Traditional drinks in Ukrainian national cuisine

You've probably already used to how rich and truly infinite Ukrainian cuisine is. The fusion of traditions and modern trends gives birth to an impressive gastronomic variety and allows the Ukrainian national cuisine to get into the TOP-20 tastiest cuisines in the world. However, in addition to delicious dishes for every taste, there are many delicious Ukrainian drinks.

Believe it or not but Ukrainian drinks like meat and vegetable dishes also have rich and entertaining histories of origin. Our ancestors did not drink modern-day tea, coffee or horilka but they made drinks from then-available products. Here are the most favorite Ukrainian beverages:

Varenukha (honey drink)

This honey drink was often served on festive occasions, especially during weddings and Christmas celebrations. It was prepared from honey, water, dried fruits, and berries. Then left to ferment for a while. More modern versions of cooking imply mixing of vodka or liquor with dried fruits, honey, raisins,  cinnamon or spicy roots.

Quass (bread drink)

This delicious, flavorful, and chilling drink Ukrainians used almost every day. To cook it rye bread, fruits, and berries were mixed. There are many types of this beverage: syrivets (bread kvass), tsiberei (flour kvass), drink made of pears, apples, beets, and more.

Uzvar (compote)

This is a sweet drink boiled from dried or fresh fruits and berries. Ukrainian women used any combination in any proportions - the beverage was always delicious and useful! Kysyli (dense fruit/berry drinks) were also popular.

Herbal infusions

Ukrainians can and know how to collect healing herbs. That is why both in ancient times and now so-called teas made of linden, mint, chamomile and other medicinal plants are so popular in Ukraine. In addition to their unique taste, they have very beneficial and healing properties.

Nalyvka (kind of liquor)

As soon as sugar appeared in Ukrainian homes, the traditional drink menu was expanded with a variety of spirits, including vodka, kalhanivka, spotykach, various nastoyky and nalyvky. Ukrainian cuisine is also known for its legendary honey vodka with pepper that combines incompatible flavors.


Because of the invasion of Ukraine by Greek colonists, wine and winemaking are also widespread in Ukraine. Odesa and Crimean wines, as well as Transcarpathian cognacs,  are especially popular today.

Want to try traditional Ukrainian drinks? Please feel free to read the recipes on our blog. We have many tasty authentic Ukrainian recipes for kvass, uzvar, nalyvka, varenukha, and more.

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