Blood Orange Infused Vodka

Bloody Red Bull, Photo by Michael Paydos, 2011

Glass courtesy of Despair, Inc.

Bloody Orange Bull

  • 3 oz blood orange infused vodka
  • 1 can Red Bull

Fill a pint glass half full with ice, add vodka, and top with Red Bull. Garnish with a lime wedge.

I’m currently enjoying the model in the photo to the right–hurray for boozeblogging! It’s ok because it’s for science.

I’m a huge fan of infusions using orange-and-its-relatives, such as the Tangerine post from a couple weeks ago. I really do want to keep things mixed up, but GUYS! Blood oranges are in season, and it was also a bad season in general, so you gotta go where the freshness takes you before it’s too late.

Blood Oranges. Photo by Michael Paydos, 2011

There are quite a few varieties, though I’ve often found they aren’t labeled in that detail, at least around these parts. They range in color from something akin to a ruby red grapefruit to a darkness close to merlot, which will even seep through the peel. The taste also varies from pretty much just an orange to much more sour with flavors of tart raspberries. The gnarlier, splotchy ones seem to be more on the dark & tart sides.

A quick note on equipment. In the background you can see my favorite zester in the world, the Microplane Grater/Zester. It works wonders. I would totally accept money from them to promote it, but right now I’m doing that for free. Also seen is an Oxo brand vegetable peeler. It works really well (better than my dollar store version–go figure), but it does not peel very thinly.

Blood orange. Photo by Michael Paydos, 2011.

The color from blood oranges is actually from a mutation. Truth be told, the ones I found were prettier and paler than I would have preferred. Also note, it’s harder to zest fruit that’s been cut, which was why I bought 3 oranges.

The peels are softer, which makes it easier to peel the fruit by hand. However, using the veggie peeler did not work well (the fruit itself is also softer, which was a challenge for the peeler). I went with the zester.

Blood orange. Photo by Michael Paydos, 2011.

The taste of this fruit is quite nice! Both sweeter and tarter than a standard orange, but not too acidic. There was a fruitiness to it that was something-other-than orange, but I don’t know if I’d describe it as raspberry.


  • 2–4 blood oranges
  • vodka


Blood orange fruit and zest. Photo by Michael Paydos, 2011.

Zest the oranges. Cut and/or peel away all the remaining pith from the fruit. For each tablespoon of zest, use 1 cup of vodka. Roughly chop up fruit and add to a jar with the zest and vodka. Store in a cool, dark place for 3 days.

Blood orange infusion, day 1. Photo by Michael Paydos, 2011.

It gets prettier. Because it’s zest and not peels, the pieces are smaller and more macerated–so 3 days is all that’s needed. If you are able to use a peeler (watch out for pith), then 4 days would be better.

When it’s ready, pour through a metal strainer. I am pretty happy with my Norpro funnel with a built in strainer. The holes are a bit small, so I usually have to use a wooden spoon to swish things around. I really loved the color of this infusion, so I pour it through a coffee filter twice to get it as clarified as possible. The filters did clog with pulp so I needed to switch filters a few times and it was a bit of a pain, but I think well worth it.

Blood orange vodka. Photo by Michael Paydos, 2011.

It ended up darker than I expected. Because I used the fruit in this and generally don’t in the regular orange, this does end up sweeter. It also has more tartness and a really nice aroma. I can’t say for sure yet, but I think aging this a couple month and then enjoying neat would be quite lovely.

Other ways to use it would include anything on the Orange vodka page. It would be especially good as a less syrupy replacement for Triple Sec in almost any drink. Would also be great to add some kick to Sangria.


About Dazed & Infused

Failed science major turned to creative writing which led to a job as a bartender hack turned mixologist turned book editor turned writer who then went on to the world of International Corporate Communications. This is a bit getting back to his roots--that would be booze & science & rambling.
This entry was posted in fruit, Vodka. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Blood Orange Infused Vodka

  1. Rewa says:

    Could this be used as orange flavoring for cakes and such? And am I reading it correctly to mean you also use the juice of the oranges? Thank you

  2. Rewa says:

    Oops I see that you added the orange in chunks…sorry Still need the 1st question answered though…thanks

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