Cheers to Good Health! Festive Low-Calorie Cocktails for a Happy New Year

Cheers to Good Health! Festive Low-Calorie Cocktails for a Happy New Year

The festive season often sees a rise in drinking, whether you’re toasting to celebrations, enjoying social gatherings, or seeking a bit of liquid courage during family get-togethers.

Navigating the holiday season while sticking to your health goals might seem challenging, but it’s entirely achievable. Embracing the joy of holiday traditions can contribute to a balanced relationship with food, as advised by experts interviewed by USA TODAY.

Explore these delectable yet healthier cocktail recipes to dazzle your guests at both holiday and New Year’s parties. As you usher in the New Year, consider indulging in these delightful concoctions while maintaining a sense of well-being. Cheers to Cocktails for a Happy New Year!

What is the healthiest cocktail to drink?

Crafting healthier cocktails begins with opting for a clear spirit such as vodka, gin, tequila, or rum. These choices boast fewer calories and less sugar compared to creamy liqueurs.

When selecting drinks, simplicity is key. According to Lauren Hassan, a registered dietitian nutritionist and chef-owner at Something Blue Catering & Cocktails, sticking to two or three ingredients in your cocktails ensures a lighter option that aligns with your health objectives. Consider using fresh-squeezed citrus and soda water as mixers, as suggested by Hassan. She points out that soda or creamy, syrupy mixers can contribute additional calories and sugar, potentially worsening the aftermath of a hangover.

However, Hassan emphasizes a crucial point, stating, “At the end of the day, it’s still a cocktail. Balance and moderation are the biggest key items.” So, as you whip up your concoctions, keep these tips in mind for a delightful and health-conscious experience. Here’s to finding balance with Cocktails for a Happy New Year!

Opting for one mudslide over five mojitos is likely a wiser choice for your health. It’s important to note that experts don’t recommend drinking alcohol for health benefits; in fact, excessive alcohol consumption can contribute to or worsen around 200 different types of diseases, as previously highlighted by experts in discussions with USA TODAY.

However, on special occasions, particularly during the holidays, it’s acceptable to allow yourself a bit of indulgence without attempting to overly modify or “healthify” your drinks. Lauren Hassan advises against altering classic cocktails, especially since many of them, sweetened with simple syrup, contain less sugar than a packet.

“Some things are classic – you can’t put Splenda in an old fashioned,” warns Hassan. So, when it comes to those timeless favorites, enjoy them in moderation on special occasions. Here’s to savoring the classics with Cocktails for a Happy New Year!

Best low-calorie cocktails to try

Rather than attempting to make a creamy cocktail healthier, consider opting for a easily customizable option, such as a mojito. According to Lauren Hassan, playing with fresh fruit and herbs allows for a more dynamic and flavorful drink, while avoiding the added calories that come with sweetened fruit puree or extra juice in your cocktail.

“I like the idea of playing with fresh fruit and a fresh herb,” she suggests. “You’ll bring complexity to your drink and have more flavors.” This approach allows you to enjoy a refreshing beverage without compromising on taste.

Here’s a basic recipe that gives a fresh twist to the timeless mojito, and you can customize it with your preferred fruit, spirit, or herb. Cheers to creating your own delightful variations of Cocktails for a Happy New Year!

  1. Muddle a few slices of fresh fruit and 1-2 herb leaves
  2. Add 1 ½- 2 ounces of spirit
  3. Add ½ ounce simple syrup
  4. Add crushed ice
  5. Top with soda water
  6. Squeeze in citrus 

Try one of these combinations:

Strawberry Basil

  1. Muddle strawberries and basil 
  2. Add 1 ½- 2 ounces of floral gin
  3. Add ½ ounce simple syrup
  4. Add crushed ice
  5. Shake and strain
  6. Top with soda water
  7. Squeeze in lemon

Cucumber Mint

  1. Muddle thinly sliced cucumbers and mint
  2. Add ½ ounce simple syrup
  3. Add 1 ½- 2 ounces of gin
  4. Add crushed ice
  5. Shake and strain
  6. Top with soda water

Peachy Tea

  1. Muddle peach and thyme
  2. Add honey
  3. Add 1 ½- 2 ounces of bourbon
  4. Add crushed ice
  5. Top with unsweetened iced tea

Herb Gardener

  1. Muddle sage, rosemary, cilantro, mint and lime peel
  2. Add ¾ ounce simple syrup and ¾ ounce lime juice
  3. Add two drops of bitters
  4. Add 1 ½- 2 ounces of tequila
  5. Add crushed ice
  6. Shake and strain
  7. Garnish with fresh herbs

For those who are new to bartending, here are some valuable tips from Hassan, the lead mixologist at Something Blue:

  1. Taste test and adjust before serving drinks to friends: Before presenting your concoctions to friends, make sure to taste and adjust the flavors to ensure a perfectly balanced drink.
  2. Timing matters for citrus lovers: If you prefer sweeter cocktails, consider saving the citrus squeeze for the end rather than muddling it. Breaking up the zest can introduce bitterness, so timing is key to achieving the desired sweetness.
  3. Be cautious with sugar substitutes: If you opt for a sugar substitute, use it sparingly. These substitutes tend to be sweeter than plain sugar, so a little goes a long way in maintaining the right level of sweetness in your cocktails.

As you embark on your mixology journey, keep these tips in mind to elevate your bartending skills and create delightful experiences for yourself and your friends. Cheers to honing your craft with Cocktails for a Happy New Year!

About Author

Ingrid Mueller

Ingrid Mueller, a literary expert with a Ph.D. in Literature from Yale University, brings a touch of artistry to her writing. Her critical analyses and cultural insights provide a fresh perspective on trending news. Ingrid's articles are a treat for those seeking a deeper understanding of the world around them. Explore the trends through her unique lens.

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