All You Need Are 3 Ingredients For The Dazzling Pink Squirrel Cocktail

If you're someone who likes to make craft cocktails at home, then you need to know about the Pink Squirrel for two reasons: It only requires three ingredients and it has a dazzling pink hue that makes it look irresistibly delicious. The three ingredients are heavy cream, white crème de cacao liqueur, and crème de noyaux. The white crème de cacao is a cocoa-flavored liqueur, which contains notes of both chocolate and vanilla. Meanwhile, the crème de noyaux is a liqueur made of stone fruit pits that boasts a strong almond flavor with undertones of cherry — it's also what gives the drink its pretty pink color. Finally, the heavy cream provides the cocktail with its creamy consistency.

To make a Pink Squirrel, add the three ingredients to a cocktail shaker — ¾ ounce of both liqueurs and 1 ½ ounces of heavy cream — along with plenty of ice, and shake thoroughly. Then, strain and pour the mixture into a chilled cocktail glass — preferably a coupe glass. If you want to make the drink a little bit stronger, some versions also include a half ounce of brandy or even vodka. One other detail to keep in mind is that you may have some trouble finding the crème de noyaux, as it isn't used in many modern cocktails. In this case, you can swap it out for amaretto, which will also provide that rich almond flavor, then add a drop of red food coloring to achieve the pink hue.

The Pink Squirrel dates back to the 1940s

We have a bartender named Bryant Sharp to thank for crafting the Pink Squirrel. Sharp created the pink dessert-like cocktail in the early 1940s at Bryant's Cocktail Lounge — which is still open today — in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The drink remained popular for a few decades after its creation, but the public lost interest sometime around the 1970s. As the story goes, the Pink Squirrel was originally made with vanilla ice cream instead of heavy cream — meaning that it once fell into the category of boozy milkshakes. The drink is often compared to the Grasshopper and the Brandy Alexander, two other retro creamy cocktails that contain crème de cacao and heavy cream. 

We have recommended trying out the Grasshopper with ice cream and have compared the Brandy Alexander to a fancy spiked milkshake. With that in mind, after you've tried making the Pink Squirrel with heavy cream, you'll have to try the ice cream version, too. Vanilla ice cream is the classic choice, of course, but you can also play around with other flavors for a more unique spin on the drink. Chocolate ice cream would match the chocolatey flavor of the crème de cacao, while a cherry ice cream would accentuate the subtle cherry notes from the crème de noyaux.