How to Make Fabulous Homemade Eggnog

Updated on December 23, 2017
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Jan has been cooking and writing about food for over twenty years and has cooked on multiple television stations, including Food Network.

Nothing says Christmas like homemade eggnog—and this version is super simple, rich, creamy, and just plain wonderful.
Nothing says Christmas like homemade eggnog—and this version is super simple, rich, creamy, and just plain wonderful.

Fabulous Homemade Eggnog

5 stars from 1 rating of How to Make Homemade Eggnog

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 10 min
Ready in: 20 min
Yields: Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh nutmeg
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup whisky or bourbon, optional

Instructions

  1. After separating the eggs, place the whites in the bowl of an electric mixer, and place the yolks in a medium saucepan.
  2. Add a tablespoon of sugar to the egg whites and beat them until soft peaks form. Be patient, this can take a few minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, add 1/3 cup of sugar to the egg yolks, and whisk well to combine. Turn heat to medium, and add the milk, whisking well, then the cream, again, whisking well.
  4. Whisk in the pinch of salt and nutmeg. Cook the milk/cream mixture until a candy thermometer reaches 170F, about ten minutes or so. Don't let the mixture come to a boil, or otherwise it could curdle or 'break'. Also, keep whisking. Sugar and cream can scorch quickly, and if it does, you'll have to toss it. Just be patient, and you'll have great results.
  5. Remove the mixture from heat once it reaches 170F. You can cool it quickly by submerging the pan in cold water and stirring for several minutes. Or just pour it into a container and stick it in the fridge for several hours.
  6. Once compleltey chilled, stir the egg whites into the cream mixture, whisking well. If you'd like to spike your eggnog, stir the bourbon or whisky in at this point.
  7. To serve, simply pour into mugs and top with a little more freshly grated nutmeg. That's all there is to it!

Start with Separating Eggs

Separate four eggs, and place the whites in the bowl of a mixer. These will make the eggnog light and fluffy. The yolks will be cooked with sugar, milk and cream to form the base of the eggnog.
Separate four eggs, and place the whites in the bowl of a mixer. These will make the eggnog light and fluffy. The yolks will be cooked with sugar, milk and cream to form the base of the eggnog.

Whisk Whites with Sugar

Whisk the whites with a tablespoon of sugar. It's easiest to get the most volume if you have a super clean bowl and make sure there's absolutely no fat - so no yolks in the whites.
Whisk the whites with a tablespoon of sugar. It's easiest to get the most volume if you have a super clean bowl and make sure there's absolutely no fat - so no yolks in the whites.

Soft Peaks

Just keep whisking the whites until soft peaks form - this just means that if you lift the whisk, the whites will hold the shape - just like in the picture.
Just keep whisking the whites until soft peaks form - this just means that if you lift the whisk, the whites will hold the shape - just like in the picture.

Place Egg Yolks in a Saucepan

Place the yolks in a medium sized saucepan. You'll be whisking in the sugar. You can whisk those together before turning on the heat.
Place the yolks in a medium sized saucepan. You'll be whisking in the sugar. You can whisk those together before turning on the heat.
Whisk the egg yolks with the 1/3 cup of sugar, and turn the heat to medium. Stir in the milk, whisking well to make sure it's fully incorporated.
Whisk the egg yolks with the 1/3 cup of sugar, and turn the heat to medium. Stir in the milk, whisking well to make sure it's fully incorporated.

Whisk in Cream

Whisk in the cream, whisking well. Just keep whisking - you'll make sure that the eggs cook through without curdling. Watch the temperature carefully - you're looking for 170F. Don't let the mixture come to a boil or a simmer - it will curdle.
Whisk in the cream, whisking well. Just keep whisking - you'll make sure that the eggs cook through without curdling. Watch the temperature carefully - you're looking for 170F. Don't let the mixture come to a boil or a simmer - it will curdle.

Add Salt and Nutmeg

Add a pinch of salt and the fresh nutmeg. If you'd like you can add 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, or a shot of vanilla once it's off the heat, but we really like the simplicity of just nutmeg.
Add a pinch of salt and the fresh nutmeg. If you'd like you can add 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, or a shot of vanilla once it's off the heat, but we really like the simplicity of just nutmeg.

Cook to 170F.

Whisk pretty frequently - milk and cream - especially combined with sugar - will scorch very easily. Whisking helps prevent this, as well as keeping the temperature consistent throughout the mixture. A simple candy thermometer will do the trick.
Whisk pretty frequently - milk and cream - especially combined with sugar - will scorch very easily. Whisking helps prevent this, as well as keeping the temperature consistent throughout the mixture. A simple candy thermometer will do the trick.

Chill Completely

The fastest way to chill is to set the pan in a sink of cold or iced water, and whisk for a few minutes. The temperature will come right down. Or just stick it in the fridge for a few hours.
The fastest way to chill is to set the pan in a sink of cold or iced water, and whisk for a few minutes. The temperature will come right down. Or just stick it in the fridge for a few hours.

Whisk Whites and Custard Base Together

Once the custard base has completely chilled, whisk together the whites and milk/cream mixture. You can store it in the fridge at this point, simply whisk it well again before serving.
Once the custard base has completely chilled, whisk together the whites and milk/cream mixture. You can store it in the fridge at this point, simply whisk it well again before serving.

Ready to Serve!

I make a non alcoholic eggnog most of the time, because it's generally not a good idea to spike the kids. But you can certainly whisk in rum, bourbon or whiskey right before serving if you like. Top with a little more nutmeg and you're good to go!
I make a non alcoholic eggnog most of the time, because it's generally not a good idea to spike the kids. But you can certainly whisk in rum, bourbon or whiskey right before serving if you like. Top with a little more nutmeg and you're good to go!

Check out the Quick Tutorial!

How to Separate Eggs Easily

Questions & Answers

    © 2017 Jan Charles

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      • AliciaC profile image

        Linda Crampton 6 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

        I confess that I bought eggnog today, but that was before I saw your recipe. Your version sounds so much better than the type bought in stores!

      • profile image

        Bull Johnson 6 months ago

        Great

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