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How to make 9 amazing No Fuss Cocktails, on a Budget.

Updated on July 11, 2013

If you've spent hours trawling the internet trying to plan the perfect cocktail party; researching recipes, figuring out head spinningly complicated ingredients that you're sure don’t even exist, while trying to maintain a constantly increasing budget, stop. You don't have to spend a fortune and there are a countless number of brilliant cocktails that you can create using basic ingredients. Whether you or your friends are traditional and prefer old fashioned familiar favourites, a little more adventurous and willing to try something a bit exotic or a coffee addict whose idea of a cocktail should involve a caffeine charged buzz.

This is your guide to everything you need to host a no fuss cocktail party that caters for everyone, on a budget.

5 stars from 1 rating of Low Budget Cocktail Recipes

Familiar Favourites

Everyone knows that we're creatures of comfort and we all like something we know. So why not make your friends feel at home by mixing a good old Dry Martini, Pina Colada or Cosmopolitan.

What you'll need:

Spirits: Gin, Vermouth (a fancy word for flavoured wine), Rum, Vodka, Triple Sec (a fancy word for orange flavoured liqueur).

Mixers: Coconut cream, pineapple Juice, Cranberry juice.

Garnishes: Green olives/Orange slices, Pineapple slice, Maraschino cherry, Lime wedge.

Tools: Shaker (Or your palm covering a glass), strainer, measuring cups (Or an educated guess), blender.

Dry Martini

If the guys at your Cocktail party are feeling a little Bond, James Bond why not try a Dry Martini shaken, not stirred.


  • 50ml Gin
  • 10ml Vermouth
  • 1 Green Olive or orange slices


  1. Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker and shake with plenty of ice.
  2. Strain the cocktail into a Martini glass and decorate with a green olive or orange slices.
  3. Recommended: Sip with an air of superiority, pinky up.

Pina Colada

For those of you that can appreciate how fun it is to say, like drinking and getting caught in the rain; a Pina Colada.


  1. Pour ingredients into a blender, add a handful of crushed ice and blend until it's a smooth consistency.
  2. Pour the cocktail into a glass and decorate with a pineapple slice and Maraschino cherry.
  3. Recommend: Sip through random outbursts of the ‘The Pina Colada Song’


  • 50ml Rum
  • 50ml Coconut Cream
  • 125ml Pineapple Juice
  • 1 Pineapple Slice and 1 Maraschino cherry

Pina Colada Song


For the Carrie Bradshaw’s at your Cocktail party; the Cosmo.


  1. Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker and add some ice
  2. Shake well to combine
  3. Strain the cocktail into a Martini glass and decorate with a Lime wedge
  4. Recommend: Sip in a circle with friends while discussing relationships and musings about commitment issues.


  • 25ml Vodka
  • 15ml Triple Sec
  • 15ml Lime Juice
  • 15ml Cranberry Juice
  • 1 Lime wedge

Excitingly Exotic

If the familiar favourites will do nothing to tickle the taste buds of your more adventurous guests, offer them something a little different; the Great Gatsby, Moscow Mule or a Dark & Stormy.

What you'll need:

Spirits: White wine, Vodka, Rum

Mixers: Grapefruit Juice, Ginger Beer, Lime Juice.

Garnishes: Orange slice

Tools: Shaker (Or your palm covering a glass), strainer, measuring cups (or an educated guess).

Great Gatsby

Encourage the more imaginative among you to live out a fantasy as the mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby or his beautiful Daisy Buchanan with the Great Gatsby cocktail.


  • Ice
  • 30ml Vodka
  • 30ml White wine
  • 65ml freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
  • Orange Slice


  1. Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker, stir until cold then strain into an ice-filled glass and garnish with orange slice.
  2. Warning: Side effects of this drink may include impromptu performances of the 1920’s Charleston.

Moscow Mule

Are you strong, like Russia? Can you throw back Vodka shots like water? Prove it with the Moscow Mule.


  • 1/2 Lime
  • Ice
  • 60ml Vodka
  • 120ml Ginger Beer


  1. Squeeze lime into a glass and drop in the lime shell. Fill the glass with ice and add vodka, top with ginger beer.
  2. Warning: You may, or may not be able to pull a cart using only your teeth after this drink.

Dark & Stormy

Ever thought about crossing over to the dark side? Maybe just for one drink; the Dark & Stormy.


  1. Fill a glass with ice, add in layers; the lime juice, ginger beer and rum. Serve with a straw.
  2. Warning: Side effects may include speaking through your hand and revealing that you are your friends’ father.


  • Ice
  • 90ml Lime juice
  • 120ml Ginger Beer
  • 60ml Rum

Your Quick " Wake Me Up!!!" Drinks

  • Espresso Martini
  • Haute & Steamy

Coffee Cocktails

If you're wanting to do something a little unusual, add Coffee Cocktails to the menu at your party.

What you'll need:

Spirits: Kahlua, Vodka, Triple Sec (a fancy word for an orange flavoured liqueur).

Mixers: Espresso shots, coffee, milk, chocolate sauce

Garnishes: Whipped cream, caramel sauce, coffee beans/coffee

Tools: Shaker (Or your palm covering a glass), strainer, measuring cups (Or an educated guess).

Espresso Martini

Espresso yourself with this creative new twist on a familiar favourite; the Espresso Martini.


  • 45ml Kahlua
  • 30ml Vodka
  • 30 ml Espresso / coffee


  1. Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
  2. Shake and strain into a martini glass, top with a layer of Kahlua.
  3. Tip: Have a creative outlet nearby. Expect possible random bursts of caffeine fuelled talent energy after this drink.

Wake Up Call

Energy drinks are so mainstream, so if it's getting to that part in the evening where everyone's starting to wind down, it might be time for a Wake Up Call – night cap anyone?


  1. Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
  2. Shake and strain into a glass, garnish with beans or a sprinkling of coffee.
  3. Tip: Do not consume before bed. Expect to fight off an extreme desire to run a marathon after this drink.


  • 60ml Vodka
  • 30ml coffee
  • 15ml Triple Sec
  • 30ml Milk

Haute & Steamy

Joining the ranks of cheeky cocktails, Haute & Steamy.


  • 30ml Chocolate Vodka
  • 15ml Coffee
  • 1 TSP. Chocolate sauce
  • Whipped Cream
  • Caramel Sauce


  1. Combine coffee, Vodka and chocolate sauce in a glass and stir.
  2. Decorate with a scoop of whipped cream and caramel sauce.
  3. Tip: Avoid being around anyone you may like. Expect to start trying pick-up lines like: “Are you a parking ticket? Cos you’ve got fine written all over you!”

Remember, if all else fails have fun! If you’re mixing drinks and realise that you've created something that looks more like a ‘Cosmartinolada’, claim that it was on purpose and invent your own cocktail!

There’s no limit to your creativity, just remember that someone’s got to drink it when you’re done…..

What you’ll need: In case of emergency: Pop rocks (goes well on the rim of a Martini glass), cinnamon, vanilla extract, sour sweets, cocktail lollipops (freeze your cocktails on a stick), gummy bears.

With enough practice you could make cocktail mixing look as impressive as this guy!

What cocktail are you?

See results

- The Jetstream Team


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