Cooking with Liquor or Spirits (Rum, Whiskey, Gin, Etc.)

Many people cook with wine. However, cooking with liquor or spirits adds exciting new dimentions to food. Spirits give different flavors to dishes, making them more interesting. As the alcohol evaporates, their essences are concentrated. Their sugars also become carmelized. And, of course, nothing compares to the excitement of a flambed dish!

Cooking with liquorAll of the cookbooks below provide great ways to enhance foods by cooking with liquor and liqueurs.

Liqueurs are spirits to which distillers add additional flavors. These may be sugar, fruits, flowers, seeds, roots, herbs, and spices. Because of their wide variety, liqueurs offer many ways to add exciting new flavors to foods.

Books for Cooking with Liquor or Spirits

Click on a title to find libraries that hold that volume. Many libraries offer interlibrary loan services.

Allen, N. Spirit of Kentucky: Bourbon Cookbook. Kearney, NE: Morris, 2011.

Allison, S. Spirited Cooking with Liqueurs, Spirits and Wine. Newton Abbot, Eng: David & Charles, 1981.


Did you know?

There’s no worm in tequila. The so-called worm is in mezcal. And the “worm” is actually a butterfly caterpillar.


Anstis, J. Cooking with Liqueurs. FastPrint, 2011.

Baker, L. The Boozy Baker: 75 Recipes for Spirited Sweets. New York: Running, 2011.

Balman, S. Cupcakes with a Kick: More than 50 Sweet Temptations with a Boozy Twist. La Vergne: Skyhorse, 2018.

Banning, K. Desserts to Get You in the Spirit. Sydney: New Holland, 2009. (Recipes made with spirits.)

Beam, J. Trénais Nouvelle Liqueur: Nouvelle Experiences in Fine Cuisine. Chicago: Jim Beam, n.d.

Beam, J. Cordials Cooking. Clermont, KY: Clear Spring, n.d.

Beard, J. The Grand Marnier Cookbook. New York: Grand Marnier, n.d. 

Bone, G. Cooking with Booze…101 Recipes from the Liquor Cabinet. La Vergne: Skyhorse, 2017.

Caruba, R. Cooking with Wine and Spirits. New York: Cornerstone, 1971.

Cointreau. Secrets of Flaming Desserts. Lawrenceville, NJ: Cointreau, n.d.

Cointreau. Cooking with Cointreau. Pennington, NJ: Cointreau, n.d.

Cole, S. Gourmet Adventures with Liqueurs. Detroit: Sabre, 1991.

Currance, J. Pickles, Pigs & Whiskey: Recipes from My Three Favorite Food Groups (and Then Some). Kansas City: Andrews McMeel, 2013.


How about this?

Distillation began during the Middle Ages. The alcohol produced was aqua vitae or “water of life.”


Daniels, D. et al. The Bourbon Country Cookbook. Chicago: Surrey, 2018.

De Wulf, L. Adventures with Liqueurs [cookbook]. New York: Books in Focus, 1979.

cooking with liquorDrambuie. Unlock the Secrets of Drambuie: Selected Cocktails and Recipes. Edinburgh: Drambuie, 1989.

Drambuie. Drambuie à la Carte. Edinburgh: Drambuie, 1989.

Frangelico. Taste the Possibilities: Frangelico Liqueur [cookbook]. New York: Grant & Sons, n.d.

Galliano. … and Add a Measure of Gold [Galliano]. New York: Galliano, 1970.

Gardner, K. Cooking with Cocktails: 100 Spirited Recipes. New York: Countryman, 2017.

Greenberg, E. and M. Whiskey in the Kitchen. New York: New Am Lib, 1970.

Greenberg, E. Gourmet Cooking with Old Crow. Frankfort, KY: Old Crow, 1990.

Hebert, M. The First Brandy Cookbook. Concord, CA: Nitty Gritty, 1973.

Hebert, M. California Brandy Cuisine. San Francisco: WAG, 1984.

