This cherry lime refresher has some tart lime juice and sweet cherries and gets topped with bubbles! Continue reading
This one is summer in a glass – refreshing tea, sweet peach, and a little spike. Also, when I say peach- I always am using nectarines but if fuzz is OK with you, go for it!
I usually only drink tea hot and exclusively in the fall and winter but this summer while I was home I embraced (iced) tea time, in the afternoons to have something fun to look forward to. I was surprised to love mint tea iced and blackberry/elderberry tea was a great treat too.
Peach Tea Cocktails
Ingredients: (for 2 cocktails + leftover iced tea)
2 peach tea bags (mine was peach mango)
3 cups water
1/2 peach, sliced
1-2 oz peach schnapps/cointreau/lemon vodka/raspberry vodka
1 teaspoon simple syrup or 1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 cups ice
Brew the tea and let cool. It should be very strong for iced tea as it will get watered down.
Add ice to a cocktail shaker with the tea, peach, alcohol, and sugar/simple syrup (if using).
Shake well and serve over ice.
This was so so good. The tea makes it really light and refreshing and gives you the chance to make it as sweet or not as you’d like with simple syrup or sugar. You could amp up the peach flavor by tossing some peach and the pit into the pot when making the simple syrup (and removing when it cooled). Herbal tea isn’t caffeinated so this is ideal for something fun to sip on a hot night. Cheers!
Cheers! Starting with lemonade, these cocktails get some muddled strawberries and basil and a splash of lemon vodka. They’re sweet and fresh. Make one or these would be great as a pitcher batch to spike as desired.
I love love love the herbs in a cocktail. I’ve been adding our boatloads of mint to my water and to iced tea so the basil flavor was a welcome change.
Strawberry Lemonade & Basil Cocktails:
Ingredients (for 2):
~6 strawberries, halved or quartered
1 teaspoon of sugar (or simple syrup)
3-4 basil leaves
2 cups lemonade
1-2 oz lemon vodka
Split the strawberries into 2 glasses and add a sprinkle of sugar (or simple syrup) and muddle a few times to crush them. Use a cocktail muddle or the handle of a spoon.
Then add in the basil and gently muddle once or twice.
Pour in the lemonade and the vodka and stir well. Top off with ice and another strawberry or basil leaf to garnish. Add in ice and stir again.
I loved this. I made it first and was too aggressive muddling the basil (thus, why they’re best done separately) and I wanted more strawberry. We had just gone strawberry picking so these were the best of the best BUT muddling would really bring even grocery store ones to life!
Fall in a cup! This hot cocktail came out of my love for fall hot drinks so I mixed vanilla tea and apple cider and spiked it. It was delightful!
Apple Cider & Vanilla Tea Hot Cocktail
Ingredients: (for 2)
1 cup cider
1 cup vanilla tea (or a tiny bit of vanilla extract into black tea)
1-2 shots vanilla vodka
~4 tablespoons whipped cream
sprinkle of cinnamon sugar
Brew the tea and warm the cider.
Mix one part tea (1/2 cup) with one part cider (1/2 cup) and half the vodka and stir. Sweeten to taste – I left my tea unsweetened but normally sweeten when drinking it by itself!
Top with whipped cream and a cinnamon sugar sprinkle.
I loved this! It wasn’t so so sweet since I hadn’t sweetened the tea but could see it being good either way. Rim the glasses with cinnamon sugar and skip the whipped cream if you wish!
This one seems great with brunch since it is light, and would be great at Thanksgiving! These would work well as a big batch, like in a pitcher and guests could spike it (or not). Serve them for day-drinks or tailgating!
Hot weather brings on the smoothies! I rarely make them in the winter and this one is so so summery plus I have lots of adaptations for you!
It is a bit sweeter than my usual which I credit to a lemonade. Kids would love this and blueberry based smoothies are ideal for hiding greens. I don’t pretend they’re not there, but you also don’t see them in the finished one.
Blueberry Lemonade Smoothie
Ingredients: (for 2 small servings as snack, or 1.5 large servings as meal)
1 1/2 cups greens (mine is baby spinach, then frozen)
3/4 cup vanilla yogurt
1 cup lemonade
1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (optional)
1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Blend together the greens, yogurt, and lemonade. Then add in the blueberries, protein powder, flaxseed, and lemon juice. Blend well and add a splash of water if needed for consistency and pour into cups.
Top with some lemon zest.
I loved this one and like them to be a breakfast meal – sometimes with a handful of cheerios or 1/2 a granola bar or a hard boiled egg. I often workout in the morning and hate to feel like I’m only on liquids when I’m starving.
– swap lemonade for: lemon juice + water + honey/agave (doesn’t even have to be mixed- just dump it in!)
– skip the protein powder and/or skip the flaxseed
– increase the yogurt or swap for Greek yogurt
– skip the yogurt all together or substitute banana for creaminess in a dairy free smoothie.
– if using fresh fruit & greens, it won’t be as think/cold but adding in some ice helps.
– if sharing with the kids, I usually water theirs down with whole milk and serve it as a drink, alongside their breakfast (~2 oz smoothie + 2 oz milk).
Since mine are usually a meal, I go for yogurt as a dairy serving and the protein powder to keep it filling (I like this kind best).
The best way to blend the greens is to incorporate with the liquids blending well then adding in other fruits. A high speed blender will blend them all at once. I blend all at once with a Vitamix and used to blend in 2 stages with a Ninja for the best consistency.
