spiked apple cider floats.

happy first day of fall, dearhearts!

listen, i know i haven’t been around lately. i feel like a big jerk.

i promise i’m not ignoring you, i’ve just been insanely busy and overwhelmed lately.

you see, i’m getting hitched in december, and lately, wedding planning has kind of taken over my life.

i mean, aside from the stress, fatigue, and hysteria, i’m loving everything about planning this wedding.

we’re doing a ridiculous amount of DIY stuff for the big day, including our invitations. with the help of our wonderful friends, the mister and i have been feverishly working to get them designed, assembled, and in the mail before our guests start thinking the wedding’s off or something.

thankfully, if i strain my eyes hard enough i can see the faintest glimmer of the light at the end of the tunnel, so i should be back to posting here regularly soon. pinkie swear.

i thought i’d keep it short and sweet with today’s installment of cocktail friday, because i want you to be outdoors, enjoying this beautiful weather! well, it’s kind of beautiful here in florida, but i have a good feeling that it’ll get way more autumnal soon. i hope. please, weather. don’t ruin this for me!

spiked apple cider floats. yup. simple, crazy delicious, and the perfect drink to enjoy on the first official day of fall!

in my wildest dreams, i would drink one of these floats while laying in a huge pile of leaves, wearing a scarf, with the wind whipping through my hair with reckless abandon. maybe i should consider wearing a hat in this wildest of wild dreams?

i served this drink at a halloween party a couple of years ago, and people went a little crazy for it. there’s just something about a float that’s so wonderfully nostalgic, right? it brings out the hyperactive, overly-excited kid in you.

make this drink. today. it’s autumn, in cocktail form!

spiked apple cider floats

Yield: 2 spiked apple cider floats

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 2 minutes

Total Time: 12 minutes

this recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, quadrupled...


for the cinnamon simple syrup

1/4 cup water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cinnamon stick

for the spiked apple cider floats

2 cups apple cider, chilled
1/4 cup cinnamon simple syrup
1/4 cup applejack or apple schnapps
2 tablespoons bourbon
5-6 scoops vanilla ice cream (you can use store-bought, or make your own!)


for the cinnamon simple syrup

combine the water, granulated sugar, ground cinnamon and cinnamon stick in a small saucepan.

place over medium-high heat, and allow to cook until the sugar is dissolved, stirring frequently. this should take about 2-3 minutes.

as soon as the sugar is dissolved, turn off the heat and allow the syrup to cool to room temperature.

when the simple syrup is cool, strain through a fine mesh sieve into a clean container, cover and store in the fridge until ready to use.

for the spiked apple cider floats

place two mugs in the freezer about an hour before you'd like to serve the floats. everyone loves a frosty mug!

place 2-3 scoops of vanilla ice cream in each mug, depending on how much ice cream you like.

in a small pitcher or cocktail shaker, combine the apple cider, cinnamon simple syrup, applejack and bourbon. shake to combine.

pour the apple cider over top the ice cream in the mugs.

garnish with a cinnamon stick (totally optional!), and serve with a straw and a spoon. enjoy!

a food + words original

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41 Responses to “spiked apple cider floats.”

  1. #
    Bev Weidner — September 23, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    I could practice my side-stroke in this float. DEAR WOMAN.

    Your day is gonna be perfect!

  2. #
    Jessica — September 23, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    First of all, congrats on your wedding! You must be so excited. :) I got married back in August and I totally feel your pain about all of the DIY stuff… but trust me, it will be so worth it in the end!

    But onto the yummy-ness at hand… OMG these sound amazing! I seriously want to reach through my computer screen and grab one to slurp on. For your party, did you just make a bunch of extra cinnamon syrup ahead of time? I’d love to serve these at our Halloween party this year. :)

  3. #
    heather — September 23, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    Oh boy, how I can relate to you and your stress, blogging regret, hysteria… We’re also extremely deep into planning a DIY-heavy wedding, occurring back home in Wisconsin (several hundred miles from our current location), not even three weeks from today. WEEKS. I can’t believe it’s gotten to this point already. Nor can I believe how much I’ve neglected my camera and blog. This float made especially for me tonight would be amazing, though cider isn’t available in these parts yet. Soon. Well, best wishes to you and your soon-to-be-husband. Can’t wait to hear all about it.



