High Desert Botanicals

Botanical kits for creative craft cocktails.

Orange Spice Bitters Recipe

  • Orange Spice Bitters Recipe

Orange Spice is one of our most popular bitters recipes, and with good reason.  This flavor is very versatile and can pair with many types of drinks from citrus to coffee. The ginger, cloves, star anise, and caraway give this recipes a complex, warm, spicy flavor while the horehound lends a minty bitterness. While dried sweet orange can be used, the combination of dried bitter orange and fresh sweet orange gives the most complete citrus flavor.


    • 4 tablespoons dried bitter (AKA: sour, Seville) orange peel, dried
    • 4 teaspoons dried horehound
    • 2 teaspoons Oregon grape
    • 2 teaspoons caraway
    • 1 teaspoon dried ginger (or 1.5 teaspoons candied ginger)
    • 1 teaspoon whole or broken cloves
    • 1 whole star anise 
    • zest of one medium orange

    Place all ingredients in a 20 oz (600 ml) or larger jar and add:

    • 16 oz unflavored grain alcohol (such as vodka). 100 proof will extract more flavor than 80 proof but isn't necessary

    Steep at least 7 days, shaking occasionally. Use dropper to extract a small amount of liquid and taste. If you are happy with the flavor, you can filter now, otherwise steep longer or add additional ingredients to adjust flavor.

    To filter, line a funnel with filter paper or line a mesh strainer with a coffee filter or double layer of paper towels. Slowly pour the liquid through the filter paper. If the filter paper becomes clogged, pour the funnel contents back in the jar and replace the filter.

    To sweeten, add:

    • 6-8 ounces of simple syrup or sweetener of your choice.


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