White Cargo Cocktail Recipe

Jump to Recipe ⬇️

White Cargo Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The White Cargo cocktail is a classic dessert cocktail that dates back to the 1930s. It was popularized in the United States during the Prohibition era and has remained a favorite among those who enjoy a sweet, creamy drink. The cocktail is said to have been created by a bartender named Harry Craddock, who worked at the Savoy Hotel in London. The White Cargo is often enjoyed as an after-dinner drink or as a dessert substitute.

  • Origin: 1930s
  • Creator: Harry Craddock
  • Popularized during the Prohibition era

How White Cargo Tastes?

The White Cargo cocktail is a sweet, creamy, and indulgent drink with a rich, velvety texture. It has a subtle hint of vanilla and a slight nutty undertone from the gin.

Interesting facts about White Cargo

  • The White Cargo is sometimes referred to as a 'grown-up milkshake' due to its creamy texture and sweet flavor.
  • The cocktail is often served in a martini glass, giving it an elegant appearance.
  • The White Cargo can be easily customized by adding different flavored liqueurs or syrups.


A few good options for White Cargo are:

  • Brockmans
  • Silent Pool Gin
  • Hendrick's Gin

Learn everything on which Gin to choose


The 1.5oz of gin acts as the backbone of the White Cargo, providing a herbaceous and floral undertone that balances the sweetness of the other ingredients. It's a see-saw of flavor – too little gin, and the cocktail becomes a milkshake; too much, and the ice cream takes a backseat. No gin? Well, that’s just dessert.

Alternatives: If you run out of gin, you might try a light rum for a tropical twist.

Emma Rose

Vanilla Ice Cream

2oz of vanilla ice cream is there for richness and body, giving the cocktail a luxurious texture that's hard to beat. Skimp on the ice cream, and your cocktail may lack fullness; go overboard, and you might need a spoon rather than a straw.

Alternatives: For a dairy-free version, coconut milk ice cream can be a delightful substitute.

Alex Green

White Crème de Cacao

With 1oz of white crème de cacao, you're adding a sweet chocolate flavor without the color, keeping the cocktail as white as a snowy day in January. If you forgo this, you'll miss out on the chocolate hint that makes the White Cargo so indulgent.

Alternatives: A splash of clear chocolate syrup could work in a pinch if white crème de cacao is not available.

Mary Mitkina

Heavy Cream

Lastly, the 0.5oz of heavy cream. It's not there to gatecrash the party – it's there to make the already smooth drink even smoother. Miss it out, and the cocktail might not be as velvety as a kitten's ear.

Alternatives: Full-fat coconut cream can give a tropical creaminess without the lactose.

Emma Rose

Recipe. How to make White Cargo Drink

  1. In a blender, combine the following ingredients:
    • 1.5oz gin
    • 2oz vanilla ice cream
    • 1oz white crème de cacao
    • 0.5oz heavy cream
  2. Blend until smooth and creamy.
  3. Pour the mixture into a chilled martini glass.
  4. Optionally, garnish with a sprinkle of grated chocolate or a vanilla bean.

Pro Tips

  • Use high-quality ice cream for a creamier texture and better flavor.
  • Chill the glass before pouring the cocktail to keep it cold longer.
  • For a richer flavor, try using a gin with a strong botanical profile.

Perfect Pairings

Sweet Desserts

Pair the White Cargo with desserts that complement its creamy sweetness. A slice of New York cheesecake or some French macarons could play very well with this dessert-like cocktail. For a less conventional pairing, try it with a warm apple pie that brings a contrasting temperature and texture to the experience.


The creamy nature of the White Cargo could either cut or enhance the bitterness of coffee, depending on the roast. An espresso or dark roast could provide a striking counterpoint, while a latte could echo those creamy notes.


Consider pairing with fresh fruits like strawberries or peaches to add a refreshing and light contrast to the creamy and decadent cocktail.

🍹 Discover the Top 50 All-Time Recipes! 🍹

Enter your email, and we'll send the exclusive list straight to your inbox.

We respect your privacy and take protecting it seriously

What you could change in White Cargo

  • Gin: Can be replaced with vodka for a milder flavor.
  • Vanilla Ice Cream: Try coconut milk ice cream for a dairy-free option.
  • White Crème de Cacao: Can be substituted with white chocolate liqueur.
  • Heavy Cream: For a lighter version, use half-and-half or milk.

Explore all drinks starting with W here

And of course - twists🍹

Espresso White Cargo

  • Add a 0.5oz shot of espresso to the mix.
  • The coffee will add a robust kick, marrying the sweetness with a touch of bitterness that coffee lovers will adore.
  • The added caffeine might also give you a little extra buzz!
  • It’s like your cocktail went to a coffee house and couldn’t resist a tempting offer.

Minty White Cargo

  • Infuse your gin with fresh mint leaves or add a 0.5oz of mint syrup.
  • This will create a refreshing twist that’ll remind you of a mint chocolate ice cream.
  • Perfect for those summer days when you want to cool down with a drink that's got a zesty edge.

Dairy-Free White Cargo

  • Swap the vanilla ice cream for a dairy-free vanilla ice cream and heavy cream for coconut cream.
  • It's a tropical take on the classic, and you won't miss the dairy.
  • Ideal for those who love the idea of White Cargo but need it to be lactose-free. It’s still indulgent and creamy, just without the cow!

In case you forgot basics how to make White Cargo

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

Find the cocktail you'd love!

If you want to drink something else - you can use our AI-augmented search to find the best cocktail for you!
Completely free!

Frequently Asked Questions on White Cargo

What types of gin are best to use in a White Cargo cocktail?

Both Old Tom and Plymouth gin, which have a more full-bodied flavor, work well in a White Cargo Cocktail to balance out the sweetness of the other ingredients.

Can White Cargo cocktail be pre-made in batches?

It's best to make White Cargo cocktails individually to maintain the creaminess and consistency of the ice cream. However, you can pre-mix the gin and Crème de Cacao and store that mixture in the refrigerator.

Can I use a different type of cream in this cocktail?

While heavy cream is preferred for its richness, you can substitute with lighter creams or even half-and-half. Note that this will change the texture and creaminess of the final drink.

Are there other garnishes that works well with a White Cargo cocktail?

Yes, some also garnish with a cherry or fresh raspberries for added color and flavor. Others add a chocolate or cinnamon stick for a little extra flair.

What food pairings work well with a White Cargo cocktail?

The dessert-like quality of a White Cargo cocktail pairs nicely with light desserts like macarons, fruit tarts, or variations of vanilla desserts.

More similar recipes to White Cargo!

Explore new cocktails you'd love!

Please rate this recipe