Let Kumquat Liqueur take you away to the warm shores of Greece, with a unique combination of tart and sweet, citrusy vodka infusion. Super easy to make with only 3 ingredients, it adds an exciting dimension to your favorite cocktails.
Liqueur infusions are popular all over the world. Kumquat Liqueur is especially popular in Greece, specifically on the island of Corfu, famous for its kumquats. In Russian, we call liquor infusions Nastoyka (настойка). Infusions can also be a type of sweet tincture.
Why You'll Love this Recipe
- Easy - all you need is 3 ingredients
- Unique - not easily found in liquor stores, this homemade recipe will elevate your drinks
- Digestif - perfect to sip after a meal
- Greek - enjoy it as part of a Greek feast
Ingredients You'll Need
- Kumquats - a tiny, sweet and tart citrus fruit
- Vodka - need 1 litre of Vodka
- Sugar Syrup - to adjust the sweetness to your preference
Kumquat Liqueur Variations
There are different ways that people make Kumquat Liqueur. Depending on which part of the kumquat you use, it changes the flavor and color.
- Peels Only - an yellow/orange liqueur that is sweet from the fragrant citrus peels, similar to a Limoncello
- Fruit Only - a white liqueur, the pulp is tart and can sometimes produce a slightly bitter infusion
- Whole Fruit - washed and placed into vodka
- Spices - some people add Cardamom or Star Anise for a spiced flavor
How to Make Kumquat Liqueur
- Prepare the Fruit - Wash the fruit (if not organic). Cut off one end of a kumquat, pinch and squeeze the other end, and the whole fruit pops out from the citrus peel.
- Infuse - place kumquat peels into a glass container with a lid so they are easy to remove (in photos I used 2 empty vodka bottles). Store in a cool, dark place for 40 days.
- Strain - to ensure a clear infusion, strain through a cheesecloth, squeezing liquids from kumquats.
- Sweeten - add sugar syrup to sweeten. Recommend to use 2 cups, start with 1 cup and increase depending on your preference. The more sugar syrup you add, the more you dilute the alcohol base, but increase the sweetness.
- Pour - place in a clean glass bottle and keep refrigerated
How to Make Sugar Syrup
- Bring 2 cups of water and 2 cups of sugar to a gently boil.
- Gently simmer on low for about 5 minutes until sugar is dissolved.
- Remove from heat and allow to fully cool.
Ways to Enjoy Kumquat Liqueur
- Neat - sip to enjoy without ice
- Champagne - pour some into your champagne glass for a citrus twist
- White Sangria - the light color and flavors complement sangria
- Cocktails - mix into your favorite cocktail recipes
Recipe Tips and FAQs
- Cool Dark Place - doesn't mean the fridge, but maybe on the floor of your pantry
- Transfrom to Liqueur - transforming from liquor to liquor requires the sweet infusion to have alcohol content of 20%-25% (by adding 2 cups of liquid)
- Skip the Sugar - skip the sugar syrup and enjoy the Kumquat Infused Vodka
- Give a Gift - pour into a fancy bottle and give as a thoughtful gift, promise it will be enjoyed!
- Everclear - substitute Vodka with Everclear, but manage alcohol content by diluting
- Speed it Up - if you can't wait 40 days to infuse, you can remove the kumquats after 14 days. However, the flavors won't be as rich and citrusy.
What to Do with Leftover Skins
- Eat - pop them into your mouth and enjoy the vodka soaked citrus
- Freeze - place in an ice cube tray and use next time you are making drinks
- Kumquat Skins - after removing the skins from the vodka, use them again to make a Kumquat Marmalade Loaf Cake (adults only)
- Kumquat Fruit - the insides are very sour, but don't waste them. Save them to make a Kumquat marmalade.
- Spoon Sweet - a tastyGreek sweet treat from leftover kumquats, like candied fruit
How Long Does Kumquat Liqueur Last?
When refrigerated, homemade liqueurs usually lasts 2-3 months in the fridge. If storing in the freezer, it can be stored for up to a year (if it lasts that long)! If it tastes off, or you see mold, throw it out.
Alcoholic Drinks To Try
- German Mulled Wine
- Homemade Limoncello
- Blueberry Vodka
- Horseradish Infused Vodka
- Blueberry Tea Cocktail
- Raspberry Vodka Infusion
The kumquat peels are full of with essential oils, anti-oxidants and vitamins, perfect to infuse with vodka. I call it Kumquatcello! Enjoy in moderation. Na Zdorovie! Bon Appetit! Приятного аппетита!
- large glass jar with lid
- 60 organic kumquats
- 1 litre Vodka
- 2 cups sugar syrup
- Wash the kumquats with hot water to remove any wax or pesticides (if not organic)
- Carefully cut one end off the kumquat, and pinch and squeeze the other end of the fruit, so the inside kumquat fruit pops out whole, leaving the skin of the kumquat. It might take a few tries to understand how the fruit pops out.
- Place kumquat peels into a glass container with a lid so they are easy to remove (in photos I used 2 empty vodka bottles). Store in a cool, dark place for 40 days. The longer it sits, the better the taste will be. Every week I shook the bottle around the mix it around
- Strain the vodka through a fine mesh sieve or through a cheesecloth. Squeeze the kumquats of any liquid, if possible.
- Add 2 cups of sugar syrup to Kumquat Infusion. Taste and adjust sugar per your desired sweetness.
- Using a funnel, pour the Kumquat Liqueur into bottles of your choice with a lid. Keep refrigerated.
©PetersFoodAdventures.com *originally posted August 2015, updated April 2023