23 Classic Rum Cocktails For The Summer

Warm weather and good cocktails go together like peanut butter and jelly. Or, in our case at least, like mint and rum!

When it comes to cooling down after a long day of work, travel, or both, a good cocktail under the setting sun is a picturesque way to wrap up a day’s events, and in style too!

Speaking of rum, one of the most popular spirits to use in cocktails has always been this particular.

23 Classic Rum Cocktails For The Summer

Perhaps it has been because of its widespread use and consumption, especially in hot and tropical parts of the world, such as the Caribbean.

Maybe it is its simple ingredients that go into making it, which are abundant in the regions where rum is often consumed.

Whatever the reason, rum has, over the decades and centuries, become the go-to spirit of choice for cocktail makers across the world.

Whilst other spirits such as vodka and tequila have found plenty of exciting flavors to be mixed with, few have come to the same sheer variety that rum has accumulated, to say nothing of other spirits that are often drunk on their own.

After all, how often are you mixing brandy or whiskey with mint or lemon?

To give you a taste, pun completely intended, of the kinds of cocktails that rum has been used in, as well as giving you plenty of inspiration for your cocktail nights, we have compiled a list of some of the best classic rum drinks that you can make with rum that is perfect for the next wave of hot weather coming your way.

1. Dark & Stormy

Starting off our list strong with a drink to match, we have this dark, tall, and tasty cocktail for you to try for yourself.

Whilst other cocktails can sometimes feel like they are trying to hide the flavor of the spirits in them, either with vibrant colors or very sweet ingredients, this dark and stormy recipe makes the flavor of the rum in this cocktail a centerpiece.

It makes you appreciate the natural flavor of this particular cocktail with none of the sweet distractions of others on this list.

The added ginger beer gives this cocktail a character that distinguishes itself from other um cocktails with its heavier element of spices in its taste, without necessarily completely leaving out the sweetness that also characterizes rum.

That sweet flavor is still here, it’s just balanced out.

Plus, this recipe only takes 4 to 5 minutes to make. That, coupled with its smaller ingredients list, makes it an ideal cocktail for people with a more mature palette.

2. The Painkiller

Whilst we don’t recommend drinking this cocktail in place of actual painkillers, drink a few of this cocktail, and you’ll not be worrying about any pain!

3. Across The Pacific

This is another cocktail that is perfect for people who love the natural sweetness of rum but don’t necessarily want to make it an overwhelming presence in their drink.

Across the Pacific gets its name from the variety of elements it borrows from. It has the trademark rum from the sunny and tropical Caribbean as its base.

However, it also adds in a little amaro from across the pond, with this classic Italian spirit.

The somewhat bitter flavors of the amaro, coupled with the toasted sweetness of the rum, plus the sourness from a good amount of lime juice, blend to make a cocktail where each of its incredibly delicious components comes together to make something special.

This drink truly earns its unique name as a drink that combines the best drinks of both sides of the Atlantic into a beautiful cocktail for you to try at home.

4. Daiquiri

This is an all-time classic cocktail that is made using rum, and one that is loved for both its simplicity and its flavors around the world.

Daiquiris are clear cocktails that are usually made by well-mixing white or light rum with both lime juice and simple syrup.

The result of a good daiquiri, including the recipe we have linked here, is a drink that is sweet but also has a decent amount of lime to balance it out with.

One of the big benefits of having such a simple recipe like this is that because there are so few key ingredients in this recipe, it leaves the door open for you to create your flavor combinations.

The sky is the limit with the potential of this classic daiquiri recipe!

5. The Coquito

There are plenty of flavors to go around with this rum and coconut cocktail, and is loved across the world, especially in its home of Puerto Rico (see also ‘23 Amazing Puerto Rican Desserts You Need To Try‘).

6. Rum Swizzle

However, there is no shame in enjoying a rum cocktail that embraces those sweet flavors, after all, being a sugarcane spirit means that it is primed to be tasted with sweeter flavors.

If you need any more proof of that, just take a look at this amazing rum swizzle for all the proof that you need!

