When hosting a large gathering, individual cocktails can be time-consuming to make. The solution? Make cocktails in large batches ahead of time so you can spend more time mingling with guests. From fruity punches to classic cocktails, here are 25 of the best big-batch cocktails to serve a crowd.
1. Pineapple-Rum Cocktail
This refreshing pineapple-rum cocktail is perfect for crowdpleasing. It’s made with sweet pineapple juice and light rum for a tropical drink that will transport you to the islands.
To make it in a large batch, simply multiply the ingredients. Mix pineapple juice, rum, and a splash of lime juice in a pitcher. Give it a quick stir to incorporate. Pour over ice into cups or hurricane glasses. Garnish with lime wheels or pineapple fronds.
2. Vodka-Thyme Lemonade
For a fresh and herbaceous twist on lemonade, add thyme simple syrup and vodka. The thyme infuses the lemonade with earthy flavor.
Make a thyme simple syrup by heating sugar and water with fresh thyme. Let cool and strain. Then mix with fresh lemon juice and vodka. Pour into a punch bowl over ice and garnish with sprigs of thyme.
3. Classic Sangria
No cocktail roundup would be complete without sangria. This wine punch is a classic for a reason – it’s easy, delicious, and serves a crowd.
Mix red wine, brandy, orange juice, lime juice, sliced apples, oranges, and grapes in a large pitcher or drink dispenser. Let it chill for a few hours so the flavors combine. Serve over ice with an orange or apple slice garnish.
4. Pineapple-Raspberry Bellini
For a tropical twist on the classic bellini, use pineapple juice and fresh raspberries. The sweet pineapple and tart raspberries pair perfectly with sparkling wine.
Mix pineapple juice, muddled raspberries, and a splash of club soda in a pitcher. Top with sparkling wine and stir gently. Serve in champagne flutes garnished with a raspberry.
5. Stonefruit Sangria
Take advantage of summer’s bounty of stone fruits like cherries, peaches, nectarines, and plums. Mix sliced stone fruits with white wine, lime juice, and ginger ale in a large dispenser. Let chill before serving over ice.
6. Kentucky Half-and-Half
This cocktail is a boozy twist on sweet tea, made with black tea, bourbon, and lemon. It’s the perfect punch for a Southern soiree.
Brew a large batch of black tea, then mix with bourbon and lemon syrup. Serve over ice with lemon wheels and mint.
7. Aperol Gin Punch
This bright citrusy punch gets its color from Aperol and its herbal notes from gin. Along with Lillet Blanc and lime, it makes for a well-balanced large format cocktail.
Stir together gin, Aperol, Lillet Blanc, and lime juice in a drink dispenser. Before serving, add ice cubes and garnish with basil and edible flowers.
8. Orange-Mint Margarita
For a crowd, take the classic margarita up a notch with fresh orange and mint. Muddle the orange and mint together, then mix with tequila, Cointreau, and lime juice.
Serve the margaritas on the rocks in glasses rimmed with salt. Garnish with orange slices and mint sprigs.
9. Lemony Spiked Sweet Tea
Another fun twist on sweet tea – this version is spiked with rum for a bit of boozy fun. Use orange pekoe tea bags to brew a large batch of tea. Mix in lemon juice and simple syrup to taste, then add rum.
Chill before serving over ice. Garnish glasses with lemon wheels and mint.
10. Fresh Grapefruit-Campari Cocktails
The classic negroni’s bitter and citrusy notes work nicely in this grapefruit cocktail. Mix grapefruit juice, Campari, club soda, and simple syrup in a large dispenser.
Before serving, add ice and garnish each glass with a grapefruit peel. The bitter Campari pairs perfectly with the sweet, tart grapefruit.
11. Rose Sangria with Nectarines and Strawberries
Use floral and fruity rosé wine as the base for this gorgeous sangria. Mix with sliced nectarines, strawberries, and a splash of lemon-lime soda.
Let chill before serving over ice and garnishing each glass with a strawberry half and mint sprig.
12. Smoky Lemon Margarita
For a southwestern twist, add mezcal to margaritas. The smoky spirit amps up the classic cocktail. Mix mezcal with lemon juice, orange liqueur, and agave syrup in a pitcher, serve over ice, and garnish with charred orange halves.
13. Strawberry Ginger Smash
Muddle fresh strawberries with minced ginger for a flavorful syrup, then mix with ginger beer and vodka for a delicious Moscow mule variation. Serve over ice and garnish with strawberry fans.
14. Aperol Jasmine Spritz
The Aperol spritz gets a floral twist with jasmine syrup and sparkling wine. Make jasmine syrup by infusing sugar syrup with dried jasmine flowers. Mix syrup with Aperol, sparkling wine, and club soda. Serve over ice and garnish with rosemary.
15. Fizzy Fruit Punch
Make the most of summer’s bounty of fruit with this fruity punch. Mix chopped fruit like berries, peaches, pineapple, and mango with orange and cherry juice. Top with sparkling water or ginger ale. For a boozy punch, add rum or tequila.
16. Hibiscus-Honey Iced Tea
Steep hibiscus tea bags with orange pekoe tea for a floral iced tea. Sweeten with honey and add a splash of rum for the perfect summer sipper. Serve over ice with lime wedges.
17. Celery-Lime Gimlet
For a savory, herbaceous twist on a gimlet, muddle celery with lime juice and gin. Shake with ice and strain into chilled glasses or mugs. Garnish with celery ribs and lime wheels.
18. Big-Batch Lemon-Mint Julep
A classic mint julep takes well to big batch preparation. Use simple syrup infused with mint to pour over bourbon. Mix in a large pitcher and pour into julep cups filled with crushed ice. Garnish with mint sprigs – you’ll need about 16 for a big batch!
19. Daniel Webster’s Punch
This boozy, old fashioned punch dates back to the 1800s. Named for the famous statesman who loved it, it contains oleo saccharum (citrus syrup), black tea, rum, sherry, red wine, and spices.
Mix in a large dispenser, then add a block of ice before serving. Garnish festively with citrus wheels, pineapple chunks, star anise, and freshly grated nutmeg.
20. Pina Colada
Escape to the tropics with this classic tiki drink made in punch form. Blend pineapple juice, coconut milk, and rum in large batches, then pour over ice to serve. Top each glass with toasted coconut flakes, pineapple chunks, or maraschino cherries.
This Spanish punch contains white wine, brandy, and lots of chopped fruit like peaches, strawberries, grapes, and banana. Mix everything in a large container and let chill before serving over ice. Garnish each glass with a banana slice.
22. Negroni Sbagliato
This bubbly riff on the negroni adds prosecco and club soda to the classic mix of Campari, sweet vermouth, and gin. Mix in batches, then serve over ice with orange wheels and rosemary sprigs for garnish.
23. Boozy Frozen Lemonade
For an adult twist on frozen lemonade, mix lemon juice, vodka, and tarragon simple syrup. Freeze in popsicle molds for an easy make-ahead option. Serve the frozen lemonade pops garnished with fresh tarragon.
24. Lillet-Vodka Cocktails
Lillet is a French aperitif wine that makes a lovely cocktail paired with citrus vodka. Mix with orange juice and shake over ice to serve. Garnish each glass with an orange slice and basil leaf.
25. Yellow Watermelon Margaritas
Make the most of summer watermelon with this gorgeous margarita. Blend yellow watermelon with lime syrup, tequila, and elderflower liqueur. Batch, then freeze in popsicle molds for easy serving. Garnish with lime wheels.