Kentucky Mule

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Looking for a new favorite cocktail? How about a Moscow Mule with a twist? Bourbon and a sprig of mint give this Kentucky Mule its distinctive Southern charm. This drink is perfectly sippable. It’s bright and refreshing and slightly zingy, thanks to the ginger. Make this one to enjoy on the front porch in the evening or whip up a round to toast a group of friends.

glass of kentucky mule

I’ll admit, my enjoyment of bourbon keeps growing! Once a former bourbon hater, drinks just like this have me finally appreciating this spirit and seeing what all the fuss is about. Make sure to check out a list of my favorite bourbon cocktails for more ideas!

Why You’ll Love This Cocktail

Here’s why you’ve got to give this bourbon drink a try!

  • It’s simple to make with just a few ingredients.
  • This drink is flavorful, yet light.
  • Hosting a group? It’s easy to make this in batches, but you can also easily whip up individual drinks. It really is quick and simple—I time it as under a minute to put together!
two glasses with Kentucky mules.

What is a Kentucky Mule?

First of all, I didn’t invent this recipe; it’s been around for quite some time. That being said, a Kentucky Mule is a variation on the classic Moscow Mule.

The main difference is the liquor. Moscow Mules are vodka-based, while a Kentucky Mule follows the same recipe, except bourbon is used in place of vodka.

As with any mule, the resulting cocktail is fresh, bright, and flavorful. And it’s easy to drink. Unless you don’t like ginger, I think you’ll enjoy this cocktail.

two Kentucky mule cocktails.


The ingredient list is short and sweet. You only need ice and a few ingredients:

  • Bourbon: I’ve shared my favorite below (Four Roses Single Barrel), but you can use whatever bourbon you like. Bonus points if it’s from Kentucky.
  • Ginger Beer: Sample a few and see which one you prefer. My current go-to is Fever Tree. It’s available at most grocery stores or online.
  • Fresh Lime Juice: Freshly squeezed is a must. We’re only using three ingredients, so you want the best of the best.
  • Mint: Every cocktail needs a garnish. Mint is perfect for a Kentucky Mule.
Kentucky Mule made with ginger beer, bourbon, and lime.

How to Make

Now that we’ve talked about what goes into a Kentucky Mule, let’s make one! (You will find a printable recipe card near the end of this post with a full list of ingredients and instructions.)

If you’ve ever made a mule, you know how simple it is to put together.

  1. Add ice to a glass or mug. See the FAQ section below for more info on this!
Pouring a moscow mule made with bourbon into a glass
  1. Add the bourbon, fresh lime juice, and ginger beer. I listed the “standard” measurements in the recipe card below, but feel free to add more or less of any ingredient to suit your tastes. Again, I’m using the Four Roses Single Barrel. It’s perfection here.
Adding a squeeze of lime to a kentucky mule cocktail
Pouring a pre-mixed kentucky mule in a glass
  1. Stir and garnish. Stir everything to combine and garnish with a wedge of lime and a sprig of mint.
  2. Cheers! Sip and enjoy, my friends.

I told you this drink is easy to make! It also tastes wonderful. If you’re not careful, this Kentucky Mule might become your new go-to cocktail.

How to Make a Kentucky Mule cocktail

Frequently Asked Questions

What Bourbon Do You Use for a Kentucky Mule?

As I mentioned, it doesn’t matter what bourbon you use. However, if you’re new to bourbon, here are a few recommendations:

  • Four Roses Single Barrel: This might be my favorite.  (As you can see in the photo, the bottle is just about empty!) There are several varieties, so make sure you get the Single Barrel. It’s the best. Plus, it’s made in Kentucky, which is perfect for this recipe!
  • Redbreast 12 Year: I was introduced to this last year when I was in Ireland. It makes an amazing Old Fashioned.
  • Bulleit: Both of the previous options are top-shelf, so they are an investment. If you’re looking for something more budget-friendly, try Bulleit Bourbon.
Redbreast and Four Roses whiskey

What type of glass should I serve this in?

Traditionally, a mule is served in a copper mug. This helps keep the drink cold. However, bourbon drinks are usually served in a lowball glass, so you could go either way.

I had these beautiful hand-painted glasses I found antiquing with a grouse and a pheasant on them, so I decided to use them instead of copper mugs. I felt the glasses fit the theme a bit better and wanted a chance to show them off! Mission accomplished.

homemade Kentucky Mule

More Bourbon-Based Cocktails to Try:

I hope you’ll give this delicious Kentucky mule a try. If you do, please leave a comment and a 5-star rating below. 

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How to Make a Kentucky Mule #cocktail #recipe #kentuckymule #bourbon #mule #gingerbread #lime

Kentucky Mule

Bourbon and a sprig of mint give this Kentucky Mule its distinctive Southern charm. I just know you’re going to love it.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: bourbon, ginger beer, kentucky mule, mule
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 3 minutes
Servings: 1 cocktail
Calories: 173kcal



  • Fill a copper mug or rocks glass with ice.
  • Pour in the bourbon and lime juice. Top with ginger beer.
  • Stir.
  • Garnish with a lime wedge and mint sprig.


Calories: 173kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 9mg | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin C: 4mg | Iron: 1mg

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Recipe Rating


  1. Sounds good and we have bourbon! Just to remind your readers that it’s ginger BEER not ginger ale…… You got it right, I can see by the colour when you pour it, but it’s just so lovely and ginger aile will not cut it. Cheers!!