This Festive Blue Hawaiian Cocktail Recipe is the classic Blue Hawaiian Cocktail all dressed up for the holidays. While this delicious recipe makes one 12 oz cocktail, it is easily multiplied according to how many thirsty cocktail lovers you are serving.
Don’t we all wish we were on a tropical beach somewhere; fancy umbrella drink in hand? I may not be able to send you on vacation, but I do have a few tropic-inspired Tiki style drinks here on the blog. The Friday Flame is the way to celebrate the end of a long week (or year!) while it doesn’t get any more tropical than a passionfruit kissed Zombie Cocktail.
Festive Blue Hawaiian Cocktail Recipe
I always say that if you can’t travel, you can always travel through food or drink. What better way to travel to the tropics than with this vivid blue cocktail with all the extras?
Embrace the feeling of Christmas kitsch in this retro cocktail…it contains all the usual Tiki cocktail suspects; rum, fruit juice, coconut cream, plus a cheesy over-the-top garnish.
However, what really makes this cocktail recipe, is the Blue Curaçao. This striking blue liqueur mixes with the pineapple juice to create a dreamy ocean inspired colour. One sip and you’re immediately transported through time and space to the beach of your choice.
By the way, this Blue Hawaiian recipe is perfect for an escape at any time of year. While the Christmas sprinkles make the cocktail shine for the holidays, a tiny Tiki umbrella, maraschino cherry, or slice of fruit are the perfect garnish for any other season.
What is a Blue Hawaiian?
If you love a Piña Colada, you will also love a Blue Hawaiian. They are essentially the same cocktail, with the latter receiving a splash of colourful blue curaçao. This colour enhancement mixes with the yellow pineapple juice to create the drinks’ signature aquamarine colour.
A Blue Hawaiian is mixed in a cocktail shaker, then poured over pebble ice in a large fish bowl, Collins glass, or Hurricane glass. However, this Blue Hawaiian Cocktail recipe is blended together to make a refreshing frozen slushie style cocktail. This classic cocktail is usually garnished with a slice of pineapple and a maraschino cherry (or two).
Blue Hawaiian vs Blue Hawaii
To add a little bit of confusion to our rum muddled minds, there are two blue Tiki style drinks with a similar name. The Blue Hawaii cocktail was invented in Hawaii by 1950’s Hilton Hawaiian Villages bartender, Harry Yee. It contains pineapple juice (sometimes sweet and sour mix) and usually vodka, along with the rum and blue curaçao.
Contrary to popular belief, the drink was not named after the classic 1961 Elvis song, Blue Hawaii but after the same titled song in the 1937 Bing Crosby film, Waikiki Wedding. The Elvis version is actually a cover recorded much later!
At any rate, the Blue Hawaiian (or Swimming Pool) cocktail differs from a Blue Hawaii cocktail in two ways:
- It does not contain vodka.
- It always contains cream of coconut or some other coconut flavour such as Malibu coconut rum.
The Blue Hawaiian is considered to either be a ‘riff’ on the original Blue Hawaiian or a ‘dressed up’ Piña Colada, with an uncertain origin story.
- white or light rum
- pineapple juice
- cream of coconut
- lemon juice (optional)
- whipping cream
- Christmas sprinkles (or other garnish)
- blue curaçao
White or light rum is preferred as it is light tasting and will not affect the signature colour of the cocktail. You can also do a little math and use a reduced amount of overproof white rum. Or, if you want to skip the cream of coconut, use a coconut infused rum in its place.
As in a Piña Colada, there is no substitute for Pineapple juice in a Blue Hawaiian. It is an essential ingredient in both cocktails.
Cream of coconut can be found in most grocery stores. However, you can skip this ingredient and use coconut infused rum (such as Malibu) in its place. The coconut cream is quite sweet, so you can add a squirt of lemon juice or even lime juice to bring down the sugar a bit, if you like. Coconut milk is not an acceptable substitute.
While whipping cream is not a standard ingredient in the classic cocktail, in this Blue Hawaiian Cocktail recipe it serves as a ‘bed’ for the Christmas sprinkles. When mixing up a non Christmas version of the Blue Hawaiian, omit the whipping cream and garnish accordingly.
What is Blue Curaçao?
Curaçao is a citrus based liqueur. It has an orange-like flavor with varying degrees of bitterness, flavoured with the peel of the bitter laraha orange. The laraha orange grows solely on the Dutch owned island of Curaçao in the Caribbean. The original distiller of this infused colourless liqueur is unknown, or highly disputed.
However, the striking blue color additive was courtesy of Dutch distiller Lucas Bols, in the early 1900’s. He believed (and rightly so) that the blue color would lend an exotic or mysterious appearance to cocktails and other mixed drinks.
It is interesting to note that both French distilled Triple Sec and Cointreau are also infused with the peel of the laraha orange. You can substitute either of them in this recipe, then add a bit of blue food colouring to achieve the signature aquamarine colour.
How to Make a Blue Hawaiian Cocktail
To make a blended or ‘frozen’ Blue Hawaiian, place the first five ingredients in a blender pitcher. Blend them together until they are smooth.
Pour the blended cocktail into a hurricane glass (it should fill 3/4 of the glass) or tiki style mug. Top with whipped cream and Christmas sprinkles (optional).
To make a Blue Hawaiian on the rocks, place the first five ingredients (plus ice) in a Boston cocktail shaker. Fill a Hurricane or Collins glass with pebbled or shaved ice. Shake until the cocktail shaker becomes frosty, then strain into the prepared glass.
Garnish with a tiny umbrella, maraschino cherry, slice of pineapple, or sliced starfruit. Bottoms up!!
If you make this Festive Blue Hawaiian Cocktail Recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Be sure to follow me on Facebook and Pinterest for my latest recipes. Also, if you do make this recipe, please tag me on Instagram, I’d love to see what you guys are making! Thank you so much for reading my blog.
- 1 1/2 oz white rum
- 3/4 oz blue curacao
- 2 oz pineapple juice
- 3/4 oz cream of coconut
- squirt lemon juice (optional)
- 1 cup ice
- whipping cream to serve (optional)
- Christmas Sprinkles (optional)
- Place the first five ingredients in a blender pitcher. Blend until smooth.
- Pour blended cocktail into a hurricane glass (it should fill 3/4 of the glass) or tiki style mug. Top with whipped cream and Christmas sprinkles (optional).
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 716Total Fat: 44gSaturated Fat: 35gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 59mgSodium: 267mgCarbohydrates: 56gFiber: 9gSugar: 41gProtein: 4g
Nutritional calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is an estimation only. For special diets or medical issues please use your preferred calculator.