Created on August 6, 2023

The Amaretto Sour, an elegant cocktail with a charming Italian lineage, combines the sweet and nutty notes of amaretto with the tangy burst of citrus. As delightful to the taste buds as it is to the eyes, this cocktail is an easy-to-make delicacy that's been celebrated worldwide for its balanced yet vibrant flavor profile.

Yellow, foamy Amaretto Sour in a rocks glass filled with ice, garnished with an orange slice and cherries.


  • 1 ½ Ounces Amaretto
  • 1 Ounce Lemon Juice
  • ½ Ounce Simple Syrup
  • 1 Egg White
  • 1 Orange Slice (garnish)
  • 1 Maraschino Cherry (garnish)


  1. Pour the amaretto, lemon juice, simple syrup, and egg white into a shaker without ice.
  2. Dry shake (without ice) vigorously for about 20 seconds, to create the foam.
  3. Add ice, and shake again for about 15 seconds to chill.
  4. Double strain into a rocks glass filled with ice.
  5. Garnish with an orange slice and maraschino cherry.
  6. Enjoy!

Recipe Tips

  • Use Fresh Lemon Juice: Bottled juice just won't provide the same fresh, vibrant tang. Squeeze your lemons just before you make the drink to ensure the best flavor.

  • Shake it Well: This will help combine the flavors and create a wonderful froth if you're using egg white. Aim for at least 20 seconds of vigorous shaking.

  • Double Strain: If you're using egg white, double strain the cocktail to remove any residual solids, providing a smoother drink.

  • Chill Your Glassware: An often overlooked step, but chilling your glass beforehand will keep your cocktail cooler for a longer period, on top of giving it a smoother drinking experience.

  • Experiment with Egg White Alternatives: If you're vegan or simply don't like the idea of using egg white, try aquafaba (the liquid in a can of chickpeas). It has similar properties to egg white and won't alter the taste of your cocktail.

What's In An Amaretto Sour?

An Amaretto Sour is a blend of four main ingredients: Amaretto, lemon juice, simple syrup, and egg white.

Amaretto: Amaretto is a sweet Italian liqueur that predominantly features an almond flavor. Its rich, nutty sweetness plays a crucial part in defining the taste of an Amaretto Sour.

Lemon Juice: The fresh lemon juice in this recipe counters the sweetness of the amaretto. Its zesty tang creates a lovely balance in the cocktail, providing a refreshing punch that lifts the entire drink.

Simple Syrup: This is a mix of equal parts sugar and water, heated until the sugar dissolves. In the Amaretto Sour, it adds a bit more sweetness, smoothing out any harsh edges and helping to unite the amaretto and lemon juice.

Egg White: It contributes a creamy, frothy texture that makes the cocktail more satisfying to drink. It also lends a smooth finish that makes the cocktail feel more rounded and complete.

Finally, the cocktail is garnished with a slice of lemon and a maraschino cherry, adding a touch of color and a hint of extra flavor.

Best Amaretto For An Amaretto Sour

The brand of amaretto you choose can make a significant difference. For an upscale, quality choice, Luxardo Amaretto offers a beautiful depth of flavor. It boasts a velvety texture with profound almond and vanilla notes, which will elevate your cocktail.


The Amaretto Sour is a fascinating cocktail with a history as rich as its flavor profile.

The key player in this drink, Amaretto, has its roots deep in Italian history. This almond-flavored liqueur dates back to the 16th century, borne out of a romantic tale involving a Saronno church artist and his muse. But it wasn't until many centuries later, across the Atlantic, that our celebrated cocktail took shape.

The exact origin of the Amaretto Sour is a bit hazy, as is the case with many cocktails, but it's generally agreed upon that it was born in the United States sometime during the 20th century.

It was during the post-World War II era, around the 1940s and 1950s, that it first began to appear in bartending guides. The cocktail emerged during a time when sweet and sour cocktails were very much in vogue, and the Amaretto Sour fit this bill perfectly.

The Amaretto Sour continues to hold its own in the ever-evolving world of cocktails. Its appearance in the hit TV series "Mad Men," attests to its enduring appeal.

Over the years, the recipe has seen numerous tweaks and variations, with bartenders adding their personal spin, but the heart of the cocktail – the sweet and sour harmony – remains unaltered.

Today, the Amaretto Sour is celebrated not just in the U.S., but across the globe. Its balance of sweet amaretto and tangy lemon, underlined by a frothy texture, makes it a favorite amongst cocktail lovers.


What Does An Amaretto Sour Taste Like?

An Amaretto Sour offers a delightful mix of sweet, sour, and bitter notes. The amaretto brings in a robust sweetness, laced with hints of almond and vanilla. The fresh lemon juice introduces a zesty tang, adding a refreshing counterpoint to the sweetness.

If you opt for an egg white, you'll find it creates a rich, silky mouthfeel, while a touch of simple syrup can smooth out the edges, enhancing the overall balance of this delightful cocktail.