Liquid calories are a dieter's worst nightmare, but it's hard to pass up a cool cocktail at a fancy fete. Bethenny Frankel's new book, The Skinnygirl Dish: Easy Recipes for Your Naturally Thin Life ($10-12; amazon.com), is full of fabulously light, flavorful drink ideas. Check out these three sips from her book, plus two bonus recipes.
2 of 6Frances Janisch
Mix a lighter, 218-calorie, fab Cosmo by trading just a little liquor for club soda. Combine in a cocktail shaker (or ask the bartender for) 1 shot (about 2 ounces) citrus-flavored vodka, 1 splash club soda, 1 splash cranberry juice, and juice of 1 lime wedge; shake well and strain into a chilled martini glass. Yumand you’ve slashed 100 calories!
3 of 6John Kernick
If you’re looking to walk the straight and narrow, try Frankel's American Virgin. Combine 1 shot (about 2 ounces) each peach juice and club soda and 1 splash each orange juice and lemonade in a cocktail shaker full of ice. Stir and strain into a rocks glass filled with ice, then garnish with a lemon wedge for a healthy 34-calorie "mocktail." Yep, you read that right34 measly calories!
4 of 6
Love this Cuban cocktail, but hate the calories? Some mojitos pack up to 250 empty calories, but Frankel's version contains only 150.
Fill a martini shaker with 1 cup ice. Add 6 lime wedges, 1 1/2 tbsp lime juice, and 2 tbsp torn fresh mint leaves. Muddle lime and mint with a pestle or a long spoon until well-bruised and fragrant.
Next combine 1/2 tsp warmed honey, 2 ounces rum, and 4 ounces club soda; stir gently to dissolve honey. Add to muddled mixture; stir until mixture is well-chilled. Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice; garnish with mint and lime, if desired.
5 of 6
Make yourself a lighter red sangria by ditching the sugar and replacing some of the wine and high-calorie liqueur with sugar-free soda.
Just slice up 4 apples and 3 oranges. Combine fruit with 1 pound red grapes, halved; 3 bottles light- to medium-bodied red wine; 1 can Fresca (or any diet lemon soda); and 1 can club soda. Chill mixture, and serve over ice for 16 servings of scrumptiousness.
Here’s the best part: Each serving has only 173 caloriesthat’s 125 calories saved.
6 of 6Kate Sears
Frankel's eggnog recipe is only 148 calories, because it’s made with low-fat milk and less liquor.
Beat 2 egg yolks until lightened in color. Add 1/3 cup sugar, beating until dissolved; set aside. Combine 2 cups 1% low-fat milk, 1 tsp vanilla, and 1 dash each cinnamon and nutmeg in a saucepan over high heat; bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat, and gradually whisk into egg mixture. Return to pot, and cook to 160. Remove from heat, stir in 1/4 cup white rum, and pour into a bowl; set in the refrigerator. Beat 4 pasteurized egg whites in a separate bowl until soft peaks form; with mixer running, gradually add 1 tablespoon sugar, and beat until stiff peaks form. Whisk egg whites into chilled mixture; sprinkle with cinnamon.
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