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Top Tropical Drinks in Hawaii and How to Make Them

April 9, 2021

One of the things that many travelers would look forward to on their Hawaiian holiday is the delicious and refreshing tropical drinks. Indeed, Hawaiian tropical drinks are delicious and refreshing. These colorful liquid drinks look beautiful too and are often served with a tiny paper umbrella. Poured over a glass full of crushed ice, these refreshing drinks are the perfect way to cool off under the Hawaiian sun.

While rum and vodka are common in a typical Hawaiian drink, and so are a wedge of pineapple and a fresh orchid for garnish, these are not the only ingredients that you will need. But the good news is, you can actually prepare these delicious Hawaiian drinks right from your kitchen using ingredients that you can source from your local supermarket.

From Mai Tais and Margaritas to Martinis and Blue Hawaii, here are the top tropical drinks of Hawaii and how you can make them.

Mai Tai

The Classic Mai Tai is probably the most popular cocktail drink being sold in most of the bars and restaurants in Hawaii. If you want to create this drink on your own, always use freshly squeezed juices instead of a bottled mix. Here’s a recipe to follow.


  • 1 oz. light rum of your choice
  • 1 oz. dark Hawaiian rum
  • Juice from freshly squeezed lime (Keep the half lime shell for later.)
  • ½ oz. orange Curacao
  • ½ oz. Orgeat. (This is a nutty-rose scented syrup that you can buy from the supermarket.)
  • ¼ oz simple syrup
  • 2 cups crushed ice
  • Mint Sprig


  1. Fill your glass with crushed ice.
  2. Place all the ingredients in a shaker except for the dark rum, then shake well.
  3. Pour them on the glass with ice.
  4. Let the dark rum float on top.
  5. Garnish with the half lime shell and the mint sprig.
  6. Add a tiny umbrella on the side to make your Mai Tai look like the real thing.

Hawaiian Margarita

Even though Margarita is a popular Mexican drink, Hawaii has its own version of this drink. Hawaii’s own margarita is made with Hawaiian passion fruit, locally known as “lilikoi”. This ingredient is what makes the Hawaiian margarita unique. Here’s how to make this drink:


  • 25 oz. Tequila
  • ¾ oz. Triple Sec
  • ¾ oz. Lilikoi Purée (passion fruit puree)
  • ¾ oz. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 oz. simple syrup
  • Lime slices for garnishing


  1. Place all the ingredients in a shaker with ice.
  2. Shake well and pour into a glass.
  3. Garnish with lime slices.

Blue Hawaii

Blue Hawaii is a turquoise-colored drink made with vodka and white rum. The turquoise color came from Blue Curaçao, a liqueur flavored drink with a distinct bitter taste. You can make your own version of this tropical drink. Here’s a recipe to follow.


  • ¾ oz. White Rum
  • ¾ oz. Vodka (use this Hawaii made vodka for a more authentic taste)
  • ¾ oz. Blue Curaçao
  • 3 oz. fresh pineapple juice
  • 1 oz. Fresh Sour Mix (separate recipe below)
  • Fresh Pineapple Wedge for garnish
  • Maraschino Cherry for garnish


  1. Fill your glass with ice cubes.
  2. Pour all the ingredients into the glass and stir well using a tall spoon.
  3. Slice a notch of pineapple wedge and attach it to the lip of the glass.
  4. For a blended version of this tropical drink, blend the ingredients including the ice cubes in a blender before pouring them into the glass.

Here’s how to make the fresh sour mix:

  1. Place a saucepan over medium heat and add one cup of water and one cup of granulated sugar. Stir well until the sugar is dissolved.
  2. Remove the saucepan from heat and leave to cool at room temperature.
  3. Add the lime and lemon juices and mix well.
  4. Store in the fridge for up to a week.

Mango Martini

Martinis may not be a typical Hawaiian tropical drink, but you’ll commonly find this refreshing drink in the menu of Hawaii’s most popular bars and restos. Typically, martinis are made with lemon, but Hawaii’s version is made from fresh tropical fruits such as mangos. If you find yourself craving that delicious mango martini from your last Hawaiian holiday, here’s a recipe you can follow.


  • 1 oz. fresh mango juice
  • 1 oz. Triple Sec
  • 2 oz. vodka (use this Hawaii made vodka for a more authentic taste)
  • Freshly squeezed juice of half lime


  1. Get a shaker and add all the ingredients.
  2. Fill it with ice cubes and shake well.
  3. Strain the liquid into a martini glass.
  4. Garnish with lime.

Lava Flow

Lava Flow is another tropical drink that’s famous in Hawaii. This colorful frozen cocktail is served in various Hawaiian bars and is said to be inspired by the volcanos of Hawaii. Thus, the name. Typically made with rum, pineapple, and strawberries, this refreshing drink is usually garnished with fresh fruits to make it look even more colorful. Here’s how to prepare this tropical drink in your own kitchen.


  • 2 fresh strawberries (hulled)
  • 2-inch slice of banana
  • 1 oz. coconut cream
  • 5 oz Hawaii made rum
  • 1 oz fresh pineapple juice


  1. At the bottom of a shaker, muddle the hulled strawberries and banana slice.
  2. Next, fill the shaker with ice.
  3. Add the coconut cream, fresh pineapple juice, and rum, then shake well.
  4. Pour them into a glass and garnish with a pineapple wedge.

As you can see, these Hawaiian cocktails are so easy to create in your own kitchen. They are best enjoyed with friends and loved ones. To achieve a more authentic taste, consider using made-in Hawaii ingredients. There are Hawaii-made liquors and spirits that you can buy online. These are the best ingredients to use in your Hawaiian cocktail drinks. And if you want some foods to pair your refreshing drinks with, grab a bag of Hawaiian macadamia nuts!

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