How To Make a Bourbon Paralyzer

5 from 6 votes
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A glass of Bourbon Paralyzer topped with whipped cream and cherry. A bottle of Jim Beam brand bourbon at the back.
Bourbon Paralyzer

Today, I needed a paralyzer cocktail. Today’s already been a day full of adventures, I’ve spent the last two hours in the medicentre getting a piece of glass dug out of the bottom of my foot, stitched up, jabbed with a tetanus shot and now I’m going to hobble around the next few days thanks to the stitched up cut in the bottom of my foot. All thanks to a glass that didn’t want to bounce off my hardwood floors and decided to smash instead. How rude.

Seriously, I can’t remember the last time I got stitches. My c-section with my daughter over 8 years ago? I think so.

Lesson #1: if you think you might have glass in the bottom of your foot, just go and get it out. It’s better than waiting like I did realizing oh…there’s still glass there. Sigh. I always put things off.

Lesson #2 : Holy crap, does a needle in the bottom of your foot hurt, dudes. I have a couple of tattoos, no fear of needles whatsoever  ( I don’t even flinch for needles anymore, they barely hurt) but I admit it, I yelped when the good ol’ doctor froze the bottom of my foot. There might have been a “Holy Sh&T!” exclaimed as well and some eyes watering.

Remind me never to tattoo the bottom of my foot.

So I’m home and hobbling – nothing like a nasty stitched cut on the ball of your foot for a week – and I’m thinking of putting my feet up and drinking something refreshing.

This past week camping I was playing around with bourbon and by now I am sure you all realize that I love me some bourbon.

I also love retro drinks. I don’t need no stinkin’ herb infused fancy cocktails (though I will drink them) I am solidly in love with old classics.

Nothing screams of my bar days in the 90’s like a paralyzer. These along with vodka slimes and candy apples…oh yah baby, we are flashing back to the good ol’ buck a drink days!

Do you remember those? Dollar highballs? It’s like an urban legend that one day I will tell my children. Heck, already people I know that are 10 years younger than me never got to enjoy those watered down cocktails of old.

This weekend I wanted a bourbon paralyzer, which is just taking the basic paralyzer and subbing in bourbon for the vodka.

Let me tell you, it’s a vast improvement. Bourbon and Kahlua?  Delicious! Those two are going to make an appearance together again, I’m just not sure how. Seriously yummy.

Now this isn’t a drink for the fainthearted, with a solid 3 ounces of liquor in it! You can definitely tone it down to half the amounts but keep the proportions if you can.

Have fun my darlings! When’s the last time you had a paralyzer?

And do YOU remember those dollar highballs? I’m not that old, so there must be some of you that remember! Oh, the good times I had in the Carstairs Hotel bar…. 😉



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A modern take on the classic Paralyzer. It's SO much better with bourbon! #cocktail #bourbon


How To Make a Bourbon Paralyzer

A modern take on the classic Paralyzer. It's SO much better with bourbon!
5 from 6 votes
A glass of Bourbon Paralyzer topped with whipped cream and cherry
Prep Time
5 minutes
Total Time
5 minutes
Karlynn Johnston


  • 4 ounces coke
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • 1 ounce kahlua
  • 3 ounces milk or cream if you dare
  • whipped cream
  • cherry
  • 1/2 cup ice


  • Pour the coke into the bottom of a large cocktail glass then add the ice.
  • Combine the milk with the bourbon and the kahlua - this prevents it from curdling.
  • Pour into the glass.
  • Top with whipped cream and a cherry.Enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 322kcal, Carbohydrates: 28g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 2g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 8mg, Sodium: 44mg, Potassium: 112mg, Sugar: 27g, Vitamin A: 140IU, Calcium: 96mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

Learn more about me

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Reader Interactions

Comments & Recipe Tips Share a tip or comment!

  1. DDJ says

    Fantastic recipe! I used some pecan milk instead of dairy since that’s what I had on hand and it’s delicious! I’m drinking it while I leave this review!5 stars

  2. Kellie says

    Delicious cocktail for the tail-end of Thanksgiving weekend. Thanks for the recipe.5 stars

  3. Michelle C Peacey says

    My favs were Smith and Kerns and Smith and Wesson! Still drink those.

  4. Mary Ann Hyndman Smith says

    Yes, I remember this as a paralyzer, after one of my friends ordered one and got roofied too. It was a good thing that I was the designated driver and could get her home safely.

  5. Julie Scriver says

    I still make paralyzers, love them! I also loved Brandy Alexanders when my girlfriend and I would go to the bars.

  6. Vikki Gardiner Brown says

    Sloe Gin Fizz, tasted like sweettarts

  7. Sheryl L McDonald says

    Alabama Slammers and Ruby Slippers. Ruby Slippers are still one of my faves

  8. Heather Andrews McGuire says

    Long Island Iced Teas and China White shooters. I feel ill just uttering the words.

  9. Phyllis Roy says

    Strawberry Daiquiri’s and White Russians were two popular drinks in the ’70s!!

  10. Lorna Dolan says

    A dirty mother is tequila, kaluha and milk or cream

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