Bountiful Birthday Boozy Bears

Last month I hopped on the vodka gummy bear bandwagon. It was Friday morning and Saturday night I would be  going to a friend’s birthday party (who happens to have a thing for bears). I knew everyone around said that ideal gummies take 5 days to “marinate”, but I simply didn’t have that kind of time. I was up for the challenge though and figured the worst that could happen would be me having my own personal giant stash of vodka bears a few days after the party.

All the recipes I read said to keep the bears in the fridge as they absorbed the booze. I figured though, 1) They don’t need it; it’s straight up alcohol and sugar. Nothing to go bad anytime soon. And 2) Room temperature bears would absorb the liquid way more quickly than hard, refrigerated bears.

Since the vodka alone made for some perky bears, I wanted to tone down the burn factor and add a little sweetness. I had triple sec and organic apple juice on hand, so I threw some of that in there Saturday morning to meld with the bears. Saturday afternoon I noticed the bears starting to loosen up, so I kept them in the fridge until that night to try and maintain the structure of the bears (they end up somewhat delicate and jello-like, so you don’t want to go overboard with the mixing and tossing ((though the sound of these things stirring is out of control!))).

Whohoo! I’m happy to report my experiment worked wonderfully. I put them together to soak at around 11am on Friday, and they were tasty (and addictive, uh oh) and  jolly, squishy bears by 9pm Saturday night.

I got so excited by the finished product that I forgot to take the always-popular comparison photo of original bear and boozed bear. Whoopsies. The finished bears were definitely significantly bigger, and all around more fun.

What makes this whole process even more awesome than expected? My bears didn’t soak up all the liquid, so after straining the bears, I was left with some delicious. Gummy bear. Flavored. Vodka. I mean truly tasty libations. It’s a tad thick and perfectly sweet from all the bear goodness that seeped out. Ohh man. This shaken with ice and straight in a glass is quite a tasty treat. There was sort of a white filmy/sediment thing (I assume from the gelatin breaking down) so I strained that through a coffee filter, but in the end I don’t think it made much of a difference. It wasn’t worth the extra effort and is fine as is straight after bear removal.

I assume the key is to get good gummy bears since the majority of the flavor will come from those. Because of my time crunch, I bought the only gummy bears Costco had that morning, which happened to be a great tasting pick (Black Forest). It wasn’t very convenient though, as it was a box of 24 individual serving packages. haha.

Have you tried any other gummy candies this way? I’m wondering about worms, sour strips/belts etc. And of course adding different flavored vodkas/liquors/juices. Hmm. So many possibilities!

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9 Comments

Filed under Nosh

9 responses to “Bountiful Birthday Boozy Bears

  1. This is such an amazing idea! How long will the bears keep after they are soaked?

    • Well mine didn’t last beyond Sunday night, but it had nothing to do with them going bad. 😉 I’m guessing they’d last about a week in the fridge. They got pretty mushy/delicate, so maybe less time. I don’t think going bad will be a concern, though! They’re tasty!

      • Holly

        I just decided to try these last night when I went shopping for more booze, I like Midori and I had some lime vodka on hand that I don’t really care for so decided to make some. I bought two different kinds of gummy bears, one is the black forest which were really hard, and an off brand that were a lot softer. I made three containers… one with both kinds of gummys with the Midori and two others, one with the black forest gummys and one with the softer gummys with the lime vodka…. they are in the fridge right now since the recipes I have say 5 days also but I will be digging in saturday night even if they are not done (maybe friday night too)…. haha…

      • Yay for gummy experiments! Thanks for your comment. Mm. I’m not a fan of melon, but somehow am fine with Midori. 😉 I’m sure those gummies will be fantastic! And I wonder how the hard vs. soft bears will do. Let me know how they turn out and which is your favorite!

  2. Holly

    Well Midori isn’t overly “melon” tasting, its just sweet. And OH MY, did the Midori bears taste good, I had made half and half of the bears with Midori and Lime vodka, the Midori ones are sweet and you can’t taste the booze at all, I ate the whole batch and thought wow, that’s not very potent, and then I got up to walk…. haha, needless to say it worked awesome. I mixed the bears in a huge wine glass with Mt. Dew and the rest of the juice with the bears…. very good. The lime vodka bears are very very potent but still good, very powerful and I may try soaking them in juice to tame them down a bit. I now have in the fridge 4 mason (small ones) filled with different types of vodka flavors to try next weekend. As far as the gummy bears went both worked ok, the Black forest were still a bit hard in the middle and the off brand of soft ones were perfect after 4 days. Will do this often!

    • Sounds great!! I could go for those Midori bears right now! And the cocktail sounds good; the leftover booze is soooo tasty. You’re getting me excited to make more myself! I’ve only made them twice (second time I used gummy butterflies, worms, and swedish fish) but would love to play with some flavor combos. Thanks for the update!

  3. Melissa

    We’re still experimenting with soak times and whether to refrigerate or not but I highly recommend trying a batch with Vanilla Vodka.

  4. Kate

    I’ve been making these for a few years and I’ve always left them to soak room temp and then put them in a few hrs before the party. I use the big gummy bears an worms. Any gummies work though but it should be the same gummy texture as the bears/worms. I’ve tried others and they don’t work well (for me anyways). Also, my vodka of choice is raspberry. It adds to the fruity flavors of the gummies 🙂

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