How to Drink Jim Beam: The Best Ways for 13 Whiskeys

Jim Beam is the best-selling bourbon whiskey brand in the world. That’s why you’ll find it almost everywhere alcohol is being served but what’s the best way to drink each of the different Jim Beam whiskeys. I decided to research this – I mean I’m drinking them anyway so I might as well, and here’s what I found.

The best ways to drink Jim Beam whiskeys are:

WhiskeyBest Way to Drink
Jim Beam White LabelCocktails & Shots
Jim Beam RyeCocktails & Shots
Jim Beam AppleNeat & Cocktails
Jim Beam HoneyCocktails
Jim Beam FireNeat, Cocktails & Shots
Jim Beam Red StagNeat & Cocktails
Jim Beam VanillaNeat, Cocktails & Shots
Jim Beam PeachNeat & Cocktails
Jim Beam OrangeNeat & Cocktails
Jim Beam Black Extra-AgedNeat & Cocktails
Jim Beam Devil’s CutNeat & Cocktails
Jim Beam Double OakNeat & Cocktails
Jim Beam Single BarrelNeat & Cocktails

Jim Beam’s whiskeys are good (for a full review of them see the article I wrote about it here) but they differ when it comes to how to drink them. In the rest of this article, I’ll go into the best way to drink each of the above Jim Beam whiskeys in more detail.

A bottle of Jim Beam and a glass of whiskey with ice

Jim Beam White Label – Cocktails & Shots

The best way to drink Jim Beam White Label is in mixed drinks, cocktails and shots. That’s because it’s a cheap whiskey (around $24 for 1L) that’s sweet, simple and easy to drink, so it’s not an expensive whiskey that must be sipped neat but something sweet enough that makes a shot pleasant and simple enough to blend well with the other flavors in a cocktail.

That’s not to say you can’t enjoy this whiskey neat, you can. The flavors it does have are good but being a simpler drink, it won’t be interesting enough for those who like their whiskeys to have more complexity.

Some of the best things to mix with drink Jim Beam White Label are:

Coca-Cola1 part Jim Beam & 2 parts Coco-Cola
Lemonade1 part Jim Beam & 2 parts lemonade
Sprite1 part Jim Beam & 3 parts sprite
Ginger beer1 part Jim Beam & 3 parts ginger beer
Soda water1 part Jim Beam & 3 parts soda water

Some popular whiskey cocktails that taste great with Jim Beam White Label include:

  • Old fashioned
  • Whiskey sour
  • Manhattan
  • Hot toddy

Jim Beam Rye – Cocktails & Shots

The best way to drink Jim Beam Rye is also in mixed drinks, cocktails and shots. This is because it’s another cheap (about $23 for 750ml), sweet and easy to drink whiskey.

Jim Beam Rye is a spicier version of Jim Beam White Label – it’s made with at least 51% rye whereas Jim Beam White Label is made with at least 51% corn, so it can be used to spice up mixed drinks and cocktails. It can also be used in cocktails that are traditionally made with rye whiskey, for example a Manhattan or Sazerac.

It can also be enjoyed neat (although like the White Label, it lacks the complexity to be an interesting daily sipper for most whiskey drinkers) especially if you’re looking for a cheap introduction to rye whiskeys.

Jim Beam Apple – Neat & Cocktails

Jim Beam make several drinks that are not technically whiskeys (due to the lower than 40%ABV and the fact that it contains additives) but a combination of White Label with different flavored liqueurs – in this case apple.

4 bottles of different Jim Beam flavored whiskey liqueurs and a whiskey cocktail

While it has even less flavors than the White Label as the apple flavor dominates this drink, the best way to drink Jim Beam Apple is, nevertheless, neat. After all, the whole point of this drink is the apple flavor, although you may need to add ice if you find it a little too sweet.

It’s also good for shots, mixed drinks and cocktails. In fact, Jim Beam have created some of their own whiskey cocktails which you can find hereOpens in a new tab., but one they have created especially for Jim Beam Apple is:

Apple Mule


  • 2 parts Jim Beam Apple
  • 4 mint leaves
  • ½ part apple cider
  • Ginger beer
  • Ice


  • Muddle mint leaves with cider
  • Add Jim Beam Apple and Ice
  • Shake and strain into a mule glass filled with ice.
  • Fill the rest of the glass with ginger beer
  • Add green apple garnish

Jim Beam Honey – Cocktails

This is also not technically a whiskey but a blend of White Label and honey liqueur and it’s very very sweet. Ice cubes or water will tone down the sweetness if you want to drink this neat, but the rich honey makes it best for mixed drinks and cocktails.

One cocktail Jim Beam has created especially for this whiskey is:

Honey Julep


  • 2 parts Jim Beam Honey
  • 9 mint leaves
  • 1 part simple syrup
  • Mint sprig
  • Ice


  • Muddle mint leaves with the simple syrup in an old fashioned glass
  • Fill the glass with crushed ice and add Jim Beam Honey
  • Stir until the glass froths over
  • Garnish with mint sprig

Jim Beam Fire – Neat, Cocktails & Shots

Jim Beam Fire is a combination of White Label and cinnamon liqueur. It’s sweet and smooth and while the cinnamon does dominate it’s not as spicy as other cinnamon liqueurs so it’s good neat as well as in shots, cocktails and mixed drinks.

Mixers that go well with this whiskey are:

Coca-Cola1 part Jim Beam Fire & 2 parts Coco-Cola
Hot Chocolate1 part Jim Beam Fire & 3 parts hot chocolate
Ginger Ale1 part Jim Beam Fire & 3 parts ginger ale

Jim Beam Red Stag – Neat & Cocktails

Jim Beam Red Stag is a blend of White Label and cherry liqueur and it’s a pleasant and sweet drink. It’s good neat, although if you find it too sweet for that you can add some White Label and adjust the cherry to whiskey ratio to your own taste.

