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The perfect winter warmer, the Hot Toddy is one of the most soothing, aromatic Bonfire Night cocktail recipes you can make – perfect for cold nights outdoors with friends and family. Easily made and with minimal ingredients, you can whip up individual glasses for anyone looking for deep winter flavours and an accompanying hit of whisky for warmth.  But how do you make a hot toddy?

With so many variations on the classic cocktail, it can often be hard to figure out which hot toddy recipe is the right one for you. Pick from our selection of the best recipes below.

Assortment of Hot Toddies

1. The Original Hot Toddy

The original recipe for hot toddy calls for a good glug of whisky, a dash of honey and some lemon juice added to water, with the addition of a few spices to really bring out the flavour. Cloves and cinnamon bring the warming touch needed.

Ingredients: (serves 1)

  • 25ml Glen Dhu Whisky
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1 cup of hot water (not boiling)
  • 1 lemon wedge
  • 1 cinnamon stick and star anise
  • 6-8 Cloves

Method: Start by studding a lemon slice with the cloves, then combine the honey, lemon slice and cinnamon stick in a heatproof glass or mug, followed by 25ml of Glen Dhu Whisky. Finish by adding hot (not boiling) water to the glass and stirring. Wait to cool, then enjoy!

Tip: Best made individually, get the orders in and make sure you’ve got enough glasses to go around. Using a lightly flavoured honey is also recommended to ensure flavours aren’t too strong.

Perfect for: Bonfire Night cocktails.

Not a fan of whisky? Fancy something a little different? Take your pick from the recipes below…

The Apple Hot Toddy

2. Hot Apple Toddy

While many like to add a slice or two of apple to their hot toddy recipe, for true fans of the sweetness offered by apple, cider is a much better alternative for making hot apple toddy. Having coated a glass with honey and sugar, simply add the hot cider along with a touch of apple brandy. Garnish with cloves and a lemon wedge, and enjoy. 

The Gin Hot Toddy

3. Hot Gin Toddy

For a completely different twist on the festive classic, hot gin toddy brings a whole new dimension to the hot cocktail. Lemon juice, water and sugar are combined with gin to form a botanical combination of flavours that take on a more refreshing tang when compared to the sweetness of traditional toddy.

The Hot Rum Toddy

4. Hot Rum Toddy

If you prefer rum to whisky, then swapping it out can make toddy better suited to your tastes. While experimenting, why not choose maple syrup over honey to bring a super-sweet finish to the cocktail? Stick with the slice of lemon and cinnamon stick for a touch of warming spice and you’ve got a subtle yet noticeable variation on the classic hot toddy recipe.

The Alcohol-Free Hot Toddy

5. Alcohol-Free Hot Toddy

Hot toddy recipes that don’t involve alcohol are also great tasting and handy for relieving a lasting cold. Simply combine honey, lemon juice, cinnamon, cloves and grated nutmeg to your favourite tea and garnish with a lemon wedge. It might not have the sharpness of the original recipe for hot toddy, but it makes up for it with punchy flavour.


This autumn/winter warmer is a great cocktail to keep the chill at bay through the colder seasons, and can offer so many great tastes that you can dabble in different flavours almost every day of the week. Find your favourite hot toddy recipes and share your creations with us on Twitter and Facebook.

Haven’t got all the hot toddy ingredients you need? Find everything you need at your local SPAR.