Between deciding whether to go to the picnic, beach bonfire or happy hour, summer is a season with many tough, albeit fun, decisions. Like… what to pour and sip. You don’t have to sacrifice taste for calories! These summer cocktails will taste great and let you indulge in some more worthwhile things like succulent BBQ and delicious ice cream. Be sure to buy local produce and skip the mixes when making any of the following healthy summer beverages. Everyone (including you) will notice the extra punch of flavor.
1. Skinny Pineapple Orange Slush: This mocktail will set you up for a tasty poolside day, but adult-beverage lovers will be happy to know that a splash of triple sec and a shot of Bacardi would make this drink the perfect summer cocktail. (via Lovely Little Kitchen)
2. Strawberry Basil Lime Cooler: We are extra excited with this mocktail’s offerings. Not only is there an alcohol-free version, but there’s also a recipe for strawberry-basil kombucha too. We climbed on the probiotic train a long time ago, and kombucha is always a good way to keep your tummy and taste buds in check. (via Making Thyme for Health)
3. Blackberry Crush: We say add a splash more blackberry and a bit less simple syrup to keep this fresh and not too sweet. A little mint garnish on top is also a nice finishing touch. (via Martha Stewart)
5. Sea Breeze: We love a good cosmo, but it’s always nice to mix things up. Instead of a cranberry-tinted cosmo, serve this cocktail in a tall tumbler. The grapefruit juices aids digestion, and all the sugar in this summery glass is alcohol or fruit-juice based. No simple syrup necessary. (via Glamour)
6. Moscow Mule: We would have thought something as heavy-sounding as a Moscow Mule would knock us down, but this light cocktail is exactly that. Coming in at less than 150 calories, this sweet but refreshing ginger-beer-based cocktail already has us ready for another. (via Eat This, Not That!)
8. White Strawberry + Lemon Sangria: If summer had a signature drink, it would definitely be sangria. And whether it’s red or white, we’re always happy to sample a fresh batch of this wine-based cocktail. (via Kitchen Treaty)
9. Red Wine Berry Spritzer: Red wine is the heart of this recipe, but the fresh berries add to the real flavor. If you want a spritzer without the calories, this fizzy cocktail will make your day a whole lot cooler. (via Aggie’s Kitchen)
10. Lemon Berry Mojito: Only alcohol sugars are present in this minty cocktail. Break out the muddler to make sure the flavor distributes equally, and enjoy this festive sipper in a tall tumbler. (via Broke and Chic)
12. Strawberry Ginger Caipirosca: This take on the classic caipirinha uses vodka instead of cachaça, the booze made from sugarcane juice that’s uber popular in Brazil. Were definitely down to try it in all its herbal and gingery glory. (via Martha Stewart)
14. Very Berry Cosmo: We admit it: The garnish caught our eye. There’s nothing wrong with a classic olive martini, but this colorful stirrer paired with a berry-based cocktail is the right kind of eye candy. (via Broke and Chic)
15. Blueberry Mojito: The great thing about mojitos is that they pack a lot of flavor without a lot of calories. You can get the color and taste of this mojito just right by adding enough blueberry. We wouldn’t mind sipping it with some of those fancy straws either. (via The Novice Chef)
16. Frozen Beach Bellinis: For those early vacation mornings, blend together some fresh peaches and add in chilled Prosecco for a burst of summer flavor that will satisfy any sweet tooth. We suggest pairing it with a bowl of fresh fruit for breakfast. (via Unsophisticook)
17. Watermelon Fizz: The pivotal summer fruit, watermelon is versatile in many summer cocktails. Here, ginger ale is used for sweetness, but you can swap the soda for agave nectar and toss in the gin to make this a healthy, but adult-friendly cocktail. (via Dinners Dishes and Desserts)
What’s your go-to fruit for cocktails? Share your healthy summer drink secrets in the comments below.