Even cocktails―the ultimate fun food―can be made healthier by including whole fruits or fruit and vegetable juices, making them a source of vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber.
Mix in crushed fresh peppermint leaves and add a long, thin slice of fresh, peeled sugarcane as a healthful, unprocessed sweetener.
Any summer spritzer (such as a juice and seltzer combo) can look as fresh as it tastes. Add mixed fruit on a skewer for more natural flavors.
When tropical cocktail recipes call for syrups, try natural, homemade versions instead of store-bought. Combine one half-cup of honey with a quarter-cup of warm water, and stir together to dissolve the honey. It works well in a daiquiri, such as the following made with lime: Combine 1 1/2 cups white rum, 2/3 cup fresh lime juice, and 6 tablespoons of the simple syrup in a small pitcher. Fill 6 (8-ounce) glasses with ice; pour 1/2 cup rum mixture into each glass.
Throwing a half-cup of pineapple chunks into a piña colada gives you twice as much filling fiber than if you used syrup or juice. It also adds volume, texture, and a more natural flavor.
Make watermelon ice cubes for a tasty addition to any tropical drink, says Cooking Light Executive Chef Billy Strynkowski. Simply remove the pits from fresh red or yellow watermelon, dice, and place in a blender with chopped fresh mint. Puree on medium speed until it liquefies, then pour into ice-cube trays and freeze.