Mojitos with Mint Simple Syrup

by May 2, 2024

It’s nice to know how to make a great cocktail, with and without the booze. I finally posted the grad party mojito recipe (makes enough for 72 drinks that are deliciously alcohol-free!) and it got me thinking about regular mojitos and how great it is to know how to make your own simple syrup. My friend Valerie Hemingway and I collaborated on the recipe published in the summer 2021 edition of Edible Bozeman, adapted from her son Edward’s book, Hemingway & Bailey’s Bartending Guide to Great American Writers, which is a hoot! 

Photo by my friend, Samantha Lord.

Mojitos with Mint Simple Syrup

Recipe makes about 1½ cups simple syrup, enough for 14–16 drinks; mojito recipe is for each cocktail


Mint Simple Syrup

  • 1 cup granulated sugar C&H
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 bunch fresh spearmint, leaves stripped from stem


  • mint leaves for muddling optional (the mint simple syrup provides enough mint flavor and keeps chunks of mint from getting on your teeth, but it is fun to muddle...)
  • 1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
  • ¾ ounce mint simple syrup
  • 1–2 ounces white rum
  • crushed ice
  • sparkling water to taste
  • fresh mint sprigs for garnish


Mint Simple Syrup

  1. Measure sugar and water into a saucepan and bring to a light boil. Reduce heat and simmer until sugar is dissolved then add the mint leaves, crushing and tearing them with your fingers as you add them to the syrup. Simmer one minute and then cover, remove from heat, and allow to steep for 30 minutes.

  2. Strain into a jar and discard the mint leaves. Cool to room temperature and keep refrigerated. Lasts a long time.

Mojito, for each cocktail

  1. With a muddler, crush a few mint leaves in the bottom of a chilled highball glass. Pour in lime juice, simple syrup, and rum. Fill glass with crushed ice and stir. Add sparkling water to taste. Garnish with lime wedge and optional mint sprig.

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