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orange-colored cocktail in a rocks glass garnished with ginger and orange

Cold Toddy Recipe with Whiskey

  • Author: Lauren Grant-Vose
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 5 servings 1x
  • Category: Drinks
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free


All the flavors of a good hot toddy—served over ice. The perfect pitcher cocktail for the holidays!


  • 1 orange + more for garnish
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, cut into coins
  • 2 earl grey tea bags
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup honey (depending on sweetness preference)
  • 1 cup rye whiskey
  • candied ginger, optional, for garnish


  1. Juice orange (should get 1/4 cup) and juice lemons (should get 1/2 cup). Reserve juices then add both spent orange halves and one spent lemon half to a small saucepan. Crack cinnamon sticks in half and add to saucepan. Add ginger, tea bags, peppercorns, cloves, and water to saucepan.
  2. Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce to medium and simmer 2 minutes. Remove tea bags, stir in honey (start with 1/4 cup and add more to taste. I usually use 1/3 cup.) and let mixture steep 20 minutes.
  3. Strain mixture through a fine mesh sieve; discard solids.
  4. Add spiced honey mixture to a large pitcher. Add orange, lemon juice, and rye whiskey. Add 1 cup ice and stir until completely melted and toddy is cold.
  5. Serve toddy over ice in rocks glasses; garnish with an orange twist (and candied ginger if you’re feeling fancy).
  6. To make this warm—skip adding the ice and instead add 1/2 cup hot water. Serve in mugs and garnish with an orange slice. Top each toddy with additional hot water to taste.


The earl grey tea syrup can be made and refrigerated up to 3 days ahead of time.

The entire cocktail can be made and refrigerated up to 1 day ahead of time.

Keywords: cold toddy, whiskey toddy

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