A Fantastic Hot Buttered Rum Recipe Minus That Icky Oil Slick

by Pamela

hot buttered rum recipe, rum drinks, spiced rum drinks, drink recipes, classic drink recipes

I don’t know where you are, but it’s been pretty unbelievably cold here. (Yes, cold is relative and I live in LA…but it’s still been ridiculously cold.) You can go the hot chocolate route for a liquid warm up or maybe some spiked cider or mulled wine, but I’m thinking something a little more high test might be in order. Like one of those classic drink recipes – Hot Buttered Rum.

Hopefully I didn’t lose you with the hot buttered rum recipe idea. I know, I know…hot buttered rum sounds delicious, smells fantastic and usually looks pretty good too but then there’s the actual consumption part. Anyone else get skeeved out by that greasy slick on the top? Sure, some people cover it up with a blob of whipped cream…but I don’t think whipped cream has any right being in (or near) rum drinks (yes, that goes for piña colada’s too).

Are you ready for this? Fat washing. No, that is not the practice of jumping into the bath or shower after the holiday’s and washing your fat ass. This refers to infusing alcohol with a flavored fat. You know all those bacon cocktails you’ve heard about and seen? That’s how they get the smoky/bacony flavor into the alcohol. Well, butter is a fat (and a flavorful one at that) and makes for a delicious cocktail addition. So while this isn’t your classic hot buttered rum recipe…it’s DELICIOUS! And even better? No icky oil slick.

Classic Drink Recipes - Hot Buttered Rum

While I would love to take credit for this recipe, I can’t. A Manhattan bartender named Jim Meehan worked this one out and then the recipe was subsequently published in the N.Y. Times. Of course, I changed it up a little bit but not much. I used Sailor Jerry’s spiced rum, to get all those delicious spice flavors in there. You’ll definitely want to use a dark or spiced rum to make this. It gives the cocktail a lot more depth (so it’s not all rum and butter). Jim used English Breakfast tea (instead of the traditional water) and I grabbed some of my favorite chai tea to get even more spices crammed into that glass.

This could easily become one of my favorite rum drinks (at least for the winter months).

Yep, it’s a short post today. It’s Friday…get out there…have some fun!


A Fantastic Hot Buttered Rum Recipe Minus That Icky Oil Slick
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Hot buttered rum is one of those classic drink recipes that's perfect for cold weather, but it's usually topped with an icky fat slick. Not anymore!
Recipe type: Cocktail
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6
  • 1 Stick Unsalted Butter
  • 16 Ounces Sailor Jerry Rum (or other dark/spiced rum)
  • 2 Vanilla Beans
  • 3 Chai Tea Teabags (the small individual teabags for cups)
  • 24 Ounces of Water
  • 6 Teaspoons of Raw Sugar
  • Cinnamon Sticks (for garnish)
  1. Add butter to a pan over medium - medium low heat. While the butter is melting, split the vanilla beans and scrape the seeds into the pan. Stir the mixture just until the butter begins to brown. As soon as the butter smells nutty, remove from heat. (The smell test will probably be easier to do than seeing the butter actually change color, if you're using a dark pan.)
  2. Pour rum into a large glass measuring cup or bowl. While the butter is still hot, pour it into the rum and let sit for 10 minutes.
  3. Cover the measuring cup, or bowl, with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator for at least 18 hours.
  4. After the 18 hours of chilling, place the rum mixture in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  5. Pull it out of the freezer and strain it though a fine-mesh sieve into a clean bowl. You can re-use the butter (smear on toast for a delicious breakfast) or throw it out.
  6. Wet a coffee filter with water then line the strainer with it. Pour the rum through the filter to remove all of the little bits of butter that may still be in there. You may need to do this twice.
  7. The rum will keep in a glass bottle in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
  8. Bring the water to a boil and add the tea bags, steep for two minutes and remove tea bags.
  9. Add 1 teaspoon sugar to each glass, pour 4 ounces of the hot tea and 1½ ounces of fat washed rum into 6 heatproof glasses or mugs and garnish with a cinnamon stick.
You may take a sip before adding sugar. I thought that mine tasted just fine with the tea that I had used. Be careful when you do that first strain. If you don't break up the layer of chilled butter, you may not have to do that second strain with the coffee filter.


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Maureen | Orgasmic Chef December 15, 2013 at 1:17 pm

I was never bothered by the butter slick but now I won’t be able to enjoy it again without washing the butter off. 🙂 Clever.

John@Kitchen Riffs December 15, 2013 at 10:26 am

Terrific recipe! I love hot buttered rum, but not that oil slick. Definitely will be trying this at some point – thanks.

sippitysup December 14, 2013 at 5:00 pm

I used this trick for a bacon infusion to great success. Happy Holidays. XOGREG

Pamela December 14, 2013 at 6:44 pm

It’s really amazing how it works, isn’t it? Bacon is next on my list. Happy Holidays to you too Greg!

Crista December 13, 2013 at 8:08 pm

great idea… i love buttered rums, but they feel so naughty…….

Pamela December 14, 2013 at 9:53 am

Well Crista, Santa does ask if you’ve been naughty or nice. 😉 Be a little naughty. But fat washing makes this version of hot buttered rum not nearly as naughty as the usual one. HO HO HO!

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