Irish Car Bomb and Other Guinness Cocktail & Shot Recipes

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Irish Car Bomb is a relatively single recipe bomb shot made with Irish cream and Irish Whiskey dropped into a glass of Guinness. It is basically two drinks, drank together for a cocktail that will take you places. Relatively simple but takes courage to drink in a chug, it takes time getting used to.

Created by Charles Burke Cronin Oat in 1979 as a St. Patrick’s Drink, it became a rather controversial drink. The ingredients for this drink are all Irish, made with Irish cream and coffee liqueur. Later, the Irish whiskey was added and the drink was officially named Irish Car Bomb. 

The name which was meant to be innocent, mainly due to the “explosion” it creates when the shot is dropped into the beer. However, the gory details of the detonation of more than 20 car bombs in Belfast, Ireland in 1972 is brought to mind by this cocktail. No wonder that even the makers of the main ingredients purposely fail to mention Irish Car Bomb in their St. Patrick’s promotional ads annually. 

In his book, Oat regretted naming the cocktail thus. In fact, ordering that cocktail in any Irish pub can get you kicked out early because the Irish likened the enormity of the 1972 Belfast bombing to the 9/11 Twin Tower incident. Surely, no one would mess with a people so traumatized with such an event by ordering it on the one day they celebrate their foremost saint.

Guinness plays a major role in this cocktail and includes several recipes using this beer in this list.

Irish Car Bomb


Bailey's Irish cream

Jameson Irish Whiskey

1 bottle Guinness Draught 


Fill a shooter glass with equal parts Irish cream and Irish whiskey.

Pour beer into a wide-mouthed glass. Tip the

Drop the shooter inside it and drink.

Our Pick

Simplest Cocktail

The simplest on this list is the Guinness Red Velvet. No fancy garnishes, readily available ingredients, no shaking and definitely no shaky layering. Just throw the two ingredients in and you’re good to go.

Most decadent

The most decadent on this list is the Chocolate Guinness Shooter. It’s just the cocktail that will make you forget your diet. With the chocolate swirl, ice cream and whipped cream on top, none is as sinfully decadent.

Most Intriguing

The most intriguing recipe in this list is the Guinness Affogato, how brewed coffee would work with beer. Definitely want to taste that.

Guinness Cocktails

Guinness is a dark Irish dry beer and is considered as the best-selling alcoholic drink in Ireland. Made with malted barley and roasted unmalted barley, it started with humble beginnings when Arthur Guinness started to brew ales in a leased brewery then exported his first few barrels to Great Britain. During the first centuries of brewing, Guinness only produced three variations of a single beer. One of them is the porter or single stout or plain beer. Another is the double stout and the third is the foreign stout. “Stout” refers to the beer strength but later, the word denoted the body and color of the beer. 

Lighter beers tend to skunk earlier than dark beers. It loses its distinctive taste due to the breaking down of the molecule in the beer and recombining with a sulfuric compound as a result of exposure to UV light. Skunked beer is worse than stale wine so be sure to drink it sooner. Chilling it doesn’t resolve the skunking so it is better to drink warm beer than UV-exposed beer. To counter the skunking, beers are bottled in amber bottles or UV-protected glass bottles. 

Guinness Black and Blonde

Black and blonde is a beauty to behold. Made with just two versions of the Guinness, it highlights the contrast how one stout can largely differ from another, considering they both come from the same brewery.

Draught beer usually comes with the tap but not everyone can afford a tap for a home bar so Guinness decided to bottle those so many can enjoy it. It skunks easier compared to the darker beers. 


10oz Guinness Blond American Lager

10oz Guinness Draught

Instruction to make 

Fill a beer glass with lots of ice.

Pour in the blond lager then the draught.

The resulting cocktail is layered with a lighter one on the bottom. 

Guinness Newly Minted

It sounds like a new coin but the name is actually a play on the mint which is the essence on the creme de menthe. It gives a new character to an otherwise just bitter beer. Containing 7.5%ABV, the Guinness Extra Stout traces its roots back in 1801 when it was first brewed by Arthur Guinness. No need to question the quality of the beer - if it survived centuries in the market, then it is a good one. Try using the Extra Stout with the Irish Car Bomb for a stronger kick. If you are not a fan of the extra stout, you can always choose draught. It works just as well. 


0.25oz LourAnn Super Strength Creme de Menthe

8oz Guinness Extra Stout

Instruction to make

Fill a low-stemmed chalice with lots of ice.

