Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes & The Champagne Cocktail

Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

Hey guys! I hope everyone that celebrated Christmas this week had a fantastic one. This was the first year that I did not spend Christmas eve and day at my parents’ home. (I had to push the trip back to this weekend due to some scheduling issues.) It was a little strange, but we managed to have a fine little holiday here, complete with beef Wellington and hot buttered rum. And that time not spent traveling meant I could do a little New Year’s Eve planning on Thursday!

Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

I’ve become very fond of bringing a bottle of Angostura and a box of sugar cubes to New Year’s Eve parties, then making friends by pushing champagne cocktails on guests. They’re simple and they look cool, which makes them a perfect low-maintenance party drink. For some reason, however, I’ve had a difficult time finding sugar cubes around here. I spent about 15 minutes staring at box upon box of sugar in the baking aisle of a Price Chopper last year, convinced I was simply overlooking the sugar cubes. I wasn’t. I then begrudgingly spent $12 on demerara sugar cubes at a natural foods market, and grumbled about it for several days after.

Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

So this year, I decided to make my own. Then it occurred to me that, not only could I make the sugar cubes, but I could make them with Angostura. They would be pink. I’d get to put them in a cute jar (complete with mini tongs!) and be that crazy person that made sugar cubes. WIN.

These are crazy easy to make. I have these silicone mini ice cube molds, which make the most perfect sugar cubes. If you don’t have something similar, don’t despair. You can press the sugar into a large sheet, then cut them into cubes and let them dry in a 250° oven. They’ll be a little more “rustic,” but hey, rustic = charming, right? I haven’t tried the oven method myself, but you can find instructions here.

Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

1 cup of superfine sugar
1 tablespoon (1/2 fl oz.) of Angostura bitters

Combine sugar and bitters in a bowl and stir until liquid is evenly distributed. Press into molds, packing it down as much as possible.

Microwave at 50% power for 20–30 seconds. Alternatively, you can let the molds sit out overnight to dry and harden. Once set, pop the cubes out of the mold.

Champagne Cocktail with Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes

Champagne Cocktail

1 Angostura sugar cube
twist of lemon

Place the sugar cube in the bottom of a champagne flute. (Add another dash of bitters if you like to really taste them — this is my preference.) Top with champagne, then garnish with the twist of lemon.

I hope you all have a wonderful New Year!

Champagne Cocktail with Homemade Angostura Sugar Cubes


    • says

      Thanks, Annette! (I was totally wishing I’d made multiple flavors after this first batch worked out so well. But hey, there’s still time!)

  1. says

    Cooler than the Rat Pack in January! How long do these last at room temperature? Also, our past experience with silicon molds has been that they leave a plastic-y taste on things, but I am guessing you have found a solution to that?

    • says

      Thanks, Sarah! :) I imagine they’d keep for at least 6 months (and quite possibly longer). I had a little taste of these once they cooled and didn’t detect any off flavors, so perhaps the short microwave time doesn’t allow for the mold to impart a weird taste, or I just lucked out. (Or it could just be the flavor of the bitters coming through strongly and covering up everything else.)

  2. says

    Wow, what an amazing idea! Real talk: I thought this sounded insane at first, but then I read the instructions & realized just how easy & doable they are. Yes please! Especially since champagne cocktails are definitely a drink of choice around here. And now I’m wondering whether there’s going to be a trend for homemade flavored sugar cubes in 2014… :)

    • says

      Haha! I know, right? DIY sugar cubes sounds like it would only be a thing for the craziest of people, but it’s so stupid easy. :)

      Hope you have a great new year, Eileen! xo

  3. Dee says

    This is so fabulous. I cant wait to try them for New Years and will definitely do a trial and taste test asap! Thanks for this great idea.

  4. says

    WOW, genius!! It’s really amazing that you made angostura sugar cubes Carey. MADE. From scratch. Plus your sugar cubes are waaay better-looking than the ones in the Wikihow article. They’re absolutely pristine! And the fact that they’re pink! That is just the cherry on top! I don’t think I’ve ever tried Angostura bitters before. What is it like? We’ve got champagne chilling away in the fridge, and I’m wondering if I should attempt fancy cool champagne cocktails tomorrow night as well. LIke maybe plain champagne just isn’t good enough?!? I want to impress people too! (But come to think of it, I would be too embarrassed because a couple friends are coming who are REALLY into drinks, and they would totally see through my hack drinkmaking!)

    Happy new year Carey!! It’s been so nice getting to know you this year. :) Best wishes for 2014!

    • says

      Thanks, Linda! Isn’t it crazy how perfect they look? I’d made them in molds of other shapes with rounder edges, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I first made the square ones. But they’re spot on. Sharp edges and all!

      Angostura bitters are super yummy. (This is my description when I don’t quite know how to describe something, and I’m stalling!) They’re bitter, of course, but they also have a warm, aromatic spice thing going on. I would highly recommend picking up a bottle and seeing where the NYE night takes you! It’s a classic cocktail, so it should garner respect from even the booze nerds. ;)

      Happy New Year, lady!!

    • says

      Thanks, Eva! I try to pretend I’m the opposite of girly when it comes to drinks, but I can’t resist this one with all the pink and fizziness goings on. :) Happy New Year!

  5. says

    Carey! This is beautiful, as always. It’s such a simple idea, and it sounds so tasty! That brilliant pink of those sugar cubes is so great. We can find Angostura bitters everywhere around here, but we can’t find Peychaud’s anywhere. Is that strange? I’d love to taste them side by side and really start learning about what bitters add to booze. Had I not been so tired last night, I probably could have put a drop of Angostura and a bit of sugar in my drink. I was on the couch in my sweats with my water glass of champagne. Keeping it classy! I hope you had a lovely New Year’s!

