Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

The best rum and rum mixers for no hangover

The best hangover cure is to never get one in the first place

Rum cocktail
Marc Schulte/Unsplash

When it comes to staying hangover-free, rum is a bit tricky. If you opt for dark, gold, or spiced rum, you might not like the results. Just like whiskey and aged tequila, darker spirits are more likely to result in a bad headache and rumbly stomach the morning after. The key is to imbibe a clear, un-aged, congener-free spirit. That’s why vodka, gin, and white rum are great choices. We’ve talked about the first two in previous articles, so today is white rum’s time to shine.

In the simplest terms, rum is a spirit made from fermenting sugarcane juice or molasses and then distilling it. The finished product is clear but often added to oak barrels to mature.

Why rum is a great liquor choice to avoid hangovers

White rum
Alvis Taurēns/Unsplash

What you want for your hangover-free (or less explosive hangover) drinking adventure is a white rum. Also known as light or silver rum, white rum is the youngest of all rum varieties. But, while it can be transferred directly to a bottle after distillation with no aging whatsoever, it doesn’t have to be. Many are matured between three and six months (and beyond).

White rum is known for its light, muted, highly mixable flavor that’s also a little sweeter and has more residual sugar than its aged counterparts. This makes it a terrific choice for mixing, especially if you want a boozy drink with less hangover potential than dark, spiced, and other rum varieties.

Avoiding congeners is key

Rum cocktails
Jennifer Schmidt/Unsplash

If you want to avoid hangovers, you’ll steer clear of spirits loaded with congeners. Spirits like whiskey, aged tequila, and dark rum are filled with congeners. The fermentation process and distillation created ethanol, which your body already needs to break down.

However, the aging process adds other chemicals like acetone, isopentanol, and methanol. These extra congeners are the reason you end up with an epic headache after an evening of sipping red wine. Instead of simply breaking down the ethanol, your body needs to work harder to break down a whole slew of congeners. Gin, vodka, and white rum are less in congeners. Therefore, you’re less likely to have a hangover. Or, at the very least, it hopefully won’t ruin your day.

Our favorite rums for no hangovers

Melissa Walker Horn/Unsplash

While all white rums are going to have less congeners than dark rums, even if they simply were charcoal filtered to remove impurities, some are better than others. Keep scrolling to learn about three of our absolute favorites.

Ten To One White Rum
Ten To One

Ten To One White Rum

This blend of column-still rum from the Dominican Republic and Jamaican pot-still rum is known for its aromas and flavors of pineapples and other tropical fruits, citrus peel, grass, and toasted vanilla beans. It’s nuanced enough to be used as a rainy-day sipping rum but shines as the base for your favorite cocktails.

Bacardi Superior White Rum

Bacardi Superior White Rum

When it comes to classic, budget, mixing white rums, it’s difficult to beat Bacardi Superior White Rum. The world’s most-awarded rum, it’s based on Don Facundo Bacardí Masso’s recipe from 1862. It’s known for its dry, clean flavor and notes of almond cookies, vanilla beans, citrus peels, and wildflowers. It’s not the kind of rum you’ll want to sip neat, as it was crafted to be a base for a mojito or another rum-based drink.

Banks 5 Island Rum

Banks 5 Island Rum

As the name suggests, Banks 5 Island Rum is a blend of rums from Trinidad, Barbados, Jamaica, Java, and Guyana. The rums were aged between three and five years before being charcoal filtered to remove impurities and caramel color. Its complex flavor profile features vanilla beans, cinnamon, citrus peels, oaky wood, and gentle spices. It’s a perfect white rum to use as the base for a flavorful tart daiquiri.

Best rum mixers

Dmitry Dreyer/Unsplash

Once you select a white rum to mix with that limits the hangover-inducing congeners, you don’t want to screw it up by adding ingredients that are going to give you a massive headache the next day. Stay away from sodas and other sugary ingredients. Instead, opt for freshly squeezed fruit juices and herbs like mint. We understand that to make many drinks, you’ll have to add some sugar or simple syrup. Simply limit the amount of sugar. You’ll be much happier the next day.

Bottom line

Timothé Durand/unsplash

As a quick primer, stick to white rums if you don’t want congeners to add to a potential hangover the next day. Also, when mixing fresh fruit juice, limiting sugar intake is key. Better yet, pick a white rum that you’d want to sip and enjoy it neat. Just drink it in moderation, or that sneaky hangover will get you regardless.

Editors' Recommendations

Christopher Osburn
Christopher Osburn is a food and drinks writer located in the Finger Lakes Region of New York. He's been writing professional
Cognac vs. brandy: What’s the difference?
Wonder no more about these age-old grape spirits
Brandy in the sunlight

The colossal world of booze is full of questions and dilemmas. Are you drinking a pinot gris or pinot grigio? What's the best glass for that pilsner? How on earth do I make a refreshing cocktail with hibiscus?

Well, here at The Manual, we've got a few answers and tricks that will get you out of any drinks-related binds. One oft-misunderstood topic involves an age-old grape spirit. We're talking about cognac vs. brandy, specifically, and how the two are different.

Read more
Get creative: How to use hibiscus in your cocktails this spring
How to use hibiscus in cocktails
Alcoholic cocktail with pieces of fruit and berries in a bowl

Hibiscus is a great ingredient to incorporate into your cocktail game. Offering radiant color and a unique flavor, the flower is often converted to tea but also can be used as a syrup, lesser-known liqueur, soda, and more. And we especially like it in a good spring cocktail, as hibiscus is both floral and refreshing.

Why hibiscus in a cocktail? Because your mixology game could use a little creativity. There are enough boring cocktails out there made with the same old lineup of ingredients. Those are fine for regulars, but you're a budding cocktail artist.

Read more
The 10 best brunch recipes for restaurant-quality meals at home
Skip long lines and getting hangry and whip up your own high-quality brunch
A person cutting up tomatoes for a healthy meal

Spring is here, so it's officially brunch season. Over the past couple of decades, brunch has become the meal of the weekend, the repast that lets you keep the party going from the night before with mimosas and Bloody Marys. The name implies that it should fall sometime between breakfast and lunch but can run anywhere from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Some restaurants have given up trying to put time restrictions on their brunch menu and serve it all day. Others have dedicated their whole concept to the "in-between" meal and only serve brunch-friendly foods.

So, what is considered brunch food? Originally, restaurants had brunch to use up ingredients that weren't used over the weekend. But now, brunch is such a busy shift (if not the busiest for some), restaurants must order special items for brunch to present creative, in-demand dishes.

Read more