Make It a Mocktail: 4 Summer Drinks You Need to Try

While I certainly love a delicious cocktail or a crisp, cold IPA, there’s no hiding the fact that alcohol has negative effects on your mind and body (it’s a poison after all), not to mention it is a major budget buster! You guys LOVED Marissa’s Kitchen Cocktails guest blog, so The Frugal Foodies brought back this bartender extraordinaire again with a fresh list of 4 stellar mocktails that are easy, affordable, and oh so tasty.


I don’t know about you, but I’m definitely not feeling 22 anymore (you feel me T-Swift?),
and neither is my alcohol tolerance. Between the ongoing quarantine, the abhorrent
shootings and some white privilege self-realizations, plus the fact that I’m uprooting my life
across the country in less than a month, adding booze into the emotional puddle that is my
existence seemed unwise.

It had become tradition in the Graham household to enjoy a drink around 4:00pm. The chimes
on the porch door would ring and I knew the ritual was beginning. We all have ways to wind
down, de-stress, and temporarily take our mind off the chaos. By no means were we
indulging heavily, but a glass of rosé or two (or a kitchen cocktail ) became a part of the
everyday routine.

But when a habit involves actual poison- in a study, researchers scored 20 drugs on harm &
alcohol reigned supreme, just above heroin- you may not recognize the immediate effect it
can have. No matter how often or how much you drink, research has shown that even one
drinking session can affect our serotonin levels.

Just a little more science, I promise…

& we know enough about the effects of alcohol on the body to understand we don’t just
“feel” better when we don’t drink. There are physiological changes that can happen when
we abstain from alcohol including:

  • lower triglyceride levels, which are the primary storage form of fat in the body
  • weight loss
  • lower blood pressure
  • less disruption in REM cycle meaning better & deeper sleep
  • & higher libido
    Anecdotally, both my parents and myself have experienced more restful sleep after just two
    weeks of not drinking. Although my feelings are a hot mess, I feel more regulated in my
    emotions and sharper overall. Also, skin is G L O W I N G (come through, $0 skin care)!

Okay, on to the good stuff…

When people at the music venue I worked at would ask me, during the busiest time of the
night, to make them “something non-alcoholic…. yaknow cause I don’t drink… something
YOU like…like mmmm a mocktail!” I would begrudgingly mix two fruit juices over ice & call
it a day. Fruit juice mocktails should barely be considered a beverage, and in a world where
less people are drinking, trendy mocktails have become king. Below are four drinks (and a
bonus!) you can create easily at home, on a budget, sans hangover.

Pro Tip: If you are out (whenever we’re allowed to go back out) & don’t feel like drinking,
take a glance at the cocktail list and see if they will make you one without the booze.
Chances are it’ll be cheaper than the listed cocktail price, and you won’t get an orange-
cranberry elixir.

Bar Tools:

For a full list of bar tool alternatives, check out the kitchen cocktails post. One tool that you will
need for a few of these recipes is a muddler.

Wtf is muddling? When you see drinks with little pieces of fruit or herbs in it, chances are the
bartender used a muddler. This simply means pressing the ingredients against the side of
the glass to release its juices and flavors. Typically this is done with a small amount of liquid
(simple syrup, lime juice) to ease the muddling and mix flavors. If you don’t have a muddler,
use a thick wooden spoon or meat pounder as an alternative.

1.Cool AF Cumber


Cucumber- handful, diced
1 oz (2 TBSP) honey syrup (or simple syrup)
1.5 oz (3 TBSP) lemon juice (about 1 large lemon juiced)
Seltzer, to top
Optional: elderflower lemon soda or make it boozy: St Germaine or alternative elderflower

For honey syrup: mix 1:1 honey and water in a small saucepan on medium-high until all of
the honey is dissolved.
Add cucumber & 1/2 oz  honey syrup & muddle. Add ice, honey syrup, lemon juice. Shake
and pour into glass- do not strain. Add fresh ice and top with seltzer. Garnish with cucumber

2.Honey, I Shrunk the Celery


3 stalks celery, halved
2 tbsp honey
2 oz lime juice (about 2-3 limes)
1/3 cup water
mint, 10-12 pieces
Ice, handful
Optional: 3-5 pieces ginger or make it boozy: vodka or gin

Add all ingredients to blender and blend until smooth. Strain with a mesh strainer at least
two times. You can add a little water to help get more of the liquid out and squeeze what’s
left in the strainer. Garnish with mint. Can be served up or on the rocks.

3.Violet, You’re Turning Violet!

2 oz (1/4 C) Blueberry syrup 
1.5 oz (3 TBSP) lemon juice (about 1 large lemon juiced)
Water, to top
Make it boozy: vodka, tequila, or whiskey

For blueberry syrup: Grab a handful of blueberries (I used frozen), ¼ C sugar, and ¼ C
water. Add all ingredients to saucepan and bring to a boil. Let simmer on medium for about
15 minutes. Strain.
Frugal tip: Use your shriveled blueberries on top of oatmeal, or make some blueberry

Add ice, blueberry syrup, lemon juice, and then water to glass. Gently stir. Garnish with
lemon slice.

4.Cham-On, Chamomile?

2 oz (1/4C) chilled chamomile tea
1.5 oz (3 TBSP) lemon juice (about 1 large lemon juiced)
2 strawberries, diced
1.5 oz (3 TBSP) honey syrup

Add dice strawberries and ½ oz honey syrup & muddle. Add all ingredients and ice and
shake vigorously. Pour in to glass- do not strain. Add fresh ice and garnish with strawberry.

BONUS * The Quaran-green-I from the kitchen cocktails blog is one of my favorite things.
Swap out the vodka for water and see what you think!

There you have it! Four mocktails that taste so great you won’t even miss the alcohol! Keep checking back for more of Marisa’s expertly crafted creations!

2 Comments Add yours

  1. replacing the alcohol right now could be a very good idea


  2. CARAMEL says:

    Love your mocktail recipes.

    Would you like to take part in THE GREAT BLOGGERS’ BAKE-OFF 2020 SUMMER PICNINC?:

    CaraMEL ❤


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