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Tom and Jerry Recipe

Warm and slightly boozy, this Tom and Jerry recipe makes the perfect holiday cocktail. Full of warm spices, the thick batter is whipped until frothy and topped with freshly grated nutmeg. Made with warm milk or hot water, this winter drink is a Christmas classic.

I’ll give you variations and substitutions where I can, plus helpful tips and tricks for success. Read on for this info as well as the recipe. If you’d like to skip straight to the recipe, use the jump to recipe button at the top of the post.

You may also be interested in my cranberry rosé spritzer and my peppermint schnapps hot chocolate recipes. For ease of browsing, you can find all of my cocktail recipes in one place.

Tom and Jerry drink in Christmas mug with bowl of batter in the background.

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Why you should make this recipe

If you like warm cocktails, like a hot toddy, hot buttered rum, or a boozy hot chocolate, I think you’ll like this drink. It is perfect for cold nights when you need something to warm you up.

Tom and Jerry drinks in Christmas mugs on a red napkin.

I feel like a Tom & Jerry is a drink that most eggnog lovers don’t even know about. Eggnog is really heavy and one cup is about all you can handle. Not so with this hot bevvy.

I honestly prefer this drink with warm milk, it is much more satisfying, but I’ve started making them with hot water when I want to make it a bit lighter.

Tom and Jerry drink recipe

The Tom and Jerry has been around for 200 years. So, it’s a safe bet that this drink is pretty good. Two centuries worth of fans can’t be wrong.

This drink is full of warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice, so it just feels like the holidays in a mug. The frothy top and freshly grated nutmeg take it into special occasion territory, because this drink isn’t something you will make all the time.

Warm Christmas cocktails in mugs with a bowl of drink batter in the background.

This holiday cocktail brings me all the nostalgia feels. It is rich without being heavy, and it tastes absolutely delicious. Most Midwesterners are familiar with this delicious warm milk punch, but if it is new to you, I can’t wait for you to try it.


These ingredients will make up the Tom and Jerry batter. Most batter recipes aren’t as heavy on the spices, but I like it this way. Cinnamon and nutmeg are a must, the other two are a bonus.

Ingredients for drink batter on white background.
  • Powdered sugar – also called confectioner’s or icing sugar.
  • Vanilla – A bit of vanilla gives this warm cocktail tons of flavor.
  • Eggs – The eggs are separated, then beaten.
  • Rum – Amber or dark rum work best in this recipe.
  • Spices – Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves. I like my drink with lots of spice.

How to make a Tom and Jerry

The first step is making the Tom and Jerry batter recipe. This will be the base of the cocktail.

Egg whites in a mixing bowl beaten to stiff peaks.

Whip the egg whites to stiff peaks. Look at those peaks standing nice and tall – that’s what you want. Set them aside for now.

Step by step photos showing how to make a Tom and Jerry drink.
  1. The egg yolks are whipped up with a splash of rum (or not, if you want to keep the batter kid-friendly), powdered sugar and the spices. It should run off of the beaters in a thick ribbon.
  2. Then, gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture. Try to keep as much of the air in the egg whites as possible.
  3. When you’ve mixed it all in, it will create a lovely, thick batter. That is the base of the drink. Add a bit of this batter into a warm mug with a shot of rum and cognac.
  4. Finally, slowly pour hot water or warm milk into the mug, stirring constantly. At the end, you should have a frothy top!
Bowl of Tom and Jerry drink batter.

Tom and Jerry drink FAQ’s

How long does Tom and Jerry batter last?

I’ve seen a wide range on this question, but because it contains raw eggs, I wouldn’t keep it in the refrigerator for more than 3 days.
To extend the life (and the safer option), store it in the freezer.

What is the best alcohol for a Tom and Jerry recipe?

I use a splash of rum in the batter, then rum and cognac in the drink. This is fairly standard, but you can use any type of brandy that you have, or omit it and just use rum.