    • says

      Thanks, Brianne! And that’s so weird that you can’t find Peychaud’s. We seem to have an ok selection of bitters around here, although it’s dominated by Urban Moonshine since they’re in VT. Location-specific selection seems to be the case in a lot of places, but I thought Peychaud’s was nearly as common as Angostura! It’s an interesting one — anise is the predominant flavor, so it brings a whole different flavor profile to the party.

      Last night was fun! I dressed up in sparkles and snuck sugar cubes into everyone’s champagne glass for the 12:00am toast (which confused some people). I will definitely be enjoying a night on the couch in sweats tonight. :) Happy New Year to you and Kevin!

  6. says

    I so wan to be the cray person who makes sugar cubes, now. And I love that you didn’t just make sugar cubes, you flavored them in an awesome way. I’ve never had angostura in champagne, but it sounds fantastic — and the color of those sugar cubes just puts it over the top! What a perfect drink for the New Year!

  7. says

    YOOOO those sugar cubes are so ADORABLE. I don’t know why but little cube shaped food things, like cube shaped caramels or chocolates, are some of my favourites (actually I think I do know why and it has everything to do with stacking them up into rando structures. Weirdly satisfying.). But dude, making sugar cubes does not make you a crazy person. That’s totally cool and logical especially when they’re all pink and awesome. A crazy person is someone who sees freaking SUGAR DOILIES on Etsy to use in coffee and then proceeds to try and make them from egg-white-less royal icing and a piping bag. This person is me, that really did occur and it took forever. What happened? Well, I found that piping a whole doily of royal icing is a total pain resulting in hand cramps so resorted to making mini sugar snowflakes which I still have sitting in a drawer in the kitchen. Unused. THAT is crazy.

    PS. Happy New Year and Merry Christmas, friend!!

    • says

      Aaaaahahahahahahaha. Holy cow, sugar doilies! Piping bags are still one of my worst enemies, and to use them to pipe doilies by hand……omg. I think I’d have a nervous breakdown. :D

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Izy!!

  8. says

    That color is so pretty and your made these sugar cubes look absolutely stunning! I think if I ever made these, it will make a fine center piece in my dinning table and I would hesitate to finish it :)

    Happy New Year Carey! xx

    • says

      Thank you, Kankana! Aren’t they the cutest? I almost wished I’d tried out different bitters to see if I could achieve different colors. :)

      Happy New Year!!

  9. says

    I had no idea sugar cubes would be that easy to make! And adding bitters? Completely brilliant! This are totally gorgeous and I will be trying them very soon! Just as soon as I order some super small silicone molds! I’m glad you had a happy holiday season!

  10. Jataka says

    I love the idea of making your own sugar cubes, but could you also explain how you prepared the store bought cubes with the bitters? I have no problem getting sugar cubes where I live. Thanks.

  11. says

    Man I love Angostura. If I could sneak it into my breakfast oatmeal, I would. ….I guess I can. Hmm, new mission.

    Snazzy idea with these sugar cubes, and I am esp. excited by a previous comment’s recommendation of an old fashioned. Hell yes.

    • says

      Me too! I’ve been experimenting with sneaking it into non-boozy things. (Current obsession: Angostura + nutmeg. And Angostura + nutmeg compound butter…omg.) :)

  12. James says

    Fun and easy.

    I want to use my 2″ ice sphere mold, and make a sugar sphere. It would go great with that extra Jeroboam of Prosecco!

  13. says

    I’m sad I didn’t know about you and your blog when I was living in Vermont! Your recipes are lovely and your photos so beautiful. I was going to Neci actually, and perhaps we could have shared tips – oh well! Happy to see a Vermont food blogger and I’ll be a follower from now on!

  14. Tweety says

    I just made these for St. Patty’s Day using Irish Cream (which is green) Rim Trim sugar. They are curing as I write this, butt taste yummy!!

  15. JaneInCA says

    I LOVE this! But I’m having trouble getting them to set/harden. I’ve tried extra time in the microwave. Could it be not enough bitters? I measured carefully. Any help would be great!!

    • says

      If extra time in the microwave isn’t helping, it’s likely that there isn’t enough liquid. The mixture should be the consistency of damp sand when you press it into the molds, if that makes sense. :)

  16. says

    Wow. Thanks! I’ve always wanted to know how to make sugar cubes. I love the color of yours!

    Sorry, can’t say anything about the alcohol. I’m not allowed to drink yet. :)

  17. Cynthia says

    Planning a DIY May 2015 wedding and will be serving champagne cocktails (using Prosecco) for the wedding toast. Guests will have their choice between sugar cubes: Angostura bitters, Rosewater (just used same recipe swapping out rosewater for bitters and it turned out fabulously), Orange bitters, and, Creme de Violet.

    Aside from being unique, for those guests under the legal drinking age or, for those that are dry, we will be offering a champagne mocktail — using Ikea sparkling pear beverage instead of Prosecco — so that they too can participate in choosing their preferred sugar cube for their mocktail toast! http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/40226766/

    Thanks for the great idea!!

  18. Poppy Sampson says

    I made my first batch of Angostura sugar cubes tonight. We are celebrating our parents 90th birthdays this Sunday. Champagne is our beverage of choice so this is a pleasant addition to the celebration.


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