As the trees, lights and festive decorations go up, the UK’s Christmas party season is in full swing. And what better way is there to celebrate than indulge in good food and a glass of something special?
New research by Diageo reveals that people are looking for more information on what’s in their drinks, including alcohol, calorie and sugar content. A staggering 84% of people admitted they don’t understand how many calories are in their favourite drinks.
Nutritionist Amanda Ursell says: “Alcohol is part of so many festive celebrations but just like food, it’s much better to go easy and pace yourself. If you get into good habits now, you’re likely to carry these into 2017 without having to give up everything you enjoy. Try lower calorie cocktails when you’re out, make one unit drinks for mid-week enjoyment and whip up alcohol-free cocktails to impress your guests who are driving.”
To help consumers make more informed choices, Diageo relaunched the Drink IQ website earlier in 2016, which now offers browsers a breakdown of calories, carbohydrates and protein in all Diageo’s drinks, plus information on levels of saturated fat, sugar, caffeine, and sodium.
Here are five low calories cocktail recipes:
Tall Coconut (Approx 116 Calories)
- 25ml Smirnoff No. 21 vodka
- 2tbsp blueberries
- 5ml agave nectar
- 150ml coconut water
Method: Muddle blueberries in a glass. Press down with a muddler on 2 teaspoons of blueberries in the bottom of a highball glass to extract the juice and flavour. Add the Smirnoff No.21 vodka and agave nectar. Using a jigger, measure 25ml Smirnoff No. 21 vodka and 5ml agave nectar into the glass. Add crushed ice and stir with a bar spoon. Top up the glass with 150ml coconut water. Garnish with blueberries.
Spiced Pina-Coco (Approx. 150 calories)
- 25ml Captain Morgan Spiced (approx. 48 calories)
- 25ml Cîroc coconut (approx. 53 calories)
- 50ml orange juice (approx. 24 calories)
- 50ml pineapple juice (approx. 25 calories)
- Orange wheel for garnish
Method: Shake all the ingredients with cubed ice, fine strain into a martini glass, garnish and serve.
Ginger G&T (Approx. 126 calories)
- 50ml Gordon’s gin (approx. 104 calories)
- 2 discs (£2 coin sized) fresh ginger, (approx. 19 calories (based on ¼ cup))
- 150ml slimline tonic (approx. 3 calories)
- Slice of fresh ginger to garnish
Method: Muddle the ginger in the base of a mixing glass, add the gin, fill with ice and shake. Fine strain into a highball glass full with cubed ice, top with slimline tonic, stir to mix, garnish and serve.
Zing-berry-tini (Approx. 134 calories)
- 50ml Smirnoff Blueberry (approx. 124 calories)
- 25ml fresh lime juice (approx. 6.34 calories)
- 2 sachets Canderel sweetener (approx. 2.8 calories)
- 50ml soda water (0 calories)
- 1 lemon twist to garnish
Method: Add the Smirnoff Blueberry, lemon juice and Canderel to a cocktail shaker and stir briefly without ice to dissolve sweetener. Fill the shaker with cubed ice and shake to mix, chill and dilute. Fine strain into a martini glass, add 50ml of soda to the glass, garnish and serve.
Gordon’s Apple Trim (Approx. 139 calories)
- 35ml Gordon’s gin (approx. 72 calories)
- 45ml pressed Apple juice (approx. 20 calories)
- 105ml soda water (0 calories)
- 15ml elderflower cordial (approx. 45 calories)
- 6 fresh mint leaves (approx. 2 calories)
- Mint sprig for garnish
Method: Slap the mint leaves and add to the base of a highball glass. Half fill the glass with crushed ice, add the remaining ingredients, stir to mix, cap with more crushed ice to completely fill the glass, garnish with a mint sprig and serve.