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Dirty Martini Recipe

4.84 from 6 votes
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posted: 06/21/19

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

This Dirty Martini, cold, delicious and refreshing, is going to be your new favorite cocktail. With the right ingredients, it couldn’t be more simple to make. The dirtier the better!

Looking for a martini that is sweet and not savory? Try my Lemon Drop Martini.

straight on view of a frosted martini glass with a dirty martini in it, garnished with three olives

WHAT IS A DIRTY MARTINI?

While the name “dirty” martini may not sound refreshing or even appetizing, it’s actually a very flavorful twist on the traditional martini. Just as the Cosmopolitan Cocktail or Lemon Drop Martini uses fruit juice to add a different flavor, this Dirty Martini Recipe uses olive juice or brine. The result is a tangy cocktail that is the perfect potion to kick off happy hour any night of the week. 

dirty martini recipe being poured through a strainer into a martini glasss with another martini in the background and a gold cocktail shaker

This vodka martini dirty comes together in just three ingredients: vodka, olive juice, and olives for garnish.

HOW TO MAKE A DIRTY MARTINI

Start with quality vodka.  Since the majority of this cocktail is vodka, you want to buy a high quality brand that its going to go down smooth. Not sure what you like? Visit a distillery for taste testing! You will find an amazing bottle.

Add olive brine. This recipe calls for almost double the brine most other recipes call for. You all know how I love the taste of things that are pickled (looking at you Pickled Red Onions!). If that’s not your jam, cut the amount in half. Tip:  Buy a jar of green olive pieces and use that brine. It will taste the same and be cheaper.

Combine the ingredients in a metal shaker with ice.  Using a metal shaker will ensure that your ingredients get ice cold, and that is a key in this recipe.

You want your martini shaken, not stirred. Shaking the cocktail with ice will ensure it’s served up icy cold.

Strain into a martini glass.  Garnish with jumbo green olives. How many olives you want is up to you. I’ve heard that the correct number of olives is as many as you can convince the bartender to give you. So since you’re making this at home, the sky’s the limit!

overhead view of two martini glasses filled with vodka martini dirty with three olives in each glass

WHAT ABOUT THE VERMOUTH

You’ll notice that I didn’t include vermouth in this recipe, and that is because I’ve had a dirty vodka martini with vermouth and without, and I really don’t like it with Vermouth. So I choose to make my dirty martini without vermouth.

There is a note in the recipe about vermouth. If you do like it (and you should try it at least once), you want to add between a splash to and 1/4 of an ounce.

WHAT TYPE OF OLIVES

You only want to use green olives and green olive brine for your dirty martini recipe. I have had restaurants experiment with kalamata brine and black olive brine . . . just no.

OTHER CLASSIC COCKTAILS

If having this dirty martini recipe makes you want to have all the classic cocktails, then you have come to the right place!

a martini glass full of vodka martini dirty, jar of olives in the background, and strainer next to it

straight on view of a frosted martini glass with a dirty martini in it, garnished with three olives
4.84 from 6 votes

Dirty Martini Recipe

Serves: 1 cocktail
(tap # to scale)
Prep: 2 minutes
Total: 2 minutes
This Dirty Martini, cold, delicious and refreshing, is going to be your new favorite cocktail. With the right ingredients, it couldn't be more simple to make. The dirtier the better!

Ingredients

  • 3 ounces quality vodka
  • 1 1/2 ounces olive juice (sse note)
  • olives for garnish

Instructions

  • Combine vodka and olive juice in a martini shaker. Stir with ice and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with olives.

Notes

This is just about the dirtiest martini you are going to find. If you aren't sure about the olive juice, start with half the amount listed. If it isn't dirty enough for you, add more. I LOVE it just as written.
Vermouth:  You will notice that this recipe does not call for vermouth. If you want to try it with vermouth, add anywhere from a splash to 1/4 ounce for a single martini.
Serving: 1martini Calories: 228kcal (11%) Carbohydrates: 1g Fat: 4g (6%) Sodium: 547mg (24%) Potassium: 1mg Fiber: 1g (4%)
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: cocktails
Cuisine: American
straight on view of a frosted martini glass with a dirty martini in it, garnished with three olives

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Dirty Martini Recipe

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Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

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  1. Carol says

    Prefer Bombay gin

    • Lisa Longley says

      LOVE Bombay Saphire!

    • Cheryl says

      Try Hendrick’s Gin, so so smooth!!!

  2. Heidi Horne says

    Hello Lisa I thought I was the only one who like their martini’s this way Yum !

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so happy I’m not alone! Lol! I was worried posting this . . . is it going to be too dirty for people. But it’s so good this way!

  3. Betsy says

    5 stars
    So delicious! I take mine up a notch by removing the pimento from a queen or larger size olive and replacing it with a good quality blue cheese. Into that blue cheese I slide a few slivers of a crispy bacon. This sends the martini over the top. Enjoy!!!

    • Lisa Longley says

      I would say that you take yours up like 18 notches! Dang girl! Yummy!

  4. Constance Cavanaugh says

    5 stars
    The best recipe for a dirty martini that I’ve come across yet. Used Grey Goose Vodka. YUMMY. Thank you.

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so happy you liked it!

  5. Geraldine Walker says

    Whatever happened to the Gin Martini, that was the original

    • Lisa Longley says

      Good news! I have a great Gin Martini recipe too!

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