If you are the kind of person who prides yourself on squeezing fresh lemon juice for cocktails or making recipe-specific simple syrups, buying pre-made Bloody Mary mix might seem like a cop-out.
While it’s true that certain widely available brands serve the Bloody Mary equivalent of using Rose’s Lime Juice instead of fresh citrus, some pre-made mixes meet the quality of anything you might get served at a decent cocktail bar — heck, some of those bars may even be using these very mixes.
Giving you more time to work on elaborate garnishes for the cocktail — and the ‘Gram, let’s be honest — these eight, pre-made Bloody Mary mixes are deserving of a place on your brunch table.
8. Miss Mary’s Bold & Spicy Bloody Mary Mix
This mix lacks the body we’d expect from a Bloody Mary and a quick glance at the ingredient list suggests it’s not made with fresh ingredients. Yet balanced and nicely flavored it arrives on the palate with the occasional flavor jumping out like an unexpected friend at a party. “Oh, hello, celery salt.” “Cayenne pepper, I wasn’t expecting you.” The finish culminates with pleasant spice and the general notion that this mix is actually pretty good after all. Average price: $13 per 946-milliliter bottle.
7. Hella Cocktail Co. Spicy Bloody Mary Mix
Were it not written on the label, it would be tough to easily identify this as “spicy,” but that’s not a mark against its character. Where Hella Cocktail Co.’s original mix leans more into sweet and rounded tomato flavors, this version has more pronounced celery and pepper notes, and just a little heat on the finish. Average price: $13 per 750-milliliter bottle.
6. SuckerPunch Gourmet Bold & Spicy Bloody Mary Mix
The flavors from SuckerPunch’s proprietary garlic pickle juice drive its standard mix, which otherwise tastes vaguely of tomato paste and nondescript smoky spices. The Bold & Spicy bottling, however, delivers much more character, with the extra heat never overwhelming the palate and even livening the taste of tomatoes. Garnish with a celery stalk and you’re good to go. Average price: $13 per 946-milliliter bottle.
5. Mary’s Mixers Original Bloody Mary Mix
For those who like to add liberal amounts of horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, and pickle juice to their Bloody Marys, consider Mary’s Mixers. Along with cayenne pepper, those components are the protagonists in this concentrated and flavorful blend, while tomato plays a willing and competent supporting role. A vegetal streak promises it will pair well with gin or even tequila, if you feel like adding even more flavors into the mix. Average price: $13 per 1-liter bottle.
4. Toma Original Bloody Mary Mix
Aromas of roasted peppers, olive brine, and fresh, salted tomatoes set high expectations for this Bloody Mary, which it quickly delivers on. The palate has concentrated layers of flavor and generous body. With the smoky, sweet profile of roasted pepper lingering onto the finish, this is another great candidate for tequila or mezcal. Be sure to also mix it in a Michelada. Average price: $16.75 per 946-milliliter bottle.
3. Taffer’s Bloody Mary Mix Original
Like many brands, Taffer’s also offers a spicy mix on top of its original mix. Unless you’re the kind of person who concerns yourself with Scoville scales and carries around Tabasco in your pocket, the heat delivered by generous servings of cracked black pepper in the original will more than satisfy your craving for heat. This mix’s pronounced pepperiness is accented by fresh bursts of celery, as well as a distinct sprinkling of celery salt. The cocktail finishes tangy, sweet, and with an expected crack of pepper. Average price: $10 per 946-milliliter bottle.
2. Stonewall Kitchen Bloody Mary Mixer
Horseradish, black pepper, and celery aromas stand out in this mix and serve as something of a running theme from start to finish. The flavors of these condiments are easily identifiable but never overpower. Spice is delivered without overbearing heat. And the tomato, which forms its flavorsome core, tastes fresh, concentrated, and almost refreshing — as far as Bloody Marys go. Whether you’ve never had a Bloody Mary or consider yourself something of a connoisseur, this mix promises to impress. Average price: $11.50 per 712-milliliter bottle.
1. Ripe Bar Juice San Marzano Bloody Mary
Made using cold-pressed San Marzano tomatoes, this mix is shipped cold and requires immediate refrigeration. The extra attention to detail (and cost when shipping) is worth it. This is a remarkably fresh Bloody Mary mix: The tomato character arrives ripe, with just the right amount of sweetness, followed by a refreshing jolt of citrus. Whoever devised its recipe is well aware of all the ingredients that make the cocktail sing — horseradish, celery seeds, cayenne pepper, to name a few — and they’re all included here, just not to the extent that each vies for too much attention and kills the harmony. The result is an incredibly balanced cocktail that tastes exactly like a Bloody Mary should. Average price: $10 per 750-milliliter bottle.