Planter's Punch Cocktail Drink

Planter’s Punch

A shot of Gavin Wrigley looking to the camera in a dimly lit room
Written by Gavin Wrigley
Andrea
Tested by
Andrea Ottaiano

Try the Planter’s Punch recipe for a cocktail that hits the spot! Simple ingredients make this drink an easy yet irresistible choice.

Planter's Punch Recipe

Unwind in the sunshine with our straightforward Planter's Punch recipe, where rum meets tropical flavors, offering the perfect sip of summer relaxation!

Prep time:

1 minute

Mixing time:

1 minute

Servings:

1

Calories:

205 kl

Ingredients

  • 2 oz Dark Rum
  • ½ oz lime juice
  • 1 oz pineapple juice
  • 1 oz orange juice
  • ½ oz grenadine
  • 1 dash Angostura aromatic bitters, optional
  • Ice cubes
  • Pineapple slice and/or maraschino cherry, for garnish, optional

Equipment

  • Highball or Collins Glass
  • Measuring Jigger
  • Stirrer or Bar Spoon

Instructions

  • Prep Glass: Fill your Collins or highball glass with ice cubes.
  • Add Bitters: Add 1 dash Angostura aromatic bitters if desired; this is optional.
  • Add Grenadine: Pour ½ oz grenadine into the glass.
  • Add Juices: Add ½ oz lime juice, 1 oz pineapple juice, and 1 oz orange juice to the mixture.
  • Add Rum: Pour 2 oz Dark Rum into the highball glass with the mixture.
  • Stir Gently: Use a bar spoon to mix the ingredients well.
  • Garnish: Add a maraschino cherry on top of a pineapple slice on the rim of the glass or into the Punch for a decorative touch.

Notes

Substitutes:

If you're out of dark rum, a spiced rum can add an interesting twist; it has a nuanced flavor that complements the fruit juices. Sometimes, I've replaced Grenadine with cherry or pomegranate juice to maintain the Punch's fruity character; consider adjusting the sweetness as needed.

Making a Pitcher of Planter's Punch:

  • Scale: For a pitcher serving 8 people, multiply all the ingredients by 8. You'll need 16 oz of dark rum, 4 oz of lime juice, 8 oz of pineapple juice, 8 oz of orange juice, and 4 oz of Grenadine.
  • Mix: Combine all the ingredients in a large pitcher. Stir them thoroughly to ensure everything is well-blended.
  • Serve: Serve the Punch into individual ice-filled glasses, garnish as desired, and enjoy your group refreshment!

Making it Non-Alcoholic:

  • Rum Substitute: Use a non-alcoholic rum-flavored syrup or a rum extract for the Punch's distinctive flavor without the alcohol. There are also non-alcoholic rum alternatives available in the market.
  • Proceed As Usual: Replace the regular rum with your chosen non-alcoholic substitute, do the same for Angostura bitters, and follow the original steps for a delightful, alcohol-free Planter's Punch.

Making it Vegan:

Most ingredients in Planter's Punch are inherently vegan, but be cautious with the Grenadine and the garnishes. Some grenadines may contain animal products, and certain maraschino cherries use non-vegan dyes. Opt for vegan-certified Grenadine and cherries.

Nutrition Facts

Calories
205
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
0.1
g
0
%
Saturated Fat
 
0.01
g
0
%
Sodium
 
6
mg
0
%
Carbohydrates
 
18
g
6
%
Fiber
 
0.2
g
1
%
Sugar
 
12
g
13
%
Potassium
 
115
mg
3
%
Protein
 
0.4
g
1
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
0.02
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
0.01
g
Vitamin A
 
65
IU
1
%
Vitamin C
 
21
mg
25
%
Calcium
 
10
mg
1
%
Iron
 
0.2
mg
1
%

 

Planter's Punch Cocktail Drink

Planter's Punch Recipe

Gavin Wrigley Written by Gavin Wrigley
Jump to Video
Unwind in the sunshine with our straightforward Planter's Punch recipe, where rum meets tropical flavors, offering the perfect sip of summer relaxation!
Prep time: 1 minute
Mixing time: 1 minute
Servings: 1
Calories: 205

