My Aged Eggnog Recipe

My Aged Eggnog Recipe

The word nog was an Old English term for ale, and a noggin was the cup from whence it was drunk.

Although most Americans think of eggnog as something they get out of a milk carton during the two-week period leading up to Christmas, eggnog descends from sack posset, a strong, thick English beverage built upon eggs, milk and either a fortified wine (like Madeira) or ale. It was a highly alcoholic beverage, often served so thick it could be scooped. It was also very much an upper-class tipple, as rich folks were usually the only ones who could procure the proper ingredients.

Yeah, this recipe has a lot of booze in it, but safety is always first and you’ll want at least 20 percent alcohol by volume to stamp out any microbial baddies the raw eggs might have brought on board. I also think the various natural flavorants in the spirits provide a fantastic complexity as the nog ages, with my peak target generally being between 4 and 6 months.

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  1. 12 large eggs (pasteurized if you need peace of mind)
  2. 1 pound sugar
  3. 1 pint half-n-half
  4. 1 pint whole milk
  5. 1 pint heavy cream
  6. 1 cup Jamaican rum
  7. 1 cup cognac
  8. 1 cup bourbon
  9. 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (plus more for serving)
  10. 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  1. Separate the eggs and store the whites for another purpose.
  2. Beat the yolks with the sugar and nutmeg in a large mixing bowl until the mixture lightens in color and falls off the whisk in a solid "ribbon."
  3. Combine dairy, booze and salt in a second bowl or pitcher and then slowly beat into the egg mixture.
  4. Move to a large glass jar (or a couple of smaller ones) and store in the fridge for a minimum of 2 weeks. A month would be better, and two better still. In fact, there's nothing that says you couldn't age it a year, but I've just never been able to wait that long. (And yes, you can also drink it right away.)
  5. Serve in mugs or cups topped with a little extra nutmeg grated right on top.


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  1. 1

    Made mine today (this is my second year). I used Jim Beam boubon, Korbel brandy, and Sailor Jerry spiced rum. I also added a little cinnamon as I have seen others on here do, as well as a little extra nutmeg. The taste test was wonderful, and I can’t wait to try it after it mellows. Last year I used a dark Jamaican rum, but wanted to try something different and others here seems to like it with a spiced rum. My last pint made it to June this year, so we’ll have to see how long it lasts this year!

  2. 2

    (2 year old eggs and milk) Friday night at a party, sitting around a fire. One guy remembers me making this recipe and asked me how it turned out. I told them I’ll be back in 15 min. Got back and they laughed about my 2 yr old jar of eggs and dairy. 6 of us finished the quart jar of 2 yr 2wk old eggnog. Nobody got sick. Someone described it as pound cake batter with liquor. It was as good as it was a year ago.

  3. 3
    Nathaniel Ingersoll

    I use Bulleit Bourbon, Appleton (Signature Blend) Rum; last year I used Courvoisier Cognac, this year Korbel Brandy.
    I’m certain you can use more or less fancy stuff and it probably will come out about the same, and I’d put money up that once you get past the really rank stuff a blind taste-test would show that few people could tell the difference after a month or two of aged egg nog. Use what you’ve got, or what makes you happy to say you used in it 🙂

  4. 4
    Kurt Brown

    I used Hennessy Congiac, Maker’s Mark 46 for the burboun, and Kraken Black Spiced Rum. It comes out very smooth. The higher the quality, the smoother it is. I could probably go a little better in the congiac, but this combo works for me.

  5. 6
    Nathaniel Ingersoll

    I made a bunch of this last year and gave some to a friend, who through super-human self control still had a bottle from last year. I was dropping more off, so he said we really should open the old bottle up and enjoy it! It had separated a bit – some clear liquid on the bottom, some really thick stuff on top – but we shook it up really well and then poured a couple glasses. Verdict – very smooth and delicious after one year! I had it two days ago, and no ill effects 🙂

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