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Homemade Eggnog

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Homemade Eggnog is a rich, creamy and festive holiday cocktail. Made with eggs, milk, heavy cream and seasonal spices, this boozy eggnog is perfect for your holiday celebrations.

Glass of homemade eggnog garnished with a cinnamon stick, whipped cream and ground nutmeg.

 

The holiday season is the time of year when boozy Eggnog gives us that deliciously comforting and cozy feeling.

I love making homemade eggnog. It’s perfectly spiced with warm Christmas spices and it’s more flavorful than store bought eggnog. The texture and flavors meld perfectly in this recipe!

Before serving at your holiday gatherings, really dress it up with whipped cream on top along with ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon plus cinnamon sticks.

Not only does it taste delicious, it’s a gorgeous cocktail to serve friends and family, just like this Peanut Butter Whiskey Martini.

More Christmas Drinks to Love

Peppermint Mudslide

Christmas Punch (Non-Alcoholic)

Christmas Moscow Mule

Slow Cooker Mulled Wine

White Christmas Mojito

What is Eggnog?

Eggnog is a rich and creamy holiday drink typically served up at festive occasions. It is made from a combination of milk, cream, sugar, eggs, and spices like nutmeg and cinnamon. 

The traditional eggnog recipe includes a bit of alcohol, such as rum, brandy, or bourbon to create a festive and boozy eggnog.

But, alcohol is not required to enjoy homemade eggnog during the holiday season.

Plus, eggnog desserts are amazing. If you love eggnog, serve up this sweet Eggnog Bread Pudding for the holiday season. Or enjoy this no-bake creamy Eggnog Cheesecake for the perfect Christmas dessert.

 

Quick History of Eggnog

Eggnog has a rich history dating back to medieval times in Europe. Its origins can be traced to a hot, milky, ale-like drink called “posset”, enjoyed by the British and even used as a cold remedy. As the availability of milk and eggs increased, so did the drink’s popularity. 

In the 1700’s the American colonies added their own twists to the cocktail with local spirits since alcohol was heavily taxed from England. Rum became a popular choice because it came from the Caribbean and was less expensive.

It eventually evolved into the eggnog we know and love today, which is this creamy homemade eggnog recipe.

Kitchen Equipment

  • Saucepan
  • Wooden Spoon
  • Large Bowl
  • Whisk
  • ​Fine Mesh Strainer
  • Airtight Container

Ingredients for Homemade Eggnog

To make delicious homemade eggnog, I use the following main ingredients:

MILK: Whole milk is the base of any classic eggnog recipe. You’ll need 2 cups of milk to help make the creamy base.

HEAVY CREAM: I’m using 1 cup of heavy cream for a richer, creamier eggnog.

RAW EGGS: Large eggs are crucial for this recipe. I separate the egg yolks and egg whites. Six egg yolks makes a generous serving.

GRANULATED SUGAR: White sugar is the most common sweetener in eggnog. 2/3 cup of sugar is the sweet spot, but you can add more or less depending on your personal tastes.

PURE VANILLA EXTRACT: A 1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract enhances the overall taste of this boozy eggnog.

CINNAMON: Ground cinnamon adds warmth and a slight spicy touch. I usually add a pinch, but feel free to adjust to your liking.

NUTMEG: Ground nutmeg is essential for that distinct eggnog flavor. Start with half a teaspoon and adjust as needed. I use store bought nutmeg, but you’re welcome to use freshly grated nutmeg.

ALCOHOL: I use spiced rum. A dark or gold rum will also do well. Or for a boulder version, you can use bourbon. To make the best eggnog, use the liquor you like.

Each homemade eggnog ingredient on a countertop in bowls and labeled with text overlay.

 

How to Make Homemade Eggnog

Here’s the step-by-step instructions to make eggnog:

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and vanilla. Use a wood spoon to continually stir. Slowly bring the mixture to a simmer.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until they have a slightly creamy texture.

Glass bowl with whisked egg yolks and sugar with a whisk in the bowl.

 

Slowly add the hot milk mixture to the egg mixture by big spoonfuls, slowly whisking in between each addition. This will temper the eggs. If you add it together too quick, it’ll cook the eggs.

Whisk until fully combined.

Add the entire mixture back into your suacepan and heat over medium heat until it reaches 160 degrees and begins to thicken. Use a candy thermometer to determine the temperature. Do not boil.

