The piña colada, as my friends and family know, is my favorite summertime drink. I love the combination of juicy pineapple and sweet coconut. It’s impossible to sip a piña colada and not think about sitting on a white sandy beach watching clear blue waves crash onto the shore in the Bahamas. It’s the perfect, most idyllic summer beverage.
My first experience with an alcoholic (rum filled) piña colada, however, was a horrible disaster. I had recently turned 21 and was having dinner with a friend at a local Mexican restaurant. I thought that the best way to test my newly minted ‘Over 21’ ID would be to order one of their oversized piña coladas. (You know the kind I’m talking about–the ones in the tall, hourglass shaped plastic glasses with an umbrella and giant straws peering out.)
The drink arrived, and I immediately grabbed my straw and went for a sip.
Bleeechhh. Holy rum! What an overpowering taste! Where was my juicy pineapple, my sweet coconut? I was drinking a drink, not a piña colada.
Since that day, I’ve been wary of ordering piña coladas in restaurants and have worked to figure out how to make a piña colada that contains just enough rum to have fun, without forgetting the tropical foundation of the piña colada itself. Based off of a recipe by the Queen of Delicious herself, the great Paula Deen, I have made a few tweaks to create my perfect piña colada. Enjoy!
Perfect Piña Colada
Adapted from a recipe by Paula Deen
1/4 cup coconut rum
1/2 cup coconut cream
1/3 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup pineapple chunks, plus more for garnish
1/2 teaspoon salt (or more if desired)
Fill blender halfway with ice cubes. Add coconut cream, coconut milk and pineapple chunks. Puree. Add rum and salt. Puree until smooth and pour into individual serving glasses. Top with pineapple chunks or coconut flakes. Enjoy!