Cooking on a Budget: Soda Floats and other Summer Drinks

Cooking on a Budget: Soda Floats and other Summer Drinks

There are two things that I love about summer: cooking on the grill and entertaining guests. And my guests know that I don’t hold back when it comes to the libations! Happy hour is a time to unwind, laugh, and just enjoy a warm summer evening outdoors. Inviting guests into your home is the best way to strengthen relationships. This summer throw a great happy hour with friends and enjoy some of these easy recipes that I’ve gathered below. And be sure to check out the soda floats – I know that not everyone wants an alcoholic beverage but that doesn’t mean that they can’t have a great experience at your backyard soiree!

Light and Sweet Summer Cocktail

Want to enjoy a drink without taking in a boatload of calories? Start off with an 80 proof version of liquor such as vodka, tequila, or rum. These are usually around 97 calories per 1.5 oz serving (a standard shot glass). But instead of using soda, tonic water, punch, or pre-made mixer (which are all packed with sugar) try using seltzer combined with either fresh fruit juice, a few pieces of mint, or a twist of lime. By making this slight adjustment you can cut down your caloric intake more than 60% per drink!

Gin and Juice Thyme

750 ml bottle of gin

2 cups Aperol

2 cups sweet white verouth

2/3 cups lemon juice

1/2 cup chilled grapefruit soda

Combine ingredients, garnish with thyme and an orange peel and serve over ice! Serves 10-12.

Green Tea Sangria

1 bottle of white wine

1.5 cups green tea

.5 cup sugar

.5 cup lime juice

melon slices

lime slices

Stir all ingredients excluding the fruit until the sugar dissolves. Add melon slices and chill. When serving garnish with a slice of lime.

Soda FloatsSoda Floats

Two summer favorites together! The great thing about floats is there are a ton of combinations. Feel free to mix it up. Gelatos, sherbets, and sorbets are all great substitutes for ice cream. The secret to great floats? Keep everything as cold as possible. Use chilled glasses and cold soda. This will help your floats stand up to those brutal summer days!

Grape Raspberry – Add a few scoops of raspberry sorbet to a glass and top with grape soda.

Lime Strawberry – For this one try lime sherbet and strawberry soda. Salt the rim of the glass if so desired.

Caramel Green Apple – If you can find it combine green apple soda and dulce de leche ice cream. Add a caramel drizzle for a float that will rival any other!


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