A mimosa, the classic combination of orange juice and sparkling wine, makes the perfect pick-me-up drink. Don’t have orange juice? Mix and match with any citrus fruit you have around.
Photography Credit:Elana Lepkowski
The classic pairing of orange juice and champagne is what first comes to mind when you see “mimosa” listed on a cocktail menu. Although the origins of this popular brunch drink are hazy at best, this simple pairing is an easy and versatile cocktail you can whip up in seconds.
This recipe is all about sparkling wine and orange juice, but if you like to mix it up a bit, don’t be afraid to explore other citrus that’s available, ripe, and ready for juicing. I personally have tangelo, tangerine, and lemon trees in my backyard.
While those particular varieties might not be readily available where you are, any combination of citrus should make a delicious mimosa. Think tangerine and Meyer lemon, or blood orange and navel oranges.
I love playing with flavor combinations as much as anyone, but sometimes it’s nice to settle in with a classic.
WHAT’S THE BEST CHAMPAGNE FOR MIMOSAS?
Savvy drinkers will skip the champagne and substitute a less expensive but still delicious alternative, as the subtleties in flavor and aroma that command a champagne price tag will be lost when mixed with the juice.
So which sparkling wine should you use?
If the quality of the bubbles is something you’re particular about, you have options.
- Prosecco is my personal favorite. It is produced in tanks and features larger bubbles, while the brightness and acidity balances out the sweet OJ.
- Cava is fermented in barrels, producing smaller, longer-lasting bubbles.
If you want a basic sparkling wine, Brut makes for a good standard. Plus, Brut’s lower amount of sugar pairs well with sweeter fruit juices like freshly squeezed orange juice.
While getting out a juicer when all you want is a cocktail might seem like a pain, believe me when I tell you it’s worth it! Freshly squeezed juice is brighter and cleaner in taste than its pasteurized, store-bought counterpart. It also has better texture and body to it that makes for, well, better cocktails.
Want to mix up your citrus? Here are my favorite pairings:
- Tangerine and Meyer Lemon
- White Grapefruit and Orange
- Blood Orange and Lime
WHAT’S THE BEST MIMOSA GLASS?
Here’s a fun fact: How we serve a mimosa now is not how it was traditionally served almost a century ago. One of the first published recipes for the mimosa calls for drinking it out of a wine glass … with ice. Now we associate it with the champagne flute, sans ice.
I think we should take a note from this change of drinking vessel and serve it however you’d like. If you want to stay within the wine glass category, stemless wine glasses are a more casual option. But go ahead with a traditional flute if it fits your occasion.
HOW TO MAKE A MIMOSA
When you’re working with orange juice and a sparkling wine like prosecco that has lots of bubbles, start with the wine first and pour slowly.
Drinks can bubble and spill over when adding wine to an already partly-full glass of orange juice. If you don’t feel like your drink is properly mixed, give it a gentle stir with a long spoon or—my favorite mixing tool—a chopstick.
ZERO PROOF MIMOSAS
Love a mimosa but can’t have, or don’t want, the alcohol? You can sub in a nonalcoholic sparkling wine instead. There are so many great options out there now with the growing interest in nonalcoholic drinks. Here are a few of my picks:
- Regis Brut
- Fre Sparkling Brut from Sutter Home Wines
- Señorío de la Tautila Sparkling Rosé
HOW TO GARNISH YOUR MIMOSA
While a classic mimosa is great to drink, it’s a bit boring to look at. To garnish your drink, try some of these suggestions:
- Rim your glass with sparkling sugar crystals or colored sanding sugar.
- Add an orange wheel to your glass as well (blood oranges make a beautiful contrast).
- Add a skewer of seasonal berries.
MORE GREAT DRINK RECIPES!
- Mint and Lime Mojito
- Sparkling Strawberry Sangria
- Hibiscus Spritz
- Apricot and White Wine Porch Sangria
- Watermelon Rosé Mimosa
- Pineapple-Mango Mimosa
- Hard Apple Cider Mimosa with Pomegranate
Classic Mimosa Recipe
Orange juice and champagne (or sparkling wine) is the classic mimosa combination, but don’t be afraid to play with citrus pairings. Try a mixture of orange and white grapefruit, or tangerine with a splash of Meyer lemon. One place I wouldn’t skimp is starting with freshly squeezed juice. It makes all the difference.
