As the holidays approach and 2021 draws to a close, we are still - unfortunately - in the midst of a global pandemic.
Many public health officials are advising that we consider scaling back the number of people at our holiday gatherings to keep people safe and to reduce the spread of the coronavirus in our communities.
Another thing we should consider as we plan for family gatherings and holiday parties is the fact that - for many people - holiday spirits do not come from a bottle.
Nearly half of all Americans do not drink alcohol on a regular basis, according to the US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
In 2019, 50.8 percent of Americans reported drinking alcohol in the past month. In other words, 49.2 percent of people do not regularly drink. (Source: SAMHSA’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health)
There are many reasons why people chose not to drink.
More than 378,000 South Carolinians are currently living in recovery from a substance use disorder. So, you are very likely to know someone in recovery. Maintaining their sobriety is very important to them.
Furthermore, there are other medical conditions that also prohibit the use of alcohol. These include pregnancy, diabetes, digestive disorders (such as ulcers and diverticulitis), heart issues, kidney problems, and depression.
For some people, they take a prescription medication that would negatively interact with alcohol. Plus, remember that alcohol does not mix well with most over-the-counter cold medicines.
And, remember that many people prefer to serve as the designated drivers for those who do chose to drink.
Spice Up Your Seasonal Gatherings With Mocktails
Despite their sizeable numbers, these non-drinkers are often overlooked at holiday gatherings where the only truly appealing beverage choices contain alcohol. These non-drinkers want choices beyond soft drinks and bottled water.
Unfortunately, many party planners go through their guest lists determining who prefers what alcoholic beverage. This holiday season, we ask that you consider your non-drinking guests who also want something tasty but non-alcoholic.
There are lots of festive "mocktail" drinks that will show your guests that you made a special effort to provide beverages that appeal to everyone.
Mocktail Recipes For You To Try
Here are eleven tried and true "mocktail" recipes to enjoy and share with your guests this holiday season.
- 1 cup frozen OJ concentrate
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup ice
- Blend until smooth.
- 16 oz. cranberry juice
- 4 oz. lemon juice
- 8 oz. ginger ale
- Pour ingredients in a tall glass with ice and serve. Garnish with a slice of lemon.
- 1 cup unsweetened pineapple juice
- 1 cup orange juice
- Juice of 2 lemons
- Juice of 2 limes
- 11 oz. sparkling water
- Mix all ingredients into a pitcher. Pour over ice cubes made of sparkling water.
- 16 oz. orange juice
- 4 oz. sour mix
- 8 oz. club soda
- Mix and pour in a tall glass with ice. Garnish with a slice of orange.
Designated Driver's Delight
- 8 oz. orange juice
- 4 oz. pineapple juice
- 4 oz. cranberry juice
- 3-4 scoops vanilla ice cream
- 3-4 frozen strawberries
- Mix in a blender until smooth. Garnish with an orange slice and strawberry.
- Fresh brewed coffee
- Whipped cream
- Chocolate sprinkles
- sugar cubes
- Pour coffee into a mug and stir in 2 sugar cubes and a dash of cinnamon.
- Top with whipped cream and chocolate sprinkles.
- 8 oz. pineapple juice
- 4 oz. club soda
- 4 oz. orange juice
- 2 TBSP grenadine
- 2 TBSP cream of coconut
- Stir to blend and serve over crushed ice.
- 1/2 gallon chocolate ice cream, softened
- 8 cups of coffee, chilled
- 1 pint half & half
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1 square semi-sweet chocolate, grated
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- Mix ice cream and 3 cups of coffee until smooth.
- In punch bowl, stir ice cream mixture, half & half, almond extract, salt and 5 cups coffee until blended.
- Sprinkle top with grated chocolate and cinnamon.
- 6 oz. can frozen lemonade concentrate
- 6 oz. can frozen orange juice concentrate
- 6 cups water
- 1/2 cup grenadine syrup
- 1 quart ginger ale
- Combine the ingredients, except the grenadine and ginger ale, in a punch bowl.
- Just before serving, add some ice cubes, and gently stir in the grenadine and ginger ale.
- Garnish with lemon slice and maraschino cherry
Hot Under The Collar (Created by The Consultative Insurance Group team)
- 6 oz. can frozen lemonade concentrate
- 32 oz. cranberry juice cocktail
- 6 pack Hot Blenheim Ginger Ale
- Key Lime Juice
- In large pitcher, mix 6 oz. frozen lemonade concentrate with 32 oz. cranberry juice cocktail. Chill.
- For a single serving: Mix in tall glass - 1/4 cup lemonade/cranberry mixture, 1/2 cup Hot Blenheim Ginger Ale, 4 drops of Key Lime Juice. Stir. Serve Chilled.
New Year's Eve Kiss
- Pour 2 oz. passion fruit juice in a champagne flute.
- Fill with club soda.