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  • Writer's pictureClyve Rose

Thanksgiving Recipe: Pumpkin Liqueur

I live in Australia, and while we don't celebrate anything like and Amewrican of Canadian thanksgiving, I have many friends that do - and I'm always thankful for having them in my life. In honour of my American and Canadian friends, then, I went hunting for an old-time recipe that fit the thanksgiving season, as well as my fascination for homemade beverages. This pumpkin-based liqueur can be made with several different alcoholic additives, but the rum version is by far the best.


  • 2 cups of water

  • 1 cup of white granulated sugar

  • 1 cup of dark brown sugar, packed

  • 1 cup of pumpkin purée (homemade is best)

  • 4 cinnamon sticks

  • 4 whole cloves

  • 4 whole allspice berries

  • 2 pieces of fresh ginger, sliced

  • 2 cups of aged rum

  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract


Step 1: In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring your water to a slow boil.

Step 2: Add your granulated sugar and brown sugar. Stir this syrup until completely all the sugar is dissolved.

Step 3: Reduce your heat to a simmer, and stir in your pumpkin purée.

Step 4: Add in your cinnamon and cloves first. Then add your allspice and ginger.

Step 5: Simmer your syrup for 5 minutes.

Step 5: Remove your syrup from the heat, cover, and let it steep and cool for 2 to 3 hours.

Step 6: Strain the pumpkin and spices from the syrup using a very find mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth. NOTE: It takes several minutes to drain due to the thickness of the liquid. Scraping the strainer with a spoon can help speed this up.

You should have around 2 1/2 cups of pumpkin and cinammon syrup.

Step 7: Add your rum and your vanilla extract. Then stir to blend them completely into your syrup.

Step 8: Use a funnel to pour your pumpkin spice liqueur into clean bottles or jars with tight seals.

Your holiday tipple is best stored in the fridge. You can drink it serves over a couple of ice cubs (remember, it's heading towards summer in my part of the world, or - and here's where I defy Starbucks entirely - it's makes a lovely additive to your coffee or hot cider. I've tried it warm, over vanilla ice cream and found it delicious.

I've not been game to attempt any thanksgiving cocktails, but if you're keen, send me your favourites. You can also try this recipe with vodka instead of rum, or almost any other liquor. That said, I've not tried it with brandy...hmmm, maybe next year?

To all my readers, reviewers, boosters and other supports...THANK YOU. I am so grateful.

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