A tasty (and creepy!) cocktail that gets its purple hue from blue curacao, grenadine, and cranberry juice. A perfectly purple cocktail for any party!

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Two purple people eater cocktails with a black background and with burning candles.

About Purple People Eater Cocktail

Halloween is one of the best holidays to have fun with festive food and drinks, and this spooky purple people eater cocktail is no exception.

Because, I mean, have you seen the deep purple hue of this drink? Or the bright purple sanding sugar? Both create a pretty drink on their own, but once you jazz it up with a black or orange straw, you’ve got an iconic look that’s perfect for a Halloween party or movie night.

Can this drink be made in advance?

Yes, it totally can!

If you’d like to whip up a large batch in advance (be sure to check the “how to measure this cocktail section”), feel free to whip up as much as you need and store it in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Can you decorate the glasses in advance, too?

Yes, the glasses could be decorated in advance, too, but be careful; it doesn’t take much for the sugar to fall off, whether it be gravity or a gentle touch. And how well the sugar sticks to the glass will depend on what you use to adhere the sugar to the glass (whether it be simple syrup, fruit juice, etc).

Because how well this works could depend on a lot of factors (like temperature, humidity) I would recommend testing this with one glass and see how long the decoration holds up. Store the glass in the refrigerator or a cool place to help keep the sugar from sliding down the glass. And no matter what you plan, I’d recommend not letting the prepared glasses sit for more than four to six hours before serving.

Close up of prepared purple people eater cocktail.

What’s in a purple people eater cocktail?

To craft this purple drink, you’ll need to have the following on hand:

  • Vodka – Any non-flavored type or brand will do.
  • Blue Curacao – A sweet liquor with a blue hue. Flavored from the dried peel of bitter oranges.
  • Cranberry Juice – This helps add some fruity flavor to the drink as well as some strong coloring.
  • Sweet and Sour Mix – A standard in many mixed drinks, this adds some sweetness with a dash of tartness.
  • Grenadine – Another mixed drink favorite, this helps smooth out the flavor while also adding a strong dose of red coloring. Also helps sub some of the tartness of the cranberry juice.

Can you make this drink in advance?

Yes, you totally can mix the core drink ingredients in advance! Prepare the drink as instructed and then store it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before serving.

Can you make a big batch of purple people eater cocktail?

Yes! There are no special “effects” with this drink (such as layering, gradients, etc) so it’s perfectly safe to mix this drink and serve it in a big batch.

And in order to make a big batch, all you need to do is measure this drink in parts.

Recipes that measure in parts usually mean it’s written so that you can adjust the size of the drink to whatever you want. The measurements they give you (1 part, 1/2 part, etc) are so you can keep the ratio of the ingredients correct.

For example, let’s say you wanted to make one drink – this typically means you’re using 1 standard shot glass for measuring. So then when the recipe says “1 part” you would interpret that amount as “1 standard shot glass” full. If the recipe says “1/2 part” you’d fill the shot glass halfway so that it’s “1/2 standard shot glass.” OR, let’s say you wanted to make enough drinks for a few friends. When making the drink you could interpret “1 part” as “1 cup” (or “1/2 part” to “1/2 cup.”)

Given the above, to measure a purple people eater cocktail in parts, you would need:

  • 1 1/2 part vodka
  • 1 part blue curacao
  • 1 part sweet and sour mix
  • 1 part grenadine
  • 1 part cranberry juice, can also use cran-grape or grape juice

Keep in mind that the above is just for mixing the core drink ingredients. It does not include the measurements for decorating individual drinks, since how much you need will depend on the type of glasses you use and how many guests you have. You can also choose to totally skip decorating the glasses to make serving this drink easier.

notes & tips for this purple cocktail

More Halloween themed recipes

More fun drinks

How to make a purple people eater cocktail

This next part is only a photo tutorial of the recipe steps. If you’re looking for the full recipe measurements and instructions, scroll down to Recipe Details.

Step 1 – If you’d like to make your glasses festive, decorate them by dipping the rims in simple syrup, then dusting the top with purple sanding sugar. I find it easiest to add the simple syrup and sugar to two separate plates and dip the glasses that way.

Step 2 – In a cocktail shaker, add the following ingredients: ice, vodka, blue curacao, sweet and sour mix, grenadine, and cranberry juice. Give it a good shake until everything is combined.

Step 3 – Pour the mixed drink into the prepared glass filled with ice.

Step 4 – Serve and enjoy!

