Add Christmas to Your Hot Drinks With This DIY Candy Cane Syrup

Add Christmas to Your Hot Drinks With This DIY Candy Cane Syrup
Photo: Claire Lower

I love a candy cane. I love the look of it. I love the smell of it. I love the taste of it. And, while the minty bent sugar sticks make great stirring implements for hot cocoa, the easiest way to give your beverages a ton of candy candy character is to melt a whole bunch of them down into a syrup.

They are, after all, mostly sugar, so they dissolve quite readily in hot water. All you have to do is toss 10 broken candy canes into a sauce pan, top with 3/4 of a cup of water, set it on the stove, and stir over medium heat until the canes dissolve, leaving behind a very festive, very red, very pepperminty syrup. If you want a thicker syrup, add more candy canes (or bring it to a boil and drive off some of the water). If you want a thinner syrup, add more water. It’s very hard to mess this up.

Once your brilliantly-hued syrup has cooled, pour it into a pretty bottle, then use it to make candy cane cocoa, candy cane sweet tea (green tea works well here), or a DIY peppermint mocha. You can also drizzle it over chocolate ice cream, whirr it into a milkshake, or shake it with some bourbon to make a candy cane julep. It also makes a very pretty gift. Tie a red bow around it, pop it in a fancy bag, perhaps with some nice hot cocoa or tea. You can also toss in a few extra candy canes. Candy canes make everything feel more festive.

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