Coquito, also known as the Puerto Rican Coconut Nog or Eggnog, is a thick, creamy holiday drink made primarily with coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, rum, and spices. This incredible recipe is like the sassy cousin of eggnog with a tropical flair. Deliciously creamy, rich, cozy drink!
Christmas isn’t complete without a boozy drink over festive songs and loud chatter. So I’m pretty thankful for a few cocktails and mocktails that allow me to take on a few more sips before I space out, like this Coquito drink here.
It has rum in it, but the condensed milk, coconut milk, and warm spices balance out this holiday drink – not too overpowering nor too thick. It’s perfect just the way it is! Yaaay!
What is Coquito?
Coquito is a Puerto Rican version of eggnog but sassier. It is usually served on Christmas Eve or Nochebuena and New Year’s Eve. It’s also given away bottled as Christmas gifts.
This luscious drink has many versions, but the base ingredients of this popular Puerto Rican traditional holiday drink will always be coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, and rum. After that, you can twist it up any way you like it.
Coquito Recipe Ingredients and Substitutes
To make this deliciousness, simply combine all the ingredients in a blender and puree for a minute, and voila! Holiday coconut punch is a cinch! Probably the hardest part will be waiting for it to chill in the fridge. Just gather these ingredients below to make it at home:
- Condensed Milk – It’s creamy, thick, and sweet – no wonder it makes our coquito drink is such a delightful drink. If you don’t have condensed milk in your pantry, try this Homemade Condensed Milk instead. 😉
- Coconut Milk – Our Christmas drink here wouldn’t be complete without the wonderful tropical taste from the smooth and creamy coconut milk. And yes, coconut cream works too!
- Evaporated Milk – The creamier, the better, of course! Just like condensed milk, you can also make your own Evaporated Milk from scratch using only one ingredient, and that’s whole milk. Oh yes! It will also add more creaminess without watering down our drink.
- Cinnamon, Cloves, Nutmeg – Of course, it wouldn’t be a Christmas drink without these warm and cozy spices. You can also add more of your favorite holiday spices, like ginger and star anise, to add another fantastic burst of flavors.
- Vanilla Extract – A teaspoon is enough to do its magic. Always the best flavor enhancer for baked goodies and drinks. And, of course, it’s another ingredient that is even better when homemade.
- White Rum – I prefer the white or light rum because it’s really good for cocktails and dessert drinks. It also keeps the beautiful creamy color. However, you can always use spiced or dark rum if you want a deeper color and bolder alcohol kick.
- Cinnamon Sticks – Aside from adding a fresh sweet flavor profile, the sticks also make a great garnish for our Puerto Rican Eggnog. However, you can skip them if you don’t have any on hand. Don’t worry because the cinnamon powder already got you covered. 👌
What’s the Best Rum for Coquito?
Traditional coquito uses Puerto Rican rum Don Q, which is also what I use for this recipe. As for using coconut rum, I haven’t tried it personally, but I think this recipe is already coconutty to add another coconut flavored drink. And it would certainly alter the taste.
- Chocolate-Flavored – Aah! Chocolate! Whether you have cocoa powder or melt a chocolate bar, either will make it more luscious and enjoyable to drink. Be careful, though, because this drink may be light, but it can still make you drunk if over-consumed.
- Alcohol-Free – If you don’t want alcohol, feel free to skip it because it’ll still be fabulous and festive. ❤
- More Spices – Ginger, star anise, and allspice are fantastic additions, too. It’s surprising how these spices add sensational flavors to our cocktail drinks despite their savory flavors.
- Raisins and Coconut Flakes – Talk about adding lovely textures to our coquito recipe. The raisins will surely give our coquito recipe a fruity twist while the coconut flakes intensify the tropical goodness. Double yaaay!
- Vegan Version – Yes! It is possible with coconut condensed milk and coconut evaporated milk. Awesome!
Tips and Tricks
- Coquito is mainly made with coconut cream (homemade is the best). However, coconut milk works perfectly fine as well. Feel free to go with thick coconut cream if that’s what you prefer.
- Always stir or shake well before serving.
- Adjust the rum content according to your preference. If you want it prickly on the back of your throat and warms you on the inside, go with 1½ cup of white rum.