Ingredients
 

  • 2 oz Dark Rum
  • ½ oz lime juice
  • 1 oz pineapple juice
  • 1 oz orange juice
  • ½ oz grenadine
  • 1 dash Angostura aromatic bitters - optional
  • Ice cubes
  • Pineapple slice and/or maraschino cherry - for garnish, optional

Equipment

  • Highball or Collins Glass
  • Measuring Jigger
  • Stirrer or Bar Spoon

Instructions

  • Prep Glass: Fill your Collins or highball glass with ice cubes.
  • Add Bitters: Add 1 dash Angostura aromatic bitters if desired; this is optional.
  • Add Grenadine: Pour ½ oz grenadine into the glass.
  • Add Juices: Add ½ oz lime juice, 1 oz pineapple juice, and 1 oz orange juice to the mixture.
  • Add Rum: Pour 2 oz Dark Rum into the highball glass with the mixture.
  • Stir Gently: Use a bar spoon to mix the ingredients well.
  • Garnish: Add a maraschino cherry on top of a pineapple slice on the rim of the glass or into the Punch for a decorative touch.

Notes

Substitutes:

If you're out of dark rum, a spiced rum can add an interesting twist; it has a nuanced flavor that complements the fruit juices. Sometimes, I've replaced Grenadine with cherry or pomegranate juice to maintain the Punch's fruity character; consider adjusting the sweetness as needed.

Making a Pitcher of Planter's Punch:

  • Scale: For a pitcher serving 8 people, multiply all the ingredients by 8. You'll need 16 oz of dark rum, 4 oz of lime juice, 8 oz of pineapple juice, 8 oz of orange juice, and 4 oz of Grenadine.
  • Mix: Combine all the ingredients in a large pitcher. Stir them thoroughly to ensure everything is well-blended.
  • Serve: Serve the Punch into individual ice-filled glasses, garnish as desired, and enjoy your group refreshment!

Making it Non-Alcoholic:

  • Rum Substitute: Use a non-alcoholic rum-flavored syrup or a rum extract for the Punch's distinctive flavor without the alcohol. There are also non-alcoholic rum alternatives available in the market.
  • Proceed As Usual: Replace the regular rum with your chosen non-alcoholic substitute, do the same for Angostura bitters, and follow the original steps for a delightful, alcohol-free Planter's Punch.

Making it Vegan:

Most ingredients in Planter's Punch are inherently vegan, but be cautious with the Grenadine and the garnishes. Some grenadines may contain animal products, and certain maraschino cherries use non-vegan dyes. Opt for vegan-certified Grenadine and cherries.

What is a Planter’s Punch?

Planter’s Punch is a cocktail that blends rum with fruity sweetness, hailing from the warm climates of the Caribbean. The drink’s history is as rich as its flavor, tracing back to colonial plantations, which is reflected in its name. The IBA (International Bartender Association) officially recognizes this classic drink and categorize it among “The Unforgettables“.

A side shot of a Planter's Punch cocktail in highball glass on a wooden tray placed on a yellow table with oranges, limes, a straw, a knife, and plant leaves around.

Planter’s Punch ingredients

You need these ingredients ready before you make your Planter’s Punch:

  • Dark Rum: The foundation of the cocktail, dark rum contributes a rich, deep flavor and warmth.
  • Lime Juice: Adds a tangy freshness that balances the drink’s sweetness.
  • Pineapple Juice: Provides a tropical flair and natural sweetness that characterizes Planter’s Punch.
  • Orange Juice: Infuses the cocktail with a citrusy zest and slight acidity.
  • Grenadine: Offers a touch of deep red sweetness, enhancing the drink’s visual appeal and fruity taste.
  • Angostura Bitters (optional): Introduces a complex, slightly spicy element, rounding out the flavors.
  • Ice Cubes: Chills and slightly dilutes the mixture for a refreshing coolness.
  • Pineapple slice and/or maraschino cherry (for garnish, optional): Enhances the aesthetic presentation, inviting a taste.

Dark Rum, Angostura Bitters, grenadine, lime, orange and pineapple laid out on a white bar table

How do you make a Planter’s Punch?

