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The Best Ever Warm Winter Cocktail: A Winter Snowflake Cocktail

Soothingly sweet, deliciously creamy and fantastically festive, A Winter Snowflake is the ideal Christmas cocktail for keeping out the winter chills and getting into the spirit of the season. Keep it simple and make the basic warm winter cocktail or go all out and top it with light-as-air whipped cream and beautifully-smelling ground cinnamon. Go on, it's Christmas and you deserve it!

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Two champagne flutes filled with Baileys cocktail and topped with cream

Why you'll love this recipe

  • It's the perfect Christmas cocktail to sip while shopping online, wrapping gifts, or writing out Christmas cards.
  • You can make a single winter snowflake just for you or take things up a level and make a giant batch of this amazing Christmas cocktail recipe to serve a crowd.
  • It's super versatile. You can swap out the alcohol, white chocolate, and milk for alternatives to really personalise the recipe to suit your taste buds.
Ingredients for A Winter Snowflake cocktail.


When you use the ingredients indicated in the recipe card, this amazing Christmas cocktail comes in at around 200 calories. That's not bad for something that tastes like a decadent dessert!

If you want to lower the calorie count, try using only 1 ounce of Bailey's Irish Cream. This will make the Christmas cocktail around 140 calories instead.

You can also consider omitting the whipped cream. Because there's really not much to it, whipped cream is surprisingly low in calories. It's only around 30 calories per tablespoon. But if you're trying to cut down everywhere you can, it's worth passing on it.

Christmas cocktail ingredients poured into a measuring jug.


  • White chocolate chips: You can make this snowflake cocktail with cheap grocery store white chocolate or fancy gourmet stuff - whatever you have to hand. But be warned: if you try this cocktail with Lindt white chocolate, you'll never want it any other way!
  • Caramel sauce: Gives the Christmas cocktail a wonderfully smooth and sweet taste. The Ghirardelli caramel sauce is amazing.
  • Vanilla extract: Adds another festive hit of sweetness. If you don't have any vanilla extract, feel free to leave it out.
  • Milk: I use skim milk to make this because it's got the least calories per serving. But feel free to use what you've got on hand.
  • Whipped cream: Whipped cream is the must-have topping for every warm Christmas cocktail!
  • Ground cinnamon: A gentle dusting of ground cinnamon is a great way to make this cocktail even more festive.
Ingredients for a Christmas cocktail mixed together in a measuring jug.

Tips for making a big batch of A Winter Snowflake cocktail

The recipe below includes the quantities you need to make a single serving of this Baileys cocktail. You can easily double the quantities to make two servings. But if you're having a Christmas party and want to serve this winter cocktail to your guests, there's no way you're going to have time to make individual servings of it, right?

A Christmas cocktail in a martini glass

One of my readers asked if it would be possible to make up a huge batch of A Winter Snowflake cocktail and it definitely is. Simply multiply the quantities by however many guests you're expecting to serve. Might as well go and throw a few extra servings in. People will definitely want seconds!

Stir everything together in the slow cooker and leave it on 'low' until it's all gone. Because the white winter cocktail contains so much dairy, I recommend you prepare it only an hour or so before the party. Don't forget to make sure all the ingredients have thoroughly melted before serving it, too.

A martini glass filled with a creamy cocktail

If you're short on time and don't think everything will have time to melt before your guests arrive, take a shortcut. Add all the ingredients into a big bowl and microwave it until they're all melted. Then pour it into the slow cooker, give everything a stir and set the slow cooker onto 'low'.

So you can spend more time mingling at your party, set out a ladle and a load of mugs so people can help themselves. Setting a can of whipped cream and some ground cinnamon, cocoa powder, and chocolate sprinkles next to the slow cooker is a great idea, too. Let people serve themselves and customise their own Baileys cocktails!

One champagne flute filled with Baileys cocktail and topped with whipped cream and caramel sauce

Substitutions and variations

  • White chocolate chips: If you don't have white chocolate chips, you can chop up a couple squares of regular white chocolate.
  • Milk: You can use any type of milk at all, from full-fat, semi-skimmed, and skimmed, to almond milk, coconut milk, and oat milk. Be aware that using a non-dairy milk will change the taste of this Christmas cocktail.
  • Bailey's Irish Cream: Don't like Baileys? There are things you can substitute it with. Kahlua, caramel vodka, whipped cream vodka, and chocolate liqueur all work really well.
A Christmas cocktail inside a martini glass


Which is the best alcoholic drink in winter?