With plenty of fruity flavors to embolden that sweet flavor that rum is already known for, with the orange juice, the pineapple, and especially the grenadine, coupled with the dark rum and white rum that this recipe recommends using, you have a drink that is perfect for the summer heat.

This beautiful orange-colored cocktail should be on everyone’s sweet cocktail lists!

7. Cable Car

Staying on the sweeter side of the cocktail menu for rum, we have another recipe that uses plenty of good orange juice in it.

If the name for this cocktail is ringing any bells, this isn’t just a drink named after a high-standing mode of transport.

The drink draws a lot of inspiration for its flavors and ingredients from the classic sidecar cocktail. Only instead of using cognac as its main spirit, this recipe uses rum instead!

8. Strawberry Daiquiri

Now we’re coming up on the REALLY sweet varieties of rum cocktails out there.

Strawberry daiquiris are some of the most popular varieties of the classic cocktail. Only in this recipe’s case, that sweetness has been dialed up to 11!

Whether the fruit is in the drink simply as a juice or has been pulped into the drink itself, this is a recipe that is bound to set your taste buds ablaze with its sweet and slightly sour flavors.

9. El Floridita

Also known as the Hemingway Daiquiri, after the novelist (this was his favorite drink), this is THE drink to order when you are in the Floridita bar in Cuba

10. Rum Runner

For a true summer drinking experience, the rum runner cocktail is a go-to for many sunshine lovers.

With the sheer variety of flavors and liqueurs that are used in it, we can’t exactly blame them for this love either!

The banana liquor, orange, and pineapple juices, alongside the grenadine and lime flavors, give this cocktail an unmistakable tropical flavor to it.

However, when blended in combination with the spiced rum that this recipe recommends, you have something that has a little more punch outside of an incredibly sweet (although very tasty) fruit smoothie.

11. Rum Rangoon

The rum Rangoon is the perfect classy cocktail that anyone with a love for Caribbean flavor should try.

This drink is a combination of classic Caribbean rum, spiced or unspiced, coupled with powerfully sweet orange liquor and sugar cane syrup that hits you with a wave of sweetness unlike anything else.

When you couple that with a little trademark lime sourness, you have one hell of a cocktail!

12. Mojito

How could we have a list of classic and best rum cocktails without paying at least a little tribute to arguably the king of cocktails?

The mojito is a cocktail that is enjoyed around the world, and for good reason.

At its base level, it is a relatively easy cocktail to make and enjoy. Rum, sugar, mint, syrup, and soda, are all easy enough ingredients to find and blend.

But when you have the experience to make the BEST mojitos, how long to shake the cocktail maker, making sure that mint oil is perfectly diffused across the whole drink, and not blended into pulp, you have a taste experience that is out of this world.

Whether you are new to cocktails or have been around the flavor block with them. A good mojito recipe like this one will not let you down!

13. Classic Daiquiri

Continuing this trend of returning to the classic cocktail recipes, this particular daiquiri recipe is another excellent take on this world-class cocktail.

Again, the pleasure in this cocktail comes from its sheer simplicity.

Just a little sweetness from the rum and the syrup, plus the sourness of fresh lime, and you have an easy-to-make drink for anyone to try out themselves.

14. Beachbum’s Own

Rum is also a very popular spirit to go with a wide variety of tiki drinks, arguably THE spirit to put in a tiki drink.

So, it would be doing this list a disservice if we did not include at least a few of the best drinks out there.

This beach bum’s recipe is certainly one of our favorite tiki drinks out there!

With its rich demerara rum, coupled with plenty of juices from the stalwarts of a good rum cocktail, from pineapple to orange, to lemons, and limes makes the perfect island flavor drink that is perfect for sipping on the beachfront.

If you love the flavor of old-fashioned island tourism flavors, or just want to feel like you’re in the sun, this is a great cocktail to try.

15. Planter’s Punch

The Caribbean is arguably the home of some of the best cocktails out there. Don’t believe us? Then check this planter’s punch drink out for yourself!

16. Hurricane

If complexity is something you love to taste in your cocktails, then a good hurricane is exactly what you’re looking for.

This particular recipe has all the classic tropical flavors and ingredients that you look for in a rum cocktail. The orange juice, the syrup, the grenadine, and, of course, plenty of rum.

