Sloe Gin

The fruit of the blackthorn tree has been used for many years to make Sloe Gin, a traditional winter liqueur. It is often associated with Christmas and in recent years has enjoyed a return to popularity. Sloes can be found growing on blackthorn trees in many hedgerows and thickets.

Sloes growing in September
  • Preparation time Two hours (prep. time)
  • Cooking time Two months (cooking time)
  • Serves Plenty


  • 1 litre bottle of gin (it doesn't need to be expensive)
  • 250g sugar
  • 500g sloes


  1. Collect your sloes, they are usually ready in September
  2. Clean them and remove any woody stalks or leaves
  3. Freeze all your sloes, at least overnight or until you are ready to make the sloe gin
  4. Add your sloes, gin and sugar to a large bottle.
  5. Shake the bottle every day or so. The more often you shake it, the quicker your sloe gin matures.
  6. Keep doing this for at least two months.
  7. You can bottle your sloe gin by either carefully pouring it into aanother bottle or by passing it through a filter.
  8. Enjoy your sloe gin