Boozy Hot Butterbeer

Cozy up with a mug of this Hot Boozy Butterbeer recipe and your favorite Harry Potter book. One sip of this hot buttered rum cocktail will make you feel like you’re in a magical world.

a cinnamon stick rests atop a glass mug with butterbeer hot buttered rum

As the weather cools off, this time of year I only want to do one thing: Cozy up with a book under a warm blanket.

Specifically, one of the Harry Potter books. I like to reread them every year if I can! (Lately, I’ve been listening to the Binge Mode podcast which breaks down every book — highly recommend!)

I always wish I had a mug of butterbeer to sip on, so I decided to make it happen.

What is butterbeer?

In the Harry Potter book series, butterbeer is a popular concoction served at pubs in the wizarding world. Students of Hogwarts would often buy it when visiting the Three Broomsticks Inn, a pub in the nearby village Hogsmeade. Butterbeer was also served at events like the Yule Ball and parties such as Fleur Delacour and Bill Weasley’s wedding.

Its flavor is butterscotch and the books indicate it was somewhat alcoholic to humans but also to magical creatures like house-elves. Wizards of age only!

The author described it as “a little bit like less-sickly butterscotch,” which I assume means it wasn’t as super sweet as, say, butterscotch candy or a butterscotch skillet cookie.

Butterscotch is made with a mixture of brown sugar and butter. It is similar to caramel, which is made with a mixture of white sugar and butter. You’d think they are similar, but the two are quite a bit different in flavor.

top view of a clear mug of hot butterbeer on a wooden coaster with a wand and a gryffindor scarf

Universal Studios’ butterbeer

When I first tried butterbeer on a trip to Universal Studios Orlando and their Wizarding World of Harry Potter, I thought it was fine but not as great as I expected.

Their version is made with cream soda, and I found it to be extremely sweet.

My friends and I drank it all anyway because, well… how often do you get an experience like that?!

Not often, but I remember being so disappointed in both the regular and the frozen butterbeer at the park.

Another disappointing thing about Universal Studios’ butterbeer? They don’t offer an alcoholic butterbeer for the adults!

That was my inspiration for creating this boozy butterbeer, which is less sweet than the Universal version. I did not want to create a concoction of heavy cream, butterscotch syrup or butter extract.

Instead, my cold butterbeer cocktail uses cream soda, butterscotch schnapps and vanilla vodka and is topped with brown sugar whipped cream and butterscotch sauce. It’s a cold drink that will have you dreaming you’re in Harry Potter World.

a cinnamon stick rests atop a glass mug with butterbeer hot buttered rum next to a red and yellow scarf and a harry potter wand

Boozy Hot Butterbeer recipe

But another criticism of mine? I always thought butterbeer was a warm drink. Maybe I need to reread the books again, but I remember it being described as a drink that warmed you up inside.

So I decided to create another version: a warm butterbeer that’s more like a hot buttered rum. And I have to be a bit Draco-ish and say: I killed it. This is the best butterbeer recipe I could have imagined.

Regular butterbeer is made with cream soda and served cold at Universal Orlando, but this one is so much better.

To make this hot butterbeer recipe, you will create spiced butter to drop into warm rum.

If that sounds weird to you, then I can relate. When I first tried it, I was skeptical. I am, of course, obsessed with movie theatre buttered popcorn. But drinking butter?

Butter definitely seems like an odd ingredient for a cocktail! It’s in the realm of egg whites for whiskey sours. Weird, but definitely good and worth a shot.

But you can trust me when I say, Once you try hot buttered rum you’ll never go back.

Butter provides a silky quality to this hot butterbeer rum, and the warmth of spices and two kinds of rum make this drink one cozy libation. Overall, it is a sweet drink, but not overbearing. It’s the real thing, trust me.

closeup of a cinnamon stick garnish for a glass of butterbeer

What is hot buttered rum?

