Image adapted from emma trithart, Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0

It wouldn’t be summer without spiked party punch recipes.

The grill is fired up, chips ‘n’ dip are set on the patio table, and the crisp salad has been tossed and chilled. But something’s still missing from this summer backyard setup … Where’s your oversized glass bowl of freshly prepared punch? When planning your summer menu, don’t forget to put some love into your drink planning. Sure, a cold beer or Pinot Grigio will wash down that grilled salmon and caprese salad, but there’s no better time of year for fresh punch. Here are 4 spiked party punch recipes to enjoy this season.

  1. Get bold with pomegranate. From Food & Wine, a recipe for Sparkling Pomegranate Punch brings together ruby red pomegranate, sweet Riesling, and cold bubbly to make for one seriously saucy punch. Tip: Add a few scoops of vanilla gelato to the punch bowl for a creamy, elegant contrast to the sassy citrus flare of the drink.
  2. Make a rosier sangria. Traditional sangria gets a perky facelift in this recipe for Rose Geranium Sangria, from our very own editor-in-chief Laura Klein. Rose-scented geranium add a fabulously feminine touch, while the tantalizing aromas of blood oranges, lemons and mixed berries invigorate your senses.
  3. Keeping it simple—simply fruit-filled. As always, Martha Stewart delivers a recipe that needs no frills, just a handful of no-brainer ingredients that come together perfectly. Here, her understated Champagne Punch is done with just sparkling wine as the base, and a healthy dose of peaches, berries, and a lemon-simple syrup mixture to bring it all together.
  4. It’s easy being green … punch? If you’re a fan of the herbal, crisp flavor of a good gin, you’ll love this recipe for Cucumber Lemonade Gin Punch from Alton Brown. Cucumbers, lemons, and a bit of sugar come together with plain ol’ gin and ice to make for one giant mason jar of summer refreshment. Tip: In addition to the cucumbers, toss in blackberries, orange slices, and fresh mint for the infusion. Then, to serve, add a few scoops of sorbet and enjoy the summery tangy flavors.

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Image adapted from emma trithart, Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0