This coffee hot buttered rum is the coziest, dreamiest winter cocktail. It’s made from scratch with homemade batter, hot coffee, fresh whipped cream, and warm spices. Save this recipe for Christmas morning, holiday parties, and lazy Sunday nights.

Two mugs of coffee hot buttered rum on a beige counter next to a red plaid linen, coffee beans, garland, and gold decorations.

Now that we are days away from Christmas, I am in full cozy, winter wonderland, cookie mode. But before I make my husband hide my laptop and hibernate for the rest of the year, I had to share just one more little recipe with you all!

This year, we’ll be having Christmas breakfast at Marc’s family’s house, and my contribution is hot buttered rum. This is one of my go-to holiday drinks along with cinnamon hot chocolate and Norwegian gløgg, of course.

This buttered rum is a traditional holiday cocktail that is rich, sweet, spicy, and beyond cozy! But, in this recipe we’re using coffee instead of hot water, because well, when don’t I add coffee? It basically makes it a morning drink which means it’s perfectly acceptable for Christmas brunch. Let’s make it!

Why you’ll love this coffee rum cocktail

A few years ago, I went to a party that had a hot buttered rum bar and I’ve been obsessed with them ever since. This is a recipe that I’ve developed over the past few holidays and it’s by far my favorite! Also, instead of hot water, we’re using coffee because it adds so much extra flavor and coziness.

  • This recipe is sweet, spicy, and boozy.
  • If you’re a coffee fan, you’ll love this cocktail!
  • The recipe comes together in just a few minutes.
  • This cocktail is amazing for parties, holidays, & cold winter nights!

The ingredients

A bottle of rum, stick of butter, and box of coffee next to brown bowls of brown sugar, spices, and vanilla on a white marble counter.

The batter

  • Unsalted butter – this will add a rich flavor to the cocktail. It’s also key for the signature butterscotch flavor! I use unsalted butter but salted butter would work too. Just don’t add additional salt!
  • Brown sugar – for sweetness and caramel flavor. I like dark brown sugar!
  • Spices – cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves will add spice and warmth to the batter.
  • Salt – I use Morton’s Kosher salt to offset the sweetness of the batter.
  • Vanilla – for just a little extra flavor. Make sure you’re using 100% pure vanilla extract.

The cocktails

  • Coffee – pick a coffee with flavor notes like nuts, chocolate, or caramel. Use a good-quality coffee too – it will make a huge difference in the flavor of this cocktail!
  • Rum – a splash of spiced rum makes this drink perfectly boozy.
  • Half-and-half – this is optional but I like adding a bit for creaminess.
  • Whipped cream – for topping the cocktails. This is also optional!

Ingredient Variations

  • Sweetener – feel free to replace some of the brown sugar with maple syrup or honey.
  • Spices – any warm spices can be added to the batter! Allspice, anise, mace, etc.
  • Coffee – decaf coffee or even plain hot water work as well.
  • Rum – try dark rum or bourbon instead.
  • Dairy-free – replace the butter with your favorite dairy-free butter.

How to make this drink

Three steps to making hot buttered rum batter. In photo 1, butter and brown sugar is in a white bowl on a white counter. In photo 2, the butter and sugar is topped with spices. In photo 3, the batter is mixed together.

To make the batter

  1. In a small bowl, mix together the butter and brown sugar until it’s smooth.
  2. Then, add the cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and vanilla.
  3. Mix everything together until it’s very smooth.

Pro tip

For easier mixing, use a hand mixer to mix the batter together. Start by whipping the butter and sugar until it’s combined. Then, add the spices, vanilla, and salt!

Three steps to making a coffee cocktail. In photo 1, a hand pours alcohol into a glass mug on a beige counter next to garland and gold decorations. In photo 2, a Chemex pours coffee into the mug. In photo 3, a carafe pours milk into the mug.

To make the cocktails

  1. Add the batter and rum to a mug.
  2. Then, pour the coffee into the mug and stir until the butter is melted.
  3. Mix the half-and-half into the coffee. Lastly, add whipped cream and enjoy!

Serving ideas

I make these buttered rums for pretty much every single winter event. They’re always a hit, especially when it’s chilly out. They’re lovely for brunch parties, Christmas movie nights, after-dinner drinks, or holiday parties!

  • Top the buttered rums with whipped cream and spices.
  • Rim the glasses with cinnamon sugar.
  • Garnish the drinks with cinnamon sticks or star anise.
  • Divide the batter into small jars and gift it to friends.
  • Set up a buttered rum bar for a party or the holidays!

Storing, make-ahead, & freezing

To store leftover batter, spoon it into an airtight container. Refrigerate the batter for up to 2 weeks. This is also a great make-ahead option!

To freeze the batter, use a #40 cookie scoop to scoop the batter into mounds on a parchment-lined sheet pan. Freeze the sheet pan until the batter pucks are solid, about 1-2 hours. Then, pop the frozen batter in a zipper bag and freeze for up to 3 months. To make the cocktails, pop a buttered rum puck in a mug and microwave it in 30 second increments until it’s melted. Make the cocktail and enjoy!

Two mugs of coffee hot buttered rum on a tan counter next to coffee beans, gold decorations, and garland.

