While good cocktails can liven up the atmosphere, they also tend to result in morning-after headaches and — occasionally — a bit of regret. If you enjoy the occasional cocktail, there are ways to make them that will minimize the negative effects, like using whole-food mixers. The following cocktail (and mocktail!
While good cocktails can liven up the atmosphere, they also tend to result in morning-after headaches and â€” occasionally â€” a bit of regret. If you enjoy the occasional cocktail, there are ways to make them that will minimize the negative effects, like using whole-food mixers. The following cocktail (and mocktail!) recipes are a sneak peek of my version of feeding people well, with recipes that never contain refined sugars or gluten â€” and always with a vegan option.
1. Cocktail: Puesta Del Sol
This unusual drink is filling and soothing. Made with bone broth â€” which has gelatin and collagen for stronger hair, skin and nails as well as remarkable anti-inflammatory properties â€” it drinks more like a meal than a beverage. Carrot juice provides a lycopene boost, and chipotle peppers will rev up your metabolism. INGREDIENTS: 2 ounces of beef bone broth, 2 ounces of mezcal, 2 ounces of carrot juice, 1 chipotle pepper in adobo, finely chopped and seeds removed, 1 teaspoon of adobo sauce (warning: hot!) DIRECTIONS: Heat broth until room temperature and no longer gelled. Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake until chilled. Serve in a highball glass over fresh ice.
Related: Bone Broth: Why It's Good For You
2. Cocktail: Get Sweet on Sours
Commercial sour mix has subpar ingredients like high-fructose corn syrup, artificial colors and assorted gums. The sugarless nature of this healthier sour "mix" will help prevent a sugar- and alcohol-combo hangover later. INGREDIENTS: 1 1/2 ounces of bourbon, 1/4 cup of lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon of lemon extract, 10 to 15 drops of liquid stevia, to taste. DIRECTIONS: Mix all ingredients in a shaker until chilled. Serve over ice.
3. Cocktail: BlondHound
A riff on the classic greyhound, this cocktail includes the juice of a single grapefruit, which produces just the right amount of liquid per drink. The result? A much fresher taste â€” not to mention many more vitamins left alive! Using homemade ginger beer helps keep the glycemic load down, since it's made with coconut sugar and not cane. Fresh ginger juice is helpful for boosting your immunity. INGREDIENTS: 1/2 cup of freshly squeezed grapefruit juice with pulp, 1/2 cup of ginger beer, 2 ounces of vodka, 1 slice of grapefruit for garnish, (optional ice cube). DIRECTIONS: Mix grapefruit juice and vodka, then pour over ice in a rocks glass. Add ginger beer and garnish with grapefruit slices and pulp.
4. Cocktail: Forest Jade
Cucumbers are an incredibly hydrating food, making them the perfect solution to alcohol's dehydrating properties. The juice contains copper, vitamin K and calcium. There's more cucumber juice in this recipe than any other ingredient, but with its mellow taste, it's not overpowering. Instead, you'll pick up on all the delightful herbal qualities of Chartreuse, a liqueur made with 130 individual herbs by Carthusian monks in France. You can skip the vodka and double the Chartreuse if you're feeling spendy. INGREDIENTS: 1 ounce of Chartreuse, 1 ounce of vodka, 1/2 cup of cucumber juice, 2 shakes of celery bitters, 1 tablespoon of lime juice. DIRECTIONS: Shake all ingredients with ice until chilled. Serve over rocks.
5. Cocktail: Fairy Iced Tea
Absinthe is now legal (again) in the U.S., and many different brands are available. It's a potent, high-proof liquor with a strong licorice flavor and herbal notes. A small amount is plenty! Here, the heavy effects are lightened up with peppermint tea, a stomach-soothing beverage that calms the nervous system, reduces inflammation and aids in weight loss. Rather than using a boxed version, it is preferable to steep fresh leaves in very hot water for a few minutes. INGREDIENTS: 1/2 cup of brewed peppermint tea, 1 ounce of absinthe, 1 tablespoon lemon juice. DIRECTIONS: Shake all ingredients with ice until chilled.
6. Mocktail: Kimmy Gimlet
If you've got a full house, chances are at least a few people want something besides a cocktail. By offering up this bright-green shot that doesn't actually contain any vegetable juice, you'll set your skills apart from all the other hosts out there who have only tea and soda in their repertoires. Fresh basil is not only unique in flavor, it protects against free radicals and can help slow the aging process. Limes are excellent detoxifiers, and maple syrup sweetens up the drink and adds minerals. INGREDIENTS: 1/2 cup packed basil leaves, 1/4 cup lime juice, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, ice cubes. Additional basil for garnish (optional). DIRECTIONS: Muddle basil leaves with one ice cube in a shaker until broken down. Add lime juice and maple syrup, then fill shaker halfway with ice. Shake to chill and pour neat into a shot glass.
7. Mocktail: Dragonâ€™s Lair Spritzer
Pitaya, also known as dragon fruit, is a beautifully colored and mildly flavored tropical fruit most commonly sold in "smoothie packs." While it doesn't lend a ton of taste to a drink, it brings some serious color to the party as well as multiple B vitamins, carotene and protein. Cara Cara oranges are a varietal that is darker in color and a good source of folate and potassium. If they're unavailable, substitute the regular guys; they still pack a useful punch of vitamin C. INGREDIENTS: 1/2 cup of freshly squeezed Cara Cara orange juice, 1 ounce of dragon fruit puree 8 ounces of sparkling water, 1 slice of orange, 1 sprig of fresh mint, ice cubes. DIRECTIONS: Mix dragon fruit puree and orange juice together until uniform in texture. Pour over a glass filled with ice and add sparkling water until full. Stir, garnish with an orange slice and a mint sprig.
Related: 11 Worst Coffee Drinks to Order
8. Mocktail: Love Shots
Rose water is an inexpensive and simple ingredient that transforms any food or beverage into a floral adventure. I love to add it to everything from chocolate cake to dates. It's been used historically as a symbol of love and to treat stress and depression. Hibiscus, used here mainly for its vibrant color, lowers cholesterol and blood sugar. This drink is tart and bright in taste, with deep, rosy undertones. INGREDIENTS: 4 ounces of brewed hibiscus tea, 1 teaspoon of rose water. DIRECTIONS: Combine both ingredients and serve in a small glass, warm or chilled.
Related: 6 Pinterest-Worthy Fruity (and Healthy!) Drinks
9. Mocktail: Lava Sparks
Ginger beer in a can or bottle can't compare to the homemade version, and making it yourself only takes a couple of minutes! Ginger is a potent anti-inflammatory, helpful for reducing nausea and has a spicy taste and invigorating effect. Coconut sugar is similar in flavor to brown sugar, but it's lower on the glycemic index than cane sugar. INGREDIENTS: 2 tablespoons of fresh ginger juice, 2 tablespoons of coconut sugar, 1 tablespoon of lime juice, 12 ounces of sparkling water, ice. DIRECTIONS: Shake coconut sugar, ginger juice and coconut sugar together until coconut sugar is dissolved. Pour into a large glass, fill with sparkling water, stirring briefly to combine.
What Do YOU Think?
What's your favorite cocktail or mocktail that doesn't give you a hangover? Which one of these drinks will you try? Do you have a signature drink that you make at parties? Leave a comment below and let us know!