Make your own Planter’s Punch by following our easy guide:

1
<p>Start by filling your preferred glass (a highball glass works well) with ice cubes to ensure your drink stays refreshingly cool.</p>

Start by filling your preferred glass (a highball glass works well) with ice cubes to ensure your drink stays refreshingly cool.

2
<p>If you prefer an added layer of complexity, sprinkle in a dash of Angostura bitters at this stage.</p>

If you prefer an added layer of complexity, sprinkle in a dash of Angostura bitters at this stage.

3
<p>Drizzle in the Grenadine will contribute a sweet depth and vibrant color to the mix.</p>

Drizzle in the Grenadine will contribute a sweet depth and vibrant color to the mix.

4
<p>Add the lime juice.</p>

Add the lime juice.

5
<p>Add the pineapple juice.</p>

Add the pineapple juice.

6
<p>Add the orange juice.</p>

Add the orange juice.

7
<p>Measure and pour the dark rum into the glass, setting the robust base for your cocktail.</p>

Measure and pour the dark rum into the glass, setting the robust base for your cocktail.

8
<p>Take a bar spoon or a long-handled spoon and stir your cocktail, blending all the ingredients for a consistent flavor.</p>

Take a bar spoon or a long-handled spoon and stir your cocktail, blending all the ingredients for a consistent flavor.

9
<p>Garnish your drink with a slice of pineapple, a maraschino cherry, or both for a visually appealing and flavorful touch.</p>

Garnish your drink with a slice of pineapple, a maraschino cherry, or both for a visually appealing and flavorful touch.

10
<p>Enjoy your Planter's Punch</p>

Enjoy your Planter's Punch

What is the difference between a Mai Tai and a Planter’s Punch?

In terms of composition, a Mai Tai combines rum, lime juice, orgeat syrup, and orange liqueur, typically curaçao, resulting in a cocktail that highlights the almond flavor of the orgeat and the citrus notes without any added fruit juices. Planter’s Punch, on the other hand, boasts a vibrant mix of dark rum, a variety of fresh fruit juices (commonly pineapple and orange), lime juice, Grenadine, and sometimes a dash of bitters for an added layer of complexity.

The flavor profile of each drink is also a clear marker of their difference. A Mai Tai presents a more nutty and tart taste, where the rum is front and center, complemented but not overshadowed by the other components. Conversely, Planter’s Punch offers a sweeter, fruitier experience, with the rum blending harmoniously with the tropical juices, creating a refreshing and less potent palate.

Lastly, presentation differs between the two. Mai Tais are often served in an old-fashioned or tiki mug with a sprig of mint, fruit slice, or even an umbrella for garnish, while Planter’s Punch is usually presented in a larger glass or punch bowl, laden with fruit slices and sometimes topped with a splash of dark rum.

A side shot of a Planter's Punch cocktail in highball glass on a wooden tray placed on a yellow table with oranges, limes, a straw, a bowl full with oranges and limes, a white cloth, and plant leaves around, in front of a yellow wall.

Non-alcoholic Planter’s Punch Mocktail

The Mocktail Planter’s Punch is a refreshing drink that keeps the spirit of the original cocktail intact, minus the alcohol. To create this, you use a non-alcoholic rum substitute, which provides a similar flavor base without the buzz. The key is to maintain the balance of sweet and tart, so adding a dash of Grenadine or simple syrup pairs with the tanginess of fresh lime juice, mimicking the traditional Punch’s taste profile. Adjusting the sweetness is easy; add more juice or syrup to suit your palate. Serve it over ice, just like the classic. For garnish, consider a slice of pineapple or a maraschino cherry, adding visual appeal and an extra layer of flavor. 

Best Rum for Planter’s Punch

Choosing the right rum for your Planter’s Punch can elevate the cocktail from good to great, and the ideal pick is a high-quality dark rum. Dark rums are aged longer and often in charred barrels, imparting a richer, more nuanced flavor than their light rum counterparts, with hints of molasses or caramel that beautifully complement the Punch’s fruity sweetness.