- 4 ounces prosecco
- 2 1/2 ounces freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 orange, thinly sliced
1 Combine the juice and wine: In a flute or wine glass, pour in the prosecco and then the orange juice. Stir gently to combine.
2 Serve: Garnish with an orange wheel.
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Mimosas are a delicious combination of sparking wine and orange juice. They are simple, fun and perfect to serve company.
Since there are only a few ingredients required to make mimosa cocktails, I like to make sure they are high in quality. To make mimosas, you will need:
- Sparkling wine
- Orange Juice
- Optional extras like vodka, Grand Marnier, Chambord, and even whiskey
How to choose sparkling wine for mimosas
I like to use a dry sparkling wine, not sweet. Use wine that you like the taste of. You don’t need to break the bank, though. We spend $12 to $15 on the sparkling wine we add to our mimosas.
Your best bet is to look for “Cava,” which comes from Spain or an American sparkling wine that’s around $15. A dry Prosecco is a great option, too. Unless you’ve found something you absolutely love, don’t go lower than $10 as that could lead to headache central.
For the best mimosa, use fresh squeezed orange juice
If you can swing it, use freshly squeezed orange juice. We know it seems a little over the top, but when you consider half of the drink is made from juice, you want the best.
Freshly squeezed orange juice tastes more fresh, lighter, a bit tart and more delicate than anything you can find in the store. With that said, when we’re in a pinch, we’ll use the “Simply” brand of orange juice.
The perfect ratio
A classic mimosa recipe calls for equal parts sparkling wine to orange juice. While we think this ratio tastes the best, if we’re serving a crowd for brunch, we do hold back the wine a little. You can obviously increase the wine, too. Just remember these will pack more of a punch.
When you’re making a mimosa, always add the sparkling wine first, then top with orange juice. This way, the cocktail mixes together on its own and won’t make a sticky mess at the top of the glass. You don’t need to stir as this will cause the wine to become flat.
Making them for a crowd
Since sharing how we make mimosas, many of our readers have asked how to make mimosas for a crowd. You can make mimosas in a pitcher. Premix mimosas in a pitcher just before your guests arrive. Don’t do this too far in advance, because you will lose some carbonation.
Whether you premix or make the mimosas one by one, make sure the wine and orange juice are well chilled. Keep the wine, orange juice, and if you added them to a pitcher, the pitcher in the refrigerator until your guests arrive.
The combination of orange juice and sparking wine is amazing, but did you know that there are lots of variations for mimosas? Here are a few of my favorites:
- Add a splash of cranberry, pineapple or pomegranate juice.
- Replace some of the orange juice with blood orange or grapefruit juice.
- Add a tablespoon of peach or strawberry puree to the bottom of each champagne flute.
- Add chopped fresh fruit like strawberries, blueberries and orange slices.
- Add a tablespoon of liqueur like Grand Marnier or Chambord (for a French inspired mimosa).
The pineapple mimosa offers a few extra layers of flavor for you to enjoy. It begins with a top-shelf pineapple vodka and just a little orange juice. On top of that, you'll add lemon juice and honey syrup before topping it with the Italian sparkling wine of Prosecco.
Though it has a few more ingredients, this mimosa is just as easy to mix up. It's a truly impressive cocktail that is close enough to the original to make your guests think you have a magical mimosa touch.
40 Mimosa Recipes That Are a Celebration With Every Sip
Whether you're toasting to Mother's Day, Easter Sunday, or an adult birthday, you'll need a delicious cocktail to properly celebrate. These fun mimosa recipes are absolutely delightful upgrades to the standard orange juice and champagne concoction. Bottoms up!
As the weather gets warmer, a glass of your favorite sherbet and champagne is a delicious way to cool off.
Get the recipe at The Cookie Rookie.
