Dirty Banana cocktail with banana chunk garnish

Dirty Banana

By Timo Torner / Last updated on May 3, 2022 
The Dirty Banana cocktail is a favorite drink in many Caribbean countries. It is a rich and creamy cocktail featuring one ripe banana, Rum, and coffee liqueur.

At first sight, one could easily confuse a Dirty Banana Cocktail with a milkshake. But this luscious adult milkshake is much better than your regular milkshake. It's boozy, rich, creamy, and carries the delicious sweetness of a ripe banana.

Perhaps the name is not that intriguing, neither is the presentation particularly appealing. But in the end, the taste is king. And that's where this one shines. Every single ingredient contributes to this brilliant flavor bomb. And as the name already suggests, bananas play an indispensable role. In fact, you need one whole banana plus banana liqueur to make this cocktail work. But let's have a closer look at all the ingredients.

Ingredients for making a Dirty Banana cocktail

As mentioned, we need one whole banana to make the Dirty Banana cocktail. And -this usually goes for drinks and desserts, as well - it's best to use a ripe one. So if your banana already has some brown spots, it's perfect. The riper the fruit, the better. That increases the sugar level of your drink and results in a much stronger banana taste.

The banana liqueur is the second banana-flavored ingredient. And although this certainly isn't a staple in most home bars, it is pretty damn delicious - at least, when using a good-quality brand. I can recommend the banana liqueurs from Giffard and from Bols. Personally, in this case, I prefer the cognac-based version from Giffard (Giffard Banane du Brésil) over the Bols Banana liqueur based on Rum. But that's up to the individual taste. Both are high-quality products that will help you make a perfect Dirty Banana.

Same as with the Dirty Horchata, it's the coffee liqueur and Rum that make this drink dirty. As usual, Kahlúa is the default choice for the coffee liqueur part. However, any other coffee liqueur works, too. Other excellent options are, for instance, Mr. Black cold brew liqueur or Patron's XO cafe.

The spirit base of the Dirty Banana is Rum. Typically, a slightly aged brown Rum does the job. For example, a Havana 3-year-old Rum works nicely. But due to the intense banana flavor, there is no need to go with a particular product, so there are plenty of alternatives. My recommendations would be Havana Club Especial, Bacardi Reserva Ocho, or an Appleton Estate Reserve Blend.

Possible Variations on this cocktail

The original recipe asks for cream as an ingredient. If you want to stick to that version, a regular single cream works perfectly fine. But there also are variations on the base recipe that substitute the cream element with something else. You can use ice cream instead - vanilla or caramel create outstanding results. Or you go vegan with some cream of coconut or gear up on the booze and use Baileys Irish cream.

Simply by replacing one single element, you can create countless delicious riffs. Another way to add some extra flavor is by using some chocolate sauce. That also elevates the presentation of the cocktail, which otherwise can turn out a little bland and boring.

Dirty Banana cocktail with banana chunk garnish

Dirty Banana

A delicious and creamy banana cocktail mixed with Rum, coffee liqueur, banana liqueur, and cream.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Caribbean
Keyword: banana, coffee, rum
Servings: 1
Calories: 482kcal
Cost: $4.30



  • 2 oz Havana Club Especial
  • 1 oz Coffee liqueur
  • 1 oz Giffard Banane du Brésil
  • 2 oz Cream
  • 1 Ripe banana


  • Add all ingredients into a blender with 6 oz of crushed or cracked ice.
  • Blend until smooth and pour into a large glass.
  • Garnish with a chunk of a banana or some chocolate.


Serving: 12oz | Calories: 482kcal | Carbohydrates: 149.7g | Protein: 6.4g | Fat: 20.8g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Sodium: 62mg | Sugar: 138.9g | Vitamin C: 44mg | Calcium: 36mg
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