How to make flavoured gin

Infuse your own gin with fabulous fruity and floral flavours. Try our simple recipes and create a delicious homemade treat that also makes a great present

Gin in glass with cucumber and botanicals

Capture your favourite flavours in your very own infused gin. Use our easy infusing method and step-by-step instructions to create summery berry tipples, delicate floral drinks and stunning seasonal sippers. Use your gin to create showstopping cocktails or give your bottles away as thoughtful homemade gifts for special occasions. 

Need even more juniper-infused drinks in your life? Get inspiration for cocktails, recipes and reviews of the best bottles on offer in our ultimate gin hub. Looking to bulk up your drinks offerings? Check out our guide to the best flavoured gins of 2018

How to infuse gin

Selection of berries on plate

  1. Choose your gin: The best quality ingredients are likely to give the best results in terms of flavour, but don't go too spend happy. Try to pick a clean-tasting, uncomplicated gin. A product with strong botanical flavours might not mix well with extra additions, whereas a classic London Dry-style gin with more neutral notes would take on flavours better. 
     
  2. Choose your flavours: Gin traditionally contains juniper, coriander and cardamom among its spices, so choose a flavour to complement the natural elements of mother's ruin. 

    Seasonal flavours should be your first port of call for flavour inspiration. Keep your eyes on the hedgerows for berries, elderflowers and herbs that you could use. Here are some suggestions to get you started: 

    Fruit: strawberries, blackcurrants, blueberries
    Vegetables: rhubarb, chilli, celery
    Herbs & plants: rosemary, thyme, lavender, mint, elderflower

    Remember, the more you use the stronger the flavour. Use around 200-400g of fruit per litre of spirit. 
     
  3. The bottling technique: Add your spirit to a Kilner jar or another sealable container. Make sure your kit is clean and sterile to avoid the spirit going bad. Then add your infusing ingredient and leave it to leach into the spirit. Here's a rough time guide: 

    Leave strong chilli, vanilla, cardamom or citrus for less than a day. 

    Hardy spices and strong-flavoured veg will need five to seven days. 

    Berries and strong fruit can take around three to four weeks to impart as much flavour as possible. 

    Milder ingredients like apple or florals will take up to a month. 

    When you're happy with the flavour, sieve to remove any solids, then pass through a very fine piece of muslin or a coffee filter to get rid of any sediment. 
     
  4. How to store: If your bottles or jars are well sealed, strained correctly and kept in a cool, dark place, your spirits can keep for up to a year. 

Once you've mastered the basic recipes why not try our other imaginative infusions? 

The best flavoured gin recipes

Raspberry gin

Raspberries in gin with cocktail
If you're a sucker for something sweet and fruity, try making our colourful raspberry gin. Use it to whip up a fresh pink G&T or get some inspiration from our 10 gin cocktails you can make in minutes. Skip the overly sweet supermarket versions and create your own trendy tipple. 

Strawberry gin

Pink gin in glasses with strawberries and jugs
Get a true taste of summer with our simple strawberry gin. It makes the ideal base for a fruity cocktail or a stunning G&T. Take your three ingredients, 15 minutes to prep and leave to steep for two to three weeks. Slip some pink into your drink and embrace this beautiful berry-infused drink. This is perfect if you've got a glut from the garden to use up. 

Try more cakes, ice creams, cocktails and dreamy desserts with our ultimate strawberry collection

Sloe gin

Sloe gin in glass and decanted
Our sloe gin is a classic autumnal treat with a rich, rounded flavour. Make it in advance and leave to mature for around two to three months to get the most from these fabulous fruits. It will only improve over time so consider making one this year to drink the next, or give away as a gift. 

Once you've made your infusion try our easy sloe gin cocktail recipes

Damson gin

Damson gin in glasses and decanter with label
Try making our damson gin for a classic autumnal tipple. Make a couple of bottles, one for gifting and one to enjoy at home. The flavour just improves with time so wait at least two months or longer for an intense fruity taste. Try our top tip of freezing the damsons, then bashing them to release the juices rather than individually pricking with a fork. 

Elderflower gin

Gin in glass with ice with elderflowers and jug
Add an elegant floral note to your classic G&T with our elderflower gin. Go all out for your next summer gathering and serve up your delicate gin made with foraged elderflower, with tonic water and plenty of ice. 

Pair up your cocktail with our fabulous elderflower recipes. Bake up a cake, mix up a cordial and much more. 

Rhubarb gin

Rhubarb in glasses with gin and ice
Think pink and whip up a batch of our glorious rhubarb gin. Everything is better with rhubarb, including this extra-special springtime booze. It tastes just as good as it looks. Try adding a vanilla pod into the mix if you have a sweet tooth, or crystallised ginger for a classic flavour combination. 

Celebrate spring with more vibrant vegetable recipes in our rhubarb collection.

Want to expand your infusing skills? Learn how to make flavoured spirits like rum and vodka with our simple guide. 
 

Enjoyed these suggestions? Check out our other drinks recipes...

Top 5 elderflower drinks
6 mojitos you can make in minutes
5 ways with gin & tonic

What's your favourite flavour infusion? Leave a comment below...

 

 

 

Comments, questions and tips

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J Scotland's picture
J Scotland
9th Jan, 2019
BBC ! Sloe gin, home made, or any other flavoured spirit (eg that you have first purchased) is illegal; its re-distilling or rectifying, and needs a HMRC licence. It is illegal to distil alcohol without a licence in the UK, as it is illegal to rectify without a licence. It is not possible to say which licence is easier to obtain. I would guess a rectifier's licence would be easier to get, but that's just a guess, each case is considered separately.
Gus Metcalfe's picture
Gus Metcalfe
24th Jul, 2019
I believe it becomes illegal if you were to try and sell said mixture.
philpreddy
3rd Feb, 2019
IF this was illegal, so would adding tonic to your gin be illegal. You are diluting the gin with the berry juice, and sweetening it with sugar. Were you to try to concentrate the gin back to, or above, its original strength, then this would be against the law. Typically this is done by boiling and condensing the vapour in a still, highly illegal without a licence as you say. So too is freezing to remove the water and concentrate the spirit. The downside with both methods is you would lose most of the flavour components as well, as they are water-soluble, and would be most prevalent in the discard fluid. Since the flavour is the the primary aim of all of these recipes, it would be rather counter-productive to try. These recipes are in effect no more than adding fancy fruit juice to gin, certainly well within the law.
Jess Matthewman's picture
Jess Matthewman
13th Jan, 2019
Oh please, this is about as technical as adding coke to whiskey, which I’ve never heard anyone be arrested for.
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