Substituting cachaça from the original recipe with vodka, the Caipiroska Cocktail is easy to make and sports a similar flavor profile. It's only slightly less earthy and more floral.
Quick Facts Caipiroska Cocktail
- Method: shaken
- Flavor profile: boozy, refreshing
- How to serve it: over crushed ice
- Best glassware: rocks glass
- Alcohol content: ~ 16% ABV, 19 grams of alcohol per serving
There are a few things to consider when preparing a great Caipiroska. That includes choosing a suitable Vodka, cutting your limes the right way, and using the proper type of sugar. We will show you how to do all that.
- 1 Jigger
- 1 Cocktail Shaker
- 1 Muddler
- 2 oz Vodka
- 1.5 pcs Limes, cut in half or quarters with pith removed
- 1 tbsp Brown Granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp Freshly squeezed lime juice - (optional but recommended)
- Crushed/cracked ice
- Combine lime halves or quarters and granulated sugar in a cocktail shaker. Gently muddle and crush the limes to release the juice and the essential oils.1.5 pcs Limes, cut in half or quarters with pith removed, 1 tbsp Brown Granulated sugar
- Add Vodka and lime juice, then stir the mix well.2 oz Vodka, 1 tbsp Freshly squeezed lime juice
- Add approximately 6 oz of crushed ice, shake very quickly and then transfer the drink into a cocktail glass with the ice.Crushed/cracked ice
- Fill up your glass with more ice and garnish with a lime wheel (optional).
Ingredients - Our Suggestions
The list of things that go into a Caipiroska is short. Besides the base spirit, fresh limes and sugar are the key components. So, here's a breakdown of what you need:
- Vodka - To make fantastic vodka cocktails, you don't need to spend a fortune on the base spirit. Great vodkas are available at comparably low prices. Get a bottle of Ketel One or Absolut, and you're good.
- Limes - We need limes cut in quarters or halves with the pith removed. That is crucial for making this drink the traditional way.
- Granulated Brown Sugar - Another vital part of the recipe is using brown sugar, not syrup. The sugar helps extract essential oils from the lime peels, making the drink far more flavorful.
- Fresh lime juice - This bit is optional but helps pronounce the tangy flavors in the Caipiroska cocktail. It's additional to the cut limes, not substitutional.
Best Practices to Make a Great Caipiroska
To make a fantastic Caipiroska, you'll have to apply the same technique you use for a tasty Caipirinha:
Tip 1: Preparing the limes - When cutting your limes, cut them in half lengthwise (top to bottom). Then remove all of the pith. Now you can go on using those half limes to make the cocktail. Or you can cut them in half again and use quarters. There's no need to cut them into smaller pieces as these would only become more difficult to muddle.
Tip 2: The type of sugar - While you muddle the limes to release the juices, the sugar will do some magic and extract the beautiful essential oils from the lime peels (remember Oleo Saccharum). That makes your drink fragrant and flavorful. We like to use brown sugar because we love the molasses flavor with vodka in this cocktail. Some recipes include syrup, but we strongly advise against that.
Tip 3: The Shaking - We shake the Caipiroska with crushed ice, which melts a lot faster than ice cubes. Thus, shake all ingredients very shortly only - not longer than 5 seconds. Then, pour the entire shaker content into the glass without the help of a strainer (dirt dump).
Just like with the Caipirinha, it's easy to make fruity variations of a Caipiroska. You can use the same recipe, but add fresh fruits in Step 2 and muddle them with sugar and limes.
Here's some inspiration to make tasty riffs on the Caipiroska with fresh fruits:
- Blackberry Caipiroska - Add 3 or 4 large blackberries when muddling the limes.
- Kiwi - You can also use a kiwi in this drink. Peel the fruit and cut it into small cubes before muddling it with your lime quarters.
- Strawberry - Similar to the blackberry variation, add 2-4 strawberries (depending on the size) and muddle them with lime and sugar. -This also works with raspberries or cherries.
- Passion fruit - Another excellent variation of the cocktail. You'll need the pulp of one fruit per drink. And this time, don't muddle it but add it with vodka and lime juice before shaking. Crushing the kernels releases a bitter and unpleasant taste, which you don't want in this cocktail.
For more refreshing and easy-to-make summer cocktails, check out these recipes:
- The Caipirinha - the original made with Cachaça
- The Mojito - a minty summer drink based on rum
- The Gin Basil Smash
- The Mint Julep