Add the creme de menthe.

Add the Guinness Extra Stout. Garnish with spanked mint for more aroma. Spanking the mint is simply smacking the sprig on your hand. It releases the essential oils for a more jazzed up aroma.

Guinness Parts Unknown

Blended rum, blackcurrant liqueur and the rest of the ingredients come together for a cocktail that will transport you out of this world - thus, parts unknown. The lemon juice and the orgeat brings back memories of the sour, only this one uses beer. 


1.5oz Ron Zacapa

0.5oz lemon juice

0.75oz creme de cassis (Monin Blackcurrant Premium Syrup)

0.25oz Liber & Co. Real Orgeat

1.5oz Guinness Draught

Instruction to make

Fill a shaker with lots of ice.

Pour the ingredients into the shaker and give it a good shake.

Strain into a highball glass.

Shake together with lots of ice

St. James Flip

This frothy sweet cocktail is a true treat for those who want a bitter and sweet gustatory experience. Blackstrap rum is naturally sweet as it is made with black strap molasses as one of these ingredients. Back then, the black strap rum is so smuggled that the patron has little to no chance at tracing its origins. The dark color of the black strap rum belies its sweetness and coupled with the condensed milk, it balances the strong body and bitterness of the Guinness Extra Stout.


1 oz black strap rum

0.5oz sweetened condensed milk

1.5oz Guinness Foreign Extra Stout

Half of a fresh egg

Grated nutmeg as garnish

Instruction to make

Fill a shaker with ice. Shake the egg vigorously until frothy.

Strain it and add one half of the froth back into the shaker.

Add the other ingredients, except the nutmeg and continue shaking.

Strain into a wine glass.

Garnish with grated nutmeg.

Guinness Irish Honey

The lovely honey flavor and aroma on the Bushmills is a slight upgrade to the classic version of this liquor. Add to it the creamy creme de cacao and you’re on the way to cocktail heaven. 


1oz Bushmills Irish Honey Whiskey

0.5oz Top Shelf Creme de Cacao

1.5oz Guinness Draught

Fill a shaker with ice.

Shake ingredients together. 

Strain into a martini glass.

Garnish with The Spice Hunter Whole Nutmeg.

Guinness Irish Summer

Ale is brewed differently than the lagers although they are both still beers. The lager uses bottom fermenting where the yeast is found at the bottom of the tank and it takes longer to ferment than the ales. The ale, on the other hand, uses top fermenting where the yeast thrives in warm temperature and takes shorter brewing time. Guinness is a type of an ale so substituting it with the Smithwick’s Irish Ale is a good choice. 


4oz Italian orange soda 

8oz Smithwick’s Premium Irish Ale

Instruction to make

Fill a beer glass with lots of ice.

Add the Italian orange soda and Irish ale.

Stir and serve.

Guinness Bloody Mary

Who doesn’t love this brunch staple? Take it a notch higher by adding beer to the usual vodka. Known as the blank canvas of cocktails, the Bloody Mary surely welcomes this version. Customize the garnishing according to your preference although we kept it to the minimum here with just the lettuce. 


1.5oz vodka

3oz Campbell's Tomato Juice

2 pinches McCormick Celery Salt

2 pinches Badia Spices Ground Pepper

2 pinches Old Bay Seafood Seasoning

2 dashes Tabasco

2 dashes Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce

Splash of fresh lemon

2oz Guinness Draught

Instruction to make

Fill a shaker with lots of ice.

Add all the ingredients into the shaker.

Give it a good shake until well chilled.

Strain into a low-stemmed chalice.

Garnish with lettuce.

Guinness Wilde Oscar Old Fashioned

This is the classic Old Fashioned recipe made better with Guinness, however, instead of using plain sugar, this one used simple syrup. There is not much sweetness in this cocktail. However, if you like the taste of plain sugar better, take it to a higher level by wetting a sugar cube with the Angostura Bitters. Pour in the bourbon and Guinness but don’t stir to just slowly release the sugar and the bitters.


Instruction to make

  1. Combine all the ingredients into an old-fashioned glass.
  2. Add lots of ice and stir.
  3. Garnish with a lemon slice.

Baby Guinness Shot

This baby doesn’t have any Guinness in it but the coffee liqueur and Irish cream did it, being the main ingredients of the original Irish Car Bomb Cocktail. This is a layered drink, with the lighter colored Irish cream floating on the darker coffee liqueur.


