5 simple ingredients you can mix-and-match to make dozens of delicious non alcoholic beverages
Indulging in your favorite cocktail might be one of your favorite ways to combat Monday (or any other day of the week) blues. But there’s a convincing reason to trade your cocktail for a non alcoholic beverage. Not only are cocktails hard on the pocket book, but they can also be hard on your health. Alcohol is a diuretic and drains your body of essential nutrients needed to stay healthy. This is far from ideal for fighting dehydration that contributes to dry skin, poor health, and let’s not forget those all-too-pesky wrinkles.
Why not try your favorite cocktail’s healthier, just as delicious mocktail counterpart? Stock your cabinet with a few simple ingredients and soon you’ll be experimenting with mix-and-match ingredients in varying proportions to craft an almost infinite amount of mocktails. Your thirst (and your taste buds!) will have so much fun doing it, you may never crave a martini again.
Wondering how to make a mocktail? You’ll need a few basics to get started:
- Fruit purees or juices
- Seltzer, soda water, or sparkling water
- Honey, agave, or sweetener of choice
- A unique ingredient to make the mocktail truly stand-out
- You’ll want to have a few tools on hand as well, including a cocktail shaker, bar-spoon, and jigger to measure with.
Oh, and don’t forget your martini glasses!
DIY Mocktail Tips
Create the perfectly crafted non-alcoholic beverage with fruit purees
Create a perfectly crafted mocktail with fruit purees, juices, and even vegetables!
A variety of purees and juices can keep your mocktail game fresh and exciting, not to mention nutritious! Not sure where to start? Strawberry is loaded with vitamin C and antioxidants, and pairs well with a diverse array of other ingredients. But don’t be afraid to be adventurous as well. Mango, passion fruit, and raspberry purees (with dare we say just a bit of green veggie powder thrown in for good measure?) are also popular options that offer incredible nutritional value! Just be mindful of how much sugar you add to any fruit. Try pureeing the fruit on it’s own first and then do a taste test. Slowly add your preferred sweetener, if necessary.
Keep it light and fresh with a calorie free base
You’ll want to include some kind of base seltzer or soda water in your recipe, otherwise you risk making your mocktail taste like a smoothie. This is the best option to keep your mocktail lower in calories. Some people use lemon or lime sodas as a base. For the healthiest option, try basic mineral or sparkling waters. If you’re craving something with a twist, ginger beer is also a popular choice.
Enjoy the sweet life with a dash of sweet
While simple syrup is the most commonly used sweetener in traditional cocktails, honey and agave syrups take the prize when it comes to mocktails. However, honey can be a bit more difficult to mix in if you aren’t using the proper tools. If you run into this problem, agave is an easier-to-use alternative. You’ll have to play around with ratios to craft the perfect mocktail for your preferred sweetness level, always being mindful of how much you’re adding into your diet.
Stay cool in the summer heat
A lukewarm mocktail is never tasty, especially on a hot summer day. Make sure you have plentiful amounts of ice to either blend, shake, or stir into your mocktail!
Lastly, add a dash of something uniquely you
Mixing and matching different ingredients to find the mocktail recipe that feels distinctly you if half the fun. Make sure you add a bit of whimsy to your lineup, by adding something you have never tried before, or include something uniquely you. Perhaps you have an ingredient that speaks to your heritage, a family tradition, or your favorite food? Embrace it!
Or, try ingredients you haven’t explored before. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box, with gorgeous florals like rose water to spicy notes like ginger. Herbs are also a wonderful addition to mocktails as an earthy note or just a beautiful garnish. The sky’s the limit!
Loving the idea of all this, but unsure where to start? Try these simple mocktail recipes:
This alternate to a Cosmopolitan uses raw cranberry juice which is naturally low in sugar and offers many health benefits.
1 TB raw cranberry juice
1/2 TB fresh squeezed orange juice
1 oz. sparkling mineral water
1 bar-spoon of fresh lime juice
Agave syrup or honey (to taste)
Place all ingredients into a cocktail mixer with ice and shake. Pour into a traditional martini glass and garnish with a slice of lime.
This alternative to a margarita will please adults and children alike. It boasts a similar flavor profile to a limeade—without all that added sugar.
2 oz. sparkling water
1 TB fresh squeezed lime juice
1 TB fresh squeezed orange juice
Agave syrup or honey (to taste)
Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. Pour into a traditional martini glass and garnish with a slice of lime (salting the rim, optional). Recipe note: If you want this mocktail to look the more traditional green, either increase the lime juice (which might make the flavor more tart) or add just a dash of lime grenadine.
Easy mocktails for a crowd
Mocktails are the perfect healthier pairing for your next BBQ, baby shower, or birthday party. We hope these basic tips on how to make a non alcoholic beverage keep you and your loved ones hydrated and healthy this summer.
Stefanie Cosman is a writer living in Los Angeles. For fun, she blogs about the quirkier side of Classic Hollywood, re-creating Audrey Hepburn’s favorite spaghetti recipe, trying out Marilyn Monroe’s more unusual beauty tricks, and finding a bit of life wisdom along the way