Recently, Ella and I had a Lilo & Stitch Movie Night, so I naturally needed to experiment with another tropical cocktail in honour of the movie’s Hawaiian setting. This was my first time making or tasting a Mai Tai and it is now one of my favourite cocktails!
If you’ve never had a Mai Tai, it is a rum cocktail with a delicious blend of almond, lime, and tropical fruit flavors. I would most liken Mai Tais to another classic tropical cocktail, the Jamaican Rum Cocktail, without the crazy amount of grenadine found in the Jamaican classic.
The almond flavour in a Mai Tai comes from a unique ingredient, orgeat (pronounced “orza”), an almond simple syrup, which can be purchased in grocery or specialty stores, but I found it easier to just whip up my own. Below I give a recipe to make quite a few Mai Tai’s, but if you just want enough to make two cocktails,boil a tablespoon of water and tablespoon of almonds in 1/4 cup of water until they reduced to a thick syrup.
Tip: I often order my liquor from Drizly because they have a quick delivery time (sometimes within 40 minutes) and no expensive mark-ups. Purchasing from them supports local retailers, too. You can order the Rum needed for this recipe from them.
Mai Tai Cocktail Ingredients
For the Cocktails:
- Orgeat Syrup <– use store-bought or check out our recipe below
- Lime Juice
- Orange Juice
- Pineapple Juice
- Dark Rum <– spiced rum is more authentic, but I used dark rum
- Garnish of choice
For the Almond Simple Syrup (Orgeat):
Scroll down to the printable recipe card for full measurements.
Kitchen Tools Used to Make this Recipe:
- Shot measure
- Highball glasses for serving
- Cocktail shaker
I really loved using my gorgeous Omishome Bartending Kit to make this recipe. The pretty bamboo holder contains all of the tools you need to make perfect cocktails, and those pretty gold tools add a touch of class to your home bar set-up.
How to Make a Mai Tai Cocktail
How to Make Orgeat Syrup:
Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook until mixture has reduced by at least half, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.
Remove the almonds either by using a fork to remove them or pouring the mixture through a cheesecloth-lined sieve.
Cool and store in the fridge for up to a month.
For the Cocktail:
You can layer or shake this recipe – there really is no way to go wrong.
For ours, I added the orgeat syrup directly to the glasses before adding the ice. I poured over the rum, lime juice, and then fruit juices before garnishing with a slice of lime and a mint leave.
Print your free copy of our mai tai cocktail recipe here:
- 2 teaspoons orgeat syrup (storebought or recipe below)
- 2 teaspoons lime juice
- 2 oz orange juice
- 2 oz pineapple juice
- 2 oz spiced rum (I just used dark rum)
- Garnish of choice
Easy homemade orgeat syrup:
- 1 cup silvered almonds
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon orange flower water, optional
For the mai tai:
- For ours, I added the orgeat syrup directly to the glasses before adding the ice. I poured over the rum, lime juice, and then fruit juices before garnishing with a slice of lime and a mint leave.
- Alternatively, you can shake all ingredients over ice in a cocktail shaver before straining to serve.
For the syrup:
- Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook until mixture has reduced by at least half, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.
- Remove the almonds either by using a fork to remove them or pouring the mixture through a cheesecloth-lined sieve.
- Cool and store in the fridge for up to a month.
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365 Everyday Value, Almonds, Blanched & Slivered, 8 oz
Nielsen-Massey Orange Blossom Water, with Gift Box, 4 ounces
Omishome Complete Bartender Mixology Kit - Elegant Gold Finish Stainless Steel Cocktail Shaker Set with Bamboo Stand and 6 BONUS Sturdy Stainless Steel Straws - A Superb Bartending Set
ReaLime Lime Juice | Lime Juice From Concentrate | 2.5 oz Each Bottle | Pack of 4
Simply Orange Juice, 52 fl oz, 100% Juice Not from Concentrate, Pulp Free
DOLE 100% Pineapple Juice 46 fl. Oz Can
Kraken Black Spiced Rum Liquor, 750 ml, 94 Proof
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 114Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 6mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 0gSugar: 9gProtein: 0g