Hot buttered rum’s history dates back to colonial America when rum was frequently imported from the Caribbean.

Rum became the base of many cocktails, from the hot toddy to eggnog to hot buttered rum.

Traditionally, hot buttered rum is made with warm rum, hot water and plain butter. It’s a hot drink that is simple and delicious.

These days, it’s common to see spices mixed into the butter as well, and more experimentation with the types of rum used. Some recipes even include vanilla ice cream or vanilla extract.

Hot buttered rum is a common drink during the holiday season and winter months.

a wand and a gryffindor scarf with a mug of hot butterbeer

Warm Butterbeer Ingredients

Hot buttered rum is an incredibly easy recipe. You can make a big batch of this delicious drink for a party of huge Harry Potter fans. Honestly, these butterbeer recipe ingredients are ones you might even already have on hand!


This recipe calls for two types of rum: blackstrap rum and aged rum.

You can use gold rum if you do not have aged rum, but you will not want to skip the blackstrap rum here. You can even use spiced rum for a more spiced flavor.

To make it non-alcoholic: You can use a zero-proof spirit such as Ritual’s rum alternative.

Unsalted Butter

You’re going to want to use quality butter for your hot buttered rum.

I usually keep Kerrygold Irish butter on hand, but trust me: Quality butter will change your life for all your baked goods and toast too!

You can use salted butter, but it will give your drink a salty flavor. I recommend unsalted if at all possible.

To make this recipe vegan: You can substitute coconut oil for the unsalted butter. The rest of the ingredients are vegan.


You will need a bevy of spices to make this Harry Potter cocktail recipe. Whenever I can, I use high-quality spices that are single-origin and ethically sourced.

Spices lose flavor over time (and can go rancid), so it’s a good idea to replenish your stock from time to time.

Here are the ground spices you’ll need for this cozy drink recipe:

  • cinnamon
  • ginger
  • cloves
  • nutmeg

For my garnish, I used one a cinnamon stick. You could also add a pretty rim of cinnamon sugar like people do with Christmas ale beer. (I bet Dumbledore would!)

How to make the best hot butterbeer recipe

Making the best hot buttered rum butterbeer is easy. You do need to plan ahead a little bit, though.

First, you will make balls of spiced butter to add to your boozy Harry Potter hot buttered rum. This is the best part that makes this cocktail have all the warm elements of butterbeer.

This is the “buttered” component, so it’s very important! (Some people call this hot buttered rum batter.)

You do not need to melt butter. Instead, you will need soft, room-temperature butter. My favorite way is to set the butter out on the counter a few hours before you plan to use it, until it is softened. Sometimes I even put it out the night before.

If you can’t wait, you can soften it in the microwave, but be careful not to melt it. Put it on a plate and soften it in 10-second intervals at 50% power. However, I much prefer this roll-out method for softening butter.

a glass bowl of butter, sugar and spices in a glass bowl to make spiced butter

Then you’ll mix the butter with dark brown sugar and spices until it’s evenly distributed. You can do this with an electric mixer or by hand.

The result is a mixture very similar to what goes inside a cinnamon roll:

a glass bowl of spiced butter to make into balls

Once the butter and spices are evenly mixed together, roll the butter into balls. You can also mold it into a log that you can cut later.

Place them on a wax paper-lined baking sheet and refrigerate. Once they have hardened, you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month.

When you’re ready to make the drinks, boil some water in your kettle. I use a stovetop one, but I envy anyone with one of these pretty electric kettles!

Place a ball of spiced butter in a mug, then top with rum and hot water.

Stir until the butter has dissolved. Some will float to the top of the rum in a foamy layer — this is normal! Ideally, most of it will mix with the rum.

Garnish with a cinnamon stick. You can top your hot version of butterbeer with boozy whipped cream if you like, but only take a sip when it reaches the perfect temperature for you.

