Cocktails are often used by women to socialize and have fun. Most of us will buy them in a bar, knowing that they’re packed with sugars but not thinking too much about them. When it comes to making them at home, we get stuck on all the different options.
One of the problems is when we’re dieting. We’re focusing so much on counting calories that we think we should avoid the food and drink that could tip us over the edge. You don’t have to give up all your favorite cocktails. There are plenty of low-calorie options that you find make excellent and delicious substitutes.
You just need the recipes to make sure you can prepare them at home. Here are six that you want to choose.
The Trick to Low-Calorie Cocktails
Before I get into the best recipes, there is one quick tip to see just how bad the cocktails are. Look out for the fruity ingredients that are used. If you see a lot of fruit juices, you can safely assume that they are higher in calories.
Fruit juices are full of natural sugars but no fiber. The juicing process gets rid of the pulp, which is the part with the fibre. All the sugars are released into the blood stream, leading to issues with your energy levels, metabolism, and insulin response. There are still all the calories that fruit have, but they don’t become as nutritious as they would if you ate full pieces of fruit or opted for smoothies.
This can depend on the type of fruit juice. Some citrus fruits are better than others for juicing without causing high blood sugar problems.
Of course, the amount of alcohol you use will also affect a number of calories in your cocktails. These recipes all contain a good balance, so you can still enjoy your night with your friends but put your health and waistline first.
Not only is it worth learning how to make these cocktails at home, but you can also ask for them when you’re out in bars. Most of them are staples within the bar industry.
The calories from the drinks are all included. Do note that I say calories per serving! The more you drink, the more calories you will take in. If you’re making your own, you can control your cocktail portions. Find a way to keep track of the amount you drink if you decide to ask for one of these cocktails while out with friends.
Are you ready for the best low-calorie cocktails?
86 Calories for the Grapefruit Mocktail
Sometimes you don’t want to drink alcohol, but you want to enjoy a summery drink with your friends. You want it to look like you’re fitting in with the friends who are drinking. Mocktails are the perfect option to get the best of both worlds.
This mocktail includes grapefruit. If you do want to make it an alcohol one, you can add some vodka or rum, but keep in mind that the ingredients amounts will increase.
- 3oz red grapefruit juice
- 3oz cranberry juice
- 2oz seltzer
- 1 lime wedge
- Fresh sprig of mint
- Mix the two fruit juices in a shaker with some ice
- Pour into a tall glass and add the seltzer
- Top with the lime and the sprig of mint
The recipe serves one. If you want to create larger cocktails, make sure you add extra to each of the ingredients.
The 99 Calorie Ginger Mocktail
The second mocktail in the list comes in at just under 100 calories. It’s perfect if you feel like you have a few digestive issues because of the ginger in them.
You can use seltzer or sparkling water in this. Fruit flavored options can be added, but they will a few extra calories. The lemonflavor is one of the best options to work with the rest of the ingredients if you do juice a flavor.
If you do want to make this an alcoholic drink, a little gin or vodka is the best option. Remember to count the extra calories for the alcohol. Unfortunately, the alcohol will take it over the 100-calorie mark.
- 2-3oz cranberry or pomegranate juice
- 3-4oz of seltzer
- 1oz of ginger syrup
- Orange/lemon peel for garnishing
- Thumb-size piece of ginger
- 1 cup of raw sugar
- 1 cup of water
Method for the Syrup:
- Peel the ginger and slice it into rounds
- Place in a saucepan with the rest of the ingredients over a high heat and allow to boil
- Keep on a boil until the mixture reduces by half
- Remove from the heat and set aside until it reduces to room temperature
- Strain the ginger from the syrup
Method for the Mocktail:
- Add the ginger syrup, juice, and some ice to a tall shaker and combine
- Pour into the glass and add the seltzer
- Top with the lemon peel
You could add the lemon peel to the shake and allow the fruit to combine fully with the rest of the ingredients. If you make your ginger syrup, keep the pieces of ginger and chop them up finely. They become a little extra topping for your drink without any extra calories.
The 168 Calorie Mojito
The next drink on the list is a cocktail. It’s one of the most popular ones in bars, which is good since it only has 168 calories. It’s the lowest calorie cocktail on the list. While it is low in calories, it’s high in sugar. You’ll still want to watch the amount that you get.
The biggest benefit of the mojito is that it tastes light. There’s no need to worry about a syrupy taste.
