Gin & Tonic Recipe with Elderflower

by | Apr 30, 2018 | All, Elderflower Liqueur, Gin

Watch heads turn after one sip of this Gin & Tonic recipe with Elderflower Liqueur! The simple addition of elderflower adds an unexpected twist to a classic cocktail. 

This post was published in 2018 and updated in 2020.

One lowball glass of Elderflower Gin and Tonic cocktail garnished with lime wedges. Other glasses of Elderflower Gin and Tonic in the background.

Elderflower Gin & Tonic recipe

I’m a firm proponent of the saying, “don’t mess with a good thing”. 

Why screw up something that’s already solid? 

You might argue that a gin and tonic is practically perfect the way it is, but I challenge you to think outside the box just a bit and give this Elderflower Gin and Tonic recipe a try. It has all the traditional flavors that G&T lovers adore but adds a summery, refreshing twist with the addition of elderflower liqueur.

Lowball glass filled with ice, gin, tonic water, elderflower liqueur and a lime wedge.

Ingredients

This 3-ingredient gin mixed drink is only as good as the ingredients you put into it, so make sure you’re using quality brands you enjoy: 

  • Gin
  • Elderflower Liqueur – Not familiar with this liqueur? Check out our guide to Elderflower Liqueur to learn all about it!  
  • Tonic Water
  • Fruit garnish (optional but I can’t imagine having my G&T without a fresh lime wedge)

Best gin for a Gin & Tonic

Take a spin down the gin aisle at the liquor store and be prepared for your eyes to glaze over. The sheer number of options can be overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be. 

A classic cocktail like a gin & tonic begs for a classic style spirit like the juniper-forward, London Dry gin. Our go-to is Tanqueray because it is reliable and readily available but don’t forget to check out your local distilleries for quality options, too.

My husband and I were in Duluth, Minnesota, a few years ago and fell in love with Vikre Distillery’s Boreal Juniper Gin, so we often have that on hand regularly, too. 

Two lowball glasses of Elderflower Gin and Tonic cocktails on a dark black board, garnished with lime wedges and a cocktail jigger.

Best brand of tonic water

You may think that all tonic waters are created equal, but after taste testing many of them, I can assure you that’s not always the case.

Schweppes and Canada Dry are your standard grocery store tonic waters. You’ll see them everywhere, and it’s often what you’ll get if you order a drink at a bar. They are solid and dependable options.  

But if you really want to elevate your G&T game, reach for either Q or Fever-Tree tonic waters. Made with natural quinine (not artificial flavors), these two tonic waters are more expensive than the grocery store brands, but you’ll be surprised how much they enhance the flavor of your drink. 

Gin & Tonic glasses

You’ll see a variety of glasses used with gin and tonic recipes – everything from highball/collins glasses to large globe wine glasses.

Personally, I always grab a lowball glass for this drink. It’s the perfect size to balance the ice and cocktail proportions. 

Top down view of a lowball glass filled with ice, gin, elderflower liqueur and tonic water. Garnished with fresh lime wedges.

Garnishes

I’m forever and ever in camp lime wedge for my g&t but feel free to shake it up if you want some variety.

You can do lemon or orange wedges, cucumber slices, edible flowers or any variety of fresh herbs for a pretty presentation. 

Gin & Tonic Recipe – How-To:

Making a good gin & tonic isn’t rocket science, but I do find that everyone likes their cocktail a little bit different. Here’s my version of a perfect gin & tonic with elderflower liqueur: 

  1. Fill lowball glass with ice.
  2. Add two ounces of London Dry gin to glass.
  3. Add one ounce of elderflower liqueur to glass.
  4. Top with quality tonic water.
  5. Squeeze a lime wedge into the glass and stir to combine.

Like I said, this is my “perfect” recipe but feel free to play with the alcohol ratios so they work for you.

Add more or less gin. Do the same with the elderflower liqueur.

Love limes? Toss in two (or more) wedges.