Recipe Details

Two purple people eater cocktails with a black background and with burning candles.
4.28 from 101 votes

Purple People Eater Cocktail

5 minutes prep
335 kcal
Yields: 1 drink
A tasty (and creepy!) cocktail that gets its purple hue from blue curacao, grenadine, and cranberry juice. A perfect cocktail for any type of party!



  • On a small plate, add purple sugar. Wet the rim of a glass with simple syrup (or cranberry juice or just water) and gently dab the top the glass in the purple sugar, coating the rim. Set glass aside.
    simple syrup, purple sugar
  • Combine vodka, blue curacao, sweet and sour mix, grenadine, and cranberry juice in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake until combined.
    1 1/2 ounces vodka, 1 ounce blue curacao, 1 ounce sweet and sour mix, 1 ounce grenadine, 1 ounce cranberry juice
  • Fill the sugar-coated glass with ice. Pour purple people eater cocktail mix into glass until full.
  • Serve immediately.


Serving: 1drink | Calories: 335kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 0.1g | Fat: 0.04g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.02g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 16mg | Potassium: 38mg | Fiber: 0.03g | Sugar: 35g | Vitamin A: 13IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.1mg

I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I’m not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.

Author: Chrisy

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Recipe Rating


    • Kathleen

    Being from Minnesota, this drink works well for football season with the Mn Vikings, also known as “the purple-people-eaters”!

    • That’s so true Kathleen, I never thought of that! 😀

    • Catherine Hannigan

    Where do you get purple sugar?

    • Hey Catherine! You can use purple sanding sugar / purple sugar sprinkles like this: http://amzn.to/2cCWjjk. This time of year you can usually find a nice, deep purple in the Halloween baking displays.

    • Mary` Goodman

    just learning, just what does 1 part mean?

    • Hey Mary! For drinks, “1 part” typically means 1 standard shot glass (the short, stout ones, measuring about 1.5 oz) but you can also think of it as a ratio. So for example, say you were making these drinks for a big party – you could replace “part” with “cup” and measure out all the ingredients using cups and still make a drink that tastes the same (but you’d have a LOT more of it!) Using that example, that would mean all of the ingredients would be 1 cup, except for the vodka, which would be 1 1/2 cups.

      Hope that helps! 😀

    • Amber Harvell

    Such a beautiful and tasty looking drink!! 😀

    • Marsha | Marsha’s Baking Addiction

    Such a gorgeous colour! I think I need to make these for Halloween!

    • Thanks Marsha! If you made the drink, I hope you liked it 😀

    • Debbie

    I would drink this just for the purple sugar. So cool!

    • I know, right? Thanks Debbie!

    • Ashley

    Yum! This drink looks and sounds delicious!

    • Katalina @ Peas & Peonies

    Love the purple color, these are so festive, love love love the color!

    • Dia

    Stumbled and tweeted! This looks so good. I love cranberry and vodka lol Thanks for sharing

    • Emily

    Wow, these are so beautiful and perfect for Halloween parties! I want one now!

    • Des @ Life’s Ambrosia

    WHat a gorgeous color! Prfect for Halloween and now I am going to be singing that song all day!

  • Such a stunning cocktail! Not so much into Haloween this year but I would love one of these purple beauties 🙂

    • Julie @ Texan New Yorker

    Love this! So fun!

    • Christine from Cook the Story

    What a fun Halloween cocktail. So creative!

    • Florian @ContentednessCooking

    This looks so colorful and inviting! Amazing color, beautiful!

    • Lauren

    This is so pretty and I love vodka so I bet I would really enjoy this one!

    • Jamie | The Kitchenarium
    • 5 stars

    These are seriously fantastic. I know what I will be sipping on while handing out candy on Saturday. Cheers!

    • Thanks Jamie! If you made it, I hope you liked it!

    • Kristina
    • 5 stars

    so pretty! I love a fun and festive vodka cocktail…

    • Amy @ Accidental Happy Baker
    • 5 stars

    Oh, I love your photos. Purple is my favorite color so I would be all about these fun drinks.

    • Angie
    • 5 stars

    That looks like fun and it’s GORGEOUS! Great photos!

        • Tammy

        Have you tried this drink with gin? I can not drink vodka.

        • Bennington

        Looks good…as a bartender I always used the sour mix to rim my glasses. I like the tartness it brings to a sugar rim and the touch of sweetness to the salt rim.

      • Char

      Tammy I’d go with white rum rather than ginyo replace the vodka in this.