how to make a mojito cocktail

Mojito is a classic spring and summer cocktail that has a refreshing taste and flavor. It is quite popular and is one of the most preferred of the tropical cocktails. The low alcohol content as the rum is the only spirit that is used in the traditional versions, has also contributed to its popularity.

The drink originated in Cuba and is the traditional Cuban highball drink. It contains five ingredients: White Rum, Mint, Sugar, Lemon and Sparkling water or Soda. There are several stories related to the origin of Mojito, some dating back as far as the 16th century.

You can either make this drink one at a time or do a pitcher at a time. If you plan to make a pitcher then increase the amount of ingredients proportionally. You might be better off preparing the drink one small batch at a time and filling up the pitcher. Also, do not add either the ice cubes or soda into the pitcher unless you plan serve immediately. By adding the ice cubes and soda directly into the glass when serving prevents the drink from getting diluted and the soda getting flat in the pitcher.


  • 5 or 6 fresh mint leaves
  • 1 fresh lemon
  • 2 shots of White Rum
  • 2 tablespoon of fine white sugar (or sugar syrup)
  • Club Soda


The steps below looks more complicated than it actually is. I have just tried to break it down to easy to follow steps, at the expense of it being lengthy.

  1. Add mint leaves into a cocktail shaker or a mixing glass
  2. Cut the lemon into two halves
  3. Cube one half of the lemon into quarters
  4. Squeeze each quarter of the lemon into shaker and drop it into the shaker
  5. Add 2 tablespoon of white sugar into shaker
  6. Muddle the contents of the shaker with a muddler
  7. Add 2 shots of the White Rum into the shaker
  8. Add some ice cubes as well into the shaker
  9. Stir the contents well, or give it a couple of good shakes till cold
  10. Slice the other half of the lemon into several (3 or 4) slices
  11. Fill a high ball or tall Collins glass with large ice cubes up to the brim
  12. Add the lemon slices into the glass
  13. Strain the contents of the shaker into the glass
  14. Top of the glass with club soda
  15. Garnish with couple of mint sprigs
mojito cocktail drink

Variations and Similar Drinks

  • Dirty Mojito: Instead of the two shots of White Rum, add a shot of the White Rum and a shot of the Gold Rum (eg. Barcardi Gold). Instead of the white sugar, use raw cane sugar. This gives the drink a light gold hue.
  • Dark Mojito: Add two shots of the dark Rum instead of the White Rum. This makes the drink much darker, darker than the Dirty Mojito.
  • Mexican Mojito: Use tequila instead of the Rum.

Other variations include adding other tropical fruits into the mix to make flavored mojitos, such as Strawberry Mojito, Mango Mojito, Orange Mojito etc.

Tips and Notes

  • Some recipes for Mojito advise against straining the contents and recommend emptying the whole contents of the shaker into the glass. I prefer straining, as it allows to get rid of the smashed up mint leaves, lemon cubes and melted down ice cubes and results in the cleaner drink.
  • You can use a shot of the simple syrup instead of the white sugar.
  • Use super fine sugar when possible, but using coarse grain sugar can give the drink a grainy texture which is good as well.
  • Muddling helps with releasing the oils from the mint as well as lemons, in addition to the lemon juice. This is better than just stirring the contents.
  • When making a pitcher, do not add either the ice cubes or the club soda into the pitcher if you plan to let it sit.