1.25oz coffee liqueur

0.25oz Irish cream

Prepare a shot glass.

Fill it with the coffee liqueur.

Using a spoon, float on top of the coffee liqueur.

Guinness Black Russian

The classic Black Russian is a cocktail made from vodka and coffee liqueur. This recipe added Coke and Guinness to add more kick to the cocktail.


1 oz vodka

1 oz coffee liqueur

3 oz coke

3 oz Guinness Draught

Instruction to make

Add ice into an old-fashioned glass

Add all the ingredients.

Stir and serve.

Dessert Cocktails

Gone are the days when dessert is only eaten. Frozen cocktails are the fad now. Adding ice cream to the usual Guinness cocktails adds the sweetness to the otherwise bitter cocktail.

Guinness Float

A bitter cocktail can be a bit overwhelming, much less drinking just the beer. The taste of Guinness can take time to develop but adding ice cream takes the edge from it.


2 scoops vanilla ice cream

1 tbsp Irish cream

6oz Guinness Draught

Instruction to make

Place 2 scoops of ice cream in a old-fashioned glass.

Add the Irish cream and Guinness.

Top with more ice cream.

Guinness Affogato

Affogato is a coffee-based dessert that takes a new life in this brewed coffee and Guinness dessert cocktail. This is a wonderful treat for brewed coffee lovers who love to indulge themselves. Instant coffee might work but nothing beats the freshly brewed espresso.


1 oz brewed coffee

2 scoops vanilla ice cream

4 oz Guinness Draught

1 tbsp Irish cream

Instruction to make

Prepare the brewed coffee. Let cool.

Fill a glass mug with the Guinness.

Add two scoops of ice cream.

Pour the coffee and the Irish cream on top of the ice cream.

Stir to mix well and serve.

Chocolate Guinness Shooter


Chocolate sauce

Dream Whip Whipping Cream, whisk until frothy

2 scoops vanilla ice cream

3 oz Guinness Draught

Instruction to make

Drizzle chocolate syrup on the inside of a shot glass.

Add the ice cream into the glass.

Add the Guinness and top with more chocolate syrup.

Top with 1 tbsp of whipping cream.

Guinness Red Velvet

The velvet is symbolic of opulence and decadence because only the well-off can afford the fabric bearing the name. The red velvet is among the pricier velvet fabrics, only after the purple one. The smoothness of velvet is evoked in this beautiful cocktail with the addition of the champagne while its strength is celebrated by the Guinness. Just make sure everything is well chilled so you don’t need to add ice. The perfect blend of these individual liquors gave it its decadent name. 


3 oz Guinness Draught

3 oz Moscato

Instruction to make

Fill a champagne glass with ice. Set aside until the glass sweats.

Remove the ice and all the water in the glass.

Add the Guinness and the champagne.

Stir and serve.

Guinness Black Velvet

Another cocktail is inspired by the fabric that is made fit for royalty - the velvet. The black velvet that inspired this cocktail is strong and luxurious, just as the Guinness Black Velvet is. The layered look reminds us of the gold-trimmed gowns of queens and duchesses in the middle ages. Use the sweet champagne to even out the bitter Guinness.


1 can of Guinness Extra Stout


Instruction to make

Tilt the wine glass  while pouring the Guinness. Be careful for any froth or your Black Velvet will be a flop. Fill the champagne glass up to a third.

Put the glass upright and let it settle for a while.

Position a spoon large enough to fill the top of the glass, slightly tilted, back of the spoon upwards.

Slowly pour the champagne over the tilted spoon. Fill up until full.

Guinness Black and Tan

Dubbed as the poor man’s Black Velvet, this cocktail is the reverse of the Black Velvet method where the lighter liquor, this time a beer on the lower part of the cocktail. Make sure all the beers are very cold.


6oz Guinness Blonde Lager

4oz Guinness Extra Stout

Instruction to make

Tilt the beer glass and slowly pour the blonde lager, about half. 

Put it upright and let settle for a few beats.

Position the spoon over the glass on a slight tilt, back of the spoon up.

Slowly and steadily pour the extra stout over the spoon until the glass is full.

Other Beer Cocktails

Similar to the Guinness Float, give your kids something to indulge in while adults enjoy their bonding time with this root beer float.  For a beer lover like you, plan a get-together with old friends and throw the perfect Moscow Mule party. A party is not a party without food. Try this selection of foods that go well with your favorite beer.

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