If you’re looking to cut back on your calorie intake but not so keen on cutting back on your social life, making an adjustment or two to how you order your favorite tipple at the bar or mix your own drinks could help you keep the calorie count down. Low-calorie alcoholic drinks contain fewer calories than their full-fat counterparts and mean that you don’t have to cancel any social events for fear of weight gain.
Alcoholic beverages tend to contain lots of added sugar and empty calories, but by choosing lower-calorie drinks and sugar-free mixers, you can keep the calorie count in check. By switching some of the ingredients or by choosing different drinks with a lower sugar content, you can reduce your calorie intake on a night out.
So, next time you’re out for a refreshing drink or two, opting for a low-calorie alcoholic drink with less sugar and fewer calories can help you lose weight (as part of a balanced diet) without having to sacrifice your social life.
Low-Calorie Options For Alcoholic Drinks
While the surefire way to reduce your calorie intake when at the bar is to cut your alcohol intake altogether, switching to a low-calorie alternative instead means you won’t miss out on any fun or become the permanent designated driver.
There are a few different ways to reduce your calorie count in the bar, such as switching from a regular beer to a light beer, from red wine to white wine, or from a Drambuie to a bourbon. Choosing a spirit with less alcohol – 80 proof instead of 94 proof – will help too. And you could also order your next Cuba libre with a diet Coke instead of regular, or skip the sugar syrup from your next Caribbean cocktail.
Here’s our roundup of some of the best low-calorie versions of your favorite alcoholic beverages and mixed drinks to help you keep tabs on your liquid calories:
Low-Calorie Vodka Drinks
Super simple and one of the lowest-calorie mixed drinks, a vodka soda is an easy way to cut down on calories. Rather than ordering shots of vodka with sugary sodas as mixers, switching to calorie-free club soda with zero grams of carbs and no sugar can help you avoid weight gain.
You can order it straight or with a dash of freshly squeezed citrus – lemon or lime juice – and a fresh lime or lemon wedge. The fructose in the fresh fruit will increase the calories slightly, though.
Skinny Vodka Mojito
A refreshing drink made with vodka, diet-lime soda, fresh lime juice, monk fruit, and mint leaves and garnished with the optional addition of a sprig of mint or a lime slice. Make sure you use a low-calorie soda to keep the calorie count down.
It’s not calorie-free, but it does contain fewer calories than a standard mojito.
By switching out the sweet triple sec for stevia, a plant-based natural sweetener with zero calories, you can mix up a batch of low-calorie Kamikaze shots. Triple sec is derived from sugar beet and contains about 100 calories per 1.5 fluid ounces serving.
If you’re looking for low-calorie drinks to get the party started, knocking up a batch of Kamikaze shots should do the trick, but they will contain less alcohol than ones made with triple sec.
Low-Calorie Tequila Drinks
Similar to a vodka soda, but with tequila instead of vodka, Ranch Water hails from West Texas and is low on the calorie count yet delightfully refreshing. You’ll just need tequila, fresh lime juice, sparkling water, or club soda, although you could also add some grapefruit juice for a fuller, fruitier flavor.
For a taste of Mexico with reduced calorie content, these skinny margaritas are also low-carb and low on sugar. Choosing low-calorie alcohols, like agave silver tequila, in your mixed drinks is another way to reduce the overall calorie content,
For a low-calorie classic cocktail, simply pour the tequila, fresh lime, and zero-calorie sweetener into a shaker with ice, give it a hearty shake, and pour.
The Paloma, Spanish for “dove,” is most commonly prepared by mixing tequila, lime juice, and a sweetened grapefruit-flavored soda, which adds to the sugar intake. Instead of the extra added sugars from the soda, switching to fresh grapefruit juice will reduce the sugar content.
All you need is fresh grapefruit juice, some tequila, and a splash of lime, but you can also add club soda or soda water to spritz it up a bit with some bubbles.
Low-Calorie Alcoholic Drinks In A Can
By Saint Archer
There are times when nothing quite beats an ice-cold beer, and if you fancy a couple without the excess calories, then opt for a light beer. Calorie count data for this IPA by Saint Archer tells us it packs a paltry 99 calories per can and has a 4% ABV.
If you want to lose weight but not give up the beers altogether, light beers are the way to go.
Watermelon Vodka Hard Seltzer
By High Noon
This low-calorie fruity drink is made from real fruit juice, sparkling water, and natural flavors, and it contains a mere 100 calories. With no added sugar and an alcohol percentage of 4.5% by volume, you’re free to consume alcohol without having to worry too much about your waistline.
Ginger Lime Organic Hard Kombucha
By Booch Craft
Regular kombucha naturally has trace amounts of alcohol (usually around 0.5% alcohol by volume) due to the fermentation process, but with hard kombucha, you get more bang for your buck. Exactly how much alcohol will depend on the variety, but these refreshing ginger and lime-flavored hard kombuchas come in at 7% ABV.
Strawberry Sparkling Mocktail
You’ll just need some frozen strawberries, fresh lemon juice, and soda water to put together a batch of these delightful summer mocktails. If you do fancy drinking alcohol at the last minute, you can switch out half the soda water for sparkling wine, like Prosecco, to easily turn it into a low-calorie cocktail.
