Sober Holidays and Moctails put the fun into the holiday season. One of the most difficult holidays of all, this festive time of year for us who don’t drink or for those who want to limit their intake of alcoholic beverages can be challenging. You add the omicron and delta variants surge to the mix, with headlines pummeling day and night to be cautious, mask up, and again stay six feet apart from one another, which doesn’t lighten the load.

The good news is the demand for sober mocktails at social events sans booze is becoming more and more popular. And that’s great for the 22+ million of us in recovery, because life should be fun and have lots of different, colorful options. 

According to research done by FiorMarkets, non-alcoholic drinks are expected to grow at about eight percent per year, globally, through 2028. That means there is plenty of opportunities for us to find delicious mocktails featured on restaurant menus across the states. 

Non-alcoholic mocktails can consists of revamping a classic cocktail like an Old Fashioned (minus the whiskey) or be a completely from-scratch recipe. Either way, the mocktail spurt has opened new creative doors for not only us sampling them, but for bartenders and restaurant owners all over the country.

Sober innovators like Chris Marshall who created Sans Bar* — a sober bar in Austin that is also hosting a tour of pop-up bars across the country — are meeting our needs to socialize in safe spaces where we can enjoy delicious sober mocktails.  Other sober bars include Getaway in Brooklyn and Listen Bar in New York. There is also an increasing social media presence of sober mocktail ideas as well as distributors of interesting drink options. Check out The Mocktail ProjectMocktail ClubMantras and MocktailsMingle MocktailsCurious Elixirs, and Gruvi.

So raise a glass to Sober Holidays and Mocktails with some festive, tasty drinks with us! Here are some delicious non-alcoholic options to entertain friends and loved ones!

Sober Holidays and Mocktails: Featuring The Candy Cane

Creamy, pepperminty and refreshing… The candy cane is a longtime holiday staple and makes for a great mocktail. The candy cane mocktail calls for cream soda, simple syrup, peppermint oil, and candy canes for the martini glasses. 
Use the syrup to coat the glass’s rim and add candy cane pieces. Then, you combine a cup of half-and-half with 12 oz. of cream soda, 4 tsp. of syrup, and a few drops of peppermint oil. Adjust for taste. Voila, you have a candy cane mocktail that anyone celebrating the season will love. 

Sober Holidays and Mocktails: Ginger Basil Grapefruit Mimosas

  • 1 grapefruit; plus additional grapefruit for garnish
  • 2 cups of ice 
  • 3 x 12 oz cans of ginger soda
  • handful of fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup basil simple syrup

Juice one large grapefruit and segment additional grapefruit ofr garnish if preferred. Fill a pitcher half way with ice. Pour soda, fresh grapefruit juice and simple syrup. Mix well. Garnish with grapefruit slices and fresh basil. 

BASIL SIMPLE SYRUP

  • 1  cup sugar
  • 1  cup water
  • 1 cup loosely packed fresh basil

Place sugar and water in a small pan over medium heat until sugar is fully dissolved, about 2 minutes. Add the basil. Allow to steep for 15-20 minutes and strain and discard basil. Place syrup in a glass tupperware container or squeeze bottle if you have it.

Cover and chill for a couple hours. 

Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to a month.  

You can also make simple syrup in the microwave by placing the mixture in a glass tupperware container and heating it at 30 second intervals until sugar is fully dissolved.

By Mary of Barefeet in the Kitchen

Sober Holidays and Mocktails: Non-Alcoholic Hot Buttered Rum

Recipe:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup Monk Fruit In The Raw bakers bag (or 24 packets of Monk Fruit In The Raw)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/16 teaspoon ground cloves
Boiling water
Half and half or heavy cream

Directions:
Combine the butter, sugar, Monk Fruit In The Raw, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and cloves in a mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until thoroughly combined. Use immediately, or transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use.

To make each drink, scoop 1 1/2-2 tablespoons of the buttered spice mixture into a small mug. Pour 1/4 cup of boiling hot water into the cup and stir or whisk to dissolve completely. Add 1-2 tablespoons of half and half or cream, and stir once more. Taste, add more water or cream, as desired.

Image Credit: The Pioneer Woman

Sober Holidays and Mocktails: Holiday Punch with a Lil Sherbet

Ingredients:

  • 2 pt. raspberry sherbet
  • 1/2 gal. cranberry juice (or a mix of cranberry and pomegranate juices), well chilled
  • 1 2-liter bottle ginger ale, well chilled

Instructions:

  1. Scoop the sherbet into a large punch bowl.
  2. Pour in the cranberry juice and ginger ale and stir gently. Serve immediately. Voila!

Recipe and photo from Alex Jump, bar manager at Death & Co, Denver

Sober Holidays and Mocktails: Umm Yumm – Lamplighter Inn

Recipe:
1.5 oz heavy cream
1.5 oz spent coffee grounds syrup
.5 oz lemon juice
.5 oz egg white
Seltzer

Directions:
Add ingredients to a cocktail shaker and shake. Add ice shake again. Strain into a fizz glass. Top with seltzer and garnish with coffee beans.