Sloe gin

Sloe gin

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(6 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins - 30 mins plus 2-3 months maturing


Makes about 1.5 litres

Make this sloe gin in advance and leave to mature for a richly rounded, fruity flavour. It makes for a perfect homemade gift

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per 25ml

  • kcal55
  • fat0g
  • saturates0g
  • carbs4g
  • sugars4g
  • fibre0g
  • protein0g
  • salt0g
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  • 500g ripe sloes
  • 250g golden caster sugar
  • 1 litre gin



    Gin has enjoyed a huge revival recently. It's usually served alongside tonic water (a…


  1. Rinse and pick over the sloes, then pat dry in a clean tea towel. Using a stainless steel fork or cocktail stick, prick the sloes and tip into a 2-litre Kilner jar, or divide between two smaller jars.

  2. Add the sugar and gin, then seal the jar. Shake well. Once a day for seven days, give the jar a good shake. Store the jar in a cool, dark place and leave for two to three months.

  3. Line a plastic sieve with a square of muslin set over a bowl and strain the sloe gin through it. Decant into clean, dry bottles, then seal and label. The sloe gin is now ready to drink but it'll improve and mature over time – so, if possible, make it one year to drink the next.

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Comments, questions and tips

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4th Dec, 2019
After filtering & bottling, don't throw away the sloes, make another batch of sloe gin with them using less sugar. This batch will be paler & have a more delicate flavour but delicious non the less.
8th Sep, 2017
A few tips. If you freeze the sloes before making the sloe gin there's no need to prick them. The longer you keep it you may need to re-strain it. Don't use expensive gin, it's a waste. Finally, it's so much less painful if you can find some thornless blackthorn!
16th Dec, 2015
What do you do with the sloes after. It seems a shame to throw away all the sloes infused with gin.
goodfoodteam's picture
18th Dec, 2015
They taste quite strong so use with caution! You could throw a few stoned ones into a pork or venison casserole with lots of onions and sage (you can freeze the rest in batches for another time) Or, cover them in thick chocolate for an after dinner suprise! Or add them to red wine, with sugar and brandy to create another after dinner drink that is a bit like port. Some people add them to trifle, but they can be quite overpowering.
8th Aug, 2019
Instead of pricking them or freezing them I lay them out on a baking tray and press the rough side of a box grater against them. Works a charm and it's quick. I find that freezing them is good but turns the fruit inside a bit mushy.
10th Sep, 2015
Most people freeze the sloes after picking. Then you can make the sloe gin when convenient. Also the freezing process removes the need to prick each sloe (tedious). A couple of uses for your sloe gin - add a slug to gravy or when making confit of onions.
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