Holidays are a hard time to be giving up alcohol! While doctors will affirm that small amounts of alcohol will not be detrimental to your baby’s health, and that the benefits of red wine in moderation can often outweigh the concerns of the alcohol, many moms choose to give up alcohol entirely during their pregnancy and while breastfeeding. You may also want to fill your glass all the way to the top from time to time! In that case, a mocktail would be the way to go.
There are many recipes out there for alcohol-free beverages, but my goal was to find you the ones that are not only delicious but also EASY! Having a fun drink shouldn’t require you to spend hours making it! So, I turned to my FAVORITE mocktail ingredient – ginger ale!! It has the fizziness of club soda or sprite, but it also has a bite to it. Since you won’t have the alcohol to add that bite, ginger ale can make up for it. There are a million combinations, but below are some of my favorites!
Alcohol-free mimosa is a piece of cake. Just combine equal parts orange juice and ginger ale! Add a dash of orange bitters or some sweet grenadine for flavor – and beautiful color – variations.
Try ginger ale with cranberry juice for a gin-less cranberry fizz. To make your fizz a bit fancier, muddle a small handful of cranberries and a lemon wedge. Add the juice and shake or stir. Then strain into a tall ice-filled glass and top off with ginger ale.
Combine ginger ale with an equal part white grape juice. Add a mixture of citrus fruit slices and fresh or frozen berries. Refrigerate an hour or two before serving to allow flavors to combine.
If you have some time to pre-make this minty simple syrup, you’ll be able to whip up mojitos in no time! Here’s my alcohol-free take on Food Republic’s 10 second mojito recipe:
Mint simple syrup: Simmer 1 cup water & 1 cup sugar until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat, add 1 cup fresh peppermint leaves. Cover and let steep until cool; strain. Store in the refrigerator.
When you are ready to serve: Fill a shaker with ice and for each serving add 1-2T. lime juice, 1-2T. mint simple syrup, and about 10 mint leaves. Shake well, and strain into an ice-filled glass. Top with a spicy ginger ale and garnish with a mint sprig if you’re feeling fancy.
Health note: Although these beverages contain no alcohol, they do all have high sugar content. As such, they are meant for special occasions and not for every day. Be especially cautious if you are watching your sugar intake for gestational diabetes or other health reasons. If you are on a sugar-restricted diet, try combining the fruit from the sangria recipe with soda water or a carbonated mineral water like San Pellegrino. Low sugar can still be delicious!!