Hutson, L. and Marshall, J. Tequila!: Cooking with the Spirit of Mexico. Berkeley: Ten Speed, 1995.

Irish Mist. Irish Mist in Fine Food and Drink. Dublin: Irish Mist, 1989.


Would you believe?

The strongest that any spirits can be is about 190 proof. That’s about 95% alcohol. At higher proof, the alcohol draws moisture from the air and self-dilutes.


Jones, S. Stan Jones’ Cooking with the Christian Brothers Brandy. Los Angeles: Bar Guide, 1982.

Kahlúa. Kahlúa [Food] Recipe Book. Los Angeles: Maidstone, 1986.

Laabs, S. and Field, S. Never Cook Sober Cookbook: 100 (Fool) Proof Recipes. Avon, MA: Adams, 2012.

Laird, L. Laird’s AppleJack Cookbook. Sobeyville, NJ: Laird, 1992.

La Maison Delan. Chambord: Special Cocktail and Cooking Recipes. Philadelphia: La Maison Delan, n.d.

Leroux. The Cordial Touch: a Guide to Creative Cooking. New York: Leroux, n.d.

Long, C. and Kibbey, H. Classic Liqueurs: the Art of Cooking with Liqueurs. Portland, OR: Sibyl, 2005.

Maker’s Mark Cooking Recipes. (Website) Excellent source of online liquor recipes.


Didn’t learn this in school!

George Washington was his country’s first large distiller.


Mandarine. Mandarine Napoléon for all Seasons: Drinks, Cocktails & Recipes. Brussels: Fourcroy, 1990.

Middleton, Q. Spirited Desserts: a Collection of Luscious Desserts Prepared with Liquors & Liqueurs. Middleton, 1990.

Neuman, R. Cooking with Spirits. Chicago: Reilly & Lee, 1991.

Peters, D. Here’s to Good Food: Cooking with Beer, Wine, Liquor and Liqueurs. Somerville, NJ: Peters, 2008.

Purvis, K. Bourbon: A Savor the South Cookbook. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 2013.

Rose, J. The Vodka Cookbook. New York: Barnes & Noble, 2006.

Ross, J. Liqueured Fruit. Knoxville, Vic: Five Mile, 1994.

Sazarac Co. Grander Recipes for Food and Drink. New Orleans: Sazarac, n.d.

Seelig, D. and Liles, J. Beyond the Glass: Bourbon Recipes. Seelig, 2018.


Nor this!

Abraham Lincoln sold liquor before he became president. His 1833 liquor store license is at the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History.


Schmid, A. The Kentucky Bourbon Cookbook. Lexington: U Press Kentucky, 2010.

cooking with liquorStaten, V. Jack Daniel’s Old Time Barbecue Cookbook. Louisville: Sulgrave, 1991.

Toliver, S. 10 Ways to Use Alize Liqueur (Cooking Recipe Book). London: Enrico, 2015.

Tolley, L. and Merrell, M. Jack Daniel’s Cookbook. Nashville: Nelson, 2012.

Tolley, L. and Nelson, T. Jack Daniel’s Spirit of Tennessee Cookbook. Nashville: Nelson, 2009.

Van Wyk, M. Cook with Brandy. Capetown: Human & Rousseau, 1992.

Walton, S. and Miller, N. Spirits & Liqueurs in the Kitchen. London: Lorenz, 2008.

More Trivia for Cooking with Spirits

Liquor Trivia: Fun Trivia about Distilled Spirits (Whiskey, Rum, Vodka, Gin, Tequila, Bourbon, Rye, Etc.).  

Wine Trivia: How Much Do You Know about Wine?

Beer trivia: Discover Fun Beer Trivia to Share with Friends.

Alcoholic Beverages Trivia and Fun Facts (Ales to Zombies).

Trivia about Alcohol.

Alcohol Word Trivia: Fun with Alcohol Words and Letters. 

MUCH MORE TRIVIA! Visit Alcohol Trivia Resources (& Links to Alcohol Trivia).