Infuse Your Vodka With Horseradish To Give Cocktails A Spicy Bite

Numerous types of infused alcohol can be spotted at high-end bars and has become a unique ingredient for bartenders to create intriguing cocktails. However, you don't need mixologist-level skills to make your own infusions. In most cases, it requires minimal ingredients, simple tools, and, occasionally, a little patience. Are you interested in taking the plunge?

If you are looking for a cocktail experience with a real kick, try infusing fresh horseradish into vodka; this will result in a spicy bite that is hard to resist and exciting to drink. To make it, pick up some fresh horseradish root in the grocery store's produce section and grab a bottle of your favorite vodka. Whether you are looking to upgrade your tried and true bloody mary recipe or want to sip it by the shot, horseradish-infused vodka isn't just easy to make, but it's also fun to experiment with in cocktails and beyond. 

How to make horseradish vodka

There are two different methods for making horseradish-infused vodka. One requires a blender and a coffee filter, and the other relies on some patience. The ingredients remain the same for either method: one bottle of vodka and a 3 to 5-inch piece of horseradish root that has been peeled and sliced.

To make infused vodka in a blender, pour the vodka into a blender with the horseradish pieces. Blend it on high until all the horseradish pieces have broken up completely. Then, line a funnel with a coffee filter and pour the mixture back into the original bottle. Blending speeds up the infusion of the horseradish flavor so it can be enjoyed immediately — but it's better when chilled first.

Alternatively, you can push the slices of horseradish directly into the vodka bottle and wait for a minimum of three days (or a maximum of one month) so its signature spicy flavor can infuse slowly into the vodka. This method allows you to sample it periodically until the horseradish flavor suits your palate. No matter which route you choose, be sure to store this infused vodka in the freezer for the optimal drinking experience.

Ways to use horseradish vodka

After you have prepared your bottle of high-quality, horseradish-infused vodka, you're probably interested in ways to use it. Some people swear by enjoying horseradish vodka by the shot and claim its pungency can clear out your sinuses and help knock out a cold. Others say horseradish vodka as the base of a bloody mary will make the best one you've ever tasted. We suggest making a dirty martini with this infusion for a twist on the classic vodka cocktail. If you are a Gibson fan, horseradish vodka can be used for a unique, spicy take that amplifies its savory nature.

Whether enjoyed by the shot or used in a cocktail, drinks made with horseradish vodka pair well with stronger-tasting foods and salty snacks. For example, salted fish, smoked bacon, pickled vegetables, and rye bread are great options. However, to get even more creative, add a splash of horseradish vodka to a homemade salsa recipe to impart an extra kick.