  4. #
    Barbara | Creative Culinary — September 23, 2011 at 11:19 pm

    Thanks so much for adding this to my Happy Hour Friday…it sounds wonderful…I’m craving one of these and a big old pile of leaves!

    I’ll do one every Friday (or at least that’s the plan) so come on over any time and add a drink or an appetizer!

  5. #
    Kathryn — September 24, 2011 at 3:45 am

    Love this and love the colours – especially the way this changes from dark brown to light. Yum! Good luck with the wedding planning, I can’t even begin to imagine all the stress must be involved.

  6. #
    Sam — September 25, 2011 at 11:42 am

    this sounds wonderful and makes me crave the cool weather i just ran away from. c’mon florida get your act together and gimme some autumn!

  7. #
    Aggie — September 25, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    wedding planning was probably one of the most stressful times in my entire life. during that time I was also buying my first house and got promoted but nothing was more stressful than wedding planning in my opinion. :)

    the weather here in FL is so frustrating this time of year…but I have hope for some cooler evenings in the near future. How awesome is this drink???? Spiked apple cider? Awesome, and so are your pictures!

  8. #
    Katie — September 26, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Oooh my gosh! This sounds so insanely wonderful. And since it is so hot in Florida, this is the perfect “fall” drink that also beats the heat ;)

  9. #
    Sneh | Cook Republic — September 26, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    oooh very nice! It is spring here, But I am so going to make this :-)

  10. #
    Amelia — September 28, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    These look amazing! Do you use alcoholic cider or just the regular kind?

  11. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    hi Amelia! your first name is my middle name–how awesome is that? i just used regular apple cider, but i bet this would be delicious with hard cider! if i were using hard cider, i’d likely leave out the other alcohol in the original recipe. hope that helps, and thank you so much for your sweet comment!

  12. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:03 pm

    thanks so much! it’s a fabulous drink, no matter the season :)

  13. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    my thoughts exactly! :)

  14. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    thank you so much for your sweet words, Aggie! wedding planning is incredibly stressful, yes! but it’s definitely very rewarding, and i’m really enjoying watching my vision unfold now that we’re getting closer to the actual wedding date. it’s awesome!

  15. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:08 pm

    i know, right? Florida is such a jerk!

  16. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:09 pm

    thanks, Kathryn! wedding planning is certainly very stressful, but it’s also very fun. a lot more fun when i have a cocktail to deal with the stress! :)

  17. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:10 pm

    thanks for your sweet comment, Barbara! i try to post a cocktail every Friday, but it doesn’t always happen. i’ll definitely link up over at your site when i do!

  18. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:12 pm

    oh my god, three weeks!?!! i would be freaking OUT right now. i cannot imagine how big of a bundle of nerves i’ll be when the wedding is that close! i totally feel for you, i’m sure planning a wedding that’s several hundred miles away is even more stressful…i hope you get some cider soon so you can enjoy one of these floats! trust me, it definitely helps calm the nerves. congratulations on your big day, Heather!

  19. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    thank you so much for your sweet comment, Jessica! i am super excited about the wedding, but also super freaking out about it! there’s still so much to do, and i don’t know how i’m going to get it all done! congrats on your recent marriage!

    for the floats for a crowd, i made a quadruple batch of the syrup and stored it in the fridge…it’ll keep practically forever–seriously! you could make some right now and it would keep like a champ for your Halloween party. let me know how you like them!

  20. #
    jaclyn — September 28, 2011 at 6:14 pm

    thanks for the words of encouragement…i hope it’s perfect! thankfully, i’m not insanely OCD or anything like that. i like imperfect things. perfectly imperfect, you know?

    i would also dive face-first into this float…oh wait. i did.

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