- If you want to thicken it up, you can add two egg yolks and whisk it in to blend thoroughly until frothy. My Homemade Eggnog recipe explains how to temper eggs if you feel nervous about consuming raw eggs.
- Chill at least two hours and up to six hours before serving it.
Serving and Storage Instructions
My Puerto Rican Eggnog here can be made ahead in big batches to be given as gifts and, of course, for personal consumption, too. And since it’s made without the eggs, you actually don’t have to worry as much about its shelf life. Woohoo!
Make-Ahead and Leftover Coquito
- Store – You can store them in an air-tight container, or better yet, in a clean glass jar or bottles. If you decide to give them as gifts, you may add adorable bows and personalized tags to make them even more special.
- Refrigerate – The alcohol also acts as a preservative. So, it can be stored safely inside the fridge for 4-6 months.
- Freeze – Yes, you can freeze it, too! Just make sure that your container is completely sealed, leak-proof, and freezer-safe. When ready to serve, just pulse them in a blender and tadaaah! Instantly frozen coquito to cool you down. 👌
Note: If you find your coquito drink separating or the coconut fats solidifying, just give it a quick shake, and it’ll be ready again in no time.
Yes, you can. But how quickly depends on how much alcohol you add to your coquito and how much you drink. So please consume carefully, especially if you have a low alcohol tolerance.
They may look the same, but Coquito and Eggnog are two different drinks. The American eggnog drink has raw eggs as its base, hence the name, and uses sugar to sweeten it up. Coquito, on the other hand, gets its sweetness from condensed milk and doesn’t have eggs. And, of course, let’s not forget the rum.
The alcohol content will stay the same, although the taste will definitely become better and tastier because it allows the alcohol and all the flavors to come together and meld beautifully the longer it chills in the fridge. For the best results, you can make this excellent drink a couple of days ahead.
Eggnog has eggs. Coquito does not. I like to keep it light and straightforward, and this one hits the spot every time. Plus, it lasts longer in the fridge without the egg. Feel free to add some egg yolks, though, if that rocks your boat.
Other Puerto Rican Recipes to Explore
If you enjoyed our Christmas drink here, then get ready to fall in love with these equally amazing Puerto Rican dishes below.
More Coconut Recipes You’ll Love
- Coconut Cake
- Samoan Bread Rolls aka Pani Popo
- Coconut Rice
- Braised Chicken in Coconut Milk
- Coconut Bread
How to Make Coquito
Blend, Chill, and Enjoy
- Combine and Blend – Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend for about a minute.
- Refrigerate – Bottle or place in a sealed container and then refrigerate. It will keep for over two weeks.
- Serve – If desired, garnish with a cinnamon stick or sprinkle with cinnamon spice.
Watch How to Make It
This post was first published in December 2017 and has been updated with an additional write-up and a video.
Coquito (Puerto Rican Eggnog)
- 1 14-ounce (354 ml) can sweetened condensed milk
- 2 cups (480 ml) coconut milk or cream (see notes 1 )
- 1 12-ounce (354 ml) can of evaporated milk
- ½ teaspoon (1.3g) ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon (0.5g) ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon (0.5g) ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon (4.2g) vanilla extract
- ½ – 1 cup (120-240 ml) white rum (more or less to suit taste buds)
- Cinnamon Sticks for garnishing
- Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend for about a minute.
- Bottle or place in a sealed container and then refrigerate. It will keep for up to 2 weeks .
- If desired garnish with cinnamon stick or sprinkle with cinnamon spice .
Tips & Notes:
- Coquito is mostly made with coconut cream (homemade is the best ). However, I sub it with coconut milk. Feel free to go with thick coconut cream.
- Stir or shake well before serving.
- Adjust the rum content according to your preference. If you want it prickly on the back of your throat and warms you on the inside, go with 1 1/2 cup of white rum.
- If you want to thicken it up, you can add 2 egg yolks and whisk it in to blend thoroughly until frothy.
- Chill at least 2 or up to 6 hours before serving it.
- You can play around with your Coquito like adding some cocoa powder into it or a thinned chocolate ganache for that chocolaty version.
- Store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
- Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on products used.
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