This homemade eggnog recipe produces a wonderfully festive drink that tastes like spiced melted ice cream and is easier to drink than a cup of dairy and booze has any right to be. Fair warning: It might ruin you for even the best store-bought versions.
Ideal for holiday season entertaining, this nog requires minimal prep time: There’s no stovetop involved, just one mixing bowl to wash, and almost everything can be done in advance. Start by whisking together all ingredients but the egg whites, then refrigerate the cream and egg mixture for up to six hours. Just before your guests arrive, use a hand mixer (there’s no need for your heavy stand mixer here) to beat the whites—don’t stop at soft peaks; you’re looking for stiff ones. Gently fold in the whipped egg whites to lighten up the drink. If your party is big and will go all night, keep a spare batch in the refrigerator and refill the punch bowl throughout the evening. Garnish each time with ground cinnamon or nutmeg.
If you’re looking to riff on classic eggnog, bar expert Al Culliton has suggestions for a “cool-kid” version made with mezcal and topped with cocoa powder and an “old-fashioned” one with Madeira and Oloroso sherry. You might also consider coquito, a Puerto Rican holiday drink made with coconut milk and, in this case, cooked egg yolks. Want more holiday cocktail ideas? Try this elegant Christmas punch with cognac or a bubbly French 75.