This blogger recommends infusing the fresh strawberries in grapefruit juice for a few hours before serving. "The more it sits, the better it gets," she notes.
Get the recipe at A Beautiful Mess.
Upgrade a classic mimosa recipe with a splash of lavender syrup.
Get the recipe at The Suburban Soapbox.
Rosewater makes this pretty and pink refreshment oh so luxurious.
Get the recipe at Kitchen Confidante.
One sip of this rum-infused drink and you'll be transported straight to paradise!
Get the recipe at Crazy for Crust.
Each glass gets double the pomegranate punch with both juice and seeds.
Get the recipe at Joyful Healthy Eats.
Consider this fruity mix summer in a glass.
Get the recipe at 3 Yummy Tummies.
Get the best of both worlds with this genius mashup.
Get the recipe at Bright Eyed Baker.
Rosemary sprigs add even more freshness to this bright cocktail.
Get the recipe at Fox and Briar.
Berry + peach + champagne = mimosa perfection.
Fill up your glasses with this extra refreshing mimosa and top it off with elegant sprigs of rosemary.
Keep it simple and classic with this no-fuss drink.
Get the recipe at Delish.
Serve this two-ingredient cocktail with cubed mango skewers for an extra special touch.
Whether it's a beautiful autumn day or a Tuesday in February, this sweet cocktail is destined to impress. With cinnamon sugar around the rim, you'll get that burst of flavor with every sip.
A quirky mix of the two classic drinks, this colorful cocktail combines tequila and grapefruit soda with champagne and grenadine, topped with slices of lime.
Get the recipe at Crumb Kitchen.
Orange-flavored kombucha and pomegranate seeds give this mimosa its unique flavor. The best part: Each glass is only 100 calories!
Get the recipe at The Real Food Dietitians .
&bull1 ½ oz Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice
&bull4 oz chilled Veuve Clicquot
First add juices then St. Germain and Champagne.
Ice cream + booze = brunch nirvana.
Get the recipe at Completely Delicious.
Blogger Danae suggests heating up the pear juice and letting cinnamon sticks steep in it, then refrigerating overnight. Whipping up this delicious cocktail up the next morning will be a breeze.
Get the recipe at Recipe Runner.
Treat yourself at your next brunch with this sweet twist on a classic mimosa. With a small scoop of vanilla bean ice cream and a creamsicle base of orange juice, milk, and more ice cream (yum!), this dessert cocktail has won our hearts.
Best Champagne for Mimosas
Look for a dry sparkling wine, that’s not too sweet. Dry sparkling wines are made from non-aromatic grapes and are usually labeled as Brut.
Since you’re mixing the sparkling white wine with orange juice you don’t need to spend a lot of money on the wine. A $12 to $15 bottle will be perfect for making mimosas.
An inexpensive bottle of Prosecco or Cava will also work for making mimosas.
How Much Champagne Goes Into a Mimosa?
A traditional mimosa is made with equal parts of champagne and orange juice. In a typical champagne flute, you can add up to 6 ounces, but I would recommend using a 2-ounce pour of each.
If you are using a jigger for measuring, 1 jigger of each is a nice portion and easy to measure. Once you've made a few, you can easily eyeball the amounts added to your glass. Of course, you don't have to serve in a champagne flute, but it does make this a bit easier to portion.
How to Make a Classic Mimosa
Add a third ingredient&mdashGrand Marnier&mdashto really improve your brunch game.
- Fill champagne flute 1/3 full of fresh-squeezed orange juice.
- Top up with brut champagne.
- Add the teaspoon of Grand Marnier.
Mimosas are astonishingly easy to make. Just champagne and fresh orange juice, mixed in a flute and sipped alongside a hearty meal of french toast, breakfast sausage, and home fries. That spread is all fine and good. In fact, we'll see you at the next brunch table over, shamelessly shelling out 30 bucks for Mimosas of the bottomless variety to go with our eggs benedict. But should you want to skip the trip to the restaurant and mix up some of your own Mimosas at home, you can juj them up with a teaspoon or so of Grand Marnier the orange liqueur add a little complexity to the exceedingly simple drink. A dash of orange bitters works well, too.
