An adult twist on the innocent Shirley Temple Drink, this Dirty Shirley Cocktail is the dirty version of the classic mocktail. If you want to turn your cocktail recipes up a notch, this drink is for you!

Cocktail glasses with pink effervescent drinks.

Sometimes, taking an original drink like the Shirley Temple and making it dirty is just too much fun, like we did with our Dirty Smoked Martini and Dirty Chai Cocktail. This Dirty Shirley Cocktail captures the essence of nostalgia while adding a grown-up flair, aka alcohol. Combined with simple ingredients like cherry syrup, gin, and lemon-lime soda, this simple cocktail will soon become a fan favorite. 

What Is a Dirty Shirley Drink?

Originally crafted for the famous actress herself, Shirley Temple, the original mocktail features grenadine, ginger ale, and maraschino cherries. However, the adult version of this classic mocktail, a Dirty Shirley, is the classic Shirley Temple mocktail plus the addition of alcohol and creates a deliciously sweet cocktail for adults. The use of gin takes the sugary sweetness out of the cherry syrup, balancing the cocktail beautifully and creating a smooth sweet drink.

Two highball glasses with rocks, cherries and the beginnings of a good cocktail.

What You Need to Make a Dirty Shirley Temple Cocktail

  • Ice
  • Amarena Cherry SyrupUse any kind of cherry syrup you like. 
  • Yellowbird Blue Agave SrirachaUse any kind of Sriracha you like.
  • Smoked Gin – You can also use regular gin or vodka if you don’t want the smoky flavor. 
  • Lemon-Lime Soda – Sprite, 7Up, and even Ginger Ale would work here too.
  • Amarena Cherry for GarnishYou can also use a maraschino cherry or Luxardo cherries if you prefer. 
Pink bubbling drinks in highball glasses surrounded by cherries.

How to Make a Boozy Shirley Temple

Get ready for a nostalgia-infused treat with the sparkling Dirty Shirley. ?? This grown-up version of the classic Shirley Temple cocktail brings together the sweetness of childhood, a little spice, and the sophistication of adulthood.

Add Ice & Craft the cocktail

Place ice in a tall cocktail glass.

Add the Amarena cherry syrup and blue agave sriracha over the ice in a tall glass.

Pour In the Smoked Gin & Bubbles

Pour in the smoked gin, allowing its distinct flavor to join the mix.

Top it off with the lemon-lime soda, adding a refreshing fizz.

Gently Blend, Garnish and Enjoy

Stir gently to ensure all the flavors combine harmoniously.

Add a delightful finishing touch by garnishing with an Amarena cherry.

Sit back, relax, and enjoy the fruits of your labor!

Cocktail cherries in a bowl.

What to Serve With This Alcoholic Shirley Temple

The citrus notes in this easy cocktail pair wonderfully with Asian Chicken Burgers or Lemon Parsley Baked Fish. For larger crowds, this adult version of a Shirley Temple would go well with Slow Cooker Goat Cheese Fondue and Huli-Huli Chicken Bites. If you want to skip the appetizers and dinner and head straight for dessert, we suggest pairing your drink with Orange Olive Oil Cake or Cherry Cheesecake Cookies to compliment the fruity taste.

Dirty Shirley in a highball glass on ice with fresh cherries in the foreground.

Expert Tips

  • Use cherry vodka for more cherry flavor. 
  • Use the Amarena cherries to craft a homemade grenadine syrup for a nostalgic twist. 
  • Swap the cherry syrup for pomegranate juice and simple syrup for a more tart twist!
  • Swap the lemon-lime soda for club soda to reduce the sweetness and sugar content. 
  • Add a splash of orange juice or lemon juice for a citrusy flavor.

Recipe FAQs

Can I make a larger batch of Dirty Shirley cocktails for a party?

Absolutely! To make a larger batch, simply multiply the recipe’s ingredients by the number of servings you need. Mix all the ingredients in a pitcher or punch bowl and adjust the flavors to your liking. Then, pour into individual glasses with ice. 

Vodka vs. Gin? What’s the difference?

Gin and vodka are like the fraternal twins of the alcohol world – they’re both very similar with a few key differences. Vodka has a more neutral flavor that can be described as crisp and clean. On the other hand, gin has a more distinct taste that can be described as ‘piney’ and herbal. Both would work in this recipe, as it only depends on your personal preference!

spicy sriracha dirty shirley temple cocktail recipe on

More Cocktail Recipes to Try

Dirty Shirley Cocktail

Combining the sweetness of a Shirley Temple with a grown-up gin kick, the Dirty Shirley is bubbly, cherry-infused joy in a glass. ?? It's a nostalgic trip down memory lane, with a decidedly adult spicy twist. +21
5 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Cocktail Recipes
Author: Kita Roberts
5 minutes
Serves: 1 cocktail



  • Place ice in a tall cocktail glass.
  • Add the Amarena cherry syrup and blue agave sriracha agave over the ice.
  • Pour in the gin and soda.
  • Stir gently.
  • Add the Amarena cherry to garnish.
  • Serve


Don’t have Yellowbird Blue Agave Sriracha on hand? Totally cool, use regular sriracha instead.
Use Amarena Cherries for a more refined, less sugary flavor than classic maraschino cherries. 


Serving: 1g | Calories: 223kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 1g | Sodium: 13mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g

Nutritional informations provided as a courtesy and is only an approximatation. Values will changes based on ingredients used.

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