This Pumpkin Mudslide Cocktail is a fall-inspired take on classic mudslides that will be your new favorite cocktail. It’s perfect for everything from cozy fall nights to holiday parties and everything in between.
What is a Mudslide Cocktail?
Mudslides are traditionally made from vodka, coffee liqueur, Baileys Irish Cream, and heavy cream with either chocolate shavings or a drizzle of chocolate inside the glass. Think of them as an adult milkshake.
Mudslides originated at the Wreck Bar on Grand Cayman Island in the 1970s. Apparently, someone ordered a White Russian, but the bar was out of heavy cream, so they decided to sub in Irish cream liqueur. Essentially, a mudslide is spin-off from a White Russian that is typically made with vodka, cream, and coffee liqueur.
To make a Pumpkin Mudslide Cocktail, you’ll need some ingredients that you probably already have or they are generally available at most grocery and liquor stores.
- Coffee vodka: I chose coffee vodka since I’m skipping the Kaluha in favor of pumpkin puree. I used a local Charleston coffee vodka called Early Bird by Cannon Distillery.
- Pumpkin puree: Make sure you’re getting 100% pure, real pumpkin. I would avoid the pumpkin pie mix in the can as you will have less control over the flavors since it’s pre-sweetened and spiced.
- Pumpkin pie spice: Pumpkin pie spice is a blend of baking spices including cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and ginger. You can buy it prepared or you can blend it yourself with spices you probably already have in your spice cabinet. If you don’t have all of these spices, that’s okay – you can use plain cinnamon if you need to and you’ll still get a great Pumpkin Mudslide.
- Baileys Irish Cream: Baileys is not hard to come by at all, but if you already have other cream liqueurs like Rum Chata, which has a cinnamon and vanilla flavor profile, already at home, you can definitely make a swap. I used regular Baileys, but they do make a Baileys Pumpkin Spice liqueur – which would be great too to punch up the pumpkin spice flavor profile.
- Half and Half: Traditionally, a Mudslide is made with heavy cream, but I made mine with half and half, which worked out great. There aren’t any other substitutions that I would recommend for this as you need at least a semi-heavy, creamy taste for a mudslide.
- Caramel sauce: The drizzle of caramel sauce inside the cocktail glass is a must in my book. I used Ghiradelli Caramel Sauce – it’s basically a caramel ice cream sauce and you can typically find it in the baking aisle. I left out any chocolate sauce, but I certainly don’t think that would be a bad idea.
How to Make a Pumpkin Mudslide Cocktail
The instructions couldn’t be easier for this Pumpkin Mudslide Cocktail, so let’s go ahead and shake one up.
First start by adding coffee vodka, pumpkin puree, spices, Baileys, and half/half into a cocktail shaker and add ice. Shake it really well. I shook mine a little longer than usual, because I knew the longer that I shook the cocktail shaker, the more the half/half would create a whipped cream-like texture.
Drizzle the inside walls of a martini or hurricane glass with the caramel drizzle. Hurricane glasses are traditional to Mudslide cocktails, but I used a martini glass. The Viski faceted martini glasses are my favorite – they have such an amazing design and I think that the unusual shape of the glasses works really well when you are drizzling syrup on the inside of a cocktail glass.
Strain the cocktail into the glass lined with caramel. Garnish with a sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice and/or a cinnamon stick.
Variations of a Pumpkin Mudslide
If you want to have a little fun and make a variation of this pumpkin spice mudslide, you could try a variation with all of the classic Thanksgiving pies:
- Extra Whipped Cream Pumpkin Pie Mudslide: Swap the coffee vodka for whipped cream vodka so bring out more of a pumpkin pie with whipped cream or pumpkin ice cream. You could add half of an espresso shot or a half ounce of strongly brewed coffee to this as well if you’re missing the stronger coffee flavor of the original.
- Pumpkin Pecan Mudslide: Swap the Baileys for something like Sugarlands Butter Pecan Sipping Cream, or other pecan cream liqueur. Add a drizzle of both caramel and chocolate sauce on the inside of the glass. You can also check out my Pecan Pie Martini.
- Apple Pie Mudslide: Swap the regular Baileys for Bailey’s Apple Pie Irish Cream and you have a Caramel Apple Pie Mudslide.
- Espresso Martini: Try a traditional Espresso Martini with Kahlua or fall twist on an espresso martini with a Pumpkin Spice Espresso Martini or Hazelnut Espresso Martini.
Ideas for Serving
Clearly, this cocktail was made for Fall. So it’s a natural fit anytime in the “ber” months – September, October, November, and December.
- Halloween: I like to enjoy a cocktail on the porch while I hand out candy, I also think this would be an amazing adult drink for a Halloween party.
- Thanksgiving: I love the idea of serving this at Thanksgiving as a pre-dinner drink – I think my whole family will enjoy it. It can be something to sip on while we wait for the rest of the food to cook. You can also serve it as an after-dinner dessert drink option among your other Thanksgiving desserts.
More Cocktail Recipes to Try
- Fluffernutter Peanut Butter Whiskey Cocktail
- Pumpkin Spice Margarita
- Apple Cider Hot Toddy with Bourbon
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Pumpkin Mudslide Cocktail with Caramel
- 1 ½ oz coffee vodka
- 2 tablespoon pumpkin puree
- ⅛ teaspoon pumpkin spice + extra for topping
- 1 ½ oz Baileys Irish Cream
- 1 oz half and half cream
- Caramel sauce for drizzling
- Add vodka, pumpkin, spice, Baileys, and half/half in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well.
- Drizzle caramel sauce on the inside of a cocktail glass.
- Strain cocktail into glass and dust with pumpkin spice.