Love a Daiquiri? Here are 15 Rum Drinks To Try Next

This versatile spirit is a core part of some of our favorite sweet, sour, bitter, and frozen cocktails.

Photo: Guillermo Riveros / Food Styling by Oset Babür-Winter

When it comes to cocktails, everyone's perception of the word "essential" is bound to be a little different. In the case of the classic drinks to make using white or dark rum, you're likely to think about a refreshing, minty Mojito, a sweet and sour Daiquiri, or a frozen Piña Colada. While our editors have a lot of appreciation for the iconic rum drinks, we're also fond of playing with rum as a versatile companion to amaro, as is the case in The Malagueña, or as a sweet counterpart to Aperol, in a White Rum and Aperol Spritz. Read on for 15 rum drinks that are bound to become essentials in your home bartending repertoire.

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Mai Tai

Mai Tai Cocktail

Matt Taylor-Gross / Food Styling by Lucy Simon

If the only Mai Tai you've ever had was pink, then you've never had a Mai Tai.

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Antonis Achilleos / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

The Sababa cocktail, created for Hanukkah, leans on a secret ingredient — tahini — for a balanced flavor and round, creamy mouthfeel.

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The Malagueña

Montenegro Amaro Cocktails
Carey Jones

Amaro and dark rum make for a surprisingly strong, bittersweet cocktail.

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Winter Mojito

Ho-Ho-Jito Winter Mojito
Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

Bartender Anh Ngo's Winter Mojito (playfully named Ho-Ho-Jito on the cocktail menu at Kata Robata in Houston) riffs on a classic mojito. Sage and rosemary infuse the simple syrup, adding savory flavor to the sweet, fresh drink, and dark spiced rum (instead of a classic mojito's white rum) brings richer flavor. Garnishes of rosemary, sage, and mint provide the final touches that transform a summery mojito into a cozy, cold-weather sipper.

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Aruba Ariba

Aruba Ariba
Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Food Styling by Ana Kelly / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

The best place to sip this classic rum punch is overlooking the sandy swath of Palm Beach at the Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino, where bartender Juan "Jocky" Tromp invented it 59 years ago. Fresh pineapple and orange juices paired with sweet, syrupy grenadine tint this vibrant Aruban cocktail a stunning deep orange-red. Despite a blend of vodka, white rum, and crème de banana, this drink does not have a strongly alcoholic bite but rather stays fruity and mellow.

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Watermelon Daiquiri

watermelon daiquiri with watermelon wedge
Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

Preparing fresh watermelon juice gives this blend-and-sip cocktail from Ten to One distillery CEO/founder Marc Farrell a burst of cool melon flavor, though fresh, high quality store-bought juice will work here, too. It's a rum drink for margarita lovers, with a salted rim that balances tart lime juice with sweet agave syrup and just as easily makes one drink with leftover juice as it does eight for a crowd.

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Black Manhattan

black Manhattan cocktail with a cherry
Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

Marc Farrell of Ten to One Rum, who wants to introduce the Caribbean's history, heritage, and culture into people's understanding of rum, shared the recipe for this rich and layered riff on the Manhattan, which shows off the smooth caramel and butterscotch flavors from dark rum. Pairing rum with the soft herbal notes of Averna Amaro Siciliano, which is sweeter than typical amaro, a few dashes of bitters, and a sweet Maraschino cherry, gently mellows the alcohol, making this simple stirred cocktail balanced, not bracing.

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White Rum and Aperol Spritz

white rum and aperol spritz with orange peel garnish
Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

Mildly spicy poblano liqueur and tangy passion fruit liqueur add delicious complexity to this white rum–spiked Aperol Spritz. Boozy heat from white rum gives a pleasant bite to a bubbly summer staple. Choose your fizz: use club soda to let the spirits and liqueurs shine through, or use a splash of sparkling wine to tame the tart piquancy of the drink for a mellower sip.

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Miami Vice

Miami Vice
Photo by Caitlin Bensel / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer / Prop Styling by Christina Daley

Frozen canned pineapple and bitters-infused strawberries take this daiquiri-pina colada mash-up to the next level.

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Buttered Rum

Buttered Rum
Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Prop Styling by Christina Daley / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall

This luxurious, velvety drink is just the thing to sip on a cool night — and using a slow cooker makes it especially easy to pull together. Heat the cream and butter first, slowly so that the mixture doesn't break. Then whisk in dark brown sugar, followed by spiced rum, salt, and a Moroccan spice mix. The end result is a richly flavored batch of drinks perfect for entertaining.

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Rum Negroni

rum Negroni
Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

Ten to One distillery CEO/founder Marc Farrell's rum-based take on a Negroni catapults the classic bitter drink in a refreshingly fruity direction. Teetering between sweet and bitter, Gran Classico Bitter’s 25 aromatics add warmth and depth to this citrusy drink, and a twist of fresh grapefruit peel perfumes each sip, highlighting the floral, clean finish of white rum.

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Guillermo Riveros / Food Styling by Lucy Simon

What makes the three-ingredient classic Daiquiri so delicious and enduring is ultimately its simplicity.

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Photo by Jacob Fox / Food Styling by Lauren McAnelly / Prop Styling by Jessica Thomas; Susan Mitchell

Coquito, or "little coconut," is a traditional creamy rum punch served in Puerto Rico for Christmas and throughout the winter holidays.

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Matt Taylor-Gross / Food Styling Lucy Simon

This chocolaty, caffeinated cocktail might look like an average milkshake, but it packs a deliciously boozy punch.

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Guillermo Riveros / Food Styling by Oset Babür-Winter

The simplicity of the Mojito allows high-quality ingredients to shine. Choose a high quality rum, like Ten to One, that is thoughtfully made and pair it with freshly squeezed lime juice, and all-natural simple syrup to elevate this drink. Plus, a splash of bubbly water to top off the drink helps keep this highball a bit less boozy, making it a great contender for an afternoon sipping. 

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Piña Colada

Fresh and Easy Piña Coladas
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

Coconut milk provides richness that rounds out sweet-tart chunks of frozen pineapple and adds a creamy texture to this lighter take on classic piña coladas. Be sure to vigorously shake the can of coconut milk before opening to recombine the coconut liquids and coconut cream.

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