Spiked Homemade Eggnog | Sugar Salt Magic

‘Tis the season. Skip the store-bought carton this year and instead make this rich and smooth spiked eggnog. It’s incredibly delicious and the perfect holiday drink.

I have wanted to create an eggnog recipe now for years – long before this eggnog panna cotta an eggnog crème brulee came along which are both great ways of using up any eggnog you may not be able to get through.

Eggnog being poured from a jar into a glass

I didn’t grow up with eggnog but boy have I made up for lost time. This smooth, creamy and rich holiday drink is one I always have in the fridge at Christmas time now.

You’ll love how much richer this tastes than store-bought too. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll still buy that too but this version is now firmly my favourite.

What is it made of?

Ingredients for eggnog on a marble bench top
Ingredients for eggnog

Eggnog is made from milk, cream, eggs, sugar, spices and often alcohol. Also known as milk punch, it’s often served around Christmas time. While some use egg whites, this recipe does not.

The eggs must be heated beyond 71C / 160F to be safe to eat but once made, eggnog is most often drunk chilled. It can be warmed though, just like you’d drink a warm mug of cocoa.

How to make it – step by step

Making eggnog from scratch is actually very simple. Heat milk and sugar, beat egg yolks, then combine them until thickened.

4 images showing the various stage of making eggnog
Mixing together eggnog
  1. Heat milk and some sugar together until dissolved and steaming.
  2. Beat together the egg yolks and remaining sugar until pale and thick.
  3. Drizzle the hot milk in slowly, then return it to the saucepan and heat, with the spices, until the temperature reaches 73C / 165F.
  4. Strain it into a clean bowl, then add the cream and alcohol.
  5. Now let it chill completely before serving.

While most recipes add the egg whites as well, whipping them first for a lighter texture, I much prefer it without the whites.

If you feel the same and have leftover egg whites, check out these meringues or how to make perfect pavlova.

2 glasses of eggnog sitting on a napkin on a wooden board

Tips and tricks

  • Don’t add the sugar to the eggs until you’re ready to beat them. Sugar and yolks will have a chemical reaction and the yolks will start to get hard lumpy bits so add it, then mix immediately.
  • Don’t overheat the milk mixture, you just want it to be steaming when you start adding it to the egg yolks.
  • Add the hot milk very slowly to the egg yolks. You should just dribble it in while constantly whisking. This is called tempering the eggs and allows you to add hot liquid without scrambling them.
  • Use any alcohol you like – whisky, bourbon and rum are traditional. I really like Drambuie liqueur but that adds a little more sweetness than the others.
  • Start with just 1/3 cup of alcohol, then taste. Add more if you like it.
  • If you want to mellow the flavour out or thin it, add a little more milk. Cream will also mellow it out but won’t thin it quite so much.


Homemade eggnog will keep for 3-4 days in the fridge in a sealed jug.

If you’d like to keep it longer, you’ll need to increase the alcohol content to half the amount of both the cream and milk combined.If it’s too boozy for you, add a little more milk or cream on serving.

It won’t freeze due to the alcohol content.

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Closeup of a glass of eggnog sitting on a wooden platter

More recipes you’ll love

2 glasses of eggnog sitting on a napkin on a wooden board

Spiked Homemade Eggnog

If you’ve ever wanted to know how to make eggnog, you’re in luck. This boozy homemade eggnog is thick, rich, creamy and so much better than store-bought. With a festive kick from cinnamon, nutmeg and liqueur, this recipe is so easy to make too.

  • In a medium saucepan over low-medium heat, combine the milk and ¼ cup of sugar. Stir constantly while it heats to dissolve the sugar and until it’s steaming. Don’t boil.

  • In a medium bowl, whisk (notes) together egg yolks and remaining ¼ cup of sugar until thick and pale.

  • While beating on low, very slowly drizzle the milk in until it’s almost all combined.

  • Tip the mixture back into the saucepan and add the nutmeg and cinnamon. Heat over low-medium heat, stirring constantly until a thermometer reaches 73C / 165F (notes). It will have thickened and will coat the back of a spoon

  • Strain the mixture into a clean bowl, then pour in the cream, vanilla and alcohol. Stir well to combine.

  • Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to chill completely.

  • Will keep for 3-4 days.

  1. Alcohol: Traditionally rum or bourbon are used. Brandy works nicely too but I particularly like Drambuie but this is a sweeter liqueur so may not be for everyone.
  2. Whisking: you can do this by hand with a manual whisk or using electric beaters or a stand mixer with whisk attachment.
    It’s safer to have a thermometer since eggs that are not cooked over 71C / 160F are unsafe to eat.
  3. You can make it richer by adding another 1-2 egg yolks.
  4. The mixture can be thinned out or lightened up with more milk.

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Mark Olive’s Christmas recipe: emu eggnog and pan stuffing with native herbs | Life and style

Emu eggnog

200g caster sugar
1 large emu egg or 10 chicken eggs
1.5L full cream milk
Vanilla essence
375ml thickened cream
250ml brandy

Cream 150g caster sugar and the egg yolk, slowly adding the sugar while whisking. Heat the milk over a water bath, adding creamed egg and sugar slowly as it thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Chill for an hour in the fridge or sit over an ice bath to cool down. Add the vanilla essence. Beat the cream until it peaks, and set aside. Whisk the egg whites slowly, incorporating the remaining sugar until it peaks. Add the brandy. Fold in the egg whites and the whipped cream.

Served chilled or warm in a tall glass with grated nutmeg.

Pan stuffing with native herbs

100g of warrigal greens or silverbeet
1 loaf light rye bread
1g native thyme or thyme
2g native pepper or black pepper
2g salt bush or pink salt
3 sticks celery, diced
2 medium brown onions, diced
6 leaves of fresh sage, chopped
50g butter
10 whole eggs
2g sea parsley or parsley

Blanch off warrigal greens, rinse under cold water and squeeze out excess moisture. Set aside to dry while you prepare the rest of the mixture. De-crust the bread and cut into small diced pieces and place in a bowl. Add the remaining dry ingredients as well as the chopped warrigal greens and mix through the bread. (The greens may also be chopped and sprinkled on top at the end to give the stuffing a vibrant lift in colour.) Fry off the celery and onions and sage in the butter and stir until soft. Stir through bread mixture. Whisk the eggs and then combine through the stuffing mixture until moist. Add milk if it feels too dry – it should just come together and not be slushy.

Turn out into a baking tray and cook in preheated oven at 160C until firm and browned. Check after 20 minutes. Turn out and cut into appropriate slices.

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Mark Olive’s Australian Christmas lunch: bush turkey and emu eggnog – video | Food

Indigenous chef Mark Olive, aka The Black Olive, makes Christmas lunch with Australia’s native ingredients such as wattle seeds and warrigal greens, and eggnog using an emu egg. ‘Indigenous herbs are an exciting thing, we should be using more of them,’ he says in this special Guardian film. ‘Australia has an opportunity to invent its own cuisine. We have this amazing cuisine here that we don’t use. We’ve embraced every other culture in this country except what we’ve got in our own backyard … get out there, explore these flavours, smell them and try them’

Follow the recipe here

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