Are you looking to add a personal touch of homemade to your festive housewarming or congratulatory drink-making kit, planning for an impressive Build-your-own cocktail bar at a shower, or hoping to offer guests at your own gathering fun ways to brighten their cocktails or mocktails? In this post, we’ll show you how to make rim salts and rim sugars that you’ll be excited to share without breaking the bank. You can package them up for gifting in some of our favorite jars like this charming Mayberry Jar or some of the others featured at the end of this post.
All salts aren’t as ideal for the role of rim salt. Kosher salt seems to be the preferred choice if you’re going for a basic salt. Depending on your drink choices, you could blend some kosher salt with Himalayan or smoked salt, if it’s not too coarse. You might want to try a smoked blend with your next Bloody Mary. (Get our Virgin Bloody Mary recipe.) You can use these proportions as a guideline – there’s a good bit of flexibility here. Store what you don’t put onto the saucer in an airtight jar.
Smoky Tuscan Rim Salt: 1Tbs Smoked Salt, 1Tbs salt, a dash of the following: dried basil & oregano, crushed red pepper, garlic powder, freshly ground peppercorn.
Old Bay Bloody Mary Rim Salt: 1Tbs Old Bay, 1Tbs Salt, 1tsp celery salt, 2tsp ground coriander.
Margarita Sweet Salt: Zest of a lemon and lime (spread the zest onto a baking sheet, bake at 300 degrees for 5 minutes and allow to cool at room temp for 20 minutes), whisk it into a mixture of equal parts salt and sugar.
As with rim salts, there is flexibility here, which is why we are not using a hard & fast recipe format. There are so many ways to add that sugar glimmer to your festive drink. Be creative and find where your preferences lead you. Some combinations or applications may seem better fitted with larger particles, some you may wish to treat with a blast of your food processor or grinder. You also have options with rim-wetting agents. Experiment by using other liquids like simple syrup or a flavored syrup instead of a citrus juice. Check out this serious eats post on How to Make & Use Flavored Simple Syrup.
Citrus Sugar: Zest of a lemon and/or lime (spread the zest onto a baking sheet, bake at 300 degrees for 5 minutes and allow to cool at room temp for 20 minutes), whisk it into 1 cup sugar. You may wish to pulse in the processor or not…depending on your preference. Add a tsp of hibiscus flowers to this for added depth and color.
Lavender Sugar: 2Tbs dry lavender buds, 1 cup granulated sugar. You can pulse it all in a food processor until it is fine, OR you can pulse have of the lavender with the sugar and then add the whole buds. It’s nice to allow this one to set a few hours so it can infuse more before using it…especially if you are using some of the whole buds. Need a good culinary lavender source, Hope Hill Lavender Farm has been a favorite of ours…and as I grabbed their link noticed that they have lavender sugar all ready to go if you want to save this step.
Vanilla Sugar: 1 cup sugar, 1 vanilla bean (the seeds and aroma) scrape the seeds into the sugar, mix well. (you can toss the remaining bean into the rest of the vanilla sugar that isn’t on the saucer so that it continues to share its aroma)
Cinnamon Sugar: 1tsp cinnamon, 1/2 cup sugar whisked together.
Toasty Coconut: 1 cup sugar, 1 cup unsweetened toasted coconut (toast it at 325 ’til golden for 5-6 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes). Pulse cooled coconut and sugar in processor, spread back onto a baking sheet, and let set to dry at room temperature for a couple of hours before jarring it.
While there are certain signature drinks that are built in a very specific manner, the rimming process is pretty basic. If you wanted to streamline the start of your party and wished to have a couple of pre-rimmed glasses, go for it. You can rim them hours before your gathering.
In addition to clean glassware, you will need:
Basic rimming steps: