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Almost Like Butterbeer from Harry Potter

Harry Potter Butterbeer

I think I am one of the few people in the universe who has not read the Harry Potter series. Although I love to read, I have commitment issues when it comes to reading books, and a whole series is just more than my ADD attention span can handle.

My husband and son are big fans of the book series, so when we recently went to Universal Studios Islands of Adventure and were immersed into the Wizzarding World of Harry Potter, they were just a tad bit stoked. I knew enough from watching some of the movies to be enchanted as well. Walking through the streets you immediately felt transported to another land.

To be honest with you, even though I don’t know much about Harry Potter, I was willing to hang out anywhere that had this delicious drink concoction called Butterbeer. Apparently, Butterbeer is the beverage of choice for the Wizards at Hogwarts Academy. One sip from the closest beverage cart and I was hooked. In fact, we had so many great things to eat and drink on our vacation, but of all of it, my craving for Butterbeer hasn’t ceased.

Katie Drinking ButterbeerOur friend Katie gets her first sip of Butterbeer!

What does a food blogger do when they are craving something? First beg Chef Steven Jayson, who created the recipe, to share his secret. When this results in no avail, scour the internet trying to find copycat recipes or create the recipe itself.  The Butterbeer created by the chef at Islands of Adventure and approved by J.K. Rowlings herself is a buttery and creamy mixture made without ice cream. I found this recipe on Fox News and decided it seemed the closest in ingredients to what I tasted at Islands of Adventure in Orlando. Close, but not quite… but delicious nonetheless! To get the real thing, I think I’m just going to have to go back to Universal Studios in Orlando…sooner rather than later!

Harry Potter Butterbeer 2

Recipe: Butterbeer (from Fox News)

  • 1 cup light or dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 6 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon rum extract
  • Four 12-ounce bottles cream soda
  1. In a small saucepan over medium, combine the brown sugar and water. Bring to a gentle boil and cook, stirring often, until the mixture reads 240 F on a candy thermometer.
  2. Stir in the butter, salt, vinegar and 1/4 heavy cream. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  3. Once the mixture has cooled, stir in the rum extract.
  4. In a medium bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar mixture and the remaining 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Use an electric mixer to beat until just thickened, but not completely whipped, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  5. To serve, divide the brown sugar mixture between 4 tall glasses (about 1/4 cup for each glass). Add 1/4 cup of cream soda to each glass, then stir to combine. Fill each glass nearly to the top with additional cream soda, then spoon the whipped topping over each.

I’m sharing this post as part of the I’m Lovin’ It roundup on TidyMom!

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  1. I’ve been looking for a good way to copy butterbeer, and maybe even add some liquor to it. I think subbing the rum flavoring for actual rum might do the trick :)

  2. Thumbs up for the little kid!
    Butter beer , it is DELICIOUS! I highly recommend using your recipe!

  3. HAHA! I’m with you with the commitment issues. The book has to be pretty outstanding for me to read it… and I don’t think I could ever get through the whole HP series.

    But gosh darn it you have me drooling with the butterbeer recipe. How freakin’ clever!

  4. so, sort of a hot buttered rum, except not hot, and with no rum, and lots of other stuff … so, i guess i have no idea what it is!! cheers!

  5. Kristen, this looks fabulous! I have to admit that I’ve never read the series either. I do however, have the first book on request from the library to start reading with the boys. I think I’ll make a batch of this beer once we start reading; yum!

  6. I haven’t read the books either Kristen………but my girls are BIG fans!!

    I’ll have to make this for them!

  7. Heather says:

    Thank you!! Just what I needed for my daughter’s Harry Potter birthday party later this month! I can’t wait to try and make it! :-)

  8. Woo hoo! I’m excited that you found a recipe! I love HP and think this butterbeer would great for a party celebrating the last movie coming out soon. =)

  9. I too have difficulty committing myself to reading books and series but HP captivated me. Loved it! Thanks for the butterbeer!

  10. My nephews are hooked on this stuff; I was just glad to find out there was no real beer in it; for them… they are 8 and 12. Looks frothy and refreshing.

  11. What a fun drink! I’m not even a HP fan, but I would totally try this.

    I’d like to invite you to share this recipe on my weekly link-up, Sweet Tooth Friday. I hope to see you there. http://alli-n-son.com/2011/06/02/mini-peach-cobblers

  12. I haven’t read the books either, but my sister made me watch all the movies when she stayed with us over her winter break so now I’m a HP fan. :-) I can’t wait to make this for her; I know she’ll love it!

  13. Kristen, I haven’t read the entire series either. Matter of fact, I didn’t read anything beyond the first one. Better hurry before all the Potterheads come chasing after me!

    Love the look of the drink. It would surely quench my terrible thirst right now!

  14. I went to Islands of Adventure in April and LOVED the butterbeer. I wish they sold it in cans or something so I could take it home!

  15. I wonder why it has ‘beer’ in the name. I’m a huge Harry Potter fan, but I always wondered if she meant it to actually be alcoholic. They did order it in bars… either way, I’m all over trying this recipe when we re-watch all the movies right before the next one comes out!

    • I often wondered that too – I think because people kind of relate it to a root beer type drink. However, in doing some reading it appears that if certain characters drink it, they do get a bit tipsy. I’m not a HP reader, so I’m not sure… Good questions :)

    • It is, in fqct, alcoholic in the books-albeit minimally so. You would have to drink quite a bit to get tipsy. It seems it’s only really very potent to house elves, and even they have to drink a few to get there =] hope that helps.

  16. Just thought I’d let you non-Harry Potter fans know that the reason its called “Butterbeer” is because in the books, the drink has a miniscule amount of alcohol in it. To get tipsy from it would mean drinking quite a bit, which left people confused when Hermione got tipsy that one time. hahaha

    As for this recipe, I haven’t tried it yet, but I intend to. I’ve read every book ever since I was a child, and the final movie is out in a few weeks.

    I’m totally in Harry Potter mode right now. lol

    I’ve seen this recipe before on the Fox thing, but now that I’ve seen that others have tried it and liked it, I’ll give it a go sometime.


  17. Professor Ritadi says:

    Currently getting ready for a week of Harry Potter (beginning July 11, and leading up to the midnight premiere of the last movie), so my kids and I are in total Harry Potter fan mode right now. ;) Thank you for the recipe – I will definitely have to try it. (I had created my own simple version just using gingerale & butterscotch syrup for several HP parties in the past.) Maybe it won’t be as sweet if I use gingerale instead of cream soda.

    BTW – I have often heard Gingerale referred to as Gingerbeer in BBC productions, so although it makes us in the USA think of an alcoholic beverage, it doesn’t necessarily mean it needs to be. Yes, in the books JKR does say that it contains a tiny bit of alcohol, (as Winky the house-elf gets drunk after drinking several bottles of it – HPGoF) but I imagine it to have about as much as a bottle of ODouls beer, which, although it is marketed as an non-alcoholic beer, does contain a tiny bit, 0.5%.

    Anyway, looking so forward to the last movie, and our week of partying!

  18. Hey! can i replace cream soda with ginger beer?

    • From my experience, Ginger Beer is well…very Ginger-y. It’s not really a sweet soda, more peppery flavor. The only use I’ve seen it for is Moscow Mules, a vodka drink. The flavor of Ginger Beer is more or less a liquid “Pickled Ginger,” the pink stuff you get with sushi. But, to each person’s taste, you may end up liking it.

  19. Paula Deen would love this.

  20. I just made this recipe. It’s delicious, if not a not too sweet. It tastes just like what I had in Orlando Studios.


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