Fall adult beverage: Pumpkin Rum Punch

24 Oct

I served up this punch at a ladies party I had at my house recently – it was a unanimous hit! Not one person tried it and didn’t like it – none that admitted it anyway! Obviously, you have to be a fan of pumpkin to enjoy this punch. It is loaded with pumpkin flavor, kind of like pumpkin pie in a glass, but less sweet. Next time I make it i’m toying with adding about 1/2 cup whipped cream vodka along with the spiced rum to make it even more pumpkin pie like. Whatever you do, don’t sub ground cinnamon for the cinnamon sticks. It creates a gritty substance that is hard to strain out, and will also alter the color of the punch.

This would be a great companion to Thanksgiving, so I’m thinking about making a double batch – one for home, one to take! Enjoy!

Pumpkin Rum Punch

serves 12


  • 2 cups packed dark brown sugar
  • 12 cups water
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 29-ounce can pure pumpkin (NOT Pumpkin pie mix)
  • zest of 1 lemon, cut using a vegetable peeler
  • 1 cup spice rum (I used Captain Morgan)


Combine 12 cups water, brown sugar, pumpkin, and cinnamon sticks in a large pot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil.  Add lemon peel and let simmer for 15 minutes. Let mixture cool, then refrigerate until the liquid is cold and the pumpkin pulp settles to the bottom, 2 to 3 hours, or overnight.

Working in batches, ladle the liquid into a fine-mesh strainer set over a bowl or pitcher. Discard the pulp and lemon zest. Return the cinnamon sticks to the punch, add the spiced rum and refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve over ice and add a cinnamon stick if you so desire.

This can be made without the rum as well for a non-alcoholic version.


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