Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
30 May

Primal Mocktails

Primal

If it’s Saturday night and you want to kick back and relax without alcohol, but want something more celebratory than sparkling water, a Primal Mocktail is what you need. Primal Mocktails are non-alcoholic, low in sugar, refreshing, and fun to drink, so you don’t feel like you’re missing out when a pitcher of margaritas is passed around.

The real challenge when crafting a mocktail is keeping the sugar content in check. Look up a few recipes for non-alcoholic beverages and you’ll find a lot of fruit juice, a lot of melons and tropical fruit, and sweeteners like simple syrup and agave nectar. The three recipes below don’t rely on sugar for flavor. Instead, these Primal mocktails are made with intriguing flavor combinations, like cucumber and chamomile, ginger, cloves & lime, and fresh berries with apple cider vinegar and mint.

Because these drinks are a whole lot more than just sparkling water with a twist of lemon, they do require a little prep time. Plan ahead, so when Saturday night rolls around your drink mixers will be chilling in the fridge waiting for the party to start.

Cucumber Chamomile Cooler

Primal

Servings: 4

This mocktail is fantastic on a hot summer evening and with brunch on Sunday. The combination of cucumber and chamomile is super refreshing and sends your body into instant relaxation mode.

Ingredients:

  • 2 English cucumbers, peeled and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups chilled chamomile tea (350 ml)
  • 1 orange, cut into wedges (optional)

Instructions:

Fill a blender with the cucumbers and chamomile tea. Blend on high until the cucumber is pureed. Pour through a fine mesh strainer, pushing down on the solids to release as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids.

Serve the cucumber juice very chilled, over ice (extra points if you make another batch of chamomile tea and freeze it into ice cubes). Add a squeeze of orange if you like.

Spiced Ginger Fizz

Primal

Servings: 8 drinks

A non-alcoholic, low sugar version of a Dark ‘n’ Stormy, this recipe uses a blend of spices to imitate the sweet, spiced flavor of dark rum. The ginger brew will keep for a week in the fridge.

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz. ginger, peeled, chopped (113 g)
  • 1 tablespoon honey (15 ml)
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice (2.5 ml)
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 limes, juiced
  • Seltzer water

Instructions:

In a food processor, pulse ginger into a chunky paste. Bring ginger, honey, allspice, cloves, cinnamon stick and 3 cups water to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer 40 minutes. Strain into a glass jar. Let cool.

For each drink, mix 2 tablespoons/30 ml ginger brew with with 1 tablespoon/15 ml lime juice Serve over ice and top with seltzer water.

Tart and Tangy Berry Mocktail

Primal

Servings: 6 drinks

A simplified, lower sugar version of a “shrub” – an old-fashioned drink with a sweet and tangy infusion of fruit, vinegar and sugar. This recipe uses strawberries, but you can experiment with other berries as well.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups/10 ounces very ripe strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • ½ cup raw apple cider vinegar (120 ml)
  • 12 fresh mint leaves
  • Seltzer water

Instructions:

Combine the berries and vinegar in a shallow dish, so the berries are mostly covered with the vinegar. Squeeze and break up the berries with your hands, mashing them up and releasing juice. Cover and leave at room temperature for 24 hours, stirring and mashing with a fork once or twice.

Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer, pressing on the solids to release the liquid. Discard the solids.

Put a couple mint leaves in the bottom of a glass. Add a few slices of strawberry and use a muddler or the handle of a wooden spoon to press down gently on the berries and leaves, twisting the muddler to tear apart the leaves a little bit.

Add ice, 2 tablespoons/15 ml of the flavored vinegar and top with seltzer water.

Primal

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. Well, the timing on this could not be better.

    Thanks.

    michael wrote on May 30th, 2015
  2. In honor of this post I’m going to go drink a bottle of gin.

    . wrote on May 30th, 2015
    • The cucumber one would go great with your gin

      Jack Lea Mason wrote on May 30th, 2015
    • The omissions have been rectified, see my post below

      wildgrok wrote on May 30th, 2015
  3. I”m having some water with a little kefir in it right now. Surprisingly refreshing. Also, kombucha is a great ingredient in real cocktails and fake ones: tart and a little sweet.

    shannon stoney wrote on May 30th, 2015
  4. Somehow there is a list of missing ingredients
    For the benefit of everybody here they are:

    1. One shot of vodka
    2. Same as 1, but double for extra kick
    3. One shot of whiskey
    4. Same as 3 but double for extra kick
    5. Same as 4 with an extra one shot for the “this is what I needed kick” (AKA the Three Amigos)
    6. One shot of gin
    7. Same as 6 with 3 drops of coconut water

    wildgrok wrote on May 30th, 2015
  5. Wow–I could go for any of these right now, in this too-hot Florida weather. I usually have sparkling water with a squeeze of lemon or lime, but these are way more exciting–not to mention medicinal! Inspired to experiment…

    Dr. Dana Leigh Lyons wrote on May 30th, 2015
  6. I am SO making that ginger one!

    oxide wrote on May 30th, 2015
    • don’t forget the gin shot (the worker bee forgot to add it to the original)

      wildgrok wrote on May 30th, 2015
  7. Love the ginger one (plus the gin shot :))!

    Corina wrote on May 31st, 2015
  8. Great idea! I love not drinking alcohol. I feel so good and sleep so good. I just quit for the month of June to give my body a break. I’m trying to help my liver and gut biome.

    I had quit drinking last year for about 4 months. Then, I started having a glass of wine with dinner occassionally. That led to a a drink because I had a bad day. Now, I’m drinking every night without even thinking about it. It’s amazingly weird how easy it is to drink every day.

    These recipes sound so refreshing! Thanks Mark.

    Sheri wrote on June 1st, 2015
    • Your drinking progression rings true to me. After quitting alcohol a few times and gradually coming back to daily use, then abuse, I found that admitting to myself that I was addicted helped me quit for good. Most drinkers are not addicted, but for those of us who are, beating the addiction combined with the Primal Blueprint is a fantastically healthy combination. I’ll drink a mocktail to that!

      Rick wrote on July 1st, 2015
  9. Fantastic recipe!!
    Switching to paleo, 2 things to avoid is sugars and alcohol. But now summer is here and BBQ’s will be happening, these 3 mocktails are great for when you are with friends and you are not encourage to drink alcohol when you can have a refreshing mocktail without alcohol and without the hangover the next day.

    Not too sure if I am keen on trying the cucumber chamomile cooler.
    How long will each mocktail keep for if you made a big pitcher for each one?

    Adam Trainor wrote on June 10th, 2015

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

© 2016 Mark's Daily Apple

Subscribe to the Newsletter and Get a Free Copy
of Mark Sisson's Fitness eBook and more!