Being healthy doesn’t mean you have to give up those delicious, mixed drinks entirely. It’s true that alcohol is a source of extra calories and sugar, but there are sneaky ways to have these drinks in health-conscious way. We can take tips from around the world to learn how to make drinks healthy but still tasty! Spain, Cuba, Mexico, and France have some inspirational ingredients in their cocktails that we can use when enjoying drinks out or on our own. Healthier, mixed drinks can be made simply through practicing moderation, using better ingredients, and controlling what goes into your drink.
4 Tips to Healthier Cocktails
1) Spain: Use Fresh, Whole Fruit
The people of Spain are famous for their delicious and fruity “Sangrias”. Sangrias typically use red wine, juice, cinnamon, and freshly sliced fruit such as grapes, lemons, and oranges. In any of your mixed drinks, try adding whole fruits for flavor, antioxidants, and fiber. Other examples of fruits to add to your drinks are frozen strawberries, fresh raspberries, pomegranate arils, pineapple, or watermelon. The fruit is also a nice snack to eat once you finish your drink!
2) Cuba: Use Herbs
The favorite cocktail of Cuba is of course the legendary “Mojito”. Mojitos always use fresh mint to diffuse flavor and aroma to the rum-based drink. Fresh herbs are the best way to add this without any extra sugar or calories! Other herbs that are delicious in cocktails are basil, lavender, rosemary, and thyme. Get creative and find some fun combinations that use fresh herbs.
3) Mexico: Use Sugar-Alternatives
Margaritas are a sweet, tequila-based drink associated with the Mexican culture. Unfortunately, they are usually very high in sugar causing sugar crashes and hangovers. Thankfully, there are some great sugar-alternatives such as agave syrup, honey, or stevia. These are natural sources of sugar that your body will thank you for. Try the Margarita recipe below that uses agave syrup. For 1 margarita, combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice: 1 shot fresh lime juice 1 shot tequila 1/2 shot agave syrup 2 shots water Garnish cup with lime and salt.
4) France: Use 100% Fruit or Vegetable Juice
Mimosas are a France favorite, and are the definition of elegance and sophistication. It also a classic drink for brunch with friends and family. France will typically use fresh orange juice alongside champagne for their mimosas. Using 100% real fruit juice cuts down on extra, unwanted sugar. It also is a way to add natural sugars and flavor to your drinks. It is important to check the labels of your fruit juices, especially ones labeled “juice cocktails” to make sure it has real juice. Also try adding fun, vegetable juices for an extra dose of nutrients