This super easy Mint Mocktail is quick and delicious. Perfect for a warm day or in any weather when you want an alcohol-free drink to sip. Elegant too.
With temperatures in the Mid-Atlantic still balmy, here at least there’s time enough to enjoy a post-summer mocktail. Once the weather cools, a Mint Mocktail for brunch. And when the Kentucky Derby rolls around next May (May 6, 2023), you can sip it as a mint julep substitute.
The idea for this drink and the photos are courtesy of my amazing son, Liam. (He’s the guy on the right, with his arm around his husband.)
On the side, Liam edits videos, takes photos, and directs with a purposeful but light touch. In my case, he helped launch All Stirred Up: Suffrage Cookbooks, Food, & the Battle for Women’s Right to Vote. (Published in August 2020, just before the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, the book did not have an auspicious start. Pre-vaccine Covid forced me into an online-only world for which I was not prepared, but Liam came to the rescue.) He organized book parties and helped me finalize my Jewish Book Council schtick, and directed and edited my All Stirred Up videos. He’s a great booster too – keeping my spirits up when the pandemic got me down.
On the domestic front, he’s no slouch either. He does most of the cooking around his house. And he’s a challah maker par excellence. (Watch out Jake Cohen! Liam may not be on Instagram with his Pride challah reel, but he braids a mean challah and can tutor all of us in how a six-strand challah works.) He even sews, witness this Votes for Women apron that he made for me.
This summer I offered Liam a jar of homemade mint jelly. I’m pretty sure I used the Simply Recipes version. In any event, it wasn’t long before he texted me that he had found a new use for the mint jelly – a super easy Mint Mocktail.
With just 2 ingredients (3 if you use a fresh mint garnish), this recipe is truly the simplest way to make this drink. Think of it as a no-alcohol mint julep without the muss and fuss of muddling.
Tips for Making a Mint Mocktail
- What type of mint jelly and the soda to use? Sometimes I make do with less-than-ideal ingredients, especially when there are many ingredients and some are less important. However not here. In this drink there are only a few and you can really taste them. So use the best. Store bought jelly works, but don’t scrimp. Try to get one without that awful green dye. And taste the jelly before you use it. If it’s delicious, the Mint Mocktail will be as well. As for the soda, use an unflavored one. Whichever sparkling water, seltzer or bubbly water you like best. For me, that’s Pellegrino, but your taste might be different. Plain old seltzer works fine if that’s what you like.
- How to stir (combine) the jelly and soda? Liam’s advice is to add the jelly and an ounce of two of the bubbly water together and shake or stir them vigorously together until well combined. Only then do you add that mixture to the ice and remaining bubbly water. While that may take the carbonation out of those few ounces of bubbly water, it prevents the jelly from settling.
- Proportions? Depending on the mintiness of your jelly and your personal taste, you might like 2-3 ounces of jelly to 8 ounces of bubbly water. You can always adjust the balance by adding more of one ingredient or the other. The jelly already contains sweetener, so there is no need to add more sugar.
Super Easy Mint Mocktail
A simple way to create a mint julep type no-alcohol drink. It's perfect for warm weather or brunch in any season.
- 2-3 teaspoons mint jelly Use the best quality, preferably without dye.
- 8 ounces unflavored bubbly water Use your favorite type. Seltzer, Pellegrino, other sparkling water, etc.
- 1-2 sprigs fresh mint Optional - as garnish
Mix the mint jelly with 1-2 ounces of the unflavored bubbly water. Stir or shake in a small closed jar until well combined. Then add all the rest of the bubbly/sparkling water. Alternatively, mix the jelly in with all the water and stir.
Add ice if desired and enjoy!
Mixing the jelly first with a small amount of the bubbly water helps combine the ingredients and prevent the jelly from sinking to the bottom of the glass.
Garnishing with fresh mint is a nice touch if serving to company.
For larger amounts, you can simply mix in separate glasses or make in a pitcher and then pour into the glasses.