Sparkling Blood Orange Mocktail
By Marisa Moore
You don’t need to wait for summer to roll around before enjoying delicious mocktails. These healthy blood orange mocktails are great during the winter and are made from blood orange juice, honey, and vanilla.
Just one glass is all that’s needed to get your recommended daily vitamin C intake, which will help keep the winter colds away.
Blueberry Ginger Mocktail
By Oh Carlene
This bold blend of fruits, herbs, and spices comes together to make a beautifully-colored refreshing drink. The ginger gives it a kick, and the mint keeps it fresh. If you change your mind and want to drink alcohol, you could also add a shot of vodka or tequila.
Low-Calorie Rum Drinks
Rum & Coconut Water
By Ten To One
One of the simplest low-calorie alcoholic drinks, rum, and coconut water, is an easy blend of two ingredients garnished with lime and mint. Perfectly refreshing on a hot, sunny day, the cucumber provides hydrating electrolytes for mindful drinking, and the rum provides a hit of alcohol.
Keto Rum Punch
Add a splash of the Caribbean to your summer barbecues with this low-carb rum punch with no added sugar. You’ll need a bottle of V-8 Splash Diet Tropical Blend, unsweetened Kool-aid Tropical Punch powder, a bottle of white rum, and some ice cubes.
Simply give the ingredients a good mix in a cocktail shaker and serve over plenty of ice.
While many alcoholic beverages contain a whole host of ingredients and more calories than you would like, this straightforward blend of Bacardi Anejo Cuatro and club soda with a squeeze of lime is different. A simple, refreshing drink with a touch of class but low on the calorie count.
Low-Calorie Whiskey Drinks
Keto Whiskey Sour
Whiskey, an egg white, a squeeze of lemon juice, and keto simple syrup instead of sugary simple syrup – classic, easy, and low on the calorie count. Switching the simple syrup for a sugar-free version is an easy way to drop some calories from a classic recipe.
Apricot Whiskey Sour
For a fruitier twist on the whiskey sour classic cocktail, simply add some apricot preserves. Combine the whisky, apricot preserves, and lemon juice with ice in a cocktail shaker, and shake. You won’t need to spend the night wondering how many calories you’re consuming as there are only a few per serving.
Jack Daniels & Coke Zero
You can turn a simple Jack and Coke into a low-calorie alcoholic drink by simply avoiding regular Coke. Regular Coke has way more calories than Diet Coke and Coke Zero, and making the simple switch will reduce your calorie intake.
Low-Calorie Gin Drinks
Low Carb, No Guilt Gin Tonic
A classic gin and tonic is hard to beat, and there’s a simple trick to make your next one a little healthier for those on a diet. Gin and tonics are easy to mix – it’s just gin and tonic water poured over a large amount of ice with a slice of lemon or lime.
To reduce the calories, you can use good quality gin and diet tonic water, or you could switch half the regular tonic water to plain water.
Honey Lemon Gimlet
The gimlet is a sour cocktail, similar to a whiskey sour, but with gin. In a gimlet, the sour flavor comes from citrus juice, and as per the name, this recipe calls for lemon. You will also need some honey syrup to balance out that sourness.
Mix the honey syrup and lemon juice with the gin, pour over ice, and garnish with a lemon slice.
Low-Calorie Gin Martini
For a low-calorie version of a gin martini, simply mix 1.5 oz of gin with 0.5 oz of dry Vermouth, and stir. Simple yet sophisticated, you can channel your inner James Bond as you sip these without worrying about the waistline.
Low-Calorie Bourbon Drinks
Bourbon Whiskey Sangria
Combine your favorite bourbon with red wine, sugar-free apple cider with apples, oranges, and cranberries, and finish with some lovely warming spice flavors. It’s not the simplest drink on the list to mix up, but a big bowl will go down a treat at your next Halloween party.
No Frills Mint Julep
While a traditional sugary mint julep packs in the calories, this no-frills version keeps them in check. Many alcoholic drinks use sugary simple syrup to add sweetness, but by switching it out for powdered sugar in this mint julep recipe, you can reduce your calorie intake.
For a sweet, refreshing cocktail that is sugar-free and low on carbs, you can’t go wrong with this keto-friendly bourbon peach smash. It’s another recipe where switching the simple syrup for a lower-calorie alternative helps you watch your calorie count.
You’ll need fresh lemon, sprigs of fresh mint, Torani Puremade Zero Sugar Peach Syrup, and a bottle of your favorite bourbon.
Which Alcohol Is Lowest In Calories?
White spirits, such as gin, vodka, and light rum, are low in calories. Mix with low-calorie versions of regular mixers for low-calorie alcoholic drinks.
What Are Some Skinny Alcoholic Drinks?
Some simple low-calorie alcoholic beverages to check out include Jack and Diet Coke, vodka and club soda, and gin and diet tonic.
Which Alcohol Is Best For A Diet?
Vodka soda is a good drink for when you are watching the waistline.
- If you’re worried about the calories that come with your alcohol consumption, there are a few ways to reduce the calorie count.
- Opting for low-calorie mixers, switching to a light beer, and choosing white wine over red can all help.
- When making cocktails at home, shop around to find sugar-free versions of the ingredients you require.
- Low-calorie alcoholic drinks are becoming more accessible, so it’s easier than ever to watch your weight as you enjoy a night out.