Monday, June 22, 2015

Blueberry Mint Kombucha Mocktails

Blueberry Mint Kombucha Mocktails
Looking for a fruity mixed drink that won't put you into a sugar coma or give you a hangover the next day? Try a kombucha mocktail! You might be wondering, how is this different than regular non alcoholic drink recipes made with fruit juices? Well, the main ingredient in this drink is kombucha. 

What is Kombucha?

Kombucha a delicious fermented tea beverage. It's bubbly, often mixed with tasty fruit juices, and filled with a ton of probiotics (similar to yogurt) that help keep your digestive system happy. 

Depending on how long the tea is left to ferment, it can range from sweet to mild to vinegary. The longer it's left to ferment, the more vinegary it will taste. I personally do not like long-aged kombucha, so I opt for the teas that are on the sweeter side.

I'm lucky enough to have a slew of kombucha options (many local) to choose from at my nearby health food stores. It's one perk of living in a big hippy-dippy (well at least in terms of food choices) city like Dallas. 

However, for those of you who live in rural areas or towns where fermented drinks aren't readily available, you can learn how make it at home using a simple fermenting guide like this

Making homemade kombucha has some major perks: it's less expensive, requires only a few simple ingredients (like fruit juice, tea & sugar), and often has a broader range and amount of probiotics. It's on my to-do list to try this year! 

Why Drink Mocktails?

I love summer cocktail recipes. Who doesn't right? They often incorporate fresh herbs like basil, rosemary, and mint muddled with ripe peaches, strawberries, mango, and blueberries. 

Drinks like mojitos, margaritas, juleps, and sangria...well, they're dangerous when the sun's beating down on your face and your mouth feels parched. Or when you're hanging out with a bunch of girlfriends trading insides jokes and old stories. Every sip tastes heavenly and before you know it, you're falling over!

There are times when that's perfectly acceptable (at a wedding reception or high school reunion, for example), but on your average day when you have responsibilities...not so much. I don't know about you, but now that I no longer work at a alcohol tolerance has plummeted. I'm okay with that. But sometimes I forget, imbibe in a one too many tasty beverages, and spend the next day moaning and bed ridden. So not worth it!

Fruity + Fizzy + Fresh Herbs + Probiotics - The Hangover = Awesome

That's why mocktails are a stellar option for days and nights when you want to enjoy a mixed drink sans the alcohol, dehydration, and sugar high. 

Blueberry Mint Kombucha Mocktails
And when you use a fruity kombucha tea as the base for your drink, it transforms the average mocktail into a healthy treat! 

How? As I mentioned above, kombucha is loaded with healthy probiotics and often sweet enough to function the same in a drink recipe as juice. Plus, it's slightly bubbly, so it's a great substitute for soda in mixed drinks.

Okay, let's do this!

Blueberry Mint Kombucha Mocktails
A fruity and bubbly mocktail recipe with probiotic-rich kombucha tea, frozen blueberries, and crushed mint that will keep your mouth and belly happy! It's an easy and healthy non-alcoholic drink recipe you can enjoy all year long.
Serves: 2

10-12 mint leaves, crushed
1/4-1/2 cup of frozen blueberries
ice cubes
12 ounces of flavored kombucha tea (I used blueberry)
sparkling water
raw honey, maple syrup, or simple syrup* (optional - only if you want it sweeter)

Recommended Tools (optional)

Divide the mint leaves equally and place in the bottoms of two glasses. Using a muddler or the handle of a wooden spoon, crush the mint leaves. This helps to bring out the flavor. Alternately, you can chop the leaves into smaller pieces and crush them with the flat side of a knife before adding.  

Do the same with the frozen blueberries, crushing them gently (no need to smoosh them completely) to bring out some of the juices. If you want some whole blueberries in the drink for a nice aesthetic, crush part of the blueberries, then add the rest whole. Fill both glasses with ice cubes, then pour in the kombucha. Fill both glasses the rest of the way with sparkling water and serve immediately!

*If your kombucha is long-aged, or you prefer your drinks sweeter, you can always stir in a few teaspoons of raw honey, maple syrup, or simple syrup. Since the drink is cold, it'll work better if you mix the sweetener 50-50 with a bit of sparkling water in a separate cup then stir it in. 

Notes & Tips
  • This kombucha mocktail recipe is highly adaptable! Sub your favorite fresh or frozen fruits, chopped herbs, and flavored kombucha. Try different flavor combos and leave a comment below if you find something you love!

Want to learn how to make your own kombucha?

If you already love probiotic drinks and foods, why not learn how to make them at home to save yourself money? It seems so intimidating, right? I know how you feel! My foodie friends Tamara & Kelly of the blog Oh Lardy are obsessed with preserving foods and fermenting drinks, so they wrote an e-book called Oh Lardy's Guide to Fermenting Fruits and VegetablesIn this PDF guide, the gals show you how to ferment fruits and veggies like mushrooms, garlic, asparagus, eight different types of sauerkraut + several fermented drinks (like kombucha), dozens of different dips, condiments and drinks, fermented fruit and so much more! Click here to take a sneak peek and nab your own copy!

I'd like to hear from YOU!

What's are your favorite herbs and fruits to add to cold summer beverages? Do you have any favorite kombucha flavors?

Blueberry Mint Non Alcoholic Mocktails with Kombucha
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