How to Sugar Rim a Glass and Other Types of Drink Rimming

Updated on December 24, 2019
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Candace has a broad range of interests that keep her head filled with strange facts. She also enjoys all things science fiction.


Adding a flavored rim to the glass is a great way to add taste and eye appeal to a drink. Rimming is very simple to do and will really impress guests, family, and friends.

Rimming is an awesome way to make any drink extra special. It doesn't have to just be alcoholic drinks. Rimming is fun for kids' drinks and normal beverages, too.

Sugar rims and salt rims are the most common type of drink rimming. You will find instructions on how to do a basic glass rim below as well as some ideas for other types of rimming to make your drinks really impressive.

So grab a glass and make the rim look and taste fabulous. Cheers!

Spread the sugar/salt on a plate or flat surface.  Dip the moistened glass in.
Spread the sugar/salt on a plate or flat surface. Dip the moistened glass in.
Gently twist the glass and lift it making sure the entire rim is coated.
Gently twist the glass and lift it making sure the entire rim is coated. | Source

Sugar/Salt Rim

The key to sugar and salt rimming is to moisten the rim of the glass enough to make the sugar or salt stick to it. It is a simple process that really adds a lot to a drink.

Follow these steps to sugar rim a drink glass:

  1. Pour some sugar onto a plate. Make sure the pile is wider than the rim of the glass you are rimming. The sugar should be about 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch deep.
  2. Decide what you want to moisten the glass with. Citrus fruit (lemon, lime, or orange) is usually used, but you can also use water if a citrus flavor will not compliment the drink.
  3. If you are using citrus, slice off a piece of the fruit. Gently rub it around the rim of the glass making sure to completely moisten the entire rim without dampening any other part of the glass.
  4. If you are just going to use water, there are two ways to moisten the glass. If you want a thin sugar/salt rim, you can use a clean sponge or damp cloth to moisten the rim. If you want a thicker rim, then pour some water on a plate. Add enough that the water is standing in a puddle wider than the rim of the glass. Gently dip the rim of the glass into the water so that it coats just the rim. Then raise the glass and hold it over the plate for a few seconds so that excess water will drip off.
  5. When the rim has been moistened, carefully dip the rim of the glass into the sugar or salt. Make sure you dip it straight in so the rim is straight and even.
  6. Twist the glass a bit on the plate to ensure that the entire rim is coated.
  7. Raise the glass off the plate and shake it gently to get off any loose bits.
  8. The glass is ready to go. Pour the drink in making sure you don't pour near the rim.

You can also use thicker liquids like caramel to rim the glass and then dip it in the salt or sugar for a heavier rim.

How to Rim a Glass

Dip the glass in the caramel or other liquid.
Dip the glass in the caramel or other liquid.
Then dip the rim in coconut or whatever else you are using.
Then dip the rim in coconut or whatever else you are using.
The finished rim.
The finished rim.
Carefully pour the drink avoiding the rim.
Carefully pour the drink avoiding the rim.

Other Glass Rimming Ideas

Sugar and salt are not the only things that can be used to rim glasses. Here are tons of other flavorful rimming ideas.

Liquid rimming ideas:

  • chocolate syrup
  • caramel
  • honey
  • maple syrup
  • corn syrup
  • agave syrup
  • lemon
  • lime
  • orange

Dry rimming ideas:

  • crushed Oreos
  • graham cracker crumbs
  • Pop Rocks
  • finely crushed cookie or candy pieces
  • salt (fine or course)
  • sea salt
  • sugar (fine or course)
  • cane sugar
  • brown sugar
  • coconut
  • cocoa powder
  • chili powder
  • bacon bits
  • cinnamon
  • crushed herbs
  • spices

You can use just the liquid rimming or you can combine a liquid rim with a dry rim. If you are using just a dry rim, you will need to moisten the rim with something before the dry rim ingredient will stick.

More than one rimming ingredient can be mixed together as well. Get creative and pair rimming ingredients that will give your drink an extra kick.

Rimming a Glass With Caramel

Glass Rimming Ideas

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Sugar and chili powder rimCinnamon and sugar rimSalt and herb rim
Sugar and chili powder rim
Sugar and chili powder rim | Source
Cinnamon and sugar rim
Cinnamon and sugar rim | Source
Salt and herb rim
Salt and herb rim | Source

Rimming Poll

What will you rim your glasses with first?

See results


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    • profile image

      Suzie Martin 

      5 months ago

      Can you use whites of eggs moisten the glass? Is it ok? And how much time before the dinner can I do this?

    • profile image

      Deb Vitale 

      2 years ago

      I was ready to buy the special sugar to rim my punch glasses, but so glad I saw this first! I used corn syrup heated a bit in the microwave,(cause I was worried if I used water, it would evaporate and the sugar would drop off) and colored my own sugar with red food coloring, and some with green. They look just great!!! Thanks for the ideas!!! I may do some in caramel for eggnog too.

    • Kristen Howe profile image

      Kristen Howe 

      4 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Great ideas, Candace. I would never thought of that. Voted up for useful!

    • cocopreme profile imageAUTHOR

      Candace Bacon 

      6 years ago from Far, far away

      willow32263 - That sounds yummy!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Pumpkin Beer rimmed with caramel, brown sugar & cinnamon OR (pumpkin spices)

    • cocopreme profile imageAUTHOR

      Candace Bacon 

      7 years ago from Far, far away

      Thanks everyone! Drink rimming is awesome and really does make the drink taste more delicious. Cheers!

    • Nettlemere profile image


      7 years ago from Burnley, Lancashire, UK

      Definitely like the idea of chocolate or coconut rimmed glasses - great for serving milkshakes with.

    • Efficient Admin profile image

      Michelle Dee 

      7 years ago from Charlotte, NC


    • Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

      Marcy Goodfleisch 

      7 years ago from Planet Earth

      Oooh! Great tips! I like the idea of rimming your glass with other things than just salt - and it's always so much fun to sip a drink through that little taste at the lip of the goblet!

      Voted up and up!!!


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