The number one function of a shot glass is to hold alcohol so you can get it into your mouth. Toasted marshmallow shot glasses sure look cute, but if they disintegrate en route to my lips, I will be less than amused. To see if any of these twee-arse vessels are worth your time, we made a whole bunch and tested them for leakiness, flavour contribution, and ease of assembly. We'll start with the best and work our way down to the failures.
The Best: Bacon Chocolate Shot Glasses
These little guys come from the blog Through the Eyes of my Belly, and I was fully expecting them to fail. Luckily, they did not, and beat out all others for the number one spot. Instead of constructing molds out of paper towel tubes and foil (as they instructed), I just wrapped the bacon around the glass, securing it with a bit of kitchen twine. I then popped them in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, keeping a very close eye on them at all times.
It was kind of a smokey process, but they crisped up just fine into cute little meat cups, and slid off the shot glasses with ease. I then coated the insides with tempered chocolate, and let them set until the chocolate hardened. Then, it was the moment of truth, so I filled those suckers up with a little cherry-infused bourbon to test. Let's see how they did:
- Do they leak? No. If you thoroughly coat the insides with chocolate, these things will hold your booze with ease.
- Are they annoying to make? Nope! I was pleasantly surprised by how easy they were to assemble, and there was something kind of zen-like about wrapping the bacon around the glasses.
- Do they contribute any flavour? That depends on how quickly you shoot them. I let the bourbon hang out in them for a bit (mostly to test for leaks) and was pleased with the hint of melted chocolate I got in the shot.
- Do they look cute? "Cute" is kind of a stretch. They certainly look novel though, which is almost as good.
- Do I actually want to eat the shot glass? Yup. Chocolate covered bacon is actually a nice little bite after a shot. The salt cuts the harsh flavour of the ethanol, while the chocolate soothes any burning sensation that may be happening in your throat.
If you like bacon, chocolate, and bourbon, you will like these. In short, they are totally worth your time.
The Cutest: Cinnamon Roll Shot Glasses
These treats come to us from the stunt food blog Oh, Bite It! and come in second simply because I had to modify them to make them fully functional. (We'll get to the mod in a moment.) To make them, I cut a Pillsbury cinnamon roll in half, shoved it down in a shot glass that was treated with a little cooking spray, and baked them at 350 degrees until they puffed up and browned on the top. Then, while they were still warm, I pushed the neck of a mini liquor bottle down into the dough to create a place for the booze to live. Once they were cool, they wiggled right out.
Now, at this point, Oh, Bite It! instructs us to dip the rims into icing and throw some Bailey's in there. You could do that, but you'd have to shoot that Bailey's quite quickly, as the liquid soaks through the dough, making your glass soggy and soft. I do not enjoy a soggy cinnamon roll, so I added one more step, coating the inside with some melted chocolate. (I used dark chocolate because I had some leftover from the bacon glasses, but white chocolate, almond bark, and candy melts would all work really well.) Once the chocolate set, I dipped the rims in the icing, and filled them with booze. I used Grand Marnier, but horchata liqueur or the suggested Bailey's would be pretty freaking tasty too.
- Do they leak? Not if you coat them with some sort of melted candy.
- Are they annoying to make? Not in the slightest. If you don't have an army of shot glasses at your disposal, you can always make them in a popover tin.
- Do they contribute any flavour? As with the bacon shot glasses above, the longer the alcohol sits in the the glass, the more it will be flavored by the coating.
- Do they look cute? Yesssss.
- Do I actually want to eat the shot glass? A thousand times yes.
If you want to do shots at brunch, these are your guys. I'd serve them at some sort of shower (baby or wedding), or a morning football game.
The Easiest: Cucumber Shot Glasses
Now things get a little fresher, a little lighter, and a little less involved. Cucumber shot glasses only require a little bit of knife work, plus some delicate scooping. To make them, I cut off a 1 ½-inch piece of cucumber and sliced off the end so it would sit flat. From there, I just scooped out the seedy flesh inside, rimmed it with a little ghost chile salt, and filled it with mezcal. (Gin would obviously be a great choice here too.)
- Do they leak? Eventually, yes. Cucumbers are porous, but they can keep it together for ten minutes or so, which gives you enough time to pour everyone a shot, but you can't pre-pour and set them out the way you can with the chocolate-coated specimens above.
- Are they annoying to make? Nah, but you do have to be careful not to scoop too far down, or you will have one leaky cucumber.
- Do they contribute any flavour? Not really. Since you have to shoot them before they start to leak, they don't really have time to infuse any flavour.
- Do they look cute? That depends on how adorable you think cukes are.
