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.


  • 12 large eggs (pasteurized if you need peace of mind)
  • 1 pound sugar
  • 1 pint half-n-half
  • 1 pint whole milk
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1 cup Jamaican rum
  • 1 cup cognac
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (plus more for serving)
  • 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.


Add yours
  1. 1

    Followed this recipe to the letter and for me the peak flavor seemed to be around 2-3 weeks. Left some go a few months, and it only seemed to get sharper with age. Great at 2 weeks though!!

  2. 3
    Chef Man

    That recipe is nowhere near 20% ABV as mentioned, more like 12%. You’d need at least another 2.5 cups of 80 proof booze for it to be 20% ABV. Take the total pure alcohol content (80 proof = 0.6 ounces alcohol per 1.5 ounce of booze) and divide it by the total volume of liquid (alcohol included) and multiply that by 100 to get the ABV %.

  3. 4
    Briar Jansons

    We use the whites beaten to almost stiff peaks, lightly sweetened, on top of the eggnog! That is our family tradition, and it’s awfully pretty with the nutmeg shaved on it. Like the floating islands of old.

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