Cocktails & Drinks/ Hawaiian/ Pineapple/ Recipes

Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash Cocktail

Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash Cocktail. A simple, refreshing, bright, tropical cocktail.

Today is Earth Day and I am partnering with Pau Maui Vodka for the second year in a row with another Earth friendly cocktail.

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash Cocktail with Pau Maui Vodka

This year’s Earth Day theme is “Protect Our Species” highlighting the protection of millions of plant and animal species from going extinct. Last year’s cocktail and theme was all about ending plastic pollution. I think the two go hand in hand since plastic pollution is so damaging to our environments and it also causes major damage to plants and animals. Especially animal habitats where so much trash and pollution is taking over. Animals are having to find to places to make as their homes since so much trash and pollution is taking over. 

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash Cocktail made with Pau Maui Vodka

Earth Day was first celebrated in 1970 and is always on April 22nd. Every year has a different theme, but all the themes are still kept in mind as we move forward to help protect the planet by reusing and recycling, moving away from single use plastics, helping to clean up trash when you see, and overall being a good person on this planet helping to preserve life. 

“Earth Day Network is asking people to join our Protect our Species campaign. Our goals are to:

  • Educate and raise awareness about the accelerating rate of extinction of millions of species and the causes and consequences of this phenomenon.
  • Achieve major policy victories that protect broad groups of species as well as individual species and their habitats.
  • Build and activate a global movement that embraces nature and its values.
  • Encourage individual actions such as adopting plant based diet and stopping pesticide and herbicide use.”

A lot of people don’t seem to realize that when certain plants and animals are extinct, we will be in danger as well. One concern is the honey bee population dying out. No bees, no pollinating, food crops will decline rapidly. 

One of the things we have done as a family to help protect the bees is plant a garden and a wide variety of citrus trees. The bees are very happy in our yard especially with my Meyer lemon tree, orange trees and persimmon tree. I spot at least 50 bees buzzing around my Meyer lemon tree all day long. Happy bees makes for lots of meyer lemons for me!  The bees also love when our basil plants go to seed because they love the basil flowers. 

For this cocktail I decided to make a smash with pineapple, basil and meyer lemon in honor of the bees in my yard that help make my garden grow bigger every year. 

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash

I started with diced ripe pineapple and sliced basil in the glass, added in basil simple syrup and muddled. 

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash

When I first made this cocktail I only muddled the basil with the pineapple and used a traditional simple syrup. The basil flavor was very subtle and I wanted to get more of that herbaceous kick to my drink so I made basil simple syrup. It adds just a bit more basil flavor to the cocktail. 

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash

Fill the glass with pebble ice ( I get bags of pebble ice from Sonic Drive-in but I am considering splurging on a pebble ice machine for home) and fill with the cocktail mix. In my directions I have you fill your glass half with ice, add more pineapple and sliced basil then fill with ice. I forgot to photograph that step! I actually took some of the ice out, then added the pineapple and basil, and put the ice back in. You can just stir the cocktail once the glass is filled, I tend to spill all over the place when I do that. 

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash

I love the combination of the sweet pineapple, herby basil, and tart lemon in this pineapple vodka basil smash cocktail. The smashing or muddling of the pineapple and basil is what makes this cocktail fun to make. I am all for smashing, swizzling, stirring and shaking cocktails. 

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash

This cocktail is so refreshing and tasty, perfect all year long. I zest my meyer lemons and freeze it as well as freeze the juice in ice cube trays  then save in freezer bags. Easy to thaw a few and use for any recipe. 

Yield: 1 Cocktail

Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash Cocktail


  • Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash
  • Makes one cocktail
  • Ingredients:
  • 3 Tbsp diced fresh pineapple
  • 2-3 Tbsp sliced fresh basil
  • 1 Tbsp basil simple syrup* (see notes for recipe)
  • 2 oz Pau Maui Vodka
  • 2 oz fresh pineapple juice
  • 1/2 oz fresh meyer lemon juice
  • few dashes citrus bitters
  • optional - soda water
  • Garnish:
  • Fresh basil
  • Meyer lemon slice
  • Pineapple leaf
  • Paper straw


  1. In a tall collins glass muddle 2 tablespoons of the diced pineapple with one tablespoon of the sliced basil then add the basil simple syrup and stir.
  2. Fill glass halfway with ice, add the rest of the diced pineapple and sliced basil. Fill glass to the top with ice.
  3. In a cocktail shaker combine the rest of the cocktail ingredients and shake well then fill the glass adding more ice if needed. If you desire a drink with some fizz don’t fill the entire glass with the cocktail mixture and add an ounce of soda water. 
  4. Garnish with fresh basil, meyer lemon slice, pineapple leaf and a paper straw


*To make the basil simple syrup combine 1 cup of sugar with 1 cup of water and 2 cups of fresh basil leaves in a saucepan over medium heat. Smash the leaves a bit while stirring the mixture to dissolve the sugar. Bring the mixture to a simmer, simmer for 5 minutes then turn off heat. Let sit for one hour for the mixture to infuse with the basil. Strain and cool completely before using. This can be made ahead of time and keep chilled. Will last up to 2 weeks refrigerated in an airtight container.

Earth Day Cocktail - Vodka Pineapple Basil Smash

Earth day should be celebrated all year round not just one day a year. Celebrate this year’s earth day with this vodka pineapple basil smash cocktail made from backyard ingredients that help keep our bees happy and healthy! 


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  • Reply
    April 23, 2019 at 7:20 pm

    This sounds so refreshing. Beautiful photography!

  • Reply
    June 29, 2019 at 8:41 am

    I still don’t see a recipe for the basil simple syrup……

    • Reply
      July 1, 2019 at 12:06 pm

      OMG I forgot to add it in the notes. Thanks for catching it! Added in now

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