A relic of the 1980s, the Fuzzy Navel has become a bit of a joke to serious mixologists. But it’s actually a tasty tipple that’s almost too easy to sip. How easy? Follow our easy Fuzzy Navel recipe and find out.
The Fuzzy Navel has a silly name and a simple recipe with only two required ingredients.
And, yet, it’s popular with a plethora of people who drink the peachy cocktail with glee. To many of those people, who are generally under 25 years old and of the female persuasion, this drink serves as a cocktail gateway to a road that eventually leads to martinis.
What Is a Fuzzy Navel?
If you haven’t heard of the Fuzzy Navel cocktail, then you didn’t go to college in the 1980s when the sweet, peachy drink was a fixture at campuses across the nation. Or maybe you did but are now fuzzy on the drink’s details.
In a nutshell (or should we say each pit?), the Fuzzy Navel is a two-ingredient cocktail made with orange juice and peach schnapps. Ice cubes complete the drink while garnishes add pizzazz.
While the original Fuzzy Navel recipe included orange juice and peach schnapps in a 1:1 ratio, not every mixologist follows that same formula today.
Some double or triple the amount of orange juice while others add vodka to the mix. However, to be clear, adding vodka transforms the Fuzzy Navel into a Hairy Navel.
You may be wondering about the Fuzzy’s Navel suggestive, belly button inspired name. To those who really haven’t figured it out yet, the word fuzzy refers to peach fuzz while the word navel describes a type of orange.
History of the Fuzzy Navel
The Fuzzy Navel seems like one of those cocktails that appeared out of nowhere. Au contraire. The drink’s history is the opposite of fuzzy.
Bartender Ray Foley claims credit for its invention in the 1980s. That timing not coincidentally coincides with the introduction of DeKuyper Peachtree Schnapps to the US market in 1984. Within a few years, DeKuyper’s peach liqueur was a top seller. That status later changed when more sophisticated sippers, like the Gimlet and Negroni, became the rage.
Foley later wrote Bartending for Dummies, one of the great cocktail tropes for neophytes. We don’t know if he’s proud of his iconic cocktail invention today but his influence remains strong. After all, millions of sorority girls can’t be wrong.
Fuzzy Navel Ingredients
You don’t need a lot of ingredients to craft a Fuzzy Navel at home. We use the following items in our recipe:
While you probably have oranges at home, you may need to buy a bottle of peach schnapps for this recipe. We bought a bottle of DeKuyper Peachtree peach schnapps with a 15% ABV for this and other cocktail recipes. The Dutch liqueur is available in the US and other countries.
How to Craft a Fuzzy Navel Cocktail
You don’t need fancy equipment to craft a Fuzzy Navel. We use the following basic bar tools to craft ours:
Don’t worry if you’re missing one or both of these tools. You can use a regular spoon or straw instead of a bar spoon. You can also use a small angled measuring cup instead of a jigger.
Discover essential 10 essential bar tools for home mixologists.
The first step in our recipe is to juice an orange. We use a citrus juicer for this step.
Your Fuzzy Navel will still taste good if you use store-bought orange juice but it will taste a lot better with the freshly squeezed stuff.
Partially fill a highball glass with ice. You can use any ice cubes for this step.
Measure the orange juice and pour it into the ice-filled glass. For this step, we use a Japanese jigger to achieve both accuracy and efficiency.
Buy a Japanese jigger from Amazon if you need a jigger or desire an inexpensive upgrade.
Measure the peach schnapps and pour it into the same glass.
Gently stir with a bar spoon.
Garnish with an orange wheel and a maraschino cherry or two.
We like to sip our Fuzzy Navels with a straw. The trick is to not sip them too quickly.
Fuzzy Navel Alternatives
There are a multitude of Fuzzy Navel alternatives, many with names that make us blush. Here are a few options you may want to try:
Fuzzy Navel FAQs
The Fuzzy Navel is two-ingredient cocktail crafted with orange juice and peach schnapps.
The Fuzzy Navel tastes sweet and peachy.
The Fuzzy Navel cocktail was invented in New Jersey (USA).
The word ‘fuzzy’ refers to peach fuzz and the word ‘navel’ refers to oranges.
Peach Schnapps, Orange Juice, Lime Juice, Orange wheel (for garnish), Maraschino Cherry (for garnish) and Ice Cubes
The Fuzzy Navel is stirred, not shaken.
The Fuzzy Navel is not strong. However, it should still be imbibed in moderation to avoid hangovers and other issues.
Fuzzy Navel Recipe
There's nothing fuzzy about this Fuzzy Navel recipe. However, you may feel fuzzy if you drink too many glasses of the tasty tipple.
- 3 ounces peach schnapps
- 3 ounces orange juice (freshly squeezed)
- maraschino cherries (for garnish)
- orange wheel (for garnish)
- ice cubes
- Partially fill a highball glass with ice.
- Pour orange juice and peach schnapps into the highball glass.
- Gently stir.
- Garnish with an orange wheel and a maraschino cherry or two.
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Highball Glasses [Set of 4] + 4 Stainless Steel Straws, 16 oz Lead-Free Crystal Clear Glass, Elegant Drinking Cups for Water, Wine, Beer, Cocktails and Mixed Drinks - Round Top, Square Bottom
Collins Stemless Maraschino Cherries | Popular Garnish for Cocktail Drinks, Desserts, Martinis, Manhattan, Old Fashioned, 10oz
Wusthof CLASSIC Paring Knife, One Size, Black, Stainless Steel
BLACK+DECKER 32oz Citrus Juicer, White, CJ625
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About the Authors
Daryl & Mindi Hirsch
Saveur Magazine’s BEST TRAVEL BLOG award winners Daryl and Mindi Hirsch share their culinary travel experiences and recipes on the 2foodtrippers website and YouTube. The married Food and Travel content creators live in Lisbon, Portugal.
Original Publication Date: April 13, 2023