Spiked Holiday Eggnog

A Very 'Pairings' Holiday

Note from Chef Ed:

Unlike Pairingsit was actually my mother who inspired me to cook. My father was a rocket scientist (yes, he loved it when people asked him, ‘What are you, a rocket scientist?’) who, god bless him, could have burned Cheerios. There was one thing he made every year, however: his holiday spiked eggnog. Not only did he swear by the recipe, but everyone looked forward to it, and after I turned 21, I did as well.

In simple terms the recipe was 1 part alcohol to 5 parts eggnog and use equal amounts of brandy and rum for the alcohol. Of course, my father, the rocket scientist, approached this recipe in his own unique way. Every year around Christmas, the formula would be broken out. 5x + 1/2x + 1/2x = E. My father would figure out how much Spiked Eggnog he wanted to make and then solve for x to figure out his portions. He revealed this to me in a moment of father / son bonding as if he were passing on a family heirloom.

I’ve had a lot of other spiked eggnogs in my life since then, but none have rivaled my father’s. It tickled my heart a few days ago when HuffPost Taste did a taste test of the most common spiked eggnog recipes and found my father’s recipe as the winner. You can read that article by Joe Satran here. They use cognac instead of brandy in the article, but cognac is simply a type of (usually higher quality) brandy similar as how bourbon or scotch is a type of whiskey.

Here is a much easier way for us non-rocket-scientist folks to re-create my father’s (and HuffPo’s) Holiday Spiked Eggnog recipe:


1/2 cup top shelf brandy

1/2 cup top shelf dark rum

5 cups eggnog

2 teaspoons nutmeg

Add all the ingredients to a large pitcher or punch bowl and mix well. Serve with a nutmeg shaker for guests to garnish their holiday nog to taste.

For a smaller batch as seen in the video above, this recipe is easily halved to a 1/4 of each liquor and 2 1/2 cups of eggnog.