Skye Sonnega | May 18, 2023

How to Use a Cocktail Shaker to Craft the Perfect Drinks

The term “cocktail shaker” can be intimidating, to say the least. However, using a cocktail shaker to create delicious cocktails (or mocktails) is super simple with a little practice.

Here, we’re going to show you how to use a cocktail shaker while at home or on the go. We also share three simple and yummy recipes you can create to practice your newfound shaker skills.

Table of Contents

  • What Is a Cocktail Shaker?

  • How Does a Cocktail Shaker Work?

  • How to Use a Cocktail Shaker at Home

  • How to Use a Cocktail Shaker On-the-Go

  • 3 Cocktail (and Mocktail) Recipes to Try

What Is a Cocktail Shaker?

A cocktail shaker is a tool designed to mix drinks through shaking instead of other methods such as stirring. In most cases, you’ll add ice and your liquid ingredients to the shaker, shake, and then pour.

Types of Cocktail Shakers

There are a few different types of cocktail shakers out there. For example, the cobbler shaker typically features a can that holds the ingredients, a shaker, and a top lid to seal the liquid inside.

A Boston shaker features two cans that fit together and form a seal to prevent spills. Another common type is the French shaker, which features two metal pieces that fit together to hold the ingredients inside.

Of course, our favorite type of cocktail shaker is our Shaker Pint, the only cocktail shaker that doubles as an insulated pint tumbler.

How Does a Cocktail Shaker Work?

The way a cocktail shaker works is quite simple. After adding in all of your ingredients and ice, you simply shake to mix your drink.

As you shake, the ice will work to chill your drink quickly and thoroughly. Plus, as the ice breaks apart, the water will slowly dilute the drink to improve its taste.

Another benefit of a cocktail shaker is that shaking your ingredients ensures your ingredients are completely mixed, which results in a tastier drink. Shakers are also easy to use, even for beginner mixologists. So, what are you waiting for?!

How to Use a Cocktail Shaker at Home

Using a cocktail shaker is super easy to do. While it’s obvious you’ll need your own shaker, we also recommend picking up a cocktail jigger, which will help you measure your ingredients.

You may also want to pick up a cocktail tumbler that you can use to enjoy your drink, such as our Rocks tumbler. Finally, you’ll need a new cocktail recipe to try.

With your tools in hand, it’s time to get started. Follow these simple steps to use your cocktail shaker:

  1. Add in your ingredients and ice. Measure your liquid ingredients using the jigger (or eyeball it if you’re the adventurous type). Add the liquid and ice to your cocktail shaker. If you’re using a Boston shaker, you’ll add the liquid and ice to the smaller glass. As an important note, avoid adding carbonated drinks to your shaker. Otherwise, you’ll have a fizzy eruption on your hands!

  2. Seal and shake. Make sure your cocktail shaker is sealed properly to avoid a spill. When you’re ready, shake your drink! The best way is to hold the shaker horizontally, using both hands (one on each end of the shaker). Then, shake the shaker over your shoulder.

  3. Strain and pour. When you’re done shaking, open your shaker. If your shaker has a built-in strainer, go ahead and pour. If it doesn’t, place a strainer over the shaker before you pour.

Now enjoy! That’s really all there is to using a cocktail shaker at home. Remember, practice makes perfect. Don’t be afraid to practice with water and ice until you get your shake down!

How to Use a Cocktail Shaker On-the-Go

You can also use a cocktail shaker on the go. However, we recommend purchasing a shaker that’s built for travel, such as the Shaker Pint.

The Shaker Pint features a triple-insulated pint glass tumbler with a shaker attachment/ built-in strainer that is 100% leakproof. Once you’re done shaking up your drink, simply pour it up to share with your crew or take the shaker attachment off and enjoy it straight from the tumbler.

3 Cocktail (and Mocktail) Recipes to Try

Ready to play mixologist? Here are three of our favorite recipes to shake up and enjoy.

1. The Paper Plane (Cocktail)

Wanna see stars? Then this cocktail is for you. Our new Astral Collection was developed in partnership with the incredible Hilary Duff, and she was cool enough to share her favorite drink with us, which is known as the Paper Plane.

For ingredients, you’ll need:

  • 3/4 ounce bourbon

  • 3/4 ounce Aperol

  • 3/4 ounce Amaro Nonino

  • 3/4 ounce lemon juice, freshly squeezed

To mix this drink, add the bourbon, Aperol, Amero Nonino, and lemon juice to a shaker with ice. Shake until well chilled, and then strain into a glass.

2. Mango No-Jito (Mocktail)

Going dry? This delicious mocktail is the perfect drink for a hot summer day (or any time, really).

For ingredients, you’ll need:

  • A bunch of fresh mint

  • A splash of simple syrup

  • Juice of one lime

  • 1/4 cup mango juice

  • 1/2 cup sparkling water (lemon-lime flavor optional)

To mix this drink, muddle together fresh mint, simple syrup, lime juice, and mango juice. Shake it all together in your cocktail shaker. Then, add it to a glass and top with sparkling water. Yum!

3. Blood Orange Bourbon Banger (Cocktail)

This banger of a drink is deliciously fruity and sweet. Plus, it’s a complete breeze to whip up inside your shaker.

First, you’ll want to make some ginger syrup by combining one cup of water, one cup of sugar, and two inches of ginger in a saucepan. Heat the mixture until it comes to a light boil. Cover and boil for 15 minutes, then strain the ginger. Your syrup is ready to use!

For the rest of this recipe, you’ll need:

  • 4 fresh raspberries

  • 1 ½ tbsp lime juice

  • 1 ½ tbsp blood orange juice

  • 1 ½ tbsp ginger syrup

  • 4 tbsp Bourbon

  • 2 tbsp club soda

Muddle your raspberries, lime juice, blood orange juice, and syrup in your shaker. Add the bourbon and stir. Finally, strain the drink into your favorite glass (like a Rocks tumbler) and add ice. Top it with sparkling water and enjoy!

Shake Things Up With BrüMate

At BrüMate, we specialize in making barware that fits your lifestyle, from tumblers to cocktail shakers. Start mixing your next favorite drink by picking up a new Brü. Check out our bestsellers today!