Is a Tom and Jerry the same as eggnog?

Nope, it is not. Eggnog is much heavier than a Tom and Jerry, and the drink tastes completely different.

Warm milk cocktail with freshly grated nutmeg in a mug.

Variations and substitutions

If you don’t have cognac, just use rum. It’ll be fine. If you have a bottle of brandy that you like, use it in your drink. Remember, all cognac is brandy, but not all brandy is cognac.

I like a drink full of spices. If you don’t, adjust them to your preferences. You can omit something you don’t like, or add in a pinch of something else, like cardamom, which I think would be really lovely here.

Helpful tools and equipment

I’m not going to sugar coat it – this drink requires more than just a cocktail shaker and a glass. But, stick with me, because it’s totally worth it.

  • Hand mixer – You’ll need a mixer to whip up the egg whites. I love this cordless one, no more tangled up cord!
  • Electric tea kettle – A kettle of any sort works, but this is what we have. Boiling water in no time flat.
  • Spice grater – This is the grater I use for the fresh nutmeg.
  • If you really want to go all out, you can find a retro Tom and Jerry punch bowl set to serve this warm cocktail.
Overhead view of drink in mug with freshly grated nutmeg on top. Mug is on a holiday napkin.

This recipe makes enough for a party, so it is perfect for a holiday gathering. One sip of this delicious warm Tom and Jerry recipe, and you’ll see what all of the fuss is about. It is the perfect Christmas cocktail to enjoy with friends and family.

More holiday recipes

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Image for Pinterest of Tom and Jerry drink in mugs.

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Tom and Jerry drinks in Christmas mugs.

Tom and Jerry Recipe

Cheryl Bennett
This Tom and Jerry recipe is the perfect warm beverage to enjoy during the holiday season.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Servings 24 drinks
Calories 134 kcal


Tom and Jerry Batter

  • 6 large eggs separated
  • 1 lb. powdered sugar
  • 1 ounce rum amber or dark
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. cloves
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. vanilla extract

Tom and Jerry cocktail (per drink)

  • 1 ounce rum
  • 1 ounce cognac
  • 4 tbsp. Tom and Jerry batter
  • 6 – 8 ounces warm milk or hot water
  • Freshly grated nutmeg for garnish


  • Tom and Jerry Batter
  • Beat egg yolks until pale, then gradually add powdered sugar, rum, allspice, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon and vanilla.
  • In a separate bowl, beat egg whites to stiff peaks.
  • Gently fold egg whites into egg yolk mixture, trying not to knock the air out of the egg whites. You will have a thick, foamy batter when it is all incorporated.
  • Make the drink
  • Pour boiling water into mugs to warm them. Let them sit for a minute or two, then dump out the water.
  • Add 2 – 4 tbsp. of the Tom and Jerry batter to a warm mug, then add 1 ounce of rum and 1 ounce of cognac. (*See note)
  • Slowly pour warm milk (or water) into the mug, stirring constantly to froth the drink. (*See note)
  • Top with freshly grated nutmeg. Enjoy!


Stirring the drink constantly while SLOWLY pouring in the warm milk/water is imperative. Pour too fast, or don't stir while pouring and you could end up with boozy scrambled eggs. No one wants that.
A shot is 1.5 ounces. To make the drink, you'll add about 3/4 of a shot of rum and cognac to each mug.
Use your favorite milk in this drink. Whole milk is best, in my opinion, it makes for a richer beverage.
Store leftover Tom and Jerry batter in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 days. To keep it longer, store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.


Serving: 8ouncesCalories: 134kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 4gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 51mgSodium: 48mgSugar: 22g
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Originally published 12/1/12, most recent update 12/15/23.


  1. Wow, homemade egg nog! I had homemade for the first time last year and it was amazing. Although the one I had was alcohol free. I don’t drink alcohol so I would keep it out, but your recipe sounds and looks amazing! Thanks for sharing!

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