The Only Bloody Mary Recipe You’ll Ever Need

Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about the Bloody Mary cocktail. Plus a classic recipe and ingredient list so you can make a perfect drink every time!

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The Bloody Mary is the ultimate brunch cocktail. Typically made with tomato juice and vodka, Bloody Marys taste like a salty and spicy V8 juice (if V8 juice could get you tipsy). It might sound kind of weird at first, but you haven’t truly brunched until you’ve had a Bloody Mary. Just trust us on this one.

The classic Bloody Mary is a spicy and savory cocktail full of flavor. What sets this drink apart from other popular classic cocktails is that it can be garnished with just about anything. Seriously, there’s no topping that’s off-limits. From celery sticks and grape tomatoes to bacon and cheese, it can (and should) double as a beverage and a meal. 

Before you get carried away with crazy garnishes, learn a little more about the origin of this unique drink and then use our tried and true Bloody Mary recipe to DIY the perfect cocktail every single time. 

Bloody Mary Fun Facts 

Have you ever wondered why it’s called a “Bloody Mary” (and if it has anything to do with that creepy lady you and your friends tried to summon in a bathroom mirror during middle school sleepovers)? We found those answers and other Bloody Mary fun facts so you can impress your friends at brunch this weekend.  

Who Made the First Bloody Mary?

The Bloody Mary has been around forever, but its origin is still a bit of a mystery. The cocktail as we know it today is often traced back to 1920 Paris and a bartender named Fernand Petiot. However, rumor has it that Petiot simply put his own twist on an existing tomato juice and vodka cocktail coined by Hollywood entertainer George Jessel.

Why is it Called a “Bloody Mary?”

So, why the name “Bloody Mary”? Some think it’s tied to England’s Queen Mary Tudor and her deadly reign in the mid-1500s. George Jessel, however, says he attributed the unique name to his friend Mary Brown Warburton. Mary accidentally spilt this blood-red concoction on her white dress while taste-testing one of the very first versions ever made—hence the name “Bloody Mary.”

What’s in a Bloody Mary?

There are hundreds of Bloody Mary variations, but a classic Bloody Mary should include either tomato juice or a Bloody Mary mix, vodka, Tabasco sauce and Worcestershire sauce. If you’re opting for a pre-made mix instead of tomato juice, you will find that the best Bloody Mary mix is really based on your personal taste. If you like to bring the heat, try something like Dr. Preservation Extra Hot Bloody Mary Mix. Or, if you like a classic Bloody Mary that’s full of flavor, Demitri’s Bloody Mary Mix is a great choice!

January 1st is National Bloody Mary Day

The only thing more common than curing a hangover on New Year’s Day is treating it with a hearty Bloody Mary. The sodium, electrolytes and rich vitamins found in tomato juice can help your body come back to life after a night of celebrating. So it only makes sense that the Bloody Mary gets its recognition on the one day a year much of the population is very hungover. 

Where Can You Order the Most Epic Bloody Mary?

Everyone has their favorite go-to brunch cocktails. If a Bloody Mary is one of yours, you’ve probably noticed that each restaurant has its own unique spin on this popular drink—especially when it comes to how the glass is garnished. 

A traditional recipe calls for a celery stick placed inside the drink and green olives on a skewer. Some restaurants take it up a level and garnish it with cheese, bacon and even shrimp. Other places go over-the-top with their Bloody Mary recipe and include an entire meal as a garnish. 

One of the craziest Bloody Marys in the country can be found at Farmer’s Table in La Mesa, California. This $45 Bloody Mary includes all of the above plus an entire rotisserie chicken.  

While you don’t need to get an entire rotisserie chicken for your guests to garnish with, you can easily build an epic Bloody Mary bar for your next event! All you have to do is grab a variety of hot sauces, Bloody Mary mixes and garnishes like celery, green olives, bacon, shrimp, cheese cubes and hot peppers. Lay out all of the ingredients on a table and let your guests get creative with their brunch cocktail! 

The Only Bloody Mary Recipe You’ll Ever Need  

Prep time: 5 minutes

Total time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Salt the rim of the glass. Start by swiping a lemon wedge around the entire rim. Then, pour salt into a shallow bowl and dip the rim of the glass into the salt. 
  2. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice, Bloody Mary mix (or tomato juice), vodka, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco sauce. If you are using a premade Bloody Mary mix, read the ingredients first. There may already be Worcestershire and Tabasco sauce in it. In that case, you do not need to add extra (unless you like the extra spice and flavor). 
  3. Shake the cocktail shaker well for 10–15 seconds and then strain the mixture into your glass. 
  4. Stick 2–3 green olives on to a toothpick or skewer and lay it across the rim. Finally, rinse and dry a celery stick and place it directly into the glass. Feel free to add any additional garnish you’d like. 
  5. Relax and enjoy!
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