Hot buttered rum is a warm, old-fashioned cocktail recipe made with a batter of sweetened, spiced butter! Add hot water and dark rum and you've got a warming drink that's creamy, festive and delicious!
If I told you we're going to make a hot rum drink you might be interested, but when I tell you it's going to be creamy, buttery, and sweet I think you'll be downright excited!
The secret to this classic drink is the hot buttered rum batter recipe. Yes, the mix for hot buttered rum is called batter, because you're beating butter, sugar and spices together like you would to make a batter for cookies or other baked goods!
Hot buttered rum ingredients
For the hot buttered rum batter:
- Softened unsalted butter: We are using a whole stick of butter and you are going to be so glad about it!
- Brown sugar: You need the molasses in brown sugar to give some caramel and earthy notes to the drink, instead of just pure sweetness.
- Ground cinnamon, ground allspice, ground nutmeg: I love this blend of warm spices.
- Kosher salt: You might think it's weird to add salt to a cocktail recipe, but remember, you are making a batter as the base of the hot buttered rum, and you add salt to most batters so it's no different here.
To finish the cocktail:
- Dark rum: Use gold or dark rum to add depth, sweetness, and a hint of caramel flavor. I like Kraken, you could also use Meyer's or a spiced rum like Captain Morgan.
- Boiling water
- Cinnamon sticks: This will be a built in stirrer and add aroma.
PRO TIP: You can adjust the hot buttered rum batter recipe to your personal taste, adjusting the spices and amount of sugar to your liking.
How to make hot buttered rum
Step 1: Make the batter
Add the softened butter, spices, brown sugar and salt to a small bowl.
Mix the ingredients together with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula until well combined.
Step 2: Make the cocktail
Add 2 tablespoons of the hot buttered rum batter to a mug. Pour in 2 ounces of dark rum, then add 6 ounces of boiling water.
Stir to melt the butter completely until the top of the drink is a little foamy. Garnish with a cinnamon stick and serve!
- To make a non-alcoholic hot buttered rum, just omit the rum and follow the recipe as written. That's why it's nice to make it in this single-serving way, so that kids and teetotalers can enjoy the buttery, coziness of this drink, too!
- If you'd like to make this as a a batch cocktail for a crowd, you can double or triple the recipe and keep it warm in a slow cooker. Add the rum or serve it on the side, depending on your guest list.
- Store leftover batter in the refrigerator for up to a month.
A hot buttered rum is rich and creamy and gets a kick from warming spices, giving you kind of a hint of gingerbread. The spiced butter mixture gives the cocktail body without being heavy. Dark rum adds sweetness and depth of flavor.
Use a dark rum, a spiced rum or a gold (aged) rum. You need some caramel and spicy notes to complement this drink. White rum is not the best choice because it's designed to go with lighter, citrusy flavors.
Yes! You can make hot buttered rum batter up to 3 days in advance and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. Allow to soften a bit at room temperature before using. You can even scoop the batter in to pre-made portions and freeze them to have at the ready when you get a craving. (Silicone ice cube trays are great for this!)
More warm drink recipes
Can't get enough festive drinks for fall and winter? Try these ideas!
- Spiked Apple Cider is almost like apple pie in a glass, but there's also bourbon!
- Mulled Wine is like the holidays in a glass!
- French Hot Chocolate is thick and rich and only has two ingredients—milk and chocolate! (You could always add some peppermint schnapps. I won't tell anyone...)
This recipe for hot buttered rum is quick, versatile and warming!
- Ready in minutes!
- Make the batter ahead of time!
- Adjust the spices and sweetness to your liking.
- Change things up by switching from dark rum to spiced rum.
- It's a warm cocktail that will carry you from fall to the Christmas holidays and all the way through the rainy days of spring.
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Hot Buttered Rum Recipe
Hot Buttered Rum Batter - makes enough for 4 cocktails
- 8 tablespoons softened unsalted butter (1 stick)
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
Hot Buttered Rum Cocktail - single serving
- 2 tablespoons hot buttered rum batter
- 2 ounces dark rum
- 6 ounces boiling water
- Add the softened butter, spices, brown sugar and salt to a small bowl. Mix the ingredients together with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula until well combined.
- Add 2 tablespoons of the hot buttered rum batter to a mug. Pour in 2 ounces of dark rum, then add 6 ounces of hot water.
- Stir to melt the butter completely until the top of the drink is a little foamy. Garnish with a cinnamon stick and serve!
- Store leftover batter in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a month.
- To make the drink non-alcoholic, simply omit the rum and follow the recipe as directed.