Yes, there’s a holiday for just about everything now, but this is one of the good ones: National Moonshine Day. It’s so good, in fact, that it looks like we get to celebrate it twice: on both June 2 and June 5. Some websites explain that  National Moonshine Day is the first Thursday in June, making it June 2, 2016. Other sites say that it’s the first Sunday in June, which would be June 5 this year. Well, I guess the only way to solve this dilemma is to celebrate it on both days!

The Unauthorized History of National Moonshine Day

I actually couldn’t find any information about why National Moonshine Day is celebrated either on June 2 or June 5. I thought the date would have some kind of significance in Moonshine history, like Popcorn Sutton’s birthday (which isn’t until October), but it doesn’t. What I did find is that a few years ago, a large number of people were all talking about moonshine on various social media platforms sometime around June 2-5, and they decided that National Moonshine Day should be a thing. It got picked up by different websites that list the fun holidays that occur every day of the year, and it spread from there.

Since home distilling is currently illegal in the United States, I’m not going to go and recommend that you make any moonshine to celebrate if you live in the United States. However, if you already have some legal moonshine that you purchased from a distillery, feel free to raise your glass on this fine day. You can even make a whole moonshine-themed dinner by working it in as an ingredient. I found the two recipes below online, but you can get creative and work it into any kind of meal you want. Today, you get to have your moonshine and eat it, too!

Grilled Buffalo Ribs with Pineapple Moonshine BBQ Sauce

recipe adapted from Food Network)


• 1 cup diced yellow onion
• 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
• 1 tablespoon chopped horseradish
• 4 cups diced pineapple
• 4 cups diced tomatoes
• 1/4 cup molasses
• 1/2 cup cider vinegar
• 1/4 cup honey
• 1/2 cup brown sugar
• 1 tablespoon dried mustard powder
• 2 tablespoons dried oregano
• 3 bay leaves
• 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
• 4 cups ketchup
• 8 Buffalo ribs
• Salt and black pepper
• Olive oil
• 1 cup water


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grill to medium-high.
2. Saute onion, garlic, and horseradish in saucepan over medium-high heat. Then add moonshine. Be sure to scrape the bottom of the pan with wooden spoon to deglaze the parts off the bottom.
3. Add pineapple and tomatoes and bring to a simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Add molasses, vinegar, honey, sugar, mustard powder, oregano, bay leaves, Worcestershire sauce, and ketchup, and simmer for 2 hours.
5. Season the ribs with salt and black pepper and rub with a little olive oil. Grill ribs for about 5 minutes per side.
6. Place the ribs in a braising pan with about 1/2 of the sauce over the ribs and cover pan with lid. Save other 1/2 of the sauce for serving.
7. Add 1 cup of water to ribs and let simmer for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, until the meat is tender but is still on the bone.
8. Remove the ribs from the liquid, serve, and enjoy!

Moonshine Onion Rings

recipe adapted from Leite’s Culinaria)

Ingredients For Onions

• 8 cups peanut oil
• 3 large Spanish onions, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices and separated into rings
• 1 cup milk
• 2 cups all-purpose flour
• 2 teaspoons sea salt
• 2 teaspoons black pepper

Ingredients For Batter

• 4 large egg whites
• 1 cup moonshine (or 100-proof vodka)
• 2 cups cornstarch
• 2 teaspoons sea salt
• 2 teaspoons black pepper
• 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper


1. Heat oil to 350°F (176°C) in a large, deep-sided pot.
2. Place onions in large bowl, pour milk over top, and toss to coat onions. Drain onions, discarding the milk.
3. Place flour in a large re-sealable baggie, add salt and pepper, and shake to mix. Working in batches, add some of the drained onions to the flour, seal the bag, and shake vigorously to coat onions. Spread onions on baking sheet. Repeat with remaining onions.
4. To make the batter, whip the egg whites to soft peaks in large bowl. Fold in the moonshine. Sift the cornstarch, salt, black pepper, and cayenne over egg whites and gently fold to combine.
5. Line a baking sheet with paper towels. Place a wire rack near the baking sheet.
6. Working in batches, add onion rings to the batter. Using a fork or a slotted spoon, remove the rings from the batter, one at a time, and allow any excess to drain off.
7. One by one, carefully drop coated onions into the hot oil without crowding them and cook in small batches until golden brown, about 3 minutes.
8. Remove onion rings with a slotted spoon and transfer to the lined baking sheet to drain briefly. Sprinkle with salt and then transfer to wire rack. Repeat with the remaining onion rings.
9. Serve immediately and enjoy!