Hot Buttered Rum – An Alaska Drink!

Hot buttered rum with spices and stirrer
Hot buttered rum / Photo by Meg Baggott, styling by Dylan Garret

Since we’re discussing Alaska this month, though it’s now the warm season for most of us, nothing helps melt through seasonal cool weather like a cocktail classic: hot buttered rum.

This hearty, warming drink is pure cocktail comfort food. Have a favorite wintry ingredient? Try adding it into the mix! The vanilla extract in this particular recipe brings a delicious depth to the drink, but using sarsaparilla or ginger instead of vanilla will yield a completely, delightfully different flavor profile.

Hot buttered rum is also a great reason to use some of those liqueurs gathering dust in your collection. For example, if you’ve still got a bottle of Drambuie or Galliano taking up space in your liquor cabinet since 1983, this is your chance to throw in a splash and put them to work. Endlessly customizable, you’d be encouraged by any creative bartender to use this base recipe as a springboard to cocktail creativity.

Thirsty yet? Lets get mixing!


  • 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 ounces dark or aged rum
  • 6 ounces hot water
  • Cinnamon stick, for garnish (optional)


  • In a mixing bowl, combine butter, vanilla extract, sugar, spices and salt.
  • Beat until well combined.
  • In a heat-proof glass or mug, combine aged rum with 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) spiced butter mixture.
  • Remaining batter can be stored in airtight container in refrigerator for future use.
  • Top with hot water and stir until ingredients are well incorporated.
  • Garnish with cinnamon stick if preferred.

Bonus edition: Hot Buttered Sourdough Rum

Mountaineers on expedition add butter to their nighttime beverages to help their bodies’ metabolism stay burning warm through the night. So a buttery warm drink might be just what the doctor ordered for your customers—and this one sports a local twist. Dissolve two sugar cubes in a mug with a little hot water, then add two ounces of Fairbanks Sourdough Rum from Ursa Major Distilling. Slide in a part of unsalted butter and fill the mug with hot water, topping with a sprinkle of nutmeg.

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Old-Fashioned Hot Buttered Rum | Recipe Recipe | Land O'Lakes
Hot Buttered Rum courtesy Land O’Lakes

See the original recipe posted here.

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