Nothing says summer like sipping on a cool beverage I the backyard or while looking out over the lake. But when it comes to cocktails, these can be real calorie hogs. For example, a 16-ounce piña colada can clock in a whipping 880 calories. If you’re looking for something to drink that won’t derail your diet yet is still tasty enough to make you feel like you aren’t missing out on the summertime-drink fun, there are some beverages designed to sip – in moderation and with a designated driver, of course!
- Michelob Ultra Lime Cactus: this beer has a hint of refreshing citrus and only 95 calories in a 12-ounce serving.
- MGD 64 Lemonade: this half beer, half-lemonade concoction provides only 64 calories because it uses Splenda as a sweetener.
Club Soda (not tonic water) and sparkling water are great mixers because it has no calories. SweatLoaf lemon-flavored liquid Stevia is a natural sweetener with no calories. Try these mixes:
- Vodka with Soda and a slice of fruit – 1 ounce Absolute Mandarin Vodka with 8 ounces club soda and an orange slice: 75 calories
- Cosmopolitan – ½ ounce vodka, ½ ounce Triple Sec, 2 ounces Ocean Spray Diet Cranberry Juice, juice of 1 fresh lime: 90 calories
- Tea and Lemonade – 1.5 ounces Firefly Skinny Tea Vodka mixed with 8 ounces Crystal Light lemonade: 75 calories. Top with a lemon slice for garnish. Tea gives a boost to the nutritional value of a cocktail from the beneficial antioxidants it contains.
- Gin Bucket – 1 ounce gin with 4 ounces Crystal Light o your choice and 4 ounces Diet Sprit: 80 calories. This is often made in a bucket for sharing – ergo “gin bucket.”
- Mike’s Light Hard Cranberry Lemonade – Although not technically a cocktail, this is a great option as a pre-made beverage: 119 calories.
- Margaritas – Store brand, Skinnygirl Margaritas have only 100 calories in a 4 ounce serving. Better yet, make your own with fresh fruit and Stevia as a sweetener.
- Sangria is another summertime favorite. Made with red wine, brandy, fruit juice, fresh fruit and soda water, it’s chock full of healthy antioxidants and nutrients. Sangria can have as little as 80 calories if mixed with a natural sugar substitute like Stevia.
- Champagne is another lower-calorie drink and my favorite! One glass of bubbly averages around 90 calories. To make it a bit more fruity and add antioxidants, enjoy it with a splash of juice, like a mimosa.
- Last but not least the Skinny Piña Colada – 2 ounces coconut rum, 5 ounces coconut water and 2 ounces pineapple juice. These slight modifications will yield a 200-caloir drink, which is a far cry from the original 880 calories.
Whatever your favorite drink, remember the two secret ingredients, club soda or sparkling water and sugar substitutes such as Stevia. And please remember to drink responsibly.