I buy baby spinach fresh in a bag and pop the whole thing into the freezer. Pulling out a bunch for the smoothie has such a satisfying splintering effect. Also in real life, I dump into the blender without measuring!
This is a nice twist considering I pretty much only make the Peanut Butter & Jelly Smoothie anymore. Leftovers are great into popsicle molds!
If the start of 2021 has you feeling crummy and seeking positive choices, this smoothie is perfect! It is DELICIOUS but also full of good stuff. I tend not to make many in the winter, so, enjoy this one!
This one is a meal – I’m going for protein & fiber and wanted to hit fruit and dairy here. This can be downgraded to a snack by skipping the yogurt, adding a bit more water, and serving as 4 smaller portions.
Chocolate Almond Smoothie
Ingredients: (serves 2-3)
1 frozen banana (or 1 cup frozen cauliflower)
1 cup vanilla yogurt
1 scoop chocolate protein powder (or 1 tablespoon cocoa powder)
2 teaspoons ground flaxseed (optional)
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 – 1 1/2 cups almond milk
1/2 cup water
a few ice cubes
Add frozen banana/cauliflower, yogurt, chocolate protein powder/cocoa powder, ground flaxseed, almond extract, milk, water, and ice to a blender.
Blend & enjoy!
I loved this! I was a bit heavy handed with the almond extract the first time – so use with caution and measure. It totally brings a unique flavor – especially if you don’t loooove protein powder. Mint extract would be a good alternative too! My fav protein powder is Amazing Grass brand, especially peanut butter or vanilla. Any chocolate-ish smoothie could definitely include/hide frozen greens. I almost did but I also wanted to keep it simple. Go for it – you won’t taste or see some frozen baby spinach in there!
My all-time fav smoothie is this PB&J Smoothie so if you got a new blender, this one is a winner and often the only one I make!
Cheers! If now isn’t the time for a fun drink, I don’t know when is! I whipped up this as an afternoon frozen treat but it definitely lends itself to being a frozen cocktail too! I never make drinks anymore but need to get back to it. This one has pink grapefruit juice with lemonade to mellow out the tartness. The grenadine adds some sweetness plus it brightens up the color!
My blender can totally pulverize ice but this drink could be on ice too- especially if it would be too icy and chunky, I’d shake it and serve over ice.
Pink Grapefruit Refresher
2 cups ice
3/4 cup lemonade
2/3 cup pink grapefruit juice
1 tablespoon grenadine
Add everything into the blender.
I loved this. The pink grapefruit is distinct and I knew it needed more sweetness. I used 100% ruby red grapefruit juice and a single serve lemonade. My tests were just frozen slushies which was truly a highlight of the afternoon. Each of the kids were stealing sips while they played outside.
For an evening version, I’d add some citrus vodka.
Today is a great day for a guest post, right!? We all need a cocktail right now and I’m thrilled to introduce you to Mike! We met in college and I fondly remember wearing a shirt to a conference that said “Have you met Mike?”. He has always been one to bring people together so cocktails in these strange times seems ohh-so fitting. Mike has been posting FAN-TASTIC cocktails and I asked if he’d share one here. Woohoo! Bottoms up! Meet Mike:
My name is Mike Lawlor, and I am the AGM for two different restaurants in Dorchester, Ashmont Grill & Tavolo Ristorante. I come up with seasonal cocktails for each establishment with the help of my bartenders. When the governor and mayor decided to move restaurants to take out only I decided I would post cocktail recipes that were delicious and approachable for the every day person with ingredients they may have in their pantry and liquor cabinet. I am fortunate enough to manage two bars where I have endless resources. Some cocktail recipes I will offer an easy suggestion for a replacement.
Peanut Butter & Banana Old Fashioned
These strange times call for jazzed up home coffees! Social distancing isn’t really a coffee change for me. I tend to not spend $4 on a fancy coffee, but LOVE to whip up fun drinks at home. There’s still joy in sipping this while playing legos or putting shapes into the correct shaped hole. I’m aiming to post when I can, depending on what we an access. We’ll see!
Plus, you can order all these ingredients for groceries delivered.
Caramel Coconut Coffee
1 cup coffee
1/4 cup coconut almond milk
1 teaspoon caramel syrup
Warm the milk just to take the chill off. Then froth the milk (either with a milk frother or shaken vigorously in a glass jar).
Drizzle caramel sauce onto the sides of the cup then add in the coffee. Spoon the foam onto the top.
The coconut is subtle and not as creamy as real milk but it foamed well! I have this one and it is the best treat $12 can get you!
Gingerbread lattes! Gingerbread americanos! Gingerbread hot chocolates! The possibilities are endless! I 100% wait until after Thanksgiving for Christmas things but these flavors felt fall enough to fit this week of Thanksgiving.
(makes ~2 cups, or 12 servings. Half unless gifting!)
1 cup water
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbs honey
2 tbs molasses
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp grated or minced ginger
1 strip orange peal
Heat everything together and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 5 minutes.
Pour through a mesh strainer, or through a cheese cloth, or through a coffee filter.
Stir into coffee and top with frothed milk. (Microwave milk in a glass jar for 15 seconds. Screw on the top and shake vigorously.)
Top with whipped cream and an extra sprinkle of nutmeg!
I keep fresh ginger in the freezer and use a veggie pealer to shave the skin off and then chop or grate. It lasts forever and is a great addition to peanut sauce or smoothies too.
I loved this! It was such a fun treat to have on hand! It is delightful in coffee or in hot chocolate. The flavor is strong so a tablespoon felt like plenty in a cup. This makes more than enough so I’ll half it next time.