Three Easy Ways to Make a Rum Runner Cocktail

Imagine, if you will, yourself on a beach. Feel the light breeze running through your hair, the smell of salty seawater wafting past you, and the sound of the ocean waves growing as the tide comes in.

Do you happen to imagine yourself holding a tropical drink in your hand?

There is no better way to truly enjoy a beach paradise than with a fruity and spiked cocktail. If you happen to be enjoying some warm weather without the beach, then you can easily channel some island vibes with an adult beverage garnished with fruit.

No matter whether you're at home dreaming of the beach or at an all-inclusive resort, the Rum Runner is a classic cocktail that is perfect for summer weather or your typical beach bum. Made with rum (duh), banana liqueur, blackberry liqueur, and grenadine, the Rum Runner is a favorite amongst drinkers because it’s easy to make and even easier to slurp down.

It is rumored to have been invented during the 1950s in Islamorada, Florida by a tiki bartender. In a rush to use up a stock of rum before more was shipped in, the bartender whipped up the Rum Runner, and it was an instant hit.

Rum Runners are fairly easy to make, and they leave room for a little creativity. Below are three different Rum Runner recipes that step outside of the box from your typical cocktail:

Not Your Average Rum Runner

This Rum Runner combines all of the classic cocktail ingredients, but it uses blood orange instead of regular orange juice. Your Rum Runner will taste much richer while maintaining the classic, tropical flavors.


1.5 oz. Light Rum
1/2 oz. Spiced Rum
1/2 oz. Crème de Blackberry
1/2 oz. Crème de Banana
3 oz. Blood Orange Juice
1/2 oz. Grenadine


Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Combine the light and spiced rums, crème de blackberry, crème de banana, and blood orange juice, and shake together well.
Fill a tall glass with ice, and strain and pour the cocktail into the glass.
Top off the Rum Runner with a ½ oz. splash of grenadine. Garnish with cherries and orange slices before serving.

Pineapple Dream

This Rum Runner is blended, and it takes a twist on the original recipe. A combination of orange and pineapple juice will satisfy anyone’s sweet tooth.


3/4 c. Ice Cubes
1.5 oz. Dark or Spiced Rum
1/2 oz. Banana Liquor
1.5 oz. Orange Juice
2 oz. Pineapple Juice


In a blender, combine the ice cubes, rum, banana liquor, orange juice, and pineapple juice. Blend until smooth. If the mixture is too thin, blend in one ice cube at a time to thicken the consistency.
Pour in a tall glass. Garnish with a slice of pineapple and slice of orange before serving.

Sophisticated and Delicious

This Rum Runner doesn’t stray far from the classic. Instead of grenadine, falernum is used. Falernum is a sugar syrup flavored with almond, ginger, citrus, and spices. This adds a sophisticated appeal that balances out overly sweet fruits.


1 oz. Coconut Rum
1/2 oz. Spiced Rum
1/3 oz. Blackberry Liqueur
1/2 oz. Banana Liqueur
3 oz. Orange Juice
1/2 oz. Falernum


Fill a shaker to the top with ice. Combine the coconut rum, spiced rum, blackberry liqueur, banana liqueur, and orange juice. Shake well.
Line the rim of a large glass with an orange peel. Strain and pour the cocktail over ice in the glass. Add a splash of falernum to the top.
Garnish the glass with the orange peel before serving.

Endless Combinations

There are a large variety of ways to create a Rum Runner that is unique to your taste buds. This versatile cocktail is a drink everyone can enjoy. Whether you’re on your long overdue vacation, or you have to bring the beach to you, the Rum Runner is the best way to celebrate. After a sip, you may even begin to hear steel drums off in the distance!

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Kylie Morrow

About Kylie Morrow

Born on the tropical island that is Saint Lucia affords a never-ending source of inspiration. In the past 13 years, Kylie loved to work with various newspapers, magazines and blogs in the Caribbean.