And that’s how you make this hot butterbeer recipe!

a cinnamon stick rests atop a glass mug with butterbeer hot buttered rum next to a red and yellow scarf and a harry potter wand

More Harry Potter Cocktails

If you’re planning a Harry Potter movie marathon or a re-read of the Harry Potter novels, you may want to mix up a few other cocktails to go with your alcoholic Harry Potter butterbeer.

Here are a few more magical recipes to try:

This fun, color-changing Amortentia cocktail, a gin drink reminiscent of the love potion in the HP books.

Infuse cinnamon sticks in bourbon to make your own Firewhiskey. Just pretend you’re in the Leaky Cauldron in Diagon Alley when you drink it!

If you’ve always wanted to try Harry Potter pumpkin juice, this grown-up version with whiskey is super fun. Or you can skip the booze and make this non-alcoholic pumpkin juice.

This green Polyjuice Potion looks absolutely frightful and I really, really hope you don’t turn into a cat if you drink it.

Don’t forget to order some chocolate frogs and every flavor beans from the Trolley Witch on the Hogwarts Express, okay?

Let me know what you think about this Harry Potter-inspired Boozy Hot Butterbeer Recipe! Leave a recipe rating or review below in the comments.

a cinnamon stick rests atop a glass mug with butterbeer hot buttered rum

Boozy Hot Butterbeer

Yield: 8 cocktails
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Make Boozy Hot Butterbeer from Harry Potter! This variation of hot buttered rum is a winter warmer that will make you wish you were a wizard.
5 from 6 votes
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For the Spiced Butter

  • 1.5 cups dark brown sugar
  • ½ cup butter 1 stick
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoons ground cloves

for the cocktail

  • 1 ounce aged rum
  • ½ ounce blackstrap rum
  • 2 tablespoons spiced butter
  • 8 ounces hot water


  • In a medium mixing bowl, stir together butter, sugar and spices until combined.
  • Measure 2 tablespoons of butter and roll into a ball. Repeat to make 8 balls. Place on a wax paper-lined baking sheet or plate and chill in the fridge for 1 hour. Transfer to an airtight, food-safe storage container until ready to use.
  • To make 1 cocktail, boil water. Meanwhile, place 1 ball of spiced butter in a mug and top with the aged rum and blackstrap rum. Add the hot water. Stir until butter melts into the hot rum mixture. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.


Adapted from Scofflaw

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nutrition information

Yield: 8 cocktails

amount per serving:

Serving: 10ounces Calories: 198kcal Fat: 12g Saturated Fat: 7g Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g Cholesterol: 31mg Sodium: 101mg
did you make this recipe?Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram with the hashtag #feastandwestrecipes!
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  1. Sherry says

    Butterbeer is becoming more and more popular in Michigans cold winters. Loved your step by step instructions to make this easy drink that all my guests just loved!!

  2. Erin says

    I know it’s been a while since this was posted but I was hoping to ask a question. I’m hosting a Harry Potter themed Friendschristmas and I would love to serve this but I’m wondering if there’s a way to premix everything in my 4 gallon insulated drink bucket with a tap for easy serving. Thank you if this is seen at all 😄🪄

    • Susannah says

      Hey Erin! I absolutely still check my comments! 🙂 I think that is a great idea for a wintry HP party — here’s what I would do:

      I’d make the butter before the party and keep it in the fridge until your party starts. Don’t add it to the drink bucket because it could clog a tap. Also it will float to the top so depending on how it dispenses, it might not come out with every drink.

      Instead, I’d do the rums and hot water in the drink bucket — multiply as needed — and then add butter to a mug and pour the hot rum on top to serve it.

      As for amounts, the butter makes enough for 8 drinks, so double up if you need more than that. For 8 drinks, you would need 1 cup (8 ounces) aged rum, ½ cup (4 ounces) blackstrap rum and 8 cups of hot water.

      It’s so good and I hope you love it! Have a great party!
      // susannah

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