Crème Brûlée Martinis Are A Boozy Take On The Classic Dessert

While the name crème brûlée might sound pretty fancy, it's just the French effect at work. In reality, the words translate to mean something pretty mundane and slightly offputting: burnt cream. In the dessert version, of course, it's not the cream itself that's burnt, but rather the sugar crust on top. You won't need a kitchen torch to make a crème brûlée martini, however; while it's plenty creamy and also quite sugary, there's usually nothing burnt about it.

There doesn't seem to be any one standard recipe for a crème brûlée martini, but rather, several variations on a drink that pretty much tastes like sweet, milky booze. One combines two parts of Irish cream liqueur with one part white chocolate liqueur and one part vanilla vodka, while another, stronger version goes with three parts vanilla vodka, one part white chocolate liqueur, one part Irish cream, and one part hazelnut liqueur. One very simple crème brûlée martini mixes one part vanilla vodka with one part coffee liqueur and stirs in three parts half-and-half, while more complicated concoctions add ingredients such as extra sugar (as if the drink needed such a thing), vanilla extract, aquafaba, and a melted caramel garnish. If you really want to show off, you can even try to do a burnt sugar topping on your crème brûlée martini, although we're not quite sure how that might affect the drinking process.

Yes, you can make an alcohol-free crème brûlée martini

One thing about the crème brûlée martini that we may have mentioned a time or two already is just how tooth-achingly sweet it is — downright cloying, some might say. There are those of us for whom sugar plus booze just isn't a good mix, but we can still enjoy this dessert-like libation risk-free by making a nonalcoholic version.

The vodka in a crème brûlée martini can be replaced with one of the many alcohol-free liquors now available. If you're unable to find a vanilla-flavored one, you may simply add a drop or two of vanilla extract (or vanilla powder, if you prefer to go entirely alcohol-free). Another option is to omit the vodka, as this ingredient adds little in the way of flavor. Instead, you can make up for its lack with some extra half-and-half or cream. As for the Irish cream liqueur, this can be easily and inexpensively replaced with Irish cream-flavored coffee creamer, while white chocolate cream liqueur may be replaced with a similar flavor of coffee creamer. (Liquid coffee creamer, of course, not the powdered kind.) If the crème brûlée martini recipe you are using calls for a coffee liqueur, this is something you could replace with an equal amount of sweetened black coffee. However you shake it up, this sweet mocktini will be the just desserts you deserve without a painful price to pay.