In Memory Of Karen Nicole Smith, 1972 - 2016

A Non Traditional Caribbean Ginger Beer.

Give the kids some orange juice and let’s make some big-people ginger beer. Spiked with rum and balanced with the juice of freshly squeezed limes, this is NOT your grandmas ginger beer recipe. I took ah-borrow of my dad’s ginger beer recipe (which is very traditional), but you know I had to add my own twist on things. So YES.. this is my take on holiday ginger beer!
You’ll Need…

1lb ginger
1 1/2 cups sugar *
4 Limes
3 drops Angostura bitters
1 teaspoon Mixed essence
5 Cups Water
4 Cups carbonated water
4 cloves
1 cup rum


Notes. The traditional way our dad would make ginger beer meant having it soak (steep) for at least a couple days, less limes and of course.. no rum was added. But after fermenting for a few days  you’d have a very STRONG ginger beer. This recipe is very quick and a great way to enjoy excellent ginger beer without having to wait days.

In a large bowl grate (or puree with a blender) the ginger. You can peel the ginger first, but I prefer using it with the skin still on.. be sure to wash the ginger well though. Then add the juice of the limes and cloves. Heat 5 cups of water in your kettle or on the stove top and pour it into the bowl. This heated water will force the steeping process. Leave that for at least 2 hours. Be sure to add the lime skin in the bowl for added flavor.

Strain the contents into another container, be sure to give the grated ginger a good squeeze to get all than lovely ginger flavor out. You may need to double strain to make sure you don’t get chunks when enjoying a cold glass!

Add all the other ingredients and whisk to make sure the sugar dissolves. Do taste to ensure there’s enough sugar to your liking.

The carbonated water will add a lovely lightness to the ginger beer and the limes (yea I know I used a lot) will give it a rounded citrus twist! Remember we have rum in this so do keep that in mind when serving it this holiday season. If the one cup of rum is not enough (lush) you can always add more. I used white rum, but for additional flavor you can use a dark spiced rum. Vodka would also work well if rum is not your thing and remember you can also make this without the rum altogether!

The mixed essence can be found at West Indian markets, but you can also use a couple drops of vanilla if you can’t source it. Remember to chill before serving!

Before you go, don’t forget to check out the latest cooking videos, connect with me on twitter and join our community on facebook. oh yea! leave me a comment below – it’s appreciated.

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A Non Traditional Caribbean Ginger Beer Recipe.
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2.51star1star1stargraygray Based on 12 Review(s)


  1. Lawrence
    August 26, 2017 / 3:59 pm

    Hi Chris, Lawrence here, just to say recipes are great.
    Respect Horace.

  2. Erika
    December 15, 2016 / 9:40 pm

    Hi, Chris!! Question: Can you use dark rum?

    • admin
      December 16, 2016 / 7:00 am


  3. patrick
    March 16, 2015 / 7:32 am

    Thanks for posting Chris,
    Great recipe!!!!!!!!!

  4. Dandai
    February 5, 2015 / 8:08 pm

    I would love to have the recipe for parrasad and mango achar which is dark in colour but the smell is out of this world.

  5. Karlene
    November 29, 2014 / 1:25 pm

    Heh Chris, what is the mixed essence that the recipe calls for. Is there a substitute that we can use in Canada?

  6. Elaine
    February 1, 2014 / 8:12 am

    Can you please send me some vegetarian recipes. Jamaican Style

  7. mama-d
    January 4, 2014 / 10:46 pm

    what is the essence cakked for in this recipe

  8. Phil
    January 4, 2014 / 1:38 am

    Hi Chris, could you post the traditional recipe or comment below on how to adjust it to the traditional one, please. (e.g. lime ratio) I’m looking to make it for the first time. Does it matter if you put the ginger to steep in a plastic bottle? I like it fiery like how you said your dad makes it. The stuff in bottles here is just soo weak.

    Thanks again for your absolutely amazing website and recipes. Just forwarded a couple friends a link to your ultimate oxtail recipe. They’ve been craving it for the past while.

  9. Ursula
    December 16, 2013 / 3:06 pm

    Hi Chris,
    I make the traditional ginger bear every year. This year I will be making this one. Thanks.

    Ps.Tried sending in my commet to be entered for Jamie Oliver’s knife
    set, but it did not go through.

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