A Little Background
Who first invented the mimosa? A bartender craving some Vitamin C? Whoever it was, that person tangentially invented brunching as a metropolitan sport. But by the mid-20th century, plenty of folks had taken to the cocktail. Alfred Hitchcock, for one. Even the Queen reportedly tried and liked the concoction. As for the name, the mimosa is also a tree that blooms with bright yellow flowers.
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If You Like This, Try These
If you're looking for something with a slightly more tropical flavor, there's the Blushing Mimosa. For that one, create a mixture that's two parts orange juice, one part pineapple juice. Fill a champagne flute two-thirds full of the juice mixture, top with champagne, and then add two tablespoons of grenadine. Another brunch-friendly drink is the Bellini, with Prosecco and peach purée. And an Apple Cider Mimosa will keep you buzzed on a fall morning, thanks to a helping of cinnamon whiskey. There are plenty of other cocktail with sparkling wine, too.
Set Up A Mimosa Bar
A great idea for a brunch is to set up a Mimosa Bar. Add different flavors of juices, plus choices of fruit and let the guests make their own.
I absolutely love this image from Simply Beverages that I found on Pinterest here.
Simply also makes a light line of beverages, but it is still fairly high in carbs at about 12 carbs per glass. You could easily swap this out for the V8 Diet line, which does come in several flavors.
Each glass has 5 calories and less than 1 carb.
The Lilac Press shared a beautiful Mimosa Bar Brunch with so many great ideas. Look at this gorgeous photo:
Want to try out different flavors of mimosas for your next brunch? Delish shares a great cheat sheet that I found on Pinterest here.
Just add a bottle of bubbly and you are good to go!
What kind of Champagne is best for a mimosa?
Mimosa drink’s key-ingredient is the sparkling wine. Any kind you like or have, either a Prosecco, Brut Wine, a Cava will suit this great and best cocktail. My advice always lies in using the best quality sparkling wine as this cocktail will be served by your family, as well as you. So for me, it is always important to use only the best ingredients. The only small difference between these sparkling wines lies in their acidity. The classical and most popular Champagne wine can be a blend of different wines like Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, while the Prosecco is only made of Glera grape. So, while making the best mimosa drink you have options to choose what it could taste like. I usually opt for Italian Prosecco.
Classic Mimosa & Flavor Variations
Prep Time 5 Minutes | 6-8 Servings
1 bottle Sparkling Wine (Cava or Prosecco, preferred)
1 carton 100% orange juice (pulp free, or fresh squeezed)
Other fruits to use as a garnish could be strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, limes, & lemons.
Combine 2 parts sparkling wine with 1 part orange juice in a tall champagne flute (or wine glass).
Garnish with an orange slice.
Replace orange juice with cranberry juice, garnish with cranberries and rosemary sprigs
Replace orange juice with grapefruit juice, garnish with orange slice or grapefruit slice
Replace orange juice with pineapple juice, garnish with pineapple slice
Replace orange juice with pomegranate juice, garnish with pomegranate
Depending on the types of juices you like mixed with your champagne, or the time of year, we recommended choosing 3-4 different varieties when you’re creating a Mimosa Bar. Start off with the classic, orange juice, and then add in a grapefruit, cranberry, or mango for some fun and colorful variations. Once you’ve decided on your lineup of juices, you’ll want to have a variety of fresh fruits or herbs to add as garnishes. This could include strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, grapefruit slices for fruits, as well as mint, basil, or rosemary sprigs for herbs.
Setting up the perfect Mimosa Bar display is all about color! Using glass carafes and bowls/jars to hold your juices and garnishes will ensure that your rainbow of ingredients will be beautifully on display! Adding flowers and petals to the mix gives your Mimosa Bar a beautiful, fresh aesthetic, that will be perfectly Instagram-able! The most important tip to remember is have fun! I’ve never seen anyone not be happy while drinking a mimosa, so pop the champagne and enjoy!
The 55 Most Delish Mimosas
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