However, with the inclusion of passion fruit purée or juice (see also ‘13 Of The Most Delicious Passion Fruit Cocktails‘), you have a new flavor to play around with too, coupled with a little extra lime juice to boot!

If you want to taste a different flavor in your cocktail, this is a recipe that you should give a try.

17. Classic Piña Colada

We almost feel guilty for not including a piña colada recipe in this list sooner. After all, how can there be a summer party with piña colada?

Fortunately, we are making up for it by using a phenomenal recipe to make one for yourself!

What makes a good piña colada stand out from other cocktails is the almost entirely new palette of flavors that it works with.

Whilst pineapple is a staple for many recipes on this list, the inclusion of extra ice for that added texture, as well as using the cream of coconut as a thickener, makes the piña colada a different beat to drink and enjoy.

18. Hot Butternut Rum

Most rum cocktail recipes are there to help you cool down under a hot summer sun.

However, if you are looking for a cocktail recipe that is more suited to warm the soul on a cold fall or winter eve, then this is the recipe for you to taste.

Combining ingredients that are more suited to chillier seasons may seem a little strange at first, especially for a summer spirit like rum.

But once you have tasted this recipe for yourself, you’ll be wondering why this amazing recipe wasn’t introduced to you sooner!

19. Bush Wacker

This cocktail is both sweet and creamy, and with chocolaty flavor on the side. What more could you ask for?

20. Caribbean Rum Punch

Punch is practically made for being a summer drink and beverage. So why not perk it up a little more with some good rum?

The recipe can easily be bulked up to be used in an actual punch bowl, or just made for one person. The choice is up to you!

21. Mai Tai

Full of tangy goodness, this is the perfect drink to kick back in tropical Hawaiian summer sun and relax with.

22. Undead Gentleman

Circling back around to the tiki drinks that are great rum recipes, the undead gentleman is an obsolete masterclass of combining plenty of flavors without making a culinary mess.

This recipe uses quite a lot of ingredients, whilst also being a high-class drink that can be served at any bar, no matter how high or low brow it is.

It’s like a zombie, but in a tuxedo, if that makes sense!

23. One Last Midnight

Finishing off our list with an appropriately ominous name, this Caribbean rum drink mixes with vermouth (see also ‘The Best 6 Vermouth Substitutes‘) and just a little salt, infused with coffee, to create a perfect late-night beverage.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are There Any Health Effects Of Drinking Rum?

The overall effects of drinking rum on your health vary from person to person and depend largely on the amount that a person drinks.

It is widely believed that drinking moderate amounts of rum can have some beneficial effects on your health, as small or moderate amounts of rum can help reduce the amount of cholesterol in your body, which can help keep your heart and arteries healthy.

Not only that but small amounts have even been found to aid in preventing artery diseases and other negative conditions, as it acts as a mild blood thinner, as well as preventing arterial blockages.

However, when consumed in larger quantities, these mild benefits are outweighed by the vast number of detrimental health effects it can have on your body.

Liver damage is a widely documented effect of excessive alcohol consumption, as are issues with addiction and fatty liver disease.

With these factors in mind, make sure that you drink responsibly when it comes to enjoying your rum.

What Is Rum Made From?

Rum is traditionally made as a by-product of the manufacture of sugar, which accounts for the often toasted sweet flavor that many types of rum have, both the dark and light varieties, and why it is a popular option to have with many sweet-flavored cocktails, as the spirit’s one sweet element compliment the sugars, both the processed and natural sugars in fruits, that are also ingredients in these drinks.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, with so many different flavors to try for yourself, the real question will be which one to make for yourself first!

23 Classic Rum Cocktails For The Summer

23 Classic Rum Cocktails For The Summer

Recipe by Jenna

Need a little inspiration to use up the last of that rum bottle you have lying around? You’re in luck! This cocktail recipe list can help you do just that!

Course: Beverages
5 from 1 vote


  • Pick a recipe from the list above
  • Click the recipe name and visit the website
  • Collect the ingredients and cook the food
  • Enjoy – don’t forget to leave a review

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