17 Healthy and Festive Holiday DrinksArticle posted in: Diet & Nutrition
The celebration season brings us so many treats that staying on track with a healthy eating plan can be challenging. Among the hardest temptations to resist are the cool cocktails and hot drinks that make our spirits bright, but often are loaded with excess calories and sugar.
Now here’s a little gift you can give yourself. These 17 fun and flavorful beverages let you enjoy the tastes of the season and still shed excess pounds. They include traditional favorites made with healthy ingredients and fresh new options that you and your guests are sure to love. While they’re perfect for parties and other special events, you can enjoy them whenever you want to make your day a little more festive.
Try these healthy holiday drink recipes this season!:
You don’t have to like coffee to enjoy the frothy fun of a latte. You can start instead with a base of Earl Grey tea, the variety that has a light, citrusy taste to go with its full-flavored black tea leaves. Mixing in oat milk, honey and vanilla extract enhances the taste and thickens the consistency of this Early Grey Latte recipe. The foam topping turns your everyday cup of tea into a specialty drink that’s full of flavor yet low in calories.
We’ve made the classic holiday drink better for everyone. Whether you’re losing weight, avoiding dairy products, or just want eggnog that is perfectly sweet and creamy, this Dairy Free Almond Milk Eggnog recipe makes it easy for you to indulge. The eggs and almond milk provide protein to fuel you up, while honey, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg bring that authentic flavor. Make it a day before you want to serve it and it will have the just the right consistency.
Any gathering becomes extra-special when you serve fizzy Sparkling Pomegranate Holiday Punch recipe. It features pomegranate, the bright-red fruit that’s packed with nutrients. All you do is fill the punch bowl with the simple ingredients and serve. Watch as guests enjoy sipping a party drink that’s alcohol-free yet full of flavor.
We’re often told to be wary of anything that’s too good to be true, yet we’re here to say you can warm yourself with extra-rich hot chocolate while you’re watching your calories. This Peppermint White Hot Chocolate recipe starts with high-protein skim milk that gets creamier when you add the fat-free whipped topping. Blend in real white chocolate and peppermint extract for a perfect holiday combination that seems indulgent but is balanced just right for you.
When brunch is part of your celebration, make it even more festive by serving refreshing, citrusy holiday drinks that are easy to whip up. This Grapefruit Mock-Mosa mocktail recipe features the tart and tangy flavors of grapefruit, orange and lime juice sweetened with real honey. Pour in a splash of sparkling water to make it delightfully bubbly without adding extra calories. You can prepare this ahead of time so it’s ready to go when guests arrive.
Warm Mulled Cran-Apple Cider is a bit like sipping on a fresh apple pie but without all the calories and sugar. We like to give this holiday drink a boost of flavor and a dash of color by blending cranberry juice in with the apple juice. Orange slices sweeten the mix and cinnamon sticks bring the zing. As the cider warms on your stove, your home fills with the pleasing aromas of the season.
If you like to sip an elegant cocktail as you mingle but don’t want to be weighed down by the extra calories you get with alcohol, whip up a pitcher of this simple Cran-Raz Spritzer Mocktail. Start with cranberry cocktail juice and add lime juice and seltzer water to make a blend that has a lovely pink color with a taste that is tart and lightly sweet. Frozen raspberries keep it cool and serve as a sweet little garnish.
You don’t have to wait for a snowy day to whip up a batch of hot chocolate that you and your family will love. This Healthy Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate recipe is made with non-fat milk and fat-free whipped topping, so it’s low in calories but still has the creaminess you want. Cocoa powder gives it real chocolate flavor while sugar-free caramel sauce and a pinch of sea salt finish it with a flourish.
Mocktails let you join in the party fun and stay on track to your weight loss goal. Real apples give this cool Booze-Free Appletini recipe a rich flavor and color. A few squirts of lemon juice keep it tasting fresh and a garnish of apple slice ties it all together. Be sure to make extra for anyone else who wants to skip the alcohol.
If you prefer your mocktails savory rather than sweet, try our version of the classic Bloody Mary. The low-sodium vegetable or tomato juice base is sparked with the zesty flavors of Worcestershire sauce, horseradish and hot sauce. Make it as spicy or mild as you like it. You know what’s even better? Drinking this Skinny Bloody Mary Mocktail recipe also gives you one of your daily servings of non-starchy vegetables.
Lattes pair the pleasantly bitter flavor of coffee with the creamy contrast of warm milk and foam. Making holiday drinks and lattes looks complicated at coffee shops, but this Sweet Cinnamon Latte recipe shows how simple it is to prepare in your own kitchen, with no special equipment needed. To keep the calories down, use fat-free milk and Truvia. Top with a sprinkle of cinnamon and you’re ready to sip.
You can enjoy the tastes of the season and fuel up on protein at the same time. Start with Nutrisystem Chocolate Protein Shake Mix. If you love the taste of mocha, add coffee instead of water to the mix. Turn up the flavor with cocoa powder and peppermint extract. To make this Chocolate Peppermint Protein Shake recipe even more festive, finish with low-fat whipped topping and a garnish of crushed candy canes.
Your whole body will feel cozy when you sip this flavorful holiday drink. It’s made with your favorite hot tea and gets a lift with warming spices such as cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg, along with a bit of sweet honey and tart lemon juice. Without the standard whiskey, this Hot Toddy Mocktail recipe is so low in calories you can have it any day you want to take the chill off.
The fermented tea known as kombucha is popular because contains probiotics. It also can be the foundation for delicious holiday drinks. You can find lots of kombucha varieties in stores these days. We use zero sugar ginger lemonade kombucha to make this refreshing Pomegranate Ginger Kombucha. We flavor it with pomegranate juice for a lightly tart and sweet taste. Garnish with a few pomegranate seeds and fresh mint leaves and it will be as beautiful as it is healthful.
Chocolate and coconut are the complementary tastes in a classic candy bar. They come together is this variation on the traditional hot drink. It starts with vanilla-flavored coconut milk, found in the dairy cases of most supermarkets these days. Toasted coconut and coconut-based whipped topping pile on the flavor. Cocoa powder and a few drops of potent almond extract complete the combination. This Healthy Almond Joy Hot Chocolate recipe is so good, it will chase away your cravings for a candy bar.
Turn the classic holiday drink into a high-protein snack that will keep you on track with your weight loss even during the indulgence season. All you need to do is blend Nutrisystem Vanilla Protein Shake Mix with light or low-fat eggnog and your choice of unsweetened vanilla non-dairy milk. Choose from oat, almond, cashew or soy milk. Spice it up with cinnamon and nutmeg and add flavorful but alcohol-free rum extract. This Vanilla Eggnog Protein Shake recipe tastes so authentic, it might become one of the favorite holiday drinks among your family and guests.
The specialty holiday drinks that coffee shops feature around the holiday season seem appealing, until you find out that they contain tons of calories and sugar. With this version, you get the same satisfying blend of mint, chocolate and coffee flavors you love. However, it’s made with healthy ingredients such almond milk, cocoa powder and peppermint extract. Bonus: making this Skinny Peppermint Mocha Cold Brew recipe yourself instead of driving to the coffee shop saves you money and time.