6 Mocktail Recipes That Make Happy Hour Way Healthier
Like cannabis edibles and dairy-free ice cream, mocktails are having a moment this summer. And I’m not talking about boring old club soda with a wedge of lime, but high-end, booze-free cocktails that look and taste like sophisticated culinary works of art. According to a recent report, mocktails are among the leading non-alcoholic beverage trends on restaurant menus (along with kombucha and cold brew coffee). And every hip bar from New York City to Los Angeles is serving them. Inspired by the buzz, I mixed up six of my own concoctions using superfood ingredients. Each of the drinks below is a feast for the senses, and packed with nutrients and antioxidants. Cheers!
Chili Grapefruit Mockgarita
In a cocktail shaker combine ice with 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice, ¼ cup fresh squeezed pink grapefruit juice, and ½ tablespoon pure maple syrup. Shake well. Wet rim of glass and dip in pink Himalayan salt. Add 4-5 ice cubes to serving glass, pour in mocktail, and garnish with fresh cilantro and a mini chili pepper.
In a cocktail shaker combine ice with ½ cup 100% pomegranate juice, ¼ cup aquafaba, ½ tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon manuka honey, and ¼ teaspoon fresh grated ginger root. Shake well, pour into glass, and garnish with fresh mint.
Blueberry Chia Crush
In a mini blender combine ¼ cup fresh blueberries, 2 tablespoons cold water, 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice, ½ tablespoon chia seeds, and ½ tablespoon pure maple syrup. Whip until smooth, transfer to cocktail glass and let sit for 5 minutes. Add 4-5 ice cubes, and ½ cup of sparkling water. Stir well and garnish with fresh basil and fresh whole blueberries.
Watermelon Mint Quencher
In a mini blender combine ¾ cup fresh seedless watermelon, ½ tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice, half of a medium peeled cucumber, ½ cup pure coconut water, 2 fresh mint leaves, and 4-5 ice cubes. Blend until smooth, pour into glass and garnish with fresh mint and a small wedge of watermelon.
In a mini blender combine ¾ cup fresh pineapple, ½ cup frozen banana slices, ½ cup unsweetened coconut milk, ¼ teaspoon fresh grated ginger root, ⅛ teaspoon ground turmeric, 1/16 teaspoon ground black pepper, ½ teaspoon blackstrap molasses, and 4-5 ice cubes. Blend until smooth. Transfer to glass and garnish with ½ teaspoon shredded coconut and a wedge of fresh pineapple.
Sassy Virgin Mary
In a mini blender combine 1 cup of 100% tomato juice, half of a medium fresh zucchini, 1 tablespoon of juice from all natural jarred olives, ⅛ teaspoon Italian herb seasoning, 1/16 teaspoon ground black pepper, and 1/16 teaspoon crushed red pepper. Blend until smooth. Add ice to serving glass, and pour in blended mocktail. Garnish with a stalk of fresh celery, and a toothpick of alternating all natural olives and pickle slices.
Cynthia Sass, MPH, RD, is Health’s contributing nutrition editor, a New York Times best-selling author, and a consultant for the New York Yankees and Brooklyn Nets.