10 Rum Extract Substitutes (Alcoholic / Non-Alcoholic) 


Few things are more disappointing than being in the middle of making a recipe and realizing you’re out of rum extract!

Never fear, though, because there are several substitutes that will work just as well in a pinch.

Here are the best rum extract substitutes to keep on hand for when you’re in a bind.

Let’s find out right away what they are!

10 Best Rum Extract Substitutes 

Here are my top picks for substituting Rum Extract.

1. Rum

Good Alcoholic Substitute

The alcoholic liquor Rum can be used to substitute Rum extract as they share most properties like aroma and flavor with most baking recipes. 

Do remember that Rum is alcoholic in nature and comes in various fruity flavors, which may not complement your baked goods.

Using unflavored White Rum is recommended.

How to substitute

Use 3 tablespoons of White Rum for every 1 tablespoon of Rum extract as rum has a thinner consistency than Rum extract.

Try this delicious and soft Rum cake.

2. Vanilla Extract

Great non-alcoholic alternative

Vanilla extract is an aromatic liquid perfect for baking to replace Rum extract.

Adding small amounts of vanilla extract allows the baked good to have a hint of rum. 

Do remember that adding too much vanilla extract will make the end result more like vanilla and less like Rum extract.

A small amount often works best for this substitute.

How to substitute

It is recommended to add 1/3rd unit of Vanilla extract for every 1 unit of Rum extract to produce the rum-like essence.

Vanilla cake with Vanilla extract and vanilla buttercream.

3. Tequila

Tequila, a liquor extracted from the blue agave plant, has a distinct and strong yet sweet flavor and aroma and can replace rum extract in both sweet and savory recipes.

Remember that to get the best of Tequila when using to substitute Rum extract, a good quality Tequila is essential. 

How to substitute

Since Tequila has a much lighter consistency than Rum extract, twice the amount of rum extract is ideal.

Try this refreshing Tequila lime chicken pasta.

4. Cognac

Great for cocktails

Cognac is a known French wine with flavor much like Rum extract that works exceptionally well with cocktails and drinks, savory meat, and also for desserts. 

Do note that using Cognac in place of Rum extract would result in slight but evident changes in the flavor of the drink or dish.

Subsequent adjustments in other ingredients would help.

How to substitute

Rum extract and Cognac can be substituted in an equal 1:1 proportion, and the amount can be increased if required.

Try these Cognac cocktails.

5. Maple Syrup

Maple syrup is an essential baking ingredient with a natural and organic sweetness extracted from plant sugars, the same as Rum extract.

Do note that although Maple syrup can be used to substitute Rum extract, you would not get the subtle alcoholic kick from the latter that enhances the flavor of any recipe.

How to substitute

Equal amounts of Maple syrup can be used to substitute Rum extract in most cocktail and dessert recipes.

Try these delicious ways to enjoy Maple syrup.

6. Bourbon

Bourbon is well-known liquor that can easily substitute Rum extract for numerous recipes, including cocktails like Mint Julep, adding a refreshing element. 

Do remember that Bourbon has a lighter texture than traditional Rum extract and more amounts need to be added to have the same essence as Rum extract. 

How to substitute

It is suggested to use Rum extract and Bourbon in a 1:2 proportion for most recipes. However, when used for cocktails, the amount of other ingredients should be adjusted.

Creamy and tasty Bourbon chicken.

7. Coffee Extract

Coffee extract is intense, aromatic, and alcoholic syrup made with coffee beans and alcohol.

It is best used for desserts like Tiramisu and brownie, and cocktails in place of Rum extract. 

It is important to remember that Coffee extract does not have a similar flavor or aroma as Rum extract. It adds a more coffee-like essence to the recipe it is added to. 

How to substitute

Rum extract and Coffee extract can be substituted for equal amounts of each other for most cocktail and dessert recipes.

Try these unique coffee bean-shaped cookies with Coffee extract.

8. Cachaca

Cachaca is well-known Brazilian liquor made from fermented sugar cane extract and has a similar flavor to Rum extract and tastes especially good with lemon or lime-based dishes and drinks.

Do bear in mind that Cachaca, although delicious, is hard to find outside Brazil and has a fruity essence to it that may not complement every recipe. 

How to substitute

Rum extract and Cachaca should be used in a 1:3 proportion as Cachaca has a lighter consistency and flavor profile compared to Rum extract.

Brazil 66: The infamous Cachaca cocktail.

9. Orange Liqueur

Orange liqueur, as the name mentions, is alcoholic liquor extracted from oranges and can replace Rum extract in cocktails and cakes.

Do note that a slight but noticeable flavor change is inevitable when substituting Rum extract with Orange liqueur due to its citrusy essence and aroma.

How to substitute

Thrice the quantity of Orange liqueur is required to substitute the mentioned quantity of Rum extract for cocktails and other desserts.

Try these easy cocktails with Orange liqueur.

10. Honey/ Brown Sugar

Honey and brown sugar serve as the last resort if none of the other substitutes are available for desserts, cocktails, and even savory dishes like meat.

A small caution: Both honey and brown sugar is sweet non-alcoholic condiments that add extra sweetness to the recipe.

The quantity of other ingredients should be adjusted accordingly. 

How to substitute

Half the quantity of Honey or Brown sugar would be sufficient to substitute the required amount of Rum extract for most recipes. 

The well-known Penicillin cocktail with whiskey, ginger, citrus, and honey.


What Is The Best Rum Extract Substitute?

The most efficient substitutes for Rum Extract are said to be Rum, Vanilla extract, and Cognac for their similarities with original Rum extract and versatile usage. They add the same essence that makes any recipe delicious.

A slight change in flavor is inevitable with substitution but the amount of other ingredients should be adjusted accordingly.

Does Rum Extract Contain Alcohol?

No, Rum extract does not contain as much alcohol as the liquor Rum contains. There is said to be a negligible amount of alcohol in natural rum since it is a concentrated rum flavorant often used for baking purposes.

Non-alcoholic Rum extract is also available for several brands and serves the same purpose.

What Is The Best Non-alcoholic Rum Extract Substitute?

The most easily available non-alcoholic substitutes for Rum extract are imitation rum, vanilla extract, and maple syrup. They can be used for baking, savory dishes, and even cocktails.

Using non-alcoholic substitutes for Rum extract will change the flavor profile of most dishes but will not make them unpleasant in any way. It is necessary to adjust other ingredients when using substitutes.

How To Substitute Rum For Rum Extract for Baking? 

It is ideal to use double or thrice the amount of Rum when substituting it for Rum extract. Rum cake requires the simple ingredients of rum, cake flour, egg yolks, egg whites, sugar, baking powder, and butter.

The thick batter is to be baked for 45 minutes till it looks golden and cooked.

Bottom Line

I hope this article was helpful to you!

If you have any experience with substitutes for rum extract, please share it in the comments.

And be sure to share this article with your friends and family who might find it useful.

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About Tammy J

Tammy is currently studying in college. While attending, she has broadened her horizons by experimenting with food from all over the world, but she has a special love for Mexican and Indian cuisine. She loves traveling with her friends, and enjoys nothing more than packing up a few backpacks and hitting the open road to explore natural beauty.

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