Low Calorie Summer Drinks!

It’s Friday night and you’re about to go out with friends. What’s the first drink you order? Maybe it’s one of those huge margaritas. Maybe it’s a beer or a glass of wine, the first of many. Or maybe you even decide to share one of those obnoxiously large Fish Bowls. But did you ever stop to think about the number of calories in these drinks? Maybe you don’t really want to.

While consuming alcoholic drinks isn’t necessarily healthy, everyone wants to let loose once in a while and indulge in a few drinks. But after working hard to get a toned summer body, you don’t want to ruin your hard work with high amounts of empty calories, especially the ones hidden in alcoholic drinks.

Drinks usually don’t come with nutritional information when you buy them, and when you realize exactly how many calories are in your favorite drinks, it can ruin the fun. Luckily you can opt for lower-calorie choices at bars, and by making drinks at home, managing the ingredients that go into them.

Here are 10 low calorie summer drinks you can order almost anywhere, or even make at home, recipes included!

Spicy Pepper Martini

1. Spicy Pepper Vodka Martini
If you want a Dirty Martini, try going for a Spicy Pepper Vodka Martini instead. The combination flavor of vodka and pepper doesn’t sacrifice the savory flavor, and it will save you the calories and the sodium of a dirty martini, that could leave you feeling thirsty and bloated the next morning.

At home recipe: (Serves 4)
12 oz. Pepper Vodka (Absolut Peppar is recommended)
1.5 oz. dry vermouth
Crushed Ice
1 fresh jalapeño, stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced
Substitute: pickled jalapeño pepper slices

Pour the vodka, vermouth and crushed ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake well, and then strain into 4 tall martini glasses. Garnish with thin jalapeno slices and serve.

250 Calories per serving

Recipe adapted from: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/spicy-pepper-vodka-martini-recipe.html

Revitalize Cocktail

2. Revitalize Cocktail
If you want a Mojito, try going for a Revitalize Cocktail instead. Mojitos are almost always served with sugar, and especially at bars, are typically served with more sugar than necessary.

At home recipe: (serves 4)
4 oz. Vodka
8 chunks of cucumber
2 oz. honey
2 oz. lime juice
8 oz. cold green tea
Crushed Ice

Combine the vodka, cucumbers, honey, lime juice and green tea in a shaker. Shake, pour over ice and garnish with a lime twist.

120 Calories per serving

Recipe Adapted from: http://www.oprah.com/health/The-Best-Drinks-for-Dieters-Low-Calorie-Cocktails/4

Tequila Shot

3. Tequila on the Rocks, club soda, and lime
If you want a Margarita, try simply going for a shot of high end tequila over ice with lime. The biggest issue when it comes to calories facing Margaritas is the non-standardized size of them. The bigger the Margarita, the more alcohol, and the more calories. Skip the margarita all together and just order a shot of high-end tequila on the rocks, with a splash of club soda and an extra lime.

100 Calories per serving

Coke Rum

4. Rum & Diet Coke
If you want Rum & Coke, opt for Rum & Diet Coke. Not only will the diet soda save you the calories, but ditching the sugar in combination with the rum will save you from a worse hangover the next day.

At home recipe: (Serves 1)
1.5 oz. Rum (Captain Morgan recommended)
6 oz. Diet Coke

Simply combine ingredients.

100 Calories per serving

Sea Breeze

5. Sea Breeze
If you want a Vodka Cranberry, try a Sea Breeze instead. This drink will save you almost 200 calories and loads of sugar, preventing a very preventable hangover.

At home recipe: (serves 1)
4 oz. grapefruit juice
1.5 oz. cranberry juice
1 oz. vodka

Directions: Combine ingredients in a shaker and shake well.

145 calories per serving

Ginger Ale

>6. Vanilla Vodka & Diet Ginger Ale
Looking for something that tastes like cake, but doesn’t have the same amount of calories? Try a Vanilla Vodka and Diet Ginger Ale. This simple and low-calorie combination will satisfy a sweet craving and a tight budget.

At home Recipe: (serves 1)
1.5 oz. Vanilla Vodka
6 oz. Diet Ginger Ale

Combine Ingredients

100 Calories per serving

Apple Martini

7. Sour Apple Martini
Luckily, not all martinis are heavy on the calories. Try a Sour Apple Martini for something sour and fruity to sip on.

At home recipe: (serves 1)
.75 oz. Vodka
.75 oz. Sour Apple Liqueur
2.5 oz. Sour Mix

Directions: Combine ingredients.

160 Calories per serving

Gn Tonic

8. Gin & Tonic
This classic drink is so classic that it probably needs no further explanation. Luckily it’s a very common drink thats lower in calories too, so ordering this drink while out is highly encouraged.

At home recipe: (serves 1)
1 oz. Gin
3 oz. Tonic

Directions: Combine ingredients.

103 calories per serving

Bloody Mary

9. Bloody Mary
Besides having a reputation as the ultimate hangover cure, this popular drink is relatively low on calories. Try this recipe, which includes mostly common household ingredients for a low-calorie morning, afternoon, or evening drink.

6 oz. Tomato Juice
1.5 oz. vodka
1 tsp. lemon juice
3 drops Worcestershire sauce
3 drops of Tabasco sauce
1 pinch celery salt

150 calories per serving


10. Champagne
Besides being another example of a classic drink, champagne is perfect for any summer night because it is refreshing and low-calorie. A 4 oz. serving of champagne has roughly 90 calories, so sipping on this simple beverage for a night will definitely keep your waistline in check.

90 calories per serving


Lauren Cassis

Lauren Cassis

Lauren Cassis is a 4th year Communication Major at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her love for health and fitness began when she earned her black belt in Taekwondo and went on to become a competitive cheerleader and cross country runner in high school. In her free time she likes running, painting and playing with dogs. Sheis currently an assistant manager for UCSB Arts & Lectures and a member of Gamma Phi Beta.
Lauren Cassis
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