Want a lighter cocktail? Pour the ingredients into a high ball glass and add a generous amount of tonic water. 

Cheers to your unique creation!

A gin and tonic cocktail in an ice-filled lowball glass.

Non alcoholic cocktail option

Guests always appreciate a tasty non alcoholic cocktail option, and you can get pretty close to the flavors of a gin and tonic with a few easy substitutions. 

A quick google search yields a number of alcohol-free “spirits” that mimic the botanical flavors of gin. If you’re not familiar with the options, ask at your liquor store for their best selling brand.

Elderflower cordial has the same floral notes of elderflower liqueur without the alcohol, so that’s an easy substitution.

Tip: You can also combine elderflower cordial with soda water for a unique and refreshing summer soda! 

Love the elderflower gin combo? We have a handful of drink recipes with similar flavors:

  • Made with gin and vodka, this elderflower martini is one of the most popular recipes on our site. 
  • This bubbly Elderflower French 75 cocktail is always the star at brunch. 
  • Special occasions call for special drinks, and this Elderflower, Gin and Prosecco Cocktail never disappoints.
  • A coupe glass of this easy Elderflower Gin Gimlet will make you feel fancy in your own backyard.
  • This refreshing White Wine Sangria with melon and cucumber is the perfect batch cocktail for your next BBQ.  
Two lowball glasses of elderflower gin and tonic cocktails on a dark wood board. Garnished with ice and lime wedges

Gin works well in so many cocktail recipes. Here are some of our favorites:  

  • Go beyond the bloody mary and serve this Greyhound Cocktail at your next brunch. 
  • Summer was made for backyards and batch cocktails like this Easy Punch Recipe made with gin and fresh watermelon.  
  • This Aperol Cocktail with gin is going bananas on Pinterest right now. Check it out to see what the hype is about!

Don’t miss the whole collection of our gin drinks in our archives.

Not a gin fan? Try our Vodka Soda with Elderflower or this Bourbon Mixed Drink with Elderflower liqueur instead!

Yield: 1 drink

Gin and Tonic recipe with Elderflower

One lowball glass of Elderflower Gin and Tonic cocktail garnished with lime wedges. Other glasses of Elderflower Gin and Tonic in the background.

Change up a classic! A splash of elderflower liqueur takes this Gin and Tonic recipe from average to outstanding!

Prep Time 2 minutes
Total Time 2 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces gin
  • 1 ounce elderflower liqueur
  • 2-3 ounces tonic water
  • lime wedge

Instructions

  1. Fill a lowball glass with ice.
  2. Pour in gin and elderflower liqueur.
  3. Top with tonic water.
  4. Squeeze lime wedge into glass, stir and serve. 

Notes

Non alcoholic option:

Substitute a non alcoholic "gin-like" spirit for the gin and elderflower cordial for the elderflower liqueur to make an alcohol-free drink.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

1

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 298Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 24mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 2gSugar: 24gProtein: 0g

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Collage picture of Elderflower Gin and Tonic Cocktails in lowball glasses garnished with lime wedges.

Upgrade your happy hour with the BEST Gin & Tonic recipe! A quick splash of elderflower liqueur takes your G&T from average to outstanding. Your friends will definitely want the recipe. 

We're the creative juices behind Garnish with Lemon. In the past 8 years, millions of people have sipped & snacked on our recipes. Need easy, delicious party food and drinks for your next shindig? You’ve come to the right place.

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About Anna

Hi, I’m Anna, a former corporate communications nerd turned food fanatic. Turns out I like cooking for others A LOT more than explaining HR policies to them. C’mon over!

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    I just made this recipe and added a smidge of cilantro. Delicious! I enjoyed it during a beautiful evening kayak on Lake Superior right next to the Vikre Distillery that you mentioned.

    Reply
    • Avatar

      Cilantro? Now I’m intrigued. Will have to give that a go (and I’m picturing that sunset kayak trip right now – lovely)!

      Reply

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