Lindsay Landis and Taylor Hackbarth

Spiced Cranberry Spritzers

So much of the holidays are heavy – creamy pies and potatoes and thick gravies and rich eggnogs and robust spiced ciders. But sometimes during the days and weeks full of heavy foods and even heavier drinks, you just want something light. You still want something alcoholic (that’s a given), but you also want something refreshing that will lift you up rather than weigh you down in a season full of heavy.

This cranberry spritzer features a lightly spiced syrup, with subtle notes of allspice and star anise, in a fresh and bubbly beverage. The syrup can be made days ahead of time, making it a breeze to whip up a pitcher if, or when, unexpected company arrives.

Make the extra effort to find pure, unsweetened cranberry juice for this recipe, which is a completely different beast than the cranberry juice cocktail you’re used to (take a sip and you’ll quickly see why). It’s not cheap, but a little goes a long way. One bottle will make countless pitchers of these spritzers, or you can use it in place of water in your homemade cranberry sauce, add a little punch to your morning smoothie or simmer it with equal parts sugar and freeze for a tangy and refreshing holiday sorbet.

Spiced Cranberry Spritzers


  • 2/3 cup pure unsweetened cranberry juice (not cranberry juice cocktail)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 Spice Islands Star Anise
  • 12 Spice Islands Whole Allspice
  • 750mL bottle Prosecco or dry white sparkling wine
  • 12 ounces club soda
  • fresh or frozen cranberries, for garnish


  1. In a small saucepan, combine cranberry juice, sugar, star anise and allspice. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat; cover and let steep for 15 minutes. Transfer to a heatproof container; cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 3 days, until ready to use.
  2. Pour chilled cranberry syrup into a large pitcher. Carefully pour in Prosecco down the side of the pitcher (which will preserve the bubbles), and gently stir until combined.
  3. Fill glasses with ice. Pour Prosecco mixture over ice, and top with club soda to taste. Garnish with fresh or frozen cranberries, if desired.
Lindsay Landis and Taylor Hackbarth

About Lindsay Landis and Taylor Hackbarth

Husband and wife team LINDSAY LANDIS and TAYLOR HACKBARTH are entrepreneurs by day, running a web and graphic design business out of their home in Nashville, Tennessee. By night they cook, bake, and eat all manner of delicious things. Their food blog, Love & Olive Oil (, chronicles their culinary adventures in and around the kitchen. Lindsay is the author of The Cookie Dough Lover's Cookbook (June 2012, Quirk Books), and their next book, a joint endeavor entitled Breakfast For Dinner, is set to be published in February of 2013.
This entry was posted in Allspice, Cocktails, Cranberries, Holiday, Love & Olive Oil, Star Anise. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Spiced Cranberry Spritzers

  1. Pat Kelley says:

    Tried it loved it.