Bailey's Irish Cream! I love using Baileys to make winter cocktails. There's just something about its smooth, creamy taste that's so comforting at this time of year. Mix it with some milk, chocolate and caramel before heating it up and you've got yourself an amazing Christmas cocktail you can snuggle up with.

How alcoholic is this white winter cocktail?

If you're worried about getting super giggly after a single glass of this Baileys cocktail, you really don't need to be. There isn't much alcohol in it. One serving only contains 2 fluid ounces of Bailey's and Bailey's is only 17% alcohol. That means you can safely enjoy a mug of this white winter cocktail while you write out your Christmas cards or wrap presents.

But beware. If you have another and another, you might find your Christmas cards filling up with inappropriate jokes and your gift wrapping becoming more and more creative. Best stick on a silly Christmas film instead and find yourself laughing uncontrollably at jokes no one else thinks are even the slightest bit funny.

Winter Snowflake Christmas cocktail in a martini glass with whipped cream and caramel.

More hot chocolate recipes

When you break it down, this Christmas cocktail is essentially a fancy hot chocolate. If you're a big fan of fancy hot chocolate, here are some other recipes I'm sure you'll love:

Close-up shot of the whipped cream and caramel sauce on a Winter Snowflake Christmas Cocktail.

More Christmas cocktail recipes

Or if you'd prefer something a little more alcoholic, check out these other Christmas cocktail recipes:

📖 Recipe

Close-up shot of the whipped cream and caramel drizzle on a winter cocktail.

The Best Christmas Cocktail: A Winter Snowflake

One sip of this and you won't want any other warm winter cocktail ever again. It's rich, creamy and loaded with Bailey's. The perfect winter cocktail for snuggling up with on Christmas Eve while watching a Christmas film.
4.88 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Christmas Cocktails
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 3 minutes
Servings: 1
Calories: 200kcal
Author: Nicola


  • 1 tablespoon white chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon caramel sauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup skim milk (you can also use non-dairy milk)
  • 2 ounces Baileys Irish Cream
  • optional: whipped cream and ground cinnamon for topping


  • Stir the chocolate, caramel, vanilla, milk and Baileys together in a microwave-safe mug or glass. Heat in the microwave for 60-90 seconds until piping hot.
  • Remove from the microwave and stir to make sure all the chocolate and caramel has thoroughly melted. Top with whipped cream and cinnamon (if using) and enjoy! 


Calories: 200kcal

About Nicola

I’m Nicola, the face behind Happy Healthy Motivated – your go-to guide to becoming your best you!
Read my story

Reader Interactions


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    Recipe Rating

  1. Maria Matter

    oh Nicky, your blog is full of yumminess!!!
    Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful creations each week @ Inspire Me Fridays!!!

  2. Katie @ Horrific Knits

    This looks great (and like it would get me into trouble)!

    • Nicky

      Thanks, Katie! 🙂

  3. Corso Mama

    I would love to try this! Looks delicious!

  4. Carrie @ My Favorite Finds

    So, do you think this could be made in a crockpot and kept warm during a party? We are having a cookie/cocktail exchange and I think this would be great for it! THanks for sharing at MTM!

    • Nicky

      I think it would work wonderfully in a crockpot, Carrie! So happy I could help with your cookie/cocktail exchange! 🙂

  5. denyse@crazy beautiful life

    Perfect! I love Kahlua and Bailey's!!

    • Nicky

      Thanks! I hope you enjoy it 🙂

  6. Jen

    This sounds so good. My husband would love it!

  7. Debi @ Adorned From Above

    This looks amazing, I just printed it out to make and pinned it.

    • Nicky

      Thanks so much, Debi!
      I really hope you enjoy it 🙂

  8. Michele

    Yum. Pinned this! Love Khalua:)

    • Nicky

      Thanks so much, Michele! 🙂

  9. wanda are queen of the drinks lady!
    I'm afraid...I'd be bombed all the time! They sound yummy! 😉

    • Nicky

      What a title! Thanks, Wanda 🙂

  10. Jennifer

    This looks yummy! I pinned it to try in December.

    • Nicky

      Thanks so much for the pin, Jennifer!

  11. Christina at I Gotta Create!

    Sounds yummy and I love the title!!