And this is great in a mixer or cocktail. One cocktail Jim Beam has created especially for Red Stag is:

Red Stag Margarita


  • 4 parts Margarita mix
  • 1¼ parts Jim Beam Red Stag
  • ½ part Triple Sec
  • Lime wedge
  • Ice


  • Combine all the ingredients except ice in a shaker
  • Shake vigorously
  • Pour over ice in a glass
  • Garnish with lime wedge

Jim Beam Vanilla – Neat, Cocktails & Shots

This is a combination of Jim Beam White Label and vanilla liqueur. The best way to drink this will depend on how much vanilla sweetness you like. If you like a lot, you’ll certainly enjoy this neat or even as a shot but if you find it too sweet you can use it as a mixer (it goes really well with Coca Cola) or add more White Label.

Or you can use it in a cocktail, for example the following one that Jim Beam has created especially for this whiskey:

Vanilla Coffee Cream


  • 2 parts Jim Beam Vanilla
  • 1 part Irish Cream
  • 2 parts Cold Press Coffee
  • ½ part simple syrup
  • Ice


  • Shake all the ingredients with ice
  • Strain into a chilled cocktail glass

Jim Beam Peach – Neat & Cocktails

This is a mix of White Label and peach liqueur and has fresh peach flavors. If you’re not a fan of that then you probably won’t like this drink but if peach is a flavor you’re into then this will be great neat as the peach flavor is not overpowering.

This is also great in mixed drinks or cocktails and two mixers that go well with Jim Beam Peach are:

Lemonade1 part Jim Beam Peach & 3 parts lemonade
Soda1 part Jim Beam Peach & 4 parts soda water

Jim Beam Orange – Neat & Cocktails

The last of the whiskey flavored drinks, this is a combination of White Label and orange liqueur. Once again, you’ll like this neat if you like orange flavors and it certainly goes well in mixed drinks or cocktails.

One cocktail Jim Beam has created especially for this whiskey is:

Orange Crush


  • 1½ parts Jim Beam Orange
  • ½ part orange juice
  • ¾ part lemon juice
  • ½ part simple syrup
  • Soda water
  • Ice
  • Orange wedge and mint sprig


  • Add the ingredients except soda water to a shaker
  • Shake and strain into a Collins glass over ice
  • Fill the rest of the glass with soda water and stir gently
  • Garnish with orange wedge and mint sprig

Jim Beam Black Extra-Aged – Neat & Cocktails

Jim Beam Black Extra-Aged, Jim Beam Devil’s Cut and a glass of whiskey

Jim Beam Black Extra-Aged is Jim Beam White Label that has spent more time aging in the barrel to improve its flavors. How much more time they don’t say, but however long it is, it does give this whiskey a little more character and flavor than the White Label.

Now that doesn’t completely transform this into a complex drink that experienced whiskey drinkers will use as their daily sipper, but it does make it something that can be enjoyed neat.

And it’s still simple enough that it will go well in mixed drinks and cocktails.

Jim Beam Devil’s Cut – Neat & Cocktails

Jim Beam Devil’s Cut is made with whiskey that was trapped deep inside the barrel walls. They call that whiskey the devil’s cut as a contrast to whiskey that evaporates from the barrels that’s known as the angel’s share.

It’s blended with some extra-aged whiskey and bottled at a higher ABV to make something with extra depth and complexity. It’s still doesn’t have the complexity some want from their whiskey, but the flavors are much more intense and the char and oak balance nicely with the regular Jim Beam sweetness. It also has almost no burn for 45%ABV.

That’s why the best ways to drink Jim Beam Devil’s Cut are neat – because of the extra depth and complexity, and as a mixer or in a cocktail – because the bold flavors will stand out.

Jim Beam Double Oak – Neat & Cocktails

There are two ways to drink Jim Beam Double Oak, neat and in a cocktail.

That’s because it has more intense flavors than other Jim Beam expressions and is smoother. This is because it’s aged twice in two barrels. It’s first aged in new, charred, American white oak barrels for four years as are all Jim Beam whiskeys, but it’s then transferred to a second freshly charred, white oak barrel – although for an unknown amount of time.

This makes Jim Beam Double Oak a good, enjoyable, sweet whiskey that’s basically the Jim Beam flavor profile but with more oak depth and something that you would certainly want to drink neat.

It’s also not too expensive ($23 for 750ml) that you wouldn’t want to drink it in any other way, and as a higher-quality whiskey would make for a higher-quality cocktail.

Jim Beam Single Barrel – Neat & Cocktails

There are also two ways to drink Jim Beam Single Barrel and that’s also neat and in a cocktail.

It’s great to drink neat because the Single Barrel is the sweetest, smoothest and most flavorful of all the Jim Beam whiskeys. That’s because they come from barrels that due to various circumstantial factors such as placement in the rack house, intensity of the season and length of aging, produce the most flavorful whiskeys. If you like the Jim Beam flavor profile, then you’ll certainly want to drink this whiskey neat.

At about $40 it is more expensive than the other Jim Beam whiskeys but it’s not too expensive that it can’t be used in cocktails. It will be another higher-quality whiskey for higher-quality cocktails.

You can buy any of these whiskeys at hereOpens in a new tab..

Josh Mitchell

I'm Josh Mitchell. I love whiskey and am working on increasing my whiskey tasting abilities and my collection.

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