Nutrition Articles

Say Cheers to Slimmed Down Cocktails

A Calorie Counter's Guide to Mixed Drinks

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  • Choose a lower proof liquor. All liquors with the same "proof" (percentage of alcohol by volume) have roughly the same calories. The lower the proof, the fewer calories a liquor has (and the less potent it will be). For example, 80 proof vodka (and other 80-proof liquors) has 65 calories an ounce; 100 proof liquor has about 80 calories an ounce.
     
  • Stay far, far away from frozen drinks. Chain restaurants serve oversize drinks that often have more calories than a dessert!
     
  • Avoid premade drink mixes, which are usually nothing more than corn syrup and artificial flavors and sweeteners. Make your own so you can control the calories and choose healthier ingredients.
     
  • Skip the mixer and save calories by ordering a flavor-infused liquor (such as raspberry vodka or coconut rum) over ice or with a squeeze of lime.
     
  • Make the switch to soda water if you're a vodka or gin and tonic fan. Tonic water has 90 calories per cup, but soda water is calorie-free. A lime or lemon can add flavor without calories.
     
  • Dilute your wine with soda water to make a wine spritzer. You'll stay hydrated, and a spritzer made with three ounces of wine only has 60 calories. Continued ›
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About The Author

Stepfanie Romine Stepfanie Romine
A former newspaper reporter, Stepfanie now writes about nutrition, health, fitness and cooking. She is a certified Ashtanga yoga teacher who enjoys running, international travel and all kinds of vegetables. See all of Stepfanie's articles.

Member Comments

  • Not sure I will not drink these drinks but I will make sure to budget for them and not go over one or two. - 8/1/2013 5:11:52 AM
  • Beware of all liqueurs!! Baileys, Chambord, Grand Marnier, Jagermeister, Damiana, Hypnotiq, Midor, Tuaca, Southern Comfort and many, MANY more. These are all sugar and cream infused. Double the calories!! Oh, and don't forget the new 'sweet tea' drinks!

    Some of the flavored vodkas also have added sugar. Remember, if it tastes sweet, it's probably had sugar added.

    ** my favourite cocktail right now, Indio blood orange vodk, with lime essence sparkling water and a lime wedge. yummy and refreshing! - 7/17/2012 1:30:19 PM
  • Great article, lots of good information.
    - 5/4/2012 6:17:37 PM
  • Good article, my perferred drink is wine. On ocassion I may have a mixed drink, now that I am fully aware of all the calories, no more. I will stick to my favorite wine. - 5/2/2012 8:35:15 AM
  • My first bottle of Kahla is now my last bottle. No wonder the numbers on the scale climbed! - 12/29/2011 10:06:06 AM
  • If you want to make some tasty flavored martini's, Bacardi now has lower calorie flavored rums that can be mixed with plain vodka, and diet juices such as white cranberry peach, or diet cranberry if you want to do a twist on a cosmo. You can also use some of the diet lipton iced teas. They now have a sparkling one that you can add to white wine to make it a spritzer. - 2/5/2010 8:35:13 AM
  • Flavored vodka adds 5 calories to the count according to the vodka companies. - 10/18/2009 11:38:49 AM
  • TBUEHNE
    I have a question about flavored vodka, does this worse than plan vodka? I like grape vodka and Sprite zero, how many calories and carbs are we talking? - 6/23/2009 10:48:52 AM
  • SILVER_SMITHY
    I have created a pretty tasty, lower calorie Tequila Sunrise. I add about 1 tsp. of Crystal LIght Sunrise Natural Classic Orange flavored powder to about an oz. of tequila and a dash of grenadine. Add crushed ice and fill glass with water. Quite tasty! The Crystal Light has only 5 calories per serving, yet does have vitamin C and calcium. I'm going to try replacing the grenadine with a red flavor of Crystal Light hoping to cut more calories from this tasty drink. - 3/16/2009 1:25:13 PM
  • CREILLY1
    Great, informative article. Printed it out to share with friends. Thanks! - 3/16/2009 11:34:31 AM
  • I found this just in time for Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago. Great information. Will definitely share. - 2/20/2009 3:46:57 AM
  • My favorite mixer is jello mix before it's chilled over ice with bottled water or juice for some simple reminiscent variety and flavor. - 2/20/2009 2:13:22 AM
  • GLAM-CAT
    omg I had no idea how much calories I was drinking ;( Very helpful article and sad at the same time (bye bye cosmopolitan) - 2/15/2009 6:55:13 AM
  • This was so helpful! I' m glad I only drink vodka on the rocks LOL - 2/11/2009 6:36:58 AM
  • This was so helpful! I' m glad I only drink vodka on the rocks LOL - 2/11/2009 6:36:52 AM

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