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In the world of Harry Potter, the Draught of Living Death is an advanced potion that causes its drinker to fall into a death-like sleep. Our version is much less grim; with spiced rum and cherry juice, it tastes like cherry pie in cocktail form!

shimmering draught of living death with old books in background

Today’s treat is one that’s fit for Potterheads, wizards, and muggles alike.

In the Harry Potter series, this sleeping draught (pronounced draft) contained infusion of wormwood, powdered root of asphondel, sloth brain, and Sopophorous bean.

This version of this recipe is a fun mix of spiced rum and cherry juice at its core, with edible glitter dust, red food coloring, and a maraschino cherry added in for some (optional) bling.

And not to worry, our libation doesn’t have the same effect as the magical potion. Save this recipe for your next Harry Potter movie marathon!

draught of living death potion in goblet with candle and old books in background

What is the Draught of Living Death?

A strong potion that puts its drinker into a death-like slumber that can last indefinitely.

In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Professor Slughorn praises Harry’s potion-making skills for brewing this particular draught.

Harry was not without help in this though. He and Ron had arrived late to the first Advanced Potion-Making class. Neither of them had a textbook, and there were only two copies in the cupboard. They both reached for the new copy, but Ron got it. Harry was left with the well-worn copy of the book, which turned out to have belonged to the Half-Blood Prince. (Later we discover that the Half-Blood Prince was none other than Severus Snape.)

Anyway, when there was just one hour left of the first class, Professor Slughorn showed the classroom a small vial of Liquid Luck (aka Felix Felicis). He promised it to the student who brewed the best Draught of Living Death in the time left during that class.

Harry opened his weathered copy of Advanced Potion-Making and noticed an exorbitant amount of notes scribbled and scrawled in the margins of his book. He decided to follow the notes instead of the textbook to make the potion. And it turned out perfect! As Slughorn said, “One drop would kill us all”.

And of course, Harry was awarded the vial of Liquid Luck as his prize. This was how Harry later gained valuable information from Professor Slughorn pertaining to Tom Riddle, aka Lord Voldemort. (Yes, my nerdy side is definitely showing!)

What Does the Draught of Living Death Do?

In the Harry Potter series, this advanced potion induces a death-like sleep on its drinker.

Luckily for us muggles, this version does no such thing. Our version of this deadly potion is merely a spiced cherry rum bevvy. It almost tastes like cherry pie, in cocktail form!

fancy silver tray with glass with maraschino cherry inside

The Harry Potter Inspired Draught of Living Death Potion – As a Cocktail

The adult (ahem, alcoholic) version of this drink tastes like cherry pie. And the kiddie version tastes just like cherry coke. They’re both fun to make (who doesn’t love a sparkly drink, right?!), absolutely delicious, and very unique!


Ingredients Explained

In this section I explain the ingredients and give substitution ideas where applicable. For the full recipe (including the ingredient amounts), see the recipe card below.

draught of living death ingredients aka spiced rum cherry cocktail
  • Spiced rum
  • Cherry juice
  • Edible silver or gold luster dust
  • Red food coloring (optional)
  • Maraschino cherry


how to make draught of living death
  1. Add the spiced rum, cherry juice, edible luster dust, and food coloring to a cocktail mixing glass. Add additional food coloring if desired to reach the right look.
  2. Stir until well-combined. Place the cherry in the bottom of a glass.
  3. Pour the drink into the glass, and enjoy responsibly.
front view of wine glass with sparkling adult beverage with candle in background

Tip: How to Make It a Mocktail

You only need to make one simple change to make this a mocktail instead of a cocktail! Omit the spiced rum and use cola instead.

More Harry Potter Drinks to Make

advanced potions making draught of living death

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Draught of Living Death Cocktail Recipe

Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time0 minutes
Yields: 1 serving
With spiced rum and cherry juice, our Harry Potter-inspired Draught of Living Death cocktail tastes like cherry pie, but without the death-like slumber that the potion in the Harry Potter series induces!

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  • Stir together the spiced rum, cherry juice, edible luster dust, and food coloring in a cocktail mixing glass. Add additional food coloring if desired to reach the right look.
  • Place the cherry in the bottom of a glass. Pour the drink into the glass.
  • Serve.


  • Mocktail Version: Use cola instead of spiced rum.


Calories: 251kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 0.4g | Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 8mg | Potassium: 148mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 2IU | Calcium: 10mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutritional information is automatically calculated and should be used as an approximate.

Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Harry Potter Food
Keyword: Draught of Living Death, Draught of Living Death Potion, Harry Potter Draught of Living Death

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harry potter draught of living death recipe pin
Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

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