    Thanks so much for linking up,
    <3 Christina at I Gotta Create!

    • Nicky

      Thanks so much, Christina!

  12. Michelle

    YUM! If it wasn't 8:25 in the AM, I'd already be trying this! I guess I'll wait for lunch then. Thanks so much for linking up to Creative Thursday. Can’t wait to see what you share this week! Have a wonderful week.

  13. Linda

    Thanks for the recipe and for linking to Adorned from Above. Happy Christmas Season, Linda

  14. HungryLittleGirl

    This sounds totally like my kind of drink 🙂
    Have to try this one for sure!

  15. The Busy Bee's

    Thanks so much for sharing at Wednesday's Adorned From Above Blog Hop. This weeks party starts at 12:01AM on Wednesday and runs through Sunday night. Have a great week.
    Debi, Joye and Myrna (The Busy Bee's), Linda (Two Succulent Sisters)

    • Rita

      Does the alcohol evaporate when heated?

  16. Kelly at Smart! School {House}

    This is featured at Smart! School {House} for Whimsy Wednesday this week! Congrats and we LOVE that you party with us:) This week's party (and your feature) will be starting soon. See you there!

    Kelly at Smart! School {House}

    • Nicky

      Thanks so much for the feature, Kelly! 🙂

  17. Steph

    I really, really, really wish I had Kahlua in the house right now!!

  18. Cristie | Little Big H

    I would love this even though it isn't winter here... Yum....

    • Nicola

      Thanks, Cristie! 🙂 You could try drinking it cold if it's warm where you are!

  19. Joanne

    I made this as a trial and good thing I Did! I have a extreme sweet tooth and this drink is super sweet. (Even for me) ill do it for my actual party tomorrow with much less sugar. I feel 1tbsp was a bit much for 1 serving especially with the white chocolate, caramel, and the sweetness of baileys. Def a drink I prefer cold as well!

    Overall I loved the simplicity of this drink. And a great cocktail to have as a dessert beverage too.

    • Nicola

      Thanks for your tips, Joanne! I'm sure they'll help other people who might not have as much as a sweet tooth as me! I've never once thought about trying this as a cold drink. Can't wait to give that a go!

  20. Misty Wicklund

    I love the flavor but it was way too sweet for me. I tried again except I removed the sugar, put less caramel, and less chocolate chips and it turned out great! I also microwaved the milk first then stirred everything else in. I found the chocolate melted better and the ingredients blended smoother this way. This will definitely be a new annual tradition, but I will have to be careful because I can definitely see how it could get me in trouble! Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe!!!!

    • Nicola

      Thanks so much for your feedback, Misty! You're not the first person to say it's too sweet. Think I'll go back and tweak the recipe a little.

    • Gary

      can you supply the amounts of the ingredients used (vanilla, caramel white chocolate) to make your version of this drink a bit less sweet
      thank you

  21. Natalie

    This looks and sounds absolutely delicious!

    • Nicola

      Thanks, Natalie!

  22. Amy | The Cook Report

    This looks like such a lovely winter treat!

    • Nicola

      Thanks, Amy. It really is!

  23. Patty

    Mmmm! Delicious! I'd love to cuddle up with one of your winter cocktails right now!

    • Nicola

      Thanks so much, Patty. It really is the perfect winter warmer!

  24. Cliona Keane

    This is going on my 'to-make' list for Christmas 2018!

    • Nicola

      I don't think I could wait a whole year to make it!

  25. lisa

    This sounds like it could double as dessert -- better get out my fat pants!

    • Nicola

      You're 100% right! (And love the idea of fat pants! 😀 )

  26. Suzanne

    This looks so good! It looks so beautiful and tasty!

  27. Vanessa

    Thanks for sharing! How long is it good after made?

    • Nicola

      Because it's got dairy in it, if you refrigerate it, it could last for up to 3 days 🙂

  28. Linda

    Where does the Khalua come in. I see it mentioned in comments but not included in recipe

    • Nicola

      Hi Linda! You can use Kahlua instead of Baileys Irish Cream if you're not a big fan 🙂

  29. Vicky C Buck

    can you use whole milk???

    • Nicola

      You certainly can. Go for it! 🙂

      • Gary

        I wanted to make this for a party of about 25 people... can I use imitation vanilla extract or will this alter the taste... 25 to 30 tsp of vanilla extract can get quite costly
        thank you