Nonalcoholic drinks perfect for the cold winter months

Book cover for "Mocktails: Nonalcoholic Cocktails with Taste and Style" by Caroline HwangWhether you’re on the wagon after a perhaps overly festive New Year’s Eve celebration, or simply want some delicious and creative alternatives to alcoholic libations, the beautifully designed and visually delightful cookbook, Mocktails, by Caroline Hwang, published by Welden Owen with photography by Beatriz da Costa, offers plenty of options to wet your whistle this winter season. 

From classic cocktails, like mojitos and gimlets, to inventive concoctions, such as a hibiscus lime slush or a strawberry rhubarb punch, the alcohol-free drinks featured in Mocktails are fun, delicious, inventive and just as well-thought-out as any alcohol-based mixed drink. Many are prepared with a foundation of an easy-to-make infused simple syrup (recipes included) and flavorful ingredients, and use the same bartending equipment used for mixing cocktails: a blender, shaker or ice strainer. 

Although the book features 80 mocktail beverages for all seasons, we offer here a sampling of comforting and cozy warm recipes perfect for sipping by a fire or serving at a winter gathering. Each recipe serves one, so multiply the ingredients depending on the number of people you’re serving.

Maple Apple Cider Mocktail, recipe courtesy of Caroline Hwang, photo by Beatriz da Costa.Maple Apple Cider

For the simple syrup

  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • 6 pieces of apple peels 
  • 1½-inch piece of ginger, peeled and chopped

Heat sugar and water in a pan, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add apple peel and ginger and simmer for 30 minutes, then strain and let cool.

For the drink

  • 6 fl. oz. (¾ cup) apple cider or apple juice
  • ½ fl. oz. (1 tablespoon) apple and ginger simple syrup
  • ½ fl. oz. (1 tablespoon) maple syrup
  • 2 cinnamon sticks

Combine all the ingredients, except for the cinnamon sticks, in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve hot in a mug, garnished with the cinnamon sticks.

Turmeric, Apple & Ginger Chai Mocktail, recipe courtesy of Caroline Hwang, photo by Beatriz da Costa.Turmeric, Apple & Ginger Chai

Ingredients

  • 2 fl. oz. (¼ cup) milk
  • 8 fl. oz. (1 cup) water
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 chai tea bag
  • ½ ounce dried apple, plus more for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon dried ginger
  • 1-inch piece of fresh turmeric root
  • cinnamon stick for garnish

Place tea bag, water, apples, turmeric and ginger in a small pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove tea bag. Add sugar and milk and whisk until sugar dissolves. Strain into a mug or heatproof glass and garnish with cinnamon stick and dried apple. 

Coconut Bullet Coffee - recipe courtesy of Caroline Hwang, photo by Beatriz da Costa.Coconut Bullet Coffee

Ingredients

  • 8 fl. oz. (1 cup) dark-roasted, strong hot coffee (keep hot)
  • 1 teaspoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk

Place all the ingredients in a blender and whizz at high speed until frothy. Pour into a mug or heatproof glass and serve.

Hot Buttered Yum Mocktail, recipe courtesy of Caroline Hwang, photo by Beatriz da Costa.Hot Buttered Yum

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1½ cups vanilla (or gingersnap) ice cream, slightly softened
  • boiling water
  • cinnamon stick and star anise for garnish

To make the batter, mix butter, sugars and spices thoroughly in a bowl. Stir in ice cream and mix until well combined. Transfer batter to a container with a tight-fitting lid and store in the freezer for up to 2 weeks. To serve the hot buttered yum, place a portion of the batter in a mug or heatproof glass, fill with boiling water and stir. Garnish with a cinnamon stick and star anise.

Persimmon Cinnamon Tea Mocktail, recipe courtesy of Caroline Hwang, photo by Beatriz da Costa.Persimmon Cinnamon Tea

Ingredients

  • 7 fl. oz. (⅞ cup) water
  • 1-2 tablespoons brown sugar (depending on how sweet you want it to be)
  • 2 pieces dried persimmon
  • ½-inch piece of ginger
  • 1 cinnamon stick for garnish

In a small pan, combine 1 piece dried persimmon with the remaining ingredients, except for the cinnamon stick, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Pour into a mug or heatproof glass and serve with remaining piece of dried persimmon and the cinnamon stick.

Mulled Winter Punch Mocktail, recipe courtesy of Caroline Hwang, photo by Beatriz da Costa.Mulled Winter Punch

Ingredients

  • 3 whole cloves
  • 2 fl. oz. (¼ cup) pomegranate juice
  • 6 fl. oz. (¾ cup) blackcurrant juice
  • 2 blackberries
  • ½ oz. dried orange slices, plus more for garnish
  • cinnamon stick for garnish

Combine all the ingredients, except for cinnamon stick and dried orange slices, in a small pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Strain into a mug or heatproof glass and garnish with cinnamon stick and dried orange slices. 

Recipes by: Caroline Hwang, Photography by: Beatriz da Costa


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