Mango Mai Tai

Mango Mai Tai

The mango mai tai recipe adds a tropical fruit twist to a favorite rum cocktail. It takes just minutes to make from scratch and is a brilliant addition to summer parties, whether they’re poolside or in the backyard.

While you can use mango rum or nectar, this recipe adds fresh mango to the classic mai tai. Mango’s sweet-tart flavor is a fantastic addition to the mai tai’s traditional combination of aged rum, orange curaçao, orgeat syrup, and lime juice. To marry the flavors, the recipe includes a splash of pineapple juice as well. Making the drink is as simple as muddling, shaking, and straining, so anyone can mix it up with the help of a few basic bar tools.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup cubed fresh mango, from about 1/2 mango

  • 1/4 ounce orgeat syrup

  • 1 1/2 ounces aged rum

  • 1/2 ounce orange curaçao liqueur

  • 1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice

  • 1/4 ounce pineapple juice

  • Mango slices, for garnish

  • Fresh mint sprig, for optional garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for a Mango Mai Tai The Spruce / S&C Design Studios

  2. In a cocktail shaker, muddle the mango and orgeat syrup until the fruit is broken up and well-juiced.

    Muddling a Mango Mai Tai The Spruce / S&C Design Studios

  3. Add the rum, orange curaçao, and lime and pineapple juices. Fill the shaker with ice.

    Making a Mango Mai Tai The Spruce / S&C Design Studios

  4. Shake vigorously for at least 30 seconds.

    Making a Mango Mai Tai The Spruce / S&C Design Studios

  5. Strain into an old-fashioned glass over crushed ice.

    Making a Mango Mai Tai The Spruce / S&C Design Studios

  6. Garnish with mango slices and a sprig of fresh mint (if using). Serve and enjoy.

    Mango Mai Tai The Spruce / S&C Design Studios

Tips

  • For this mai tai, use your favorite aged rum. The oakiness of barrel aging adds a nice depth of flavor to the fruity drink.
  • Consider fresh-squeezed lime juice essential for any tropical drink, as bottled juices are often sweetened and sometimes unnaturally flavored. One-half of a large lime should yield enough juice for a single drink.
  • Crushed ice is a signature for any mai tai, giving the drink a frostiness that ice cubes simply can’t add. To quickly crush ice cubes, use a manual or electric ice crusher machine. A Lewis bag and mallet work as well but take a little more effort. You’ll need about 1 cup of crushed ice per glass.

Recipe Variations

  • Spiced rum is a good alternative to aged rum, adding a little extra flavor to the mai tai.
  • Instead of fresh mango, use 1 1/2 ounces of either mango rum or mango nectar or a combination of the two.
  • Blueberries are excellent with mango; add a few blueberries to the muddle for a pop of color and sweet berry taste.
  • For a spicier twist, muddle a slice or two of jalapeño pepper with the mango and orgeat.
  • When you want to make a pitcher of mango mai tais, it’s best to use mango juice, nectar, or rum. For six to eight drinks, use 1 1/2 cups each of aged rum and the mango liquid of your choice, 1/2 cup each of curaçao and lime juice, and 1/4 cup each of orgeat syrup and pineapple juice. Mix the ingredients in a small pitcher and keep it chilled. To serve, pour into glasses over crushed ice and garnish.

What Can I Use in Place of Orgeat Syrup?

Orgeat syrup is an almond-flavored syrup with a hint of orange flower water. The nonalcoholic mixer often appears in tropical cocktails and is a great sweetener in many rum drinks. If you don’t have it, almond syrup or amaretto liqueur are good substitutes.

How Strong Is a Mango Mai Tai?

The amount of alcohol in the mango mai tai will depend on the strength of the rum you choose to pour. Using the average 80-proof rum, it mixes up in the 18 percent ABV (36 proof) range. This drink is a bit lighter than the original mai tai but is still a pretty strong cocktail.

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