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 beverage is a Christmas classic.
This warm drink brings me all the nostalgia feels. 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.
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Why I love this recipe
I feel like a Tom & Jerry is the secret that most eggnog lovers don’t even know about. Eggnog is really heavy and one small cup is about all you can handle.
Not so with this hot bevvie. 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.
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.
It is rich without being heavy, and it tastes absolutely delicious.
What you need to make this Tom & Jerry recipe
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.
To make this Tom & Jerry recipe, you’ll need the following 8 ingredients:
- Eggs – use the best quality eggs that are available to you.
- Powdered sugar – also called confectioner’s or icing sugar.
- Rum – I like an amber or dark rum for this recipe.
- Vanilla – only the real deal, please, no imitation stuff.
- Spices – Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves.
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.
Frequently asked questions
I’ve seen a wide range on this question – anywhere from 3 days to 3 weeks. 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.
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.
Nope, it is not. The biggest difference is the temperature. Eggnog is generally served cold and a Tom and Jerry is a warm milk drink. Eggnog is also much heavier than a T&J.
How to make a Tom and Jerry
The first step is making the Tom and Jerry batter recipe. The egg whites will be whipped to stiff peaks. The photo below is for reference, in case you’re not sure. Look at those peaks standing nice and tall – that’s what you want.
Next, the egg yolks are whipped up with a splash of rum (or not, if you want to keep the batter kid-friendly),the powdered sugar and the spices. It should run off of the beaters in a thick ribbon.
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.
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.
Finally, slowly pour hot water or warm milk into the mug, stirring constantly. At the end, you should have a frothy top!
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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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. T&J batter
- 6 - 8 ounces warm milk (whole milk is best) 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, then dump out water.
- Add 2 - 4 tbsp. Tom and Jerry batter to warm mug, add 1 ounce rum and 1 ounce cognac.
- Slowly pour warm milk (or water) into mug, stirring constantly to froth the drink. (*See note!)
- Top with freshly grated nutmeg. Enjoy!
Stirring the drink while SLOWLY pouring in the warm milk is imperative. Pour too fast, or don't stir while pouring and you could end up with boozy scrambled eggs. No one wants that.
Use your favorite milk in this drink. Whole milk is best, in my opinion, it makes for a richer beverage.
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Serving Size:8 ounces
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 104Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 47mgSodium: 21mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 0gSugar: 19gProtein: 2g
Nutrition information calculated by a third-party company as a courtesy. It is intended as a guideline only.
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Originally published 12/1/12, most recent update 12/9/21.