A few weeks ago I had something to celebrate and cocktails were order of the day. It didn’t take long before one my friends asked ‘I wonder which cocktail has the most sugar?’. Have you ever put thought to how much you might be guzzling down on an average night out?
Whilst I will always promote a number of healthier alcoholic drinks to choose over the cocktail, I understand that sometimes only a fancy glass with bright umbrella will do. You’re by the pool on your oh so tropical holiday, it’s the last five minutes of happy hour, or you just feel like treating yourself. Fair enough. Moderation is the key to enjoying all of life’s pleasures after all, so pass me the menu please….
A little help and guidance when picking a cocktail can stop you from going head first into the sugar deep end, where there’s quite a difference between types. Being a little savvy can mean you could even have two instead of the one – in a sense that your about to cancel out the earlier swim (ok maybe more of a dip) in the pool.
Lets look at the top 3 cocktails we’ll call ‘the best’; in the sense they are the lower sugar options:
The Humble Martini
With a gin/vodka and a dry vermouth base this is hands down the best low carb, low sugar cocktail in town. Watch out for the varieties that tend to add juice, but seeing as the glass is small compared to other cocktails, the volume of added sweetness tends to be limited. Request more of a ‘splash’ and you’re Happy Sugar Habits in my eyes
A ‘Proper’ Mojito
As a popular favourite one might think these are high sugar due to the substance itself being a main ingredient. Yes they can be, but ultimately it depends on how they are mixed up. A decent Mojito should contain rum, mint, soda water, lime and a little sugar. Ask the charming barman if you can go easy on the sugar and low sugar cocktail voila! Make sure you’re not in a cheapo place that uses a premade mix – these are full of the bad stuff and should be avoided at all costs
The Bloody Mary
It might not be the sweet pretty elegant thing you’ve got in mind, but this should be considered as an option. Although tomato juice does contain sugar, this cocktail comes in low compared to something like a Sex on the Beach and gets your taste buds going just as nicely.
Looking at some of ‘the worst’ it’s not too hard to reduce the sugar content with a few requests
Long Island Iced Tea
With a base of coke, this is loaded with sugar, especially if a jug is on order. Swap for diet and you’re significantly cutting sugar with minimal effort.
Usually made with a strawberry pre mix and additional added sugar this can be super sweet, as often indicated by the bright unnatural colour. See if it can be made with fresh strawberries and no added sugar, although I can’t guarantee it will taste quite as good.
A combination of sugary creaminess from the Kahula, Baileys and other ingredients, this is not only high in sugar but it also rocks up really high in fat and calories too. Don’t try and go low sugar here, if your going to indulge, just fully enjoy it and appreciate every last sip.
Again, I do need to emphasise the severe moderation of cocktails, as these are a really sugar sin, but giving these up forever is a tad unrealistic. If you do over indulge and find yourself a little worse for wear the next day, check out Day After Munchies.
Which cocktails are your favourites? Do you consider sugar when you are browsing the menu or it is a lucky dip?