Here’s how to enjoy a tasty tipple without toppling off the diet wagon. Disclaimer: you’ve gotta love you some vodka.
If you’ve been on your best behaviour trying to be healthy through the year, the last thing you want to do is ruin it all with empty calorie sugar-laced cocktail binges. See, the thing is, the base of most of those scrumptious concoctions we all love so much is a sugar syrup, but we’ve got the solution.
Here’s how you can continue to enjoy a social drink, parties and events without experiencing any pangs of guilt the next day…
1. Sea Breeze
WHAT’S IN IT: Vodka cranberry can get boring, so adding grapefruit juice instead re-works this old classic into a refreshing cocktail that’ll change it up for your palate.
HOW TO MIX IT: Mix a shot of vodka with a shot of grapefruit juice and finish with three more shots of cranberry juice. Garnish with a lime slice, and serve in a highball glass.
2. Lemon Drop Liqueur
WHAT’S IN IT: It’s Madonna’s sole choice of cocktail (when she unstraps herself from her pilates machine for long enough to have a drink), and it’s made simply of lemon rinds, lemon juice and vodka.
HOW TO MIX IT: Add a shot of vodka to half an ounce of of Triple Sec orange liqueur. You’ll need three quarters of a shot of freshly-squeezed lemon juice plus a twisted peel of lemon and some ice cubes. Shake, then serve in a long glass.
CALORIE COUNT: 150
3. Gin and Tonic
WHAT’S IN IT: Fact: In the 1700s, the quinine in tonic water was found to treat and prevent malaria. Don’t be tempted to go for slimline tonic though, as the aspartame ingredient is found to be a trigger for fat stores in the body.
HOW TO MIX IT: Add a shot and a half of gin to a highball glass, fill with tonic water and finish with either a wedge of lime or some cucumber.
CALORIE COUNT: 120
4. Vanilla Vodka and Ginger Ale
WHAT’S IN IT: Ginger ale is a common hangover remedy, so that part can’t hurt, while vodka has the lowest calorie content of all spirits, and your final ingredient is just a touch of vanilla liqueur.
HOW TO MIX IT: Pour a shot and a half of vodka and one shot of vanilla liqueur into a highball glass, or if you’re feeling fancy, shake the ingredients together with crushed ice and pour into a martini glass.
CALORIE COUNT: 100
5. Tequila and soda
WHAT’S IN IT: So you love your margaritas but you love your waist more? Then ditch sugar-laden cocktails and choose a tequila and soda on the rocks; add a slice of lime, and you can still enjoy a taste of Mexico.
HOW TO MIX IT: Go for a high quality silver tequila, adding a shot to a glass over ice. Fill to the brim with soda water, and decorate with a twist of lime.
CALORIE COUNT: 100
WHAT’S IN IT: It’s easy to see why it was a favourite of Carrie and co on Sex and the City for all those years… the vodka-based cocktail is infused with triple sec and orange – and still doesn’t reach triple digits.
HOW TO MIX IT: A shot of vodka plus half a shot of triple sec, a dash of cranberry juice plus a good twist of orange peel is all you need to make this oldie-but-oh-such-a-goodie.
CALORIE COUNT: 99
WHAT’S IN IT: A regular glass of wine totals at 100 calories, and given the size of wine glasses these days, no one is sinking an average measure. Our tip? Opt for champagne for a 15 calorie discount, and get an endorphin hit from the bubbles while you’re at it.
HOW TO MIX IT: This one’s simple – pour it in your glass, and then pour it down your neck.
CALORIE COUNT: 85
by Robert O’Connor