- 2tbsp lime juice, fresh
- 2tsp sugar, superfine variety
- 1 cup of crushed ice
- 12 mint leaves, fresh and 5 sprigs for garnishing
- ¼ cup of white rum
- 2tbsp club soda
- Stir the lime juice and sugar together in a glass, until the sugar completely dissolves
- Add a quarter of the crushed ice
- Rub the mint leaves around the rim of the glass and then tear in half and drop into the glass
- Stir for about 15 seconds, before adding the rum, the rest of the ice, and the club soda
- Stir for 5 seconds and add the mint sprigs to the top of the glass
This is best drinking with a straw. You’ll not only get away from the ice hitting your teeth, but you’ll avoid drinking the mint sprigs and leaves! The straw will also help to keep the ingredients combined as the ice melts.
Get a 176 Calorie Martini
James Bond’s favorite drink is the martini, although it’s probably not for the same reason as it’s on this list. The martini is one of the best drinks calorie wises and extremely popular in bars and restaurants. It’s one of the easiest to make and delicious for all. You can easily have a martini night with your girlfriends while binging the latest on Netflix.
Make a classic martini with a mixture of gin and vermouth. By adding more liquor and less vermouth, you can reduce the calories slightly. If you’re in a bar, make sure you ask for it dry to get this drink option.
Add olives to the drink for something slightly extra. Count the extra calories based on the amount that you get if you choose to eat them.
- 2 1/2oz of dry gin
- 1/2oz of vermouth
- Olives for garnishing
- Add some ice to a cocktail shaker with the vermouth and gin
- Shake rigorously and then strain into the martini glass
- Serve with the olive garnish
You can also add everything to the cocktail glass and stir. Of course, if you want to be like Bond, you need it shaken, not stirred.
The 178-Calorie Gimlet
178 calories certainly aren’t that bad for a cocktail. However, it’s not the best on our list. The Gimlet is still delicious. The Gimlet uses gin, which is the best liquor to choose when you’re on a diet. Fruit juice is used, but it’s lime juice, which isn’t as bad as other fruit juices out there. You can buy lime juice, but you can also make your own with freshly squeezed limes.
The latter is going to be better for calories but a little messier. You will get a fresher taste though, so it’s often worth the extra hassle it takes to make.
- ¼ cup of gin
- 1tbsp lime juice, or to taste
- 1 slice of lime
- Fill a cocktail glass with ice and then add the gin and lime juice
- Stir and garnish with the slice of lime
This is one of those slow drinks. It’s designed to be sipped throughout the night. You don’t have to add ice if you don’t want, but it will taste cooler and more refreshing.
245 calories for the Michelada
This is the worst drink on the list regarding calories. However, you’re still getting a cocktail that has less than 250 calories. This is also one that includes more ingredients and includes a little beer, which is where the extra calories come in.
Because of the use of Mexican beer, this is the perfect summer cocktail to enjoy with your friends. It’s refreshing and easy to make.
- Salt, to rim the glasses
- 1 1/2oz of lime juice, fresh
- 1oz of Valentina Salsa Picante
- 4 dashes of Maggie seasoning
- 2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
- 1 bottle of Mexican larger
- Rim the glasses with the salt, using some lime juice around the edge to help the salt stick
- Fill the glasses halfway with ice
- Add the lime juice, salsa Picante, Maggi seasoning, and sauce in order
- Pour the lager on top
- Mix completely and garnish with a slice of lime
You’ll get one drink out of the ingredients above. Remember the higher calorie count in this one compared to the calories in all the rest.
Please Do Drink Responsibly!
While we’ve shared alcoholic drinks, we do want you to drink responsibly. This is about having a little fun without worrying about your waistline. However, too much alcohol is bad for the body. It will dehydrate the body and leave your liver working hard to get rid of all the toxins. You will feel the effects the next day, and your brain suffers from the alcohol.
Make an effort to sip your drinks slowly. After all, that’s the way cocktails were designed to drink. With many of the drinks above, you won’t want to drink very quickly due to the mixture of ingredients. The ice will also help to slow you down, along with the straw if your drink comes with one; ask for one if it doesn’t.
Are You Ready for a Good Cocktail Night with the Girls?
Just because you want a cocktail doesn’t mean you have to put up with the extra calories. There are six options that will work for all needs and interests. If you want alcohol free cocktails, you certainly can. However, it’s very easy to add a few drops of alcohol to the mocktails if you want.
Learn how to make the six above. You will certainly not regret the items you buy with the fun that you and your girlfriends will have throughout the night. All the recipes will serve one, but it isn’t that hard to make extra portions for everyone.
These are also excellent options to ask for in bars. All you’ll need to do is find a way to keep track of a number of drinks you have. The glasses will be washed, so how about straws, toothpicks (from the olives), or little umbrellas? Enjoy your night responsibly and safely without all the calories!