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Make Your Own Honey Bourbon Liqueur

Amaretto DiSaronnoMake Your Own Honey Bourbon Liqueur

There are many excellent top shelf bourbon liqueurs, like Wild Turkey American Honey, Evan Williams Honey Reserve, Celtic Honey, Bushmill Irish Honey, Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey, and Bärenjäger Honey Bourbon, but they share one thing in common; they are all very expensive. You can make your that's exactly the same in taste and quality, but for much, much less than the brand names or knock-offs. It's easy and takes only 10 minutes to make  For other liqueurs you can make, see this page.

 Here's how to make it:

Yield: about 1.1 liter


  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) water, quality filtered water.
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup (125 to 156 ml) honey. You can't really substitute Stevia or Splenda to cut calories; you will lose the flavor and texture that honey provides. But you can choose a honey with a flavor you prefer, like Tupelo honey, Acacia honey, orange honey, raspberry honey, blueberry honey even cotton honey.  These are (by law) based on the type of flowers the bees visit.  Those flowers carry their flavor into the honey. You can use a honey like the honey below with some chili's in it, if you want to kick things up with some spice.
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (360 ml) of Whiskey.  Pick your favorite brand.  It's hard to be a flavorful bourbon like Wild Turkey, but the choice is up to you! You can use Irish, Scotch, even Canadian or American bourbon. In any case, don't  go cheap on the brandy, you want a good quality smooth brandy. On the other hand, it's probably a waste of fine bourbon to use Crown Royal or the best  Maker's Mark, etc.  Choose something in the middle price range. I like the Wild Turkey 101 because it yields a higher proof honey liqueur with flavor.


Honey Bourbon ingredientsNote about alcohol content: Wild Turkey's American Honey is about 35% alcohol (71 proof). So, if you use an 80 proof whiskey, your final product will be around 50 proof. Using the 101 proof Wild Turkey will produce about 67 proof, much closer to the original Wild Turkey American Honey.  You can also try tweaking the amounts of water and honey to your liking.



  • Large glass jar (quart jars or 1/2 gallon) with sealable lid
  • Pot, spoons, measuring cup



Step 1 - Dissolve the honey

In a heavy-bottomed pot (to avoid burning) heat the water and honey over medium heat and stir until the honey is dissolved.Amaretto pot with water and sugars




Step 2 - Cool to warm

Remove the sugar solution from heat, and allow to sit for about 15-20 minutes so it it is warm but not how (say 90 - 110 F, 35 - 40 C). This is to avoid causing the extracts to breakdown and the alcohol to boil off.








Step 3 - Add the bourbon or other whiskey

Add the whiskey. Stir well.

Step 4 - Pour into jars

I save old Amaretto jars, but you can use any clean, glass jar that can be sealed, like mason canning jars..

Step 5 - Final aging

Well, honestly, there really isn't any aging.  Just enjoy!


Cost comparison

  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) water - free
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup honey - $3 to $5.
  • 1.5 cups (360 ml) of Whiskey. Best prices are usually at Costco or Sam's Club, $30 for 1.75 liter.  = $6.00.

Total cost: ~$10 per liter


Wild Turkey's American Honey generally costs about $20 / 750 ml bottle, (or $27/liter)  plus tax  (2020, Atlanta, GA retail)


So, the homemade is about 1/3 the price. 


Above is the
2020 version of
the Ball Blue Book