Goals from Dexter Blackstock and Ishmael Miller earned the Championship side the win, with Owain Tudur Jones replying for the SPL outfit.
Blackstock opened the scoring in the 26th minute when he netted from the penalty spot after he had been tripped in the area by Lewis Stevenson.
Hibs, who are warming up for their Europa League qualifying ties later this month, hit back as Ryan McGivern fired wide from long range and Danny Handling had a header deflected wide.
Both managers rung the changes at the interval but it was Forest who controlled the game after the restart.
However Hibs snatched an equaliser midway through the second half when Tudur Jones sprung the Forest offside trap and lifted a shot over substitute keeper Karl Darlow.
Forest were quickly back in front as Miller netted from Darius Henderson's precise pass and the Reds were unlucky not to extend their advantage in the closing stages as Matt Derbyshire, Jamie Paterson and Adlene Guedioura all went close.