that we really liked.
Take a cocktail shaker and muddle the jalapeno with a little lemon or lime and maybe some fresh herbs – like cilantro, before adding the rest of the ingredients.
This will release more of the jalapeno flavor and really bring out more of the heat. Remember, a little goes a long way with jalapeno! Also, look for fresh ground horseradish rather than creamy horseradish sauce when shopping for ingredients.
Bloody Mary Recipes With V8
V8 Bloody Mary with a Smokey Rim
The classic Bloody Mary is made with plain tomato juice, but using a substitute like V8 juice adds extra flavor and creates a really great cocktail.
V8 is a vegetable juice that’s made from more than just tomatoes, so it adds some new depths and layers of flavor that you don’t get with the straight “mater” juice.
Olive juice is added as well for a little extra salty brininess to the mix. If olives aren’t your thing, some pickle juice will work just as well.
Virgin Bloody Mary
Ina Garten’s Virgin Marys
by Food Network
This Virgin Mary recipe is courtesy of Ina Garten at the Food Network. If you’ve followed Ina Garten throughout her career, then you know she really knows how to take a simple, standard recipe and turn it up a few notches. These Virgin Bloody Marys are no exception.
You’ll find the usual suspects in this list of Bloody Mary ingredients, like tomato juice and Worcestershire Sauce. But if you’re not going to have the vodka, why not do something to make the drink extra special?
She starts by putting whole celery stalks and shallots in a food processor until they’re minced nicely and fine. Then she adds all the liquid ingredients and spices, along with a few dashes of hot sauce. The result is a thicker Bloody Mary Mix that’s both satisfying and delicious.
Bloody Mary With Clamato
Using Clamato juice instead of tomato or vegetable juice is a great way to mix the flavor of your bloody marys. Serve them at Sunday Brunch and leave your guests to wonder what the secret ingredient is!
Clamato juice is combined with Old Bay Seasoning, Worcestershire Sauce, Tabasco, prepared horseradish, and of course, the vodka!
The Bloody Caesar is a great cocktail to serve with a seafood brunch that might include something like lobster tails or red snapper. Just don’t leave out the Old Bay Seasoning in this mix – it adds just the right touch.
Bloody Mary Pitcher Recipe
Homemade Bloody Mary Mix (Eight Servings)
by Feast + West
Maybe you’re planning on hosting a brunch, and you’ve scoured through cocktail recipes looking for just the right one to serve. The original Bloody Mary is the perfect answer, but you need an entire pitcher of them instead of just one or two.
This recipe by Feast + West is perfect and serves eight. You can always double (or triple!) the recipe if you need more. In the world of Bloody Marys, this recipe is simple and classic, featuring tomato juice, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, ground black pepper, sea salt, and celery salt.
It also calls for hot sauce, and you can use several dashes of your favorite. Just Tabasco sauce works perfectly too.
Preparing the Glass
The ultimate Bloody Mary starts with a perfectly prepared glass. You can use any size glass you want, but one that holds in the range of 8-12 ounces offers the perfect ratio of vodka to Bloody Mary mix. If you go smaller or larger, you’ll want to adjust the amount of vodka you use accordingly.
Before you start adding garnishes, you want to start with a savory rim around the glass. Start with a small plate with a liquid added to it, and then a second small plate with salt and/or seasonings.
For the liquid, you can use something like lime juice or pickle juice. If you’re going with a spicy cocktail, you can also use hot sauce. Some use a little soy sauce because of the saltiness it offers to the cocktail.
The second plate is where you add the spices for the rim. You can go with straight kosher salt, but mixing it up a little adds great flavor. Celery salt, ground black pepper, and garlic salt or garlic powder taste great on the rim when mixed together. A little Old Bay seasoning mixed in is yummy too.
To prepare the glass, first, dip the rim of the glass into the plate with the liquid and then into the plate with the seasonings. Take the prepared glasses and add ice cubes to each glass before crafting your delicious Bloody Marys.
Setting Up a Bloody Mary Bar
If you’re serving Bloody Mary’s to a crowd, the best way to do it is by setting up a Bloody Mary bar so your guests can prepare their own drinks with all of their favorite garnishes. You can take the classic route or go over the top with the offerings.
You can set out a single type of Bloody Mary mix or offer a couple of different ones for your guests to choose from. For example, maybe go with a classic, spicy, and Clamato mix.
For the Bloody Mary garnishes, offer a good selection that will tempt everyone. A few examples of favorite garnishes include:
- Green Olives stuffed with Pimento, Garlic, or Blue Cheese
- Celery Stalk or Celery Stick
- Cucumber slices
- Cherry Tomatoes
- Pickled Jalapenos
- Hot Banana Pepper Slices
- Cocktail Onions
- Marinated Artichoke Hearts
- Pickled Veggies like Pickled Green Beans, Pickled Asparagus, and Pickled Okra
- Spicy Pickles, Garlic Pickles, Dill Pickle Spears
- Lemon Wedge or Lime Wedge
For a Loaded Bloody Mary Bar with over-the-top garnishes, consider some of these ideas:
- Shrimp (offer cocktail sauce for guests who want to dip)
- Seared Scallops
- Pepperoni or Meat Sticks
- Beef Jerky
- Cubed Salami
- Mini Cheeseburgers
- Hot Dogs
- Chicken Strips
- Variety of Cubed Cheeses
- Deviled Eggs
- Onion Rings
- Jalapeno Poppers
Also offer a selection of seasonings and add-ins, like pickle juice or olive juice, celery salt, ground black pepper, Old Bay, and a few different hot sauces with varying levels of heat.
What is the best alcohol to put in a Bloody Mary?
Vodka is the most popular alcohol to add to a really good Bloody Mary mix. You can have fun with it and choose a flavored vodka if you wish. In place of vodka, tequila is a good substitute and makes a drink called Bloody Maria instead.
How do you make a Bloody Mary taste better?
You can turn the average Bloody Mary into one of your favorite drinks by adding ingredients that you love. A little garlic, hot sauce, or the right garnish can make all the difference.
What is the difference between a Bloody Mary and a Dirty Bloody Mary?
While there’s a variety of recipes, the main difference between a traditional Bloody Mary and the Dirty version is the addition of olive juice or brine, similar to what you would add to a dirty martini.
What is the ratio for Bloody Mary Mix?
The best ratio of Bloody Mary Mix to vodka is 3:1. So, if you have six ounces of the mix, you’d want to have two ounces of vodka, making an 8-ounce drink before adding ice.
- Making your own Bloody Mary mix is easy and tastes infinitely better than store-bought mixes.
- Bloody Marys are one of the classic drinks that every home bartender should master.
- Prepared horseradish adds a little bite to the mix – just make sure you don’t purchase the creamy sauce.
- There are more recipes for Bloody Marys out there, so experiment and find the ones you like.
- With all the variations and garnishes, you can’t have this much fun with other cocktails!