Sparkling Cider Float Mocktail

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Add some festive fun to any holiday or party with Apple Cider Floats. This is a deliciously simple sparkling cider mocktail for kids and adults to enjoy. And a few easy tips make them extra simple to prep ahead of time and extra special for your celebration.

Easy Apple Cider Floats

Yes, it’s super easy and extra yummy to scoop some ice cream into sparkling cider. The creaminess added to the crisp fruit flavor is already a holiday match made in heaven. However, I like to add a few little extras to make these Sparkling Apple Cider Ice Cream Floats worthy of a special celebration! These fizzy treats are perfect for a Christmas toast, ringing in the New Year, or just as a delicious dessert.

Cuisine Inspiration: American
Primary Cooking Method: No-bake
Dietary Info: Gluten-free, Nut-free, Dairy-free option
Skill Level: Easy

Why You’ll Love these Sparkling Cider Mocktails

Once you try these apple cider floats, the kids will be begging for them again and again. And you’ll be happy to make them. Here’s why…

  • An easy treat. You practically don’t even need a recipe. Just a little inspiration.
  • But simple to make fancy. A few little tips help you dress them up for a special occasion.
  • Prep ahead. These sticks also help you to get all of the components prepared ahead of time so that when it is time to party, you are ready to go.
  • Incredibly versatile. You can change up the flavors, use a dairy-free option, and even turn it into a cocktail for adults, if you like.
A closeup of the ice cream floating in the apple cider float.

Apple Cider Float Ingredients and Substitutions

Let’s take a quick look at what you’ll need and even how you can customize your sparkling cider mocktails (or how to turn them into cocktails). This is just a brief overview, so be sure to scroll to the recipe card for the full amounts and details.

  • Sparkling Apple Cider. Stick with the classic Apple or try a flavor like Apple-Pomegranate or Pear Cider. You can even make it a cocktail by using hard cider like Bold Rock or Strong Bow, or even add a little rum or bourbon.
  • Vanilla ice cream. A nice, rich French vanilla adds amazing flavor. But feel free to substitute light ice cream, frozen yogurt, or a non-dairy option. You can even make your own No-Churn Cheesecake Ice Cream for a tangy twist or add a little color with Sparkling Cider Rainbow Sherbet Floats.
  • Cinnamon-sugar. I like to mix cinnamon with coarse sugar or sparkling sugar for added sparkle. But you can use granulated sugar or a container of pre-mixed cinnamon-sugar.
  • Caramel sauce. I like a good-quality one like Smucker’s Simple Delight Salted Caramel without artificial flavors or my Homemade Caramel Sauce.

How to Make Sparkling Cider Floats

Let’s go over how to make your party prep simple and make these drinks super fun. The step-by-step instructions are in the recipe card.

  • Pre-scoop the ice cream. You can skip this step if you are going to serve them right away, but it makes it easier to prep a bunch for a party, and keeps the ice cream from melting too fast. Line a cookie sheet with wax paper or parchment paper. Then scoop little balls of vanilla ice cream with a cookie scoop. Sprinkle the ice cream scoops with cinnamon sugar, and pop them in the freezer.
  • Garnish the glasses. Again, an optional step, but way more fun for a festive touch. Dip the rim of your flutes or glasses in caramel, and then in the cinnamon-sugar.
  • Make the floats. When it’s time to toast, pour the cider into the prepared glasses, pull the ice cream balls out of the freezer, and drop them in. Cheers!
A champagne flute of sparkling cider with a scoop of vanilla ice cream in it with a cinnamon-sugar rim.

Serving Suggestions

Here are a couple of items I like to use to turn these easy apple cider floats into a fancy sparkling cider mocktail!

CHAMPAGNE FLUTES – I was lucky enough to find some inexpensive champagne flutes for about 25 cents each at Ikea a while ago and I stocked up to always have them on hand for a celebration. You can check your local Ikea, but if not, these shatter-proof stemless flutes are less than a dollar apiece.

STRIPED PAPER STRAWS – safer for the environment than plastic straws and available in colors and designs for any holiday or occasion, you can dress up any drink with striped paper straws like these red and white ones.

Two flutes of sparkling cider with a small scoop of ice cream floating in them.
5 from 1 vote

Sparkling Apple Cider Floats

Add some festive fun to any holiday or party with Apple Cider Floats. This is a deliciously simple sparkling cider mocktail for kids and adults to enjoy. And a few easy tips make them extra simple to prep ahead of time and extra special for your celebration.
Prep: 20 minutes
Freezer Time 2 hours
Total: 2 hours 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon sugar, preferably coarse sugar or sparkling sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt (approximately, you may need more or less depending on size and quantity of scoops))
  • 1/4 cup caramel sauce homemade or store bought
  • 750 ml Sparkling Apple Cider or two 12 oz. bottles of Hard Apple Cider
  • 1 shot rum or bourbon per cocktail, optional

Instructions

  • In a small bowl, stir together the sugar and cinnamon.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper.
  • Using a small cookie scoop, melon baller, or spoon, place 8-12 (depending on the size and if you want two or three scoops per glass) scoops of ice cream onto the baking sheet. Using some of the cinnamon sugar mixture, sprinkle cinnamon sugar on top of each ball, pressing in if necessary. Place the sheet with the ice cream balls in the freezer for an hour or two.
  • Pour some of the caramel into a small bowl. Dip the rim of your champagne flutes or glasses in the caramel and then into the cinnamon sugar mixture. Set aside until ready to serve.
  • When ready to serve, pour about 6 oz. (3/4 cup) of the cider into each of the prepared glasses and add two or three ice cream balls to each glass.
Nutrition Facts
Sparkling Apple Cider Floats
Amount Per Serving (1 drink)
Calories 203 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Saturated Fat 2g10%
Cholesterol 14mg5%
Sodium 83mg3%
Potassium 266mg8%
Carbohydrates 41g14%
Sugar 28g31%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 150IU3%
Vitamin C 1.7mg2%
Calcium 70mg7%
Iron 0.2mg1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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