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8 Zero-Proof Cocktails I Love Making When I Don't Feel Like Drinking Alcohol (But Still Want The General Vibe)

Whether you're cutting back on alcohol, don't drink at all, or just want to sip on something new and delicious, I definitely recommend these.

I'm Hannah, and I really enjoy both making and drinking cocktails. But during quarantine, I discovered something new to me: the beauty of the mocktail.

Snacks and cocktails set up at a cocktail making class.
Hannah Loewentheil/BuzzFeed

I drink alcohol, but every now and then I want to indulge in drinking something delicious without feeling the effects of booze.

Despite the somewhat cliché name, mocktails — or zero-proof cocktails — are so much fun. They taste amazing, they're a step above basic non-alcoholic drinks (like water or soda), and they're a creative exercise in crafting a delicious drink using whatever's in your kitchen.

Me drinking a mocktail made with ginger kombucha, lime juice, and Seedlip
Hannah Loewentheil/BuzzFeed

And people drink them for a lot of reasons. Maybe they're cutting back on drinking (or in recovery). Maybe they're pregnant but still want to sip on something delicious. Maybe they're on a medication that they can't mix with alcohol. You get the idea.

Before we get into the booze-free concoctions, here are a few pointers:

Without further ado, here are a few mocktails I've been making on repeat so you can try them at home too!

@inagarten

1. Coconut Pineapple Cooler

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Think of this mocktail as an easy, lighter, non-alcoholic piña colada. Rather than whip up a frozen drink, this version calls for pineapple juice, lime juice, and coconut water. It's refreshing and comes together in two minutes.

What you'll need: 4 ounces coconut water, 4 ounces pineapple juice, juice from a whole lime, sparkling water to taste.

How to make it: Combine all the ingredients other than the sparkling water into a shaker. Shake with ice and strain into a glass. Top with sparkling water.

Mocktail tip: You can easily make a frozen version of this drink. Just add the ingredients into a blender with ice and pulse. Or to make it even more delicious, add some frozen pineapple and/or coconut chunks.

2. Spicy Margarita

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Instead of tequila and orange liqueur, this zero-proof spicy marg calls for non-alcoholic tequila and orange juice. You could always change the flavor by swapping in your favorite fruit juice like mango or pineapple.

What you'll need: 2 ounces Seedlip Spice, 1 ounce orange juice, juice from a whole lime, 1/2 ounce spicy/hot honey.

How to make it: Combine all of the ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake and strain over ice. Garnish with sliced serano or jalapeño pepper.

Mocktail tip: I love using spicy honey like this Bee's Knees version in my margaritas instead of simple syrup because it serves the dual purpose of adding sweetness and spice. Of course, if you don't have hot honey, just shake your drink with agave or simple syrup and some sliced jalapeño.

3. Kombucha Mule

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Moscow Mules are usually made with vodka, ginger beer, and lime juice. This uses Seedlip Spice in place of the vodka, and kombucha gives it a nice kick.

What you'll need: 2 ounces Seedlip Spice, 6 ounces Gingerade kombucha, 2 ounces ginger beer, 1-2 mint leaves, juice from one lime, lime-flavored seltzer (optional).

How to make it: Squeeze the lime juice into a glass. Pour in the Seedlip Spice and top with Gingerade kombucha, ginger beer, and lime-flavored seltzer (if using). Garnish with fresh mint. Serve in a copper mug unless (like me) you don't have one.

Mocktail tip: If you don't have a non-alcoholic vodka, just make this mocktail without it! The mix of ginger kombucha, spicy ginger beer, and lime juice is delicious without it.

4. Faux-Groni

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I love Negronis, which are typically made with Campari, gin, and sweet vermouth. Here, we replace those three ingredients with stand-in non-alcoholic beverages.

What you'll need: 2 ounces Lyre's Apértif Rosso, 2 ounces Lyre's Italian Orange, 2 ounces Seedlip Herbal

How to make it: Combine all ingredients in a glass and stir with ice. Strain into a glass filled with ice and garnish with an orange peel.

Mocktail tip: Unless you are completely avoiding alcohol, try adding just a few dashes of orange bitters. It's a great way to add complexity to this mocktail and achieve something more similar to the taste of Campari.

5. Cosnopolitan

A booze-free Cosmopolitan garnished with a cucumber.
Hannah Loewentheil/BuzzFeed

Typically made with vodka, cranberry juice, lime juice, and simple syrup, this booze-free cosmopolitan calls for your favorite alcohol-free spirit (like Seedlip Grove).

What you'll need: 2 ounces Seedlip Grove (or another non-alcoholic spirit), 1 ounce cranberry juice, 1/2 ounce lime juice, 1/2 ounce simple syrup.

How to make it: Add all of the ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a glass. Garnish with whatever you have on hand, like an orange peel, or in my case, a cucumber!

Mocktail tip: This recipe calls for simple syrup, but you can easily do without it. Just add a little extra cranberry juice or a squeeze of agave/honey until the mocktail is sweet enough for your liking. If you don't have a non-alcoholic vodka substitute, just try finishing off your drink with club soda instead.

Recipe: Cosnopolitan

6. Zero-Proof Cucumber Basil Gimlet

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A gimlet is usually made with gin, but this non-alcoholic version still captures all the right herbal notes.

What you'll need: A few thin slices of English cucumber, 4 basil leaves, juice of one lime, 1 tablespoon simple syrup, seltzer, or club soda.

How to make it: Gently smash the cucumber and the basil with a muddler or the back of a wooden spoon. Add all other ingredients except for the club soda to a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a glass. Top with seltzer. Garnish with sliced cucumber and fresh basil.

Mocktail tip: A splash of your favorite green juice gives this drink even more flavor plus an herbaceous kick. Again, if you don't want to go through the effort of making simple syrup, just add honey or agave to your shaker.

Recipe: Zero-Proof Cucumber Basil Gimlet

7. Sour Blossom

An orange sour blossom cocktail in a coupe.
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Sweet, tangy, herbal, and rich all at the same time, this mocktail gets tons of flavor from cider vinegar and lemongrass.

What you'll need: 2 ounces Seedlip Grove, juice from half a lemon, 1 tsp cider vinegar, 1 lemongrass stalk, 1 tbsp simple syrup, 1 egg white.

How to make it: Discard the egg yolk and use only the white. Add all the ingredients other than the egg white into a shaker and shake with ice. Add the egg white and shake again. Strain into a glass.

Mocktail tip: Sometimes I love a drink with a foamy top from an egg white, but other times I just don't feel like adding it. This mocktail is delicious either way. If you don't use the egg white, I'd suggest adding a small amount of club soda on top.

Recipe: Sour Blossom

8. Zero-Proof Elderflower Collins

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A friend of mine first introduced me to an alcoholic version of this mocktail, which he called the Beluga Collins. The key ingredient is elderflower liqueur, so I use Monin elderflower syrup as a delicious booze-free substitute.

What you'll need: 2 ounces Seedlip Citrus, juice from a whole lemon, 1 ounce Monin Elderflower syrup, sparkling water to taste.

How to make it: Combine all ingredients other than the sparkling water into a shaker. Shake with ice and strain into a glass. Top with sparkling water and garnish with lemon peel.

Mocktail tip: Monin is just one brand that makes delicious syrups that are perfect for cocktails, but if you look around, you'll find tons of different flavored syrups like hibiscus, rose, lavender, or fig. I'm convinced that any of these flavors would taste amazing in this drink.

Do you have a favorite mocktail recipe? Tell me in the comments below so I can try it!