THE BEST DIRTY SHIRLEY RECIPE YOU NEED TO DISCOVER THIS SUMMER!

1 cocktail
3 min

This Dirty Shirley recipe is delightful, refreshing and nostalgic.

And you can’t serve this Dirty Shirley recipe without a cherry and a swizzle stick!

Remember the “kiddie” cocktail?

LOL. I most certainly do.

In retrospect, I’m not sure that was the most appropriately named drink to serve a six year old …

But alas, I also rode backwards in my aunt’s station wagon with my cousins in between downing kiddie cocktails.

We all survived.

The kiddie cocktail (or Shirley Temple as it is also called) was a staple of my Friday nights during the late seventies.

While my parents unwound before ordering dinner at a nice restaurant, they also enjoyed a Manhattan or a Rob Roy, and I sipped on my Shirley Temple.

It was colorful, pretty, a little tart, and always garnished with a maraschino cherry.

And the drink was simply not complete without a swizzle stick!

This long-last tradition, often took the shape of a paddle, giraffe or featured the restaurant’s name in some fancy design. Remember those?

The swizzle stick is nostalgia at its best.

When I got wind of the Dirty Shirley craze, I simply had to jump on board.

It almost felt like a call of duty.

As a nod to my Friday nights of yesteryear and in keeping with my fondness for a good “adult” cocktail to end the week, I summoned Matt to concoct the best Dirty Shirley recipe.

And I think he did an excellent job.

He even included a pastel swizzle stick! Keep reading to find out how you can make this delightful drink at home too!

But first, a few fun facts about this drink genre:


WHY IS IT CALLED A SHIRLEY TEMPLE?

The drink is named after the famous childhood actress Shirley Temple and is considered to be the world’s first mocktail.

Since its creation, non-alcoholic cocktails have come a long way. In fact, we’ve previously shared some delicious mocktail recipes.


WHAT IS THE ORIGIN SHIRLEY TEMPLE COCKTAIL?

According to one legend, a bartender at Chasen’s restaurant in Hollywood, Calif. invented the Shirley Temple cocktail.

The restaurant closed in the mid nineties but historians describe Chasen’s as “old Hollywood personified,” with classic red booths and lots of wood-paneled walls.

You can totally picture it. And even today, I love those kind of restaurants.

Young Shirley became a bit aggravated when the bartender wouldn’t serve her the same Old Fashioned cocktail as the adults she was with were drinking. Smart.

So he came up with a more appropriate children’s version.

And it makes sense. The Shirley Temple cocktail is similar in color to the Old Fashioned.

I’m sure Shirley was fooled!


WHAT IS THE SHIRLEY TEMPLE DRINK?

The traditional ingredients of a Shirley Temple drink are ginger ale, with a splash of grenadine and a maraschino cherry garnish. You can also use Lemon lime soda instead of ginger ale.


WHAT FLAVOR IS GRENADINE?

Grenadine is a non-alcoholic syrup, with a deep red color, and is traditionally made from pomegranate.

The origin of the word grenadine is the French word grenade (pomegranate). It is commonly found in cocktails such as the Singapore Sling, Tequila Sunrise and the Zombie, among others.

WHAT IS A DIRTY SHIRLEY?

A Dirty Shirley is an adult spin on the classic Shirley Temple cocktail that includes vodka.

It is delightful and nostalgic, which has no doubt led to its recent rise in popularity!


HERE IS THE BEST DIRTY SHIRLEY RECIPE …

This cocktail should not simply be a spiked version of your Shirley Temple from the seventies.

As an adult, I find a Shirley Temple can be rather syrupy and overly sweet.

This Dirty Shirley recipe uses high-end ingredients, like these spectacular maraschino cherries by Filthy as a garnish.

This Dirty Shirley recipe is also lower in calories, since it uses Diet Sprite.

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DIRTY SHIRLEY INGREDIENTS

Two ounces Ketel One vodka

One ounce Rose’s Grenadine

Eight ounces Diet Sprite

Filthy Maraschino Cherries

Ice Nuggets


HOW TO MAKE A DIRTY SHIRLEY

Fill your favorite cocktail glass with ice nuggets

Add vodka and grenadine.

Top with Diet Sprite.

Garnish with a single Filthy Maraschino cherry and add a fun swizzle stick.

Did you enjoy this Dirty Shirley recipe? Check out these other great entertaining ideas you don’t want to miss:

Discover the Daiquiri … It’s Not What You Think!

Five Great Tablescape Ideas for a Casual Summer Dinner Party

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THE BEST DIRTY SHIRLEY RECIPE YOU NEED TO DISCOVER THIS SUMMER!
Recipe details
  • 1  cocktail
  • Prep time: 3 Minutes Cook time: 0 Minutes Total time: 3 min
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Ingredients
The Dirty Shirley Cocktail
  • Two ounces Ketel One vodka
  • One ounce Rose’s Grenadine
  • Eight ounces Diet Sprite
  • Filthy Maraschino Cherries
  • Ice Nuggets
Instructions
How to Make a Dirty Shirley
Fill your favorite cocktail glass with ice nuggets
Add vodka and grenadine. 
Top with Diet Sprite.
Garnish with a maraschino cherry and add a fun swizzle stick.
Annemarie Schumacher
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Comments
  • Cynthia Cynthia on Jun 29, 2022

    I do remember ordering Shirley Temples and our kids did and grandkids still do. But, it seemed that there was a gender issue with Shirley Temples back then. The girls ordered them, but the boys ordered Roy Rogers. Not sure what was in it—-Coke, instead of ginger ale?

    • See 1 previous
    • Annemarie Schumacher Annemarie Schumacher on Jun 30, 2022

      LOL. Cynthia and Lee -- I think you've given me my next cocktail idea! The Dirty Roy!

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