This pickled strawberry cocktail is kind of a riff on a strawberry daiquiri but without being overly sweet. Instead there's plenty of strawberry flavor, a gently tartness with the sweet and it's deliciously drinkable.
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I am a big fruit fan, but don't have a huge sweet tooth. I do like some sweetness, but I'm one of those people who will nearly always leave most of the frosting on a store-bought cake as it's just way too much.
Cocktails can be the same, at times. I like fruit in there, but without it being sickly. Something like my grilled peach mojito is freshened up with the mint and lime, and my strawberry bellini has a pretty even balance of sweeter strawberry and tarter prosecco.
If you are ever unsure about strawberry cocktails, especially daiquiris, because you find them too sweet, then this is the drink for you. The pickled strawberries add a layer of complexity, but it’s still full of fruity strawberry flavor.
With frozen strawberries in it too, it has that cooling edge perfect for a summer's day. But it also has a kick and elegance that helps it fit in any time of year, from festive parties to drinks and canapés.
How to pickle strawberries
Pickling isn’t just for cucumbers! Pickled strawberries are deliciously sweet and tangy as well as versatile. You can use pickled strawberries in any number of ways such as to top ice cream, sandwiches, or as I used before in my cod tacos with pickled strawberry slaw.
To pickle strawberries you simply submerge the fresh strawberries in a vinegar solution. They are really quick and easy to prepare, then you simply store and wait a day or two. I found this Bon Appetit recipe which seemed like a great base for experimentation.
As well as this basic combination, you can also add herbs, vanilla, or make them a little sweet. Then use the pickled strawberries in a whole range of dishes, from salads to desserts and of course drinks.
You'll also need some frozen strawberries to make this cocktail. You can buy ready frozen, but they are easy to make yourself. In fact, it's the ideal solution when you have bean picking or just otherwise end up with more strawberries than you can use.
To freeze them, you want to first wash the strawberries and then remove the green tops and any inner white core that comes away, also known as hulling the strawberries. For this strawberry cocktail recipe, it works just as well to slice the berries before freezing or freeze the strawberries whole.
After preparing them, freeze the strawberries in a single layer on a baking sheet/tray then transfer to a sealed container once frozen.
Since this drink uses frozen strawberries, it's nice and cold without needing to use any ice. This both helps the drink be a smoother, thicker texture without watering it down. It also means it's packed with wonderful strawberry flavor.
How to make this pickled strawberry cocktail
Once you’ve made your pickled strawberries, this cocktail is really quick and easy to make. Simply put everything in a blender, and blend until smooth. This isn’t as sweet as many other berry-packed cocktails, but for me that’s a good thing.
There’s a little tang from the pickled strawberries, but also the fragrant fruity goodness you’d expect from strawberries as well. The simple spirit combination is based on some daiquiri combinations and works perfectly with the strawberries.
This pickled strawberry cocktail is a deliciously unusual and drinkable sipper, perfect for any time of year. So get pickling, and blend up a pickled strawberry cocktail for yourself!
Try these other fruity cocktails:
- Passion fruit margarita
- Frozen pineapple daiquiri
- Raspberry collins
- Clover Club in Paris gin cocktail
- Plus get more cocktail recipes in the archives.
Pickled strawberry cocktail
- 1 cup frozen strawberries 150g, approx
- ½ cup pickled strawberries 75g, approx
- 2 oz white rum 60ml
- 2 oz triple sec 60ml
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- Place all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Divide between two glasses.
- If you like, line the rim of the glasses with sugar first by rubbing the edge of the glasses with lime, sprinkling some sugar on a small plate and then dipping the rim of the glass in the sugar.
- 8 oz strawberries
- ¾ cup champagne vinegar
- ⅓ cup water
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp salt
- Hull the strawberries and cut them in half, or larger strawberries in quarters. Pack them into a jar.
- Put the vinegar, water, sugar and salt in a small pan and warm over a medium heat, stirring regularly. It should just come to a simmer as the sugar and salt dissolve. Remove from the heat and pour over the strawberries.
- Leave the liquid to cool then cover and chill. They will need to be left at least overnight but will be good up to 5 days.