To make a big batch for a crowd

Making this coffee rum cocktail for a crowd? You can make it in a slow cooker for easy serving. Here’s how!

  1. Mix the batter and brewed coffee in a slow cooker.
  2. Set the slow cooker to WARM and stir it well to make sure everything is mixed.
  3. Then, ladle the coffee into mugs. Add a shot of rum, half-and-half (if you want), top with whipped cream, and enjoy!

Quick Tip

Don’t add the rum to the slow cooker! The heat of the slow cooker will make the alcohol evaporate. Just keep the base warm and add shots of liquor as you serve the cocktails.

Helpful tools

A mug of coffee hot buttered rum on a beige counter next to gold candle sticks, garland, and a red plaid linen.

Tips & tricks

  • Use good-quality butter and coffee. They’re the main flavors in this cocktail, so good-quality stuff makes a big difference!
  • Make sure the butter is room temperature. You want the butter and sugar to mix together like you would with cookie dough.
  • Add more or less batter to taste. If you prefer less sweet cocktails, use less batter. If you like sweeter cocktails, use more.
  • Fresh spices make a huge difference in this drink! I recommend using freshly-ground spices (or at least new spices) for the best flavor.

Recipe FAQs

What is the difference between hot buttered rum & hot toddies?

Hot buttered rum and hot toddies are totally different drinks! Buttered rums are usually made with rum, butter, sugar, spices, and hot water. Hot toddies, on the other hand, have bourbon, honey, hot water, and fresh lemon juice.

Can I make this non-alcoholic?

Sure! Just replace the rum with a non-alcoholic version or leave it out entirely. If you want rum flavor without the alcohol, you can also try adding 1-2 teaspoons of rum extract to the batter!

Can I make this dairy-free?

Yep! Try replacing the butter with a dairy-free butter. I also think coconut oil could work, although I haven’t tried it. You can also use dairy-free milk instead of half-and-half. I like oat milk best!

What rum should I use?

I like spiced rum in this recipe because it complements the spices in the batter. But dark rum is also delicious! Some of my favorites are Sailor Jerry’s, The Kraken, or Chairman’s Reserve. But any of your favorite spiced or dark rums should work great!

How can I make this iced?

To make an iced version of this cocktail, add the batter to a glass. Add a very small splash of hot water (just enough to melt the batter). Stir the hot water and batter until it’s mixed well. Then, stir in the rum. Add cold brew or your favorite iced coffee along with a splash of half-and-half if desired. Top with whipped cream and enjoy!

A mug of coffee hot buttered rum on a beige counter next to a red plaid linen, gold Christmas decorations, and garland.

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Cozy Coffee Hot Buttered Rum

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
This coffee hot buttered rum is the coziest, dreamiest winter cocktail. It's made from scratch with homemade batter, hot coffee, fresh whipped cream, and warm spices. Save this recipe for Christmas morning, holiday parties, and lazy Sunday nights!

Ingredients

Spiced Batter

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (113 grams)
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, packed (210 grams)
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Coffee Buttered Rum

  • 1-2 Tablespoons batter, per cocktail (recipe above)
  • 1 1/2 ounces spiced rum, per cocktail (45 milliliters)
  • 3/4 cup hot black coffee, per cocktail (180 milliliters)
  • Half-and-half, for serving
  • Whipped cream + cinnamon, for serving

Equipment

  • Hand mixer,
  • Rubber spatula
  • Coffee maker

Instructions 

Spiced Batter

  • Add the butter and brown sugar to a medium mixing bowl. Using a hand mixer or rubber spatula, mix the butter and brown sugar until it's completely combined.
  • Add the cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and vanilla. Mix until it's combined.
  • Use the batter to make hot buttered rums. Or, place it in an airtight container and refrigerate the batter for up to 2 weeks.

Coffee Buttered Rum

  • Add 1-2 Tablespoons of batter to each mug. Then, pour the spiced rum over the batter.
  • Add the coffee to the batter-rum mixture. Stir well, until the batter is completely melted. Add a splash of half-and-half, if desired.
  • Finish the cocktail with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Enjoy!

Notes

The batter will make between 8-12 cocktails depending on how much batter you put in each drink. I personally like closer to 2 Tablespoons, but 1 Tablespoon will make a less sweet, less rich cocktail.
Use good-quality butter and coffee. They’re the main flavors in this cocktail, so good-quality stuff makes a big difference!
Add more or less batter to taste. If you prefer less sweet cocktails, use less batter. If you like sweeter cocktails, use more.
Fresh spices make a huge difference in this drink! I recommend using freshly-ground spices (or at least new spices) for the best flavor.
The nutrition information does not include the half-and-half, whipped cream, or any additional toppings.
Cuisine: American
Course: Drinks
Serving: 1cocktail, Calories: 184kcal, Carbohydrates: 10.4g, Protein: 1.4g, Fat: 4.3g, Saturated Fat: 2.6g, Cholesterol: 11mg, Sodium: 112mg, Potassium: 544mg, Fiber: 0.3g, Sugar: 9.8g, Calcium: 36mg
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xo Sara Lynn

Song of the day – I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm by Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong