Bahama Mama is a simple cocktail that is fruity, cool, and refreshing. It is a perfect summer drink to sip on after a long day, on warm nights, and at casual get-togethers.
It is a tropical cocktail like the Mai Tai and the Rum Runner that mixes up quickly and contains coconut rum, banana liqueur, orange and pineapple juices, and grenadine syrup.
If you are looking for a perfect fruity rum drink that reminds you of beach days and tropical getaways, then the Bahama Mama is it!
What is a Bahama Mama?
The Bahama Mama is a fruity tropical drink that has endless recipes and variations. Nearly all of the recipes contain various fruit juices, like pineapple juice and citrus juice, and of course different types of rum. Then from those basic ingredients, numerous versions add a variety of other ingredients like coffee liqueur or banana liqueur, grenadine syrup, sour mix, and simple syrup.
The original recipe was invented in the 1950's by a bartender named Oswald Greenslade who worked at the Nassau Beach Hotel. According to his book, "One More Cocktail: A Guide to Making Bahamian Cocktails", he named this rum-forward cocktail with a lovely pink color after a local calypso singer.
Over the years there have been "original" versions, "real" versions, and "ultimate" versions of this popular cocktail. But to me, the best is the simplest recipe where every ingredient counts. So I spent some time trying a variety of recipes after a recent trip to the Bahamas where I had a very tasty Bahama Mama on the beach.
I made this drink with plain silver rum, silver rum with dark rum, and also with silver, coconut, and dark rum. After many trials, I found that this recipe that uses only coconut rum is the simplest Bahama Mama recipe to make and the best tasting.
I've also experimented with banana liqueur in the recipe and I really like adding it. It gives that "something extra" flavor without yelling "Hey! there's banana in here!" But you can certainly make a Bahama Mama without banana liqueur.
The big takeaway is you can make this fruity cocktail the way you like it. If you like more rum you can add more and if you like your drink very sweet and very pink you can add more grenadine syrup.
So... let's make a tropical escape in a glass!
Here's what you will need to make the Best Bahama Mama Cocktail:
Coconut Rum - I like Malibu Coconut Rum but any brand of coconut rum will work in this drink.
Orange Juice - Fresh juices are always best and your favorite orange juice that you have for breakfast is perfect.
Pineapple Juice - Always choose the best quality pineapple juice that has no additional sweeteners.
Grenadine Syrup - A splash of grenadine gives a Bahama Mama a lovely pink color and makes the drink sweeter. You can add more or less to suit your taste.
Banana Liqueur, (Optional) - I happen to like just a touch of banana flavor, but the drink is still lovely without it.
Oranges Slice, Pineapple Wedge, and/or Maraschino Cherries - Garnishes that signal the fruity flavors of the drink are best.
Please see the recipe card for quantities.
In a cocktail mixing glass or cocktail shaker, add Malibu Coconut Rum, banana liqueur, orange juice, pineapple juice, and grenadine. Stir well.
Pour over ice in a hurricane glass or tall cocktail glass. Add an additional splash of grenadine. Garnish with a slice of orange, a wedge of pineapple, and or maraschino cherries.
My Top Tips
♡ Be sure to have the coconut rum and the pineapple and orange juices well chilled. I generally keep coconut rum in the refrigerator, when I know I will be making drinks with it.
♡ This recipe scales up easily and you can make a pitcher in advance for entertaining. Then simply put ice in a glass, pour, and garnish!
Substitutions and Variations
Add More Coconut Rum. If you want a little more alcohol kick, you can add more rum.
Substitute White Rum or Dark Rum. You may prefer the flavor of white rum or dark rum instead of coconut rum. However, you may need to add simple syrup or more grenadine to balance the flavors.
Make it Sweeter. Add plain simple syrup to make a sweeter drink.
Make it Pinker. Add more grenadine syrup (which will also make it sweeter).
Substitute Maraschino Cherry Juice. Instead of grenadine syrup, you can use the syrup from maraschino cherries. Both of these syrups are red and fruity and can be substituted for each other.
More Great Cocktails & Drinks
- 2 Ounces Malibu Coconut Rum
- ½ Ounce DeKuyper Creme De Banana Liqueur, Optional
- 2 Ounces Orange Juice
- 2 Ounces Pineapple Juice
- ½ Ounce Grenadine Syrup
- Orange Slice, Wedge of Pineapple, and or Maraschino Cherries.
- In a cocktail mixing glass or cocktail shaker, add Malibu Coconut Rum, banana liqueur, orange juice, pineapple juice, and grenadine. Stir well.2 Ounces Malibu Coconut Rum, ½ Ounce DeKuyper Creme De Banana Liqueur, 2 Ounces Orange Juice, 2 Ounces Pineapple Juice, ½ Ounce Grenadine Syrup
- Pour over ice in a hurricane glass or tall cocktail glass. Add an additional splash of grenadine. Garnish with a slice of orange, a wedge of pineapple, and or maraschino cherries.Orange Slice, Wedge of Pineapple, and or Maraschino Cherries.
Encharted Cook Notes
Per 1 serving. All nutritional information on this site is an estimate. Your results may vary.