As the warmer months are quickly approaching, this is the perfect time of year to meet up with new and old pals and grab some drinks. Making good food decisions during these times are very important and one way to help out your festive food/drink decisions is to make your favorite cocktails but in a healthier way! Let’s be honest…everyone will want to enjoy a few treats throughout their weight loss journey to just relax and let loose. But there is a way to still enjoy a few of your favorite drink and still stay on track with your healthy eating!
Flavored martinis have gone the way of the pom’. Pomegranate syrup can be found in the coffee or baking aisle of well-stocked supermarkets.
Start to Finish: 10 minutes
Makes: 8 servings
1/2 of a medium orange, cut into wedges
1 1/2 cups vodka or gin
1/3 cup pomegranate syrup (grenadine)
3 tablespoons dry vermouth
Small pomegranates (optional)
1. Rub orange wedges around rims of 8 martini glasses. Invert glasses into a dish of sugar to coat rims; set glasses aside. In a small pitcher, combine the vodka, pomegranate syrup, and vermouth. Place ice cubes in a martini shaker. For each drink, add 1/4 cup of the syrup mixture; shake. Strain into one of the prepared martini glasses. Garnish with a small pomegranate, if desired.
Nutrition Information per serving: 146 calories, 0g protein, 11g carbohydrate, 0g fat (0g saturated), 0g fiber
Orange Martinis: Prepare as above, except use 3 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed, in place of the syrup. Omit garnish.
Apple Martinis: Prepare as above except use 1/3 cup frozen apple juice concentrate, thawed, in place of the syrup. Garnish with fresh orange peel curls.
6 large lemons (1 1/2 cups juice)
3 medium limes (1/3 cup juice)
3/4 to 1 cup honey
6 cups water
2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
Lemon and/or lime slices (optional)
1. In a 2-1/2-quart pitcher, combine lemon juice, lime juice, and 3/4 to 1 cup honey. Add water and raspberries. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours.
2. Just before serving, gently stir to combine. Pour into ice-filled glasses. Add lemon and/or lime slices, if desired.
Nutrition Information per serving: 101 calories, 1g protein, 28g carbohydrate, 0g fat (0g saturated), 2g fiber
Lemonade Tea : Add equal parts freshly brewed iced tea and Tangy Citrus Lemonade to ice-filled glasses. Sweeten to taste with additional honey, if desired.
Frozen Lime Margaritas
Start to Finish: 10 minutes
Makes: 10 servings
12-ounce can frozen limeade concentrate
2/3 cup tequila
1/2 cup light orange juice or orange liqueur
4 cups ice cubes
1/2 of a medium lime
Orange slices (optional)
1. In a blender container combine limeade concentrate, tequila, and orange juice. Cover and blend until combined. With blender running, add ice cubes, one at a time, through opening in lid, blending until mixture becomes slushy.
2. Cut a thick lime slice; cut slice in half. Rub slices around rims of eight glasses. Dip rims into a dish of coarse salt to coat rims. Pour mixture into prepared glasses. Garnish glasses with orange slices, if desired.
Nutrition Information per serving: 122 calories, 0g protein, 22g carbohydrate, 0g fat (0g saturated), 0g fiber
Strawberry Margaritas: Prepare as above, except blend half of the mixture at a time adding 1 cup frozen unsweetened whole strawberries along with 2 cups of the ice cubes. Repeat with remaining mixture, 1 cup additional frozen strawberries, and remaining 2 cups ice cubes. Continue as directed, substituting coarse sugar for the salt on the glasses. If desired, garnish each glass with a whole strawberry.
Make-ahead directions: Prepare as above through Step 1. Pour into a 1-1/2-quart freezer container. Cover and freeze overnight. To serve, use a large spoon to scrape across frozen surface and pile into salt-rimmed glasses.
White Wine Spritzer:
Try diluting your drink with club soda or sparkling water. This in the end means that you get more glasses for fewer calories. These are about 100 calories per serving. Dry wines are better because they usually contain fewer calories.
It has about 65 calories, but the cranberry juice also helps to flush the alcohol you consume out of your system. Try to request the light cranberry juice for the lower calories. For an extra zesty flavor (without adding calories) squeeze a lime wedge in your drink.
Vodka and Diet Red Bull:
Request to have it made with the sugar-free Red Bull. It’s only about 75 calories.
Here are some more mixers that you can choose at the bar that carry small calorie content (Thanks to WebMB) :
Diet soda or diet tonic: 0 calories
Orange juice (6 oz): 84 calories
Cranberry juice cocktail (8 oz): 136 calories
Light orange juice (8 oz): 50 calories
Light cranberry juice (8 oz): 40 calories
Light lemonade (8 oz): 5 calories
Coffee, tea: 0 calories
Lemon or lime juice (1/2 oz): 10 calories
Consider mixing up a pitcher of your favorite crystal light drink and use that to mix in with your hard alcohol! This option adds zero extra calories, taste great, and will keep you from racking up the extra calories and sugar for the day.
So feel free to treat yourself EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE to a nice cocktail with your friends or just at home after a long day. The key is to be smart and to enjoy these things in moderation!