A classic holiday recipe- eggnog! This dairy-free eggnog recipe is easy to make and is also gluten-free and refined sugar-free. Naturally sweetened with maple syrup and honey and spiked with our favorite boozy mix. Perfect for your next holiday gathering.
Please read the entire post for tips and tricks to ensure a perfect recipe every time. And don't forget to tag @peelwithzeal on Instagram so we can admire your creation!
This post may include affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
Mr. Peel is known for his classic eggnog recipe. Each friend, neighbor, or family holiday party invitation comes with a request for our eggnog recipe attached. What we love about this recipe is that no one knows how healthy this Christmas cocktail is. They just love it!
This was one recipe we could easily do gluten, dairy, and refined sugar-free. Our friends and family agreed it is even better than traditional boozy eggnog and we all felt less heavy after imbibing.
Enjoy Mr. Peel’s classic dairy-free eggnog recipe. I am sure the multiple batches he had to make and taste test was tough!
Recipe Ingredients and Substitutions
This recipe has very simple ingredients so quality and freshness is important.
- Eggs- Use fresh eggs. If you can get the locally raised farm fresh eggs with the giant folks even better. Use extra-large or jumbo eggs if buying at the store. Sorry, but there is no real substitute for eggs.
- Macadamia Nut Milk- This past summer I declared my love for Macadamia nut milk in our recipe for a strawberry-tahini milkshake. The same rules apply here, macadamia milk is naturally sweet so you can use less sugar. Almond milk and oat milk (specifically the chilled oat milk from Oatly) also make great substitutes. While you can use any non-dairy milk I find soy and rice milks to be too thin for this recipe.
- Coconut Milk- You need one can of full-fat coconut milk. Not reduced fat, not coconut cream (although he coconut cream would work in a pinch). Do not substitute coconut beverage from a cardboard container, the eggnog will be too thin. Fun fact, eggnog made with coconut milk is called coquito and is the Puerto Rican version of this class Christmas drink.
- Honey and Maple Syrup- Not one or the other but BOTH. All maple syrup and it tastes like a pumpkin latte. All honey and it misses the complexity the maple syrup brings.
- Seasonings- we stick with the classic cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla. For the vanilla, you can use extract, powder, or paste.
- Booze- This recipe uses a combination of spiced rum, cognac, and whiskey. This is the classic eggnog trio. While other versions of eggnog have just a single option, typically bourbon, I firmly believe that this trio is the best tasting boozy eggnog.
Is Homemade Eggnog Gluten-Free?
Many Celiacs debate whether distilled alcohol is gluten-free if the base ingredient comes from wheat, barley or rye. Beyond Celiac says yes, it is safe to consume. You can read more about that on the Beyond Celiac website. BUT you know your body best. If in doubt, always safer to stick with a choice that doesn’t use cereal grains in the mash.
Here are the suggested brands for totally gluten-free eggnog: ½ cup Captain Morgan’s Rum, ½ cup calvados (apple brandy), and 1 cup Queen Jennie (sorghum whiskey). It is this mix of liquors that give this eggnog recipe a unique and balanced taste.
How to Make Dairy-Free Eggnog
Dairy-free eggnog is easy to make, the key to success is not to overcook the eggs (scrambled egg eggnog is not good!).
Prepare the Egg Base
Start by whisking the egg yolks, honey, maple syrup, and nutmeg and cinnamon until well combined and thickened slightly. The color will be darker than traditional eggnog because of the honey and the maple syrup.
In a medium saucepan, heat half the non-dairy milk and all the coconut milk over medium heat until steaming. SLOWLY drizzle the steaming milk mixture into the egg mixture, tempering the eggs.
Whisk until well combined. Remove from heat and immediately stir in the remaining macadamia nut milk. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer.
Booze it Up
Stir in all the liquors and vanilla extract. Chill thoroughly (at least 6 hours) and serve very chilled with fresh nutmeg sprinkled on top.
Or you can make a non-alcoholic version…
How to Make Non-Alcoholic Eggnog
Totally avoiding alcohol? I like to add a touch, maybe a ¼ cup or so, of unsweetened apple juice in place of the liquor. Apple gives it a bit more spiced flavor but doesn’t water it down or make it overly sweet. Other than avoiding the booze the remainder of this dairy-free eggnog recipe can remain the same.
Eggnog Tips and Tricks
- Fresh grate the cinnamon and nutmeg spices for maximum flavor.
- Add ground ginger for a spicy kick.
- Don't worry about using high-end liquor. By all means, use what you have on hand but don't worry if you don't have fancy booze. Between the egg, cream, and sugar the bite of hard alcohol will be overruled.
- Store (and serve) eggnog in capped bottles rather than a punch bowl. We used Ikea capped bottles so we can give it a good shake before pouring. The spices have a tendency to separate.
- Make a double batch- it goes quickly!
- Use any leftover eggnog as a sauce for desserts.
Dairy-free eggnog will last in the refrigerator for 2 weeks. Making the perfect make-ahead batch cocktail for your next Christmas party. Be sure to store in a bottle with a tight fitting cap.
Do you have any favorite holiday eggnog memories? Share in the comments!
Classic Eggnog- Gluten, Dairy & Sugar Free
- 6 egg yolks
- 1/3 c honey
- 1/3 c maple syrup
- 3/4 tsp nutmeg, ground
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 1/2 c macadamia nut milk, divided substitute any nut or non-dairy milk
- 14 oz coconut milk, full fat approx 1 can
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 c spiced rum
- 1/2 c cognac
- 1 c whiskey
- In a medium bowl, whisk together egg yolks, honey, maple syrup, and nutmeg and cinnamon until well combined and thickened slightly.
- In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup macadamia nut milk and coconut milk over medium heat until steaming.
- While whisking the egg mixture, slowly drizzle the steaming milk mixture into the egg mixture, tempering the eggs. Whisk until well combined.
- Stir in the remaining macadamia nut milk. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer. Stir in all the liquors and vanilla extract.
- Chill thoroughly (about 6 hours) and serve very chilled with fresh nutmeg sprinkled on top.
- Any nut milk or non-dairy milk will due but this macadamia nut milk has an extra sweetness with no added sugar.
- Suggest chilling at least 24 hours to take the bite out of the whiskey.
- Eggnog will last up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.