Remove from heat and stir in the heavy cream and rum (optional).

Pouring rum into the saucepan with the eggnog mixture.

 

​Place in the refrigerator overnight or until chilled.

Pour into individual glasses and add a cinnamon stick for garnish.

Serve with whipped cream on top and sprinkle cinnamon and/or nutmeg over the whipped cream.

 

Recipe Tip

If there are little bits of egg in your mixture, this means some of the eggnog mixture got too hot and actually cooked the eggs.

Not all is lost, but it will be less creamier. Use a fine mesh strainer to strain out the egg. The next time you make it, be sure to combine the hot milk mixture slower into the egg mixture.

What is the Best Alcohol for Eggnog?

I’m using a spiced rum, as it’s my favorite flavor to mix with this holiday drink. Here are a few more options and you can read more here if you want an in-depth look at how the different alcohol tastes in eggnog.

Rum: A gold or dark rum seamlessly blends with the egg-based mixture and preserves the flavor. I personally enjoy the extra flavor of Spiced Rum in my eggnog.

Brandy: Specifically Cognac, gives a traditional, sweet twist to eggnog. It’s great for those with a sweet tooth but it can be too sweet for others. Some people prefer to split it and add both brandy and rum.

Bourbon: For a stronger kick, use bourbon. It’s a traditional favorite, but it can taste too strong for those who don’t enjoy its bold flavor.

 

Can I make Eggnog Without Alcohol?

Yes! This eggnog recipe tastes just as fantastic without the added bourbon or rum.

Simply omit it from the recipe.

Is it Safe to Drink Eggnog with Raw Eggs?

As long as your hot mixture reaches 160 degrees F in the saucepan, then the raw eggs are safe to drink. Use a candy thermometer to ensure your homemade eggnog gets hot enough.

At this temperature, any bacteria will be killed, making homemade eggnog safe to drink

 

How to Store Homemade Eggnog?

Keep it in the refrigerator for 1-2 days. Be sure to whisk it all together again before serving, as the mixture may have separated.

This Homemade Eggnog recipe is a creamy and delicious holiday drink. Serve it with or without your favorite rum, brandy or bourbon. Either way, this cozy drink has all the good feels of the festive season.

Yield: 2

Homemade Eggnog

Glass of homemade eggnog garnished with a cinnamon stick, whipped cream and ground nutmeg.

Homemade Eggnog is a rich, creamy and festive holiday cocktail. Made with eggs, milk, heavy cream and seasonal spices, this boozy eggnog is perfect for your holiday celebrations.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 6 large Egg Yolks
  • ⅔ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups Whole Milk
  • 1 cup Heavy Cream
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg, plus extra for garnish
  • A pinch of salt
  • ½ teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 3 ounces Spiced Rum or Bourbon
  • Cinnamon Sticks, for garnish
  • Whipped cream, for garnish
  • Ground Cinnamon, for garnish

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and vanilla. Use a wooden spoon to stir. Slowly bring the mixture to a simmer.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until they have a slightly creamy texture.
  3. Slowly add the hot milk mixture to the egg mixture by big spoonfuls, whisking together in between each addition. This will temper the eggs. If you add it together too quick, it'll cook the eggs.
  4. Whisk until fully combined.
  5. Add the entire mixture back into your suacepan and heat over medium heat until it reaches 160 degrees and begins to thicken. Use a candy thermometer to determine the temperature. Do not boil.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in the heavy cream and rum.
  7. Place in the refrigerator overnight or until chilled.
  8. Pour into individual glasses and add a cinnamon stick for garnish.
  9. Serve with whipped cream on top and sprinkle cinnamon and/or nutmeg over the whipped cream.

Notes

If there are little bits of egg in your mixture, this means some of the eggnog mixture got too hot and actually cooked the eggs.

Not all is lost, but it will be less creamier. Use a fine mesh strainer to strain out the egg. The next time you make it, be sure to combine the hot milk mixture slower into the egg mixture.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

5

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 360Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 256mgSodium: 69mgCarbohydrates: 23gSugar: 21gProtein: 6g

Nutritional values are estimates and not exact.

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I love easy recipes and delicious desserts and happy to share with you my favorite recipes. My favorite places are tropical, family always comes first and I'm a cocktail enthusiast for sure!
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