How to Make Homemade Fireball

Written by Zhen-Mei Huang and Nikki Seelam

Check out the YouTube video linked above for visual step-by-step aid as well as funny behind-the-scenes content.

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Cinnamon whisky is a warm, spicy infusion that really heats you up from the inside out. If done correctly, cinnamon whiskey can be delicious. However, there are a lot of store-bought cinnamon whiskies that are too strong and probably cause war flashbacks. There’s a reason why all of us were 19 and taking shots of Fireball at the bar; We didn’t know better about quality. Thankfully, we have learned from our past mistakes and this article is here to teach you the right way to make cinnamon whisky using regular bourbon.  And it’s going to be a billion times better than this Fireball that we have nightmares just looking at.


This will be a few day process. To start off, obviously, we need whiskey right? You want to make sure it’s inexpensive because you’re going to sweeten and flavor it up anyways. Bourbon is best for this recipe. The next ingredient? Cinnamon sticks. That’s self-explanatory, so I’m not gonna go too in detail with that. Lastly, we’ll need turbinado sugar, to make a syrup that adds the sweetness and smoky flavor that Fireball is known for.


Let’s begin by bringing 3 oz. of water to boil, either with a water broiler or by stovetop, at your convenience. This step is essential to making simple syrup, a popular ingredient consisting of equal parts turbinado sugar and hot water stirred together until completely dissolved. Important to note, you will need a heat safe container, as boiling water has a tendency to crack certain glasses. The noticeable difference between this syrup versus traditional simple syrup will be the darker tones, changing the color of any cocktails you add it to.


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Finding a container to store your soon-to-be Fireball will be the next in the process. Breaking eight cinnamon sticks to cover as much space as possible at the bottom of the container, you’ll also want to add in all the previously made simple syrup and a full 750 ml bottle of your whiskey of choice. Pro-Tip! When emptying out the bottle, spinning the liquor in a tornado-fashion will clear the whiskey out twice as fast. Shaking together all the ingredients within the jar, let this mixture sit for 5-7 days, depending on your preference for a potent cinnamon flavor.

Pro-Tip: For a quicker method to empty out a bottle, spin it around upside down into your container, forming a “tornado” and let gravity do the work.


You’ve let the cinnamon whisky sit, what next? The HEAT. And we’re going to bring that in AMPLE quantities by introducing dried chilli peppers. These are dried vietnamese peppers. You’re going to want about six of these to get a decent level of kick. Letting the chillies sit for 3 days in the cinnamon whisky will give you a nice Fireball level of spicy sweet flavor and then after that it’s purely personal preference.


After 3-4 days, you should get a cinnamon whiskey that is a little sweeter, definitely spicier and definitely better than fireball. Give the whisky a good strain into another container.

The color should be darker and the flavor should be richer. This homemade whisky is WAY better than store-bought cinnamon whisky that’s really just glorified syrup.

Enjoy it at parties in shots, cocktails to impress a date. Or home alone after a really really long day. Just make sure to drink responsibly.