One top contender is Appleton Estate, a Jamaican rum lauded for its smooth yet spicy profile and a natural fit for Planter’s Punch. Its well-balanced nature doesn’t overpower the drink’s other elements. Mount Gay Black Barrel, out of Barbados, is another excellent option, with its bold, toasty notes derived from the charred bourbon oak barrels it’s aged in, adding a layer of complexity to your cocktail.

For a slightly different take, consider Gosling Black Seal. This Bermudian rum brings a deep, mellow sweetness with a touch of smokiness, perfect for a Planter’s Punch with a twist. Lastly, for those seeking a true premium experience, Ron Zacapa 23, crafted in Guatemala, offers a blend of rums aged between 6 and 23 years. Its sophisticated tapestry of flavors, including sweet fruitiness, rich nuttiness, and a hint of spice, makes any Planter’s Punch an upscale treat.

If you have to choose just one, Appleton Estate strikes a brilliant balance between quality and affordability, and its flavor profile is practically tailor-made for Planter’s Punch.

A side shot of a Planter's Punch cocktail in highball glass on a wooden tray placed on a yellow table with oranges, limes, a straw, a knife, a white cloth, and plant leaves around, in front of a orange wall.

Planter’s Punch Variations

Want to try a similar yet different Punch? We recommend one of these two variants:

  • Barbados Rum Punch: Sweet, fruity flavors with a hint of bitterness define this delight, making it a true embodiment of the island’s spirit. Rich Barbados rum mixes with lime juice, simple syrup, and a dash of Angostura bitters for a vibrant and refreshing taste. The lime juice’s sharpness beautifully complements the warm rum, and the bitters bring a complex depth. The balance in this punch captivates me; it’s like a sunny escape in a glass, capturing the essence of Barbados perfectly.
  • Jamaican Rum Punch: Bold and spicy, this punch transports you straight to Jamaica with its robust flavors. Potent Jamaican rum pairs with a blend of pineapple and orange juices, often brightened with grenadine for added sweetness and color. A sprinkle of nutmeg or allspice can enhance the tropical taste, making every sip a vibrant celebration. The spicy kick that balances the fruit’s sweetness draws me in. It feels like a festive Jamaican party, full of lively spirit and rich traditions.

A Planter's Punch cocktail, shot form above, on a white marmol table with an Angostura Bitters bottle, a Dark Rum bottle, a grenadine bottle, an orange juice bottle, two limes and two oranges around.

History and Origins of the Planter’s Punch

The story begins in the West Indies, where sugar plantations increased in the 17th century. These plantations produced vast quantities of molasses, the byproduct of sugar production, which became the primary ingredient for rum distillation. Rum swiftly became a staple of the region, and the planters who owned these vast estates would often cool off with a refreshing, rum-based drink.

Planter’s Punch, as the name suggests, associates closely with these sugar planters. The first written mention of this Punch appears in publications like The New York Times in the early 1900s. Still, the drink’s existence likely predates this by several centuries, tied to the long tradition of Caribbean punches.

 

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FAQ

How many calories are in a Planter's Punch?
A typical Planter's Punch contains approximately 200-250 calories, depending on the specific quantities and ingredients used.
How strong is a Planter's Punch cocktail?
Planter's Punch usually has an alcohol by volume (ABV) of around 15-20%, equating to approximately 30-40 proof, contingent on the rum's strength and the proportion of non-alcoholic mixers.
What type of alcohol is used in Planter's Punch?
Dark rum, renowned for its rich and robust flavor, is the traditional alcohol in Planter's Punch.
In which type of glass is Planter's Punch served?
Planter's Punch is commonly served in a highball glass, which allows plenty of room for ice and garnishes.
What does Planter's Punch taste like?
Planter's Punch boasts a vibrant, tropical flavor profile, combining the sweetness of fruit juices with the tangy zest of lime and the deep, complex notes of dark rum.
What's the typical ratio in a Planter's Punch?
The classic ratio is 2 oz Dark Rum, 1/2 oz Lime Juice, 1 oz Pineapple Juice, 1 oz Orange Juice, 1/2 oz Grenadine, and a dash of Angostura Bitters.
How is Planter's Punch typically served in terms of ice?
It's most commonly served over ice, ensuring the drink remains chilled and dilutes slowly for sustained enjoyment.

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