For many of us, Labor Day marks the unofficial end of summer. For me, it also marks the end of no set schedules, no zoom meetings, no alarm clocks, and the jarring realization that I’ll be slammed with busy weekends of soccer practice and ballet recitals before heading straight into the holiday season.
So, I ideally don’t want to celebrate this holiday by giving myself extra work (by making cocktails all day long). Pitcher drinks provide an easy, casual way of entertaining, so everyone wins. With pitcher drinks, pre-made cocktails are readily available the moment your guests fancy one.
With big, batched cocktails, measuring out ingredients is also simpler, using big measuring cups instead of small jiggers, and mixing in bulk rather than dealing with individually shaken drinks. Guests are allowed and encouraged to help themselves.
Below you’ll find a variety of flavors to bring to, or serve at, your Labor Day party this year, from sangrias to margaritas to special twists on classic cocktails, with nonalcoholic options as well.
Sparkling Strawberry Sangria
A fresh, fruity sangria with an herbaceous twist, this Sparkling Strawberry Sangria can be made either boozy or nonalcoholic with just a few tweaks.
Frozen Cucumber Margaritas
Looking to be cool as a cucumber this summer? Try this refreshing cucumber margarita and wow all of your friends and family with this vegetal take on this classic summertime favorite.
Pineapple Jalapeño Pitcher Margaritas
Who doesn’t love a spicy marg? This tropical take infuses sweet, juicy pineapple with muddled jalapeño peppers for a perfectly balanced sweet and spicy cocktail, big batch style!
Virgin-Pomegranate Citrus Sangria
The secret to flavorful Sangria minus the booze? Two kinds of tea! For a nonalcoholic option at your party, serve this pomegranate and citrus sans-gria with whatever seasonal fruit you have on hand.Continue to 5 of 12 below.
Cucumber Lime Mint Agua Fresca
Not all summer drinks have fruit, and this cucumber based agua fresca will keep you cool as a… (well, you know!). Fresh mint, tart lime juice, and sugar are combined with cucumber juice for a refreshing nonalcoholic pitcher drink. Although, it does also pair well with gin if you’d like to take it in that direction.
Frozen Strawberry Margaritas
Cold, bold, and beautiful. Strawberry lovers this is the margarita for you. This recipe makes enough to serve a crowd so invite some friends and break out your blender!
Easy Red Wine Sangria
Take it easy on Labor Day with a simple Red Wine Sangria. Minimal prep and maximum flavors equal a complex cocktail that is sweet, spicy, citrusy, and boozy. Now close your eyes and transport yourself to Spain.
Watermelon Pitcher Margaritas
As if you needed an excuse to buy a whole watermelon this summer, this classic margarita is batched up big and blended with fresh chunks of watermelon. It’s the drink you need in hand if your afternoon consists of floating around in a pool.Continue to 9 of 12 below.
Frozen Siesta Cocktail
Tequila, Campari, simple syrup, and citrus blend up into this boozy slushie that is tart, slightly bitter, and has hints of citrus.
Blueberry Pitcher Margaritas
Fresh, or frozen, blueberries take this margarita in a bold new direction. And if you’re a berry lover, try mixing in some blackberries for a sweet-tart variation on this classic cocktail, pitcher style!
Spicy Bloody Maria Cocktail
Looking for a pitcher cocktail to serve that is more on the savory side? Try this spicy tequila riff on a Bloody Mary. Keep it in the pitcher and lay out a garnish bar for guests with cilantro, skewered cocktail onions, pickled carrots, radishes, tomatillos, lemon wedges, orange wedges, additional hot sauce, and beer.
Pitcher Frozen Margaritas
Sweet, tart and utterly refreshing. Frozen margaritas are easy to make at home and a great way to beat the heat! Premix the liquids and have a couple of batches ready to go when friends stop by.