Hot toddy on a stump with blue towel

Warm Drinks to Beat the Cold

Whether you’re trying to warm up on a cold day or simply unwinding before bed, there’s nothing quite like wrapping your hands around a toasty mug of tea or cocoa and taking a slow inhale before your first warming sip.

My go to is most often some sort of herbal or non caffeinated tea because I love warm drinks in the evening. However, I’m also a fan of a not too sweet spiced cider, a rich cup of cocoa, or a spicy chai. All of which can be perked up with a few dashes of bitters or even spiked for that most indulgent of nightcaps. 

Elevating your warm drinks can be as simple as adding a few dashes of cardamom bitters to a steaming mug of Earl Grey or making your own ginger tea to use as a base for a hot toddy. As we patiently wait out the last dragging months of winter, here’s some inspiration to fill your mug.

Hot Toddy

A hot toddy can be as simple as hot water, lemon, honey, and a cinnamon stick with a shot of whiskey, but I’m fan of making ginger tea for my base and I don’t always add whiskey. With or without, it’s a restorative drink that will help fight off any cold.

Ginger Tea

Slice a large chunk of ginger, 3-4 inches, put it in a medium saucepan filled with water and bring to a bare simmer. You’ll have a great tasting tea within 30 minutes, but the longer you go the spicier and more concentrated it will get. 

Spicy Ginger Toddy

½ oz lemon juice
1 tbsp of honey
3-5 dashes The Bitter Housewife Aromatic Bitters
1.5 oz whiskey (optional)
6-8 oz ginger tea

Bitters & Tea

Earl Grey or English Breakfast with milk, sugar, and a few dashes of The Bitter Housewife Cardamom Bitters is a great mid-afternoon treat that both comforts and helps power you through the last few hours of your work day. 

Smoky Spiced Cider

Lapsang Souchong is a pine smoked tea where a little goes a long way. If you love smoky drinks, definitely check this one out, it tastes like the first days of fall with the smell of wood smoke in the air.

12 oz apple cider
1 tsp lapsang souchong tea leaves
1 cinnamon stick
4 whole cloves
½ tsp fresh grated nutmeg
4-6 dashes of The Bitter Housewife Barrel Aged Bitters

Place all ingredients, except bitters, in a saucepan and heat over medium heat to a bare simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes. Pull off heat, add bitters, and strain into two mugs. 

If you want an extra warming cider add 1.5 oz of whiskey to each mug. 

North Westward Hot Cocoa

2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 - 2 Tbsp sugar 
1 cup milk or any combination of milk, half-and-half, or cream
5 dashes of The Bitter Housewife Westward Hazelnut Bitters 

Whisk together the cocoa, sugar, and about 2 tablespoons milk in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until cocoa and sugar are dissolved. Whisk in the rest of the milk and heat it over medium heat, whisking occasionally, until it is hot. Add the bitters and enjoy in your favorite mug.

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