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Spiced panela syrup is the ingredient your rum cocktails have been missing

Panela is unrefined whole cane sugar, and instead of making simple syrup with white sugar and water, this rum cocktail recipe calls for syrup made out of coconut milk, panela and cinnamon.

The richness of the coconut milk cooked with the panela makes the drink slightly thick, and when it’s combined with the rum, it gives this cocktail a tropical flair. And I can’t tell you how aromatic it is! While the sugar is melting with the coconut, your kitchen will smell like summer on a faraway island. It never hurts to dream of white sand beaches in the middle of winter.

It’s sweet, mild in alcohol and very easy to drink. For those with a sweet tooth, you will love this drink for its almost dessert-like flavor.

Image: Rowena Dumlao-Giardina/SheKnows

Rum cocktail with spiced panela dark sugar syrup recipe

If you can’t find panela, you can substitute by mixing 1 cup of dark brown sugar with 2 tablespoons of molasses.

Yields 1

Prep time: 13 minutes | Cook time: 5 minutes | Total time: 18 minutes


  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons panela sugar, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 2 tablespoons rum
  • Ice cubes


  1. In a small pot over low heat, combine the coconut milk, 1-1/4 tablespoons of panela sugar and the cinnamon, and simmer for 5 minutes. Let the mixture cool, mixing a few times.
  2. Into the cocktail glass, pour the rum, and then add the coconut milk. Mix well.
  3. Add the ice cubes, sprinkle in the remaining 1/4 tablespoon of panela sugar, and serve immediately.
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Image: PDX Food Love

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