Orange Crush Cocktail

Finally I get around to writing about this drink, which I feel is entirely apropos this year of 2020 since #1 It has lots of Vitamin C and fresh orange juice (Oranges have been a BIG seller in the Pandemic) #2 It has alcohol (Alcohol has been a BIG seller in the Pandemic) and #3 It’s a comforting type of drink, bringing us back to our innocent (and pre-Pandemic) childhoods of drinking soda and not fearing for our lives on a daily basis.

I had never heard of the Orange Crush Cocktail until I took a Road Trip to Maryland and Delaware, where apparently they are a big thing. I even had an Orange Crush craft beer in St. Micheals, Maryland. It actually tasted like the soda (with a beery aftertaste). I then had an Orange Crush Cocktail at Rehoboth Beach in Delaware, while overlooking the waves and dolphins in the Atlantic. It was invented more than 20 years ago at a bar in Harborside, Maryland and is the perfect hot weather drink, making it perfect for anytime in Miami.

Of course I had to make one myself when I got home from our trip. Since I had no Orange Vodka on hand, I sliced the rind off a couple of Navel Oranges and poured Tito’s vodka over it in a Bell canning jar. In a couple days- voila! Orange vodka. The oils in the rind really permeate the vodka, causing it to change color and infusing it with flavor.

The crushed ice is key here, making the drink more slushy-like, so don’t skip it for regular ice; I used sparkling water instead of lemon-lime soda (7-up, Sprite or Sierra Mist) to save calories and cut down the sweetness, but it certainly will taste even more soda-like with the soda. The only problem with this Orange Crush drink, is it tastes so good and so much like soda (and not like a drink-drink), you may down a couple before you know it! But hey, that’s ok!

Orange Crush Yield 1 drink Recipe by How Sweet Eats

  • 1 navel orange, juiced
  • 2 ounces orange vodka (Stoli O was the traditional)
  • 1 ounce orange liqueur (I used Cointreau)
  • 3 to 4 ounces lemon-lime soda
  • orange wedges for garnish
  • a sprig of mint


Fill a glass with crushed ice. Pour the vodka, orange liqueur and fresh orange juice in the glass. Give it a gentle stir. Top it off with the soda, an orange wedge and a mint leaf. Enjoy!

This ain’t no time to be sober.

Uncle Kracker

Published by gleeguilford

Born and raised in Miami, the daughter of a pilot and stay-at-home Mom, I love food in all forms. My great grandfather opened the first Italian restaurant in Miami in the 20's, The Boathouse on the Miami river. I love exploring my heritage and linking food and recipes to personal stories. I've been published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Food and Love and wrote restaurant reviews and news as the Miami Dining Examiner for three years. I love exploring Miami's latest hot spots, hole in the walls and institutions. I'm always looking for innovative ways to use the plethora of tropical fruits and vegetables South Florida offers, especially from my own garden.

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