- Do I actually want to eat the shot glass? Maybe with ranch.
So these aren't the most exciting edible shot glasses, but they do hold their liquor fairly well, and cucumbers have the benefit of working with a variety of different liquors. I do however feel like you'd end up tossing a lot of cucumbers if you were to serve these at a party, depending on how much ranch you have.
The Slightly Dangerous: Candy Shot Glasses
I couldn't find any peppermints at my local (stupid, Portland, hippy) grocery store, but I did find Jolly Ranchers, and I figured those would work just as well. I followed the procedure as laid out by the above video, melting candies on a Silpat and then draping them over a shot glass, gently pressing the hot sugar around it to shape.
First attempt I was not, however, able to just "pop it off" once it was set, and the glass shattered when I tried to remove it. I re-did the whole thing, spraying the glass with a bit of cooking spray, and it slid off just fine. I then filled it with more of that cherry bourbon.
- Do they leak? Nope!
- Are they annoying to make? No, but they're slightly dangerous to make. You have to watch them in the oven very carefully, because they will burn. There is also a chance you will burn your fingers or cut yourself on the sugar. (I managed to do both.)
- Do they contribute any flavour? Yes, sweet candy flavour.
- Do they look cute? They are quite pretty, yes.
- Do I actually want to eat the shot glass? Not really. Unlike the bite-sized candies used to craft the glass, you can't exactly pop the whole thing in your mouth.
Though I enjoyed making these, I wouldn't make them again. It takes a lot of Jolly Ranchers (10 per glass) and is slightly painful.
The Ugliest: Kiwi Shot Glasses
I have made these with both green and golden kiwis, and feel fairly neutral towards both. They're not difficult to make, exactly, but you have to be pretty delicate in your scooping. Just slice off both rounded ends and scoop out the seedy flesh. Do not peel them first, as that will cause the whole kiwi to kind of mush out. Fill it with rum or something.
- Do they leak? Nope! I let them sit there for a whole half hour and they never leaked.
- Are they annoying to make? Kind of. It's super easy to scoop too much and have it all come crashing down.
- Do they contribute any flavour? Yes. Kiwi flavour.
- Do they look cute? No. The golden ones kind of look like potatoes. The green ones are cuter, but still slightly scrotal looking, with the fuzz and all.
- Do I actually want to eat the shot glass? No. The best part of the kiwi is scooped out.
These aren't the worst — at least they don't leak — but they are kind of ugly and frustrating to hollow out without wrecking everything.
The Most Finicky: Strawberry Shot Glasses
Here we have another porous fruit that works better in theory than practice. Though easy to make — just slice off the top and tip and scoop out the inside with a grapefruit spoon — they start leaking within a couple of minutes, and don't hold a lot of alcohol.
- Do they leak? Yes.
- Are they annoying to make? Yes. Due to their small size, it is very easy to scoop out too much and puncture the sides or bottom of the berry.
- Do they contribute any flavour? Not really, as you have to shoot them before they start leaking.
- Do they look cute? Yeah.
- Do I actually want to eat the shot glass? Sure. Strawberries are pretty good.
I give this one a resounding "EH."
The Failure: Toasted Marshmallow Shot Glasses
They appear far more cavernous in this photo than they actually were. This one just didn't work. I toasted the marshmallow on all sides, as instructed by the video above but — unlike what happened in that same video — they never really collapsed to form a cavity for my booze. Since there wasn't a place to put any alcohol, I didn't put any in, which is probably for the best, as the the liquid would just melt the sugar anyway. I'm not going to even bother answering the usual questions.
The Worst: Snickers Shot Glass
This one, which is also from Oh, Bite It!, comes in dead last because it was a straight up betrayal. The instructions are simple enough:
Cut the Snickers in half, and gently push down in the center using either a knife or whatever will fit, creating a hole.
Then you are supposed to fill that hole with booze. There are two major problems with this, however. First, it is almost impossible to create said hole without creating leaks and, if you do manage this incredible feat of delicate knife work, the hole is too small to hold any appreciable amount of alcohol. Boo.
- Do they leak? Yes.
- Are they annoying to make? Yes. Actually, they are almost impossible to make.
- Do they contribute any flavour? If you count the salty tears of failure, yes.
- Do they look cute? No.
- Do I actually want to eat the shot glass? Well. Yes. Even though it's a mangled leaky mess of a Snickers bar, it's still a Snickers bar.
That was a lot of gimmicky nonsense, you guys, but I think we learned a lot. If you're going to make a ridiculous drinking vessel, you better go hard, and you better make it delicious. It also better hold your freaking booze because, without booze, what is the point of a shot glass?
Photos by Claire Lower.