This Banana Daiquiri is going to be the best-tasting, most authentically banana-flavored cocktail of your life. No artificial colors or banana flavorings here. The secret ingredient? Homemade cold-process banana syrup. This incredibly simple mix of fresh bananas and sugar turns an ordinary Daiquiri into a richly flavored, tropical delight.
There are a number of ways to make a Banana Daiquiri. You can serve it blended and frozen, shaken and served up, with banana liqueur, banana syrup, or fresh bananas. The choice is yours.
However, after trying a few different recipes, this simple, shaken Banana Daiquiri with an easy banana syrup is my very favorite. If you’re looking for real banana flavor while also being able to taste your rum of choice, this is the recipe for you.
What makes a Daiquiri a Daiquiri?
A classic Daiquiri is a simple cocktail made with white rum, freshly squeezed lime juice and simple syrup. For a flavored Daiquiri, you can either swap out the simple syrup for a flavored syrup or muddle fresh fruits. Frozen, flavored Daiquiris have a bad reputation for being overly sweet and artificial-tasting. But if you use fresh ingredients and avoid Daiquiri mixes, you can make perfectly balanced, fruity, frozen Daiquiris right from the comfort of your home.
There is some variation in the specs for a traditional Daiquiri, but a good place to start is 2 parts rum, 1 part lime juice, and 3/4 part simple syrup. Some prefer it a bit sweeter with 1 part of syrup, while others like it even more tart with only 1/2 part sweetener. As long as the flavor of the white rum is in harmony with the sweet syrup and the sour lime juice, it’s a Daiquiri.
How to make it frozen
To make a frozen Daiquiri, all you need to do is add about 1 cup of crushed ice to your ingredients and blend everything until smooth. I recommend using flavored syrups, like the banana syrup in this recipe, rather than using fresh banana. The reason for this is because we want to control how much the flavors are diluted. Using whole, fresh bananas will add a lot more volume to the finished drink, essentially ‘watering it down’.
Instead, our banana syrup adds the same flavor, but in a more concentrated form. You can apply this to other fruity Daiquiris, too: use strawberry simple syrup to make a Strawberry Daiquiri, or passion fruit syrup to make a Passion Fruit Daiquiri.
Pro tip: Use a quality blender and crushed (rather than cubed) ice for the best, smoothest texture.
Learn all my best tips for making great frozen drinks at home in my Frozen Honey Palomas recipe!
How to make the banana syrup
This syrup is made using the process of maceration. For those unfamiliar, this is the same cold-process method of syrup making that’s used for oleo saccharum. Oleo saccharum is a classic cocktail ingredient that was frequently used for making large format punches.
It’s essentially a citrus peel syrup made by mixing lemon or orange (or lime, or grapefruit) peels with white sugar. The mixture is left for an hour or several, and the sugar slowly draws out the rich oils from the peels. Oleo saccharum is a great way to add bright citrus flavor to many drinks, from those old school punches to simple lemonade.
To make this macerated banana syrup, you’ll simply toss sliced ripe bananas with sugar, cover the bowl, and wait an hour. Next, you can add a small measure of water to help dissolve the last of the sugar crystals, carefully strain out the bananas, and voila! While it does take a little bit of patience, it’s very easy and requires no cooking, which means beautiful, fresh banana flavor.
Find all the details in my Fresh Banana Syrup Recipe.
The best rums for Daiquiris
Daiquiris are most commonly made with white rum, but you can use an aged rum if you prefer. Here I’ve used Copalli White Rum, which is a really interesting, smooth, organic rum from Belize with a distinct grassy flavor. The simple format of the Daiquiri makes it a great choice when sampling a new rum.
You can really taste your rum of choice, and enjoy some of its more nuanced flavors. Other white rums I recommend for Daiquiris are:
- Plantation 3 Star
- El Dorado 3 Year
- Flor de Cana 4 Year
You can certainly use the old standby, Bacardi, if you enjoy it, but there are many more white rums out there to choose from! Here are some quick notes on two of my favorite rums for any Daiquiri:
Plantation 3 Stars
Plantation 3 Stars White Rum is a blend of rums from three different Caribbean countries: Jamaica, Barbados, and Trinidad. It is a blend of unaged and aged rums that have been distilled using both pot and column stills.
Plantation 3 Stars White Rum has a smooth, clean taste with a hint of sweetness and a subtle vanilla flavor. It has a medium body and a rich, velvety texture.
Probitas Rum is a unique blend of two different rums from two different distilleries: Foursquare Distillery in Barbados and Hampden Estate in Jamaica. What makes Probitas Rum different is its unique blend of rums from two different countries and distilleries, resulting in a complex flavor profile that combines the fruity and floral notes of the Jamaican rum with the rich, spicy notes of the Barbados rum.
Banana Daiquiri variations
There are many ways to make a Banana Daiquiri. This ultra-simple recipe is my current favorite, but I also recommend checking out the Shaken Banana Daiquiri from Difford’s Guide and the Parasol by Shannon Mustipher.
Both of these recipes use Giffard’s Banane du Bresil, which is a delicious, high quality banana liqueur made with Brazilian bananas and Cognac. If you don’t have time for making banana syrup, I highly recommend picking up a bottle of Banane du Bresil!
The Parasol is a particularly wonderful tropical cocktail that is made with a touch of pineapple juice and garnished with freshly grated nutmeg.
How to garnish
I like to garnish with a banana slice. Just be sure to slice the banana while it’s still in the peel! Then, cut a slit just long enough to allow the slice to sit on the rum of your cocktail glass. A fresh banana slice makes a great finishing bite for this cocktail, but you can also garnish with a sprig of mint to amplify the fresh flavors, or you can skip the garnish altogether.
You may also enjoy these other Daiquiri recipes:
Banana Daiquiri with Easy Homemade Banana Syrup
- 2 oz white rum
- 1 oz lime juice
- ¾ oz fresh banana syrup
- Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker and fill it 3/4 with ice.
- Shake until chilled, then strain into a cocktail glass.
- Garnish with a banana slice.
Don’t have time to make the banana syrup?Try substituting with a high quality banana liqueur like Giffard’s Banane du Brasil and a touch of simple syrup. Here’s a good starting point: Ingredients:
- 2 oz white rum
- 1 oz lime juice
- 1/2 oz – 3/4 oz Giffard Banane du Bresil
- 1/2 oz simple syrup