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The Perfect Christmas hot whiskey toddy drink using cloves, cinammon and nutmeg. Recipe.

Updated on November 10, 2012

Perfect Hot toddy recipe.

I've found that a wonderful glass of hot toddy is the best thing to warm you up after a brisk autumn or winter walk and it is great for putting you in a Christmas or festive mood too. We always have this after our Christmas day walk, a much needed after dinner family ritual that helps us digest all that rich food.

The warm, spicy smell released as this hot toddy warms up on the top of the stove fills the whole house with such an amazing aroma that just says Christmas to me somehow. It reminds me of days long ago when my mother would spend hours at a time in the kitchen cooking up the most amazing things for us to eat at Christmas time. Things like Christmas cake and hot, spicy mince pies, this hot toddy has hints of all of those things and much, much more.

I always put a pan of this hot toddy mixture on to warm up when I am expecting guests and it never fails to greet them with a welcoming scent. You can make this hot toddy mixture up in advance and keep it in a jug, in fact, the flavour is improved if the mixture is allowed to infuse for a while, use warm, not hot, water to help with the infusing. You can add extra spices if you want to, I've found that something like star anise goes really well in this toddy, or you can pep it up by adding more cloves.


A hot toddy with a cinnamon stick and a slice of lemon.

Hot toddy.
Hot toddy.

Nothing warms you up more than a hot toddy on a cold winter's day.

When snow falls reach for the toddy mixture.
When snow falls reach for the toddy mixture.

How to make the perfect hot toddy.


4 tsp runny honey.

2 sticks of cinnamon, and some to garnish if wanted.

4 cloves.

Large pinch of grated nutmeg.

3 fl oz whiskey.

Juice of half a lemon.

Slices of lemon to serve.


Use thick, dishwasher proof glasses for this drink as it is best served if the glass is warm. You can do this by standing the glasses in a bowl or clean sink filled with hot water, or pour hot water into the glasses and then tip it out just before filling with the toddy.

In a large pan put the runny honey, whisky, lemon juice, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and some hot water, depending on how strong or weak you want your hot toddy to be. Heat the liquid slowly but do not let the mixture boil, or even simmer, as this will impair the flavour and destroy the alcohol content. Place a slice of lemon into each glass and then pour in the hot toddy mixture. Delicious.


This hot toddy can also be made using rum, brandy, Jack Daniels etc. Simply follow the above recipe but substitute your own favoured alcoholic beverage. Put an individual stick of cinnamon in each glass to make it extra special, you can leave it in when you inevitably have to top up people’s drinks. One of my own personal favourite toddy recipes uses Grand Marnier as its base, it tastes simply wonderful!

Be aware that this toddy is pretty powerful stuff so don’t serve it to the designated drivers, or if you do then weaken it first by boiling to remove more of the alcohol and adding some more water.

I hope that you enjoy this hot whiskey toddy recipe, it is one of my favourite winter drinks.


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