Make Your Own Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey Knockoff

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The spicy cinnamon spirit just went DIY.

Have you jumped on the flaming bandwagon of Fireball Cinnamon Whisky yet? If not, you’d better start guzzling to catch up with the rest of the country, where the Canadian-based, fire-breathing brand continues to sell and spread through bars like liquid wildfire.

With an undeniable stronghold in the flavored spirits scene, this low-proof whisky channels the flavor of red-hot cinnamon candies and is oddly easy to toss back as a shot, which is how most people take it. Fireball may start sweetly in its pure form, but it quickly rises from kindling to an inferno of a finish, with a lingering burn that kicks like an angry mule. Perhaps this is why the spirit is proving so popular; it’s a bit exhilarating in its rocket fuel-like quality and has even sparked competition between a series of big-brand imitators.

Good homemade Fireball requires strongly-scented cinnamon.

While you can down this spicy shot at countless bars across the country, a Fireball facsimile is easy to make at home, and the DIY route offers the bonus of smug self-satisfaction when it’s done. Eager to try your hand at some fiery infusion? You’ll need the following cast of characters: A bottle of whiskey, a handful of strongly-scented cinnamon sticks, simple syrup and—if you’re really ready to light the fuse—a bunch of dried red chile peppers. Grab your best shot glasses and get infusing with the effortless—well, downright lazy—recipe below:

Homemade Fireball Whiskey

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 (750 ml) bottle inexpensive whiskey
  • 8 Cinnamon sticks
  • 3 oz Simple syrup
  • 6 Whole dried red chile peppers (optional)

PREPARATION:

Empty the bottle of whiskey into a large container with a lid. Add the cinnamon sticks and simple syrup and seal. Shake the container and let stand for five days, shaking daily.

After five days, add the dried chile peppers to the container, if desired, and shake. Let stand for three to four more days, tasting after the first day to test the flavor intensity. When the flavor reaches the desired intensity, strain and rebottle.

Up the firepower with a handful of spicy dried peppers.

With this fresh bottle of fire-juice now at your disposal, how do you plan to drink it? If straight shots aren’t your style, try mixing the spiced whiskey into a jug of apple cider that’s crowded with autumnal fruits and honey. Though a roughhouser at heart, Fireball has also been known to play well with hot coffee and a cap of whipped cream, and manages to mimic the sugar-spackled delights of a famous cinnamon cereal when shaken with creamy RumChata.

Whichever way you choose to imbibe the atomic-level spirit, this easy infusion means that your favorite bar shot just wandered a lot closer to home. But be careful not to swill too much Fireball at once or you might risk spontaneous self-combustion of the senses. Happy infusing, you heat-seeking fiends.

*Obviously, this recipe for a homemade facsimile of that insanely popular cinnamon whiskey was not endorsed or sponsored by Fireball or the Sazerac Company, Inc.

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