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The Lunchbox Drink Recipe

The Lunchbox drink recipe is a very lovable cocktail. There’s nothing especially sophisticated about it – it just tastes incredibly good.

Lunchbox cocktail next to beer bottle and opener tool

It’s not even a very pretty drink: there’s no garnish, and it tends to look like a glass of weak beer. That’s because it is indeed beer-based.

The Lunchbox blends Southern Comfort and amaretto with orange juice and beer. That may sound like an odd combination at first, but it should also sound like a familiar one.

Southern Comfort, amaretto and orange juice appear together in the Alabama Slammer. The fourth ingredient in that cocktail is sloe gin, a very, very sweet berry liqueur.

So the Lunchbox is quite similar to the Alabama Slammer, only less sweet and without the berry notes. The small amount of beer gets lost in the rest of the flavors.

You might be wondering what’s the best beer to use in this drink. The answer is: pretty much anything you have on hand.

The beer tends to be dominated by all the other flavorful ingredients in this cocktail. So this is a good way to use up that beer sitting in the back of the fridge that you didn’t like very much on its own.

If you’re buying a beer to make this cocktail, you can go with whatever is halfway good and on sale. For this one as pictured, we used Harp Lager, which has a good flavor.

You can also try flavored beers, although this will change the profile of the drink. Just think about what would go well with the other flavors in the drink.

Overhead view of Lunchbox cocktail next to beer bottle and opener tool

The flavors here, in order of their appearance in your mouth, are: orange, the almond-cherry flavors of amaretto, peach, and hints of something fruity. And a little bit of spice and bitterness.

The “something fruity” comes from the beer and the whiskey base of the Southern Comfort. Mixed in with everything else, you mostly just pick up fruit notes.

And the mild bitterness comes from the beer, which cuts the sweetness of the drink. That makes it more complex than the purely sweet Alabama Slammer.

The natural bubbles in the beer give the cocktail a refreshing feeling. It’s not quite like carbonation, especially with this small amount of beer.

But it adds a little something special and memorable to the drink. And refreshing.

Closeup view of Lunchbox cocktail on table beside bottle of beer and beer opener

This is a very simple drink to make. You just pour all the ingredients in and stir. Or you can save the Southern Comfort for last, put it in a shot glass, and drop the shot glass in, Boilermaker style.

You can make this drink in big batches, hours or even a day ahead of a get-together. That makes it a great choice for tailgating parties.

If you enjoyed this one, try the Beer Margarita, which is a lot like a regular Margarita, only with beer and no orange liqueur or juice. It has lime-aid to give it some wonderful citrus flavor.

Or the Raspberry Beer, which is aptly named because it’s beer and it tastes like raspberry. You’ll taste the beer a little more in this one than the Lunchbox, so be sure to pick a good one. And then there’s the classic Boilermaker, which is even simpler to make. It’s basically spiked beer.

Lunchbox cocktail on table beside bottle of beer and beer opener
Yield: 1 drink


Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

The Lunchbox cocktail blends orange juice, beer, Southern Comfort and amaretto. It's sweet and surprisingly tasty.


  • 1 1/2 ounces Southern Comfort
  • 1 1/2 ounces amaretto
  • 3 1/2 ounces orange juice
  • 1 1/2 ounces beer


  1. Pour the orange juice into a highball glass first.
  2. Next pour the beer.
  3. Then pour the amaretto.
  4. Finally, pour the Southern Comfort.
  5. Alternately, you can put the Southern Comfort in a shot glass and drop it down in.
  6. Give it a quick stir.

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