It’s the night of your holiday fiesta. You’ve finished all of the errands you have to run before your entire extended family comes over—bought the wine, cleaned the kitchen and bathrooms, vacuumed the living room carpet, and stockpiled some favorite kids’ movies. You’ve thought of everything.
Except, maybe, one thing: nonalcoholic drinks. Why nonalcoholic drinks? There are plenty of reasons. Maybe drinking alcohol makes you tired, and you want to be able to partake in the festivities without crashing early. Maybe there are going to be lots of children, children who want interesting things to drink. Maybe there’s a recovering alcoholic coming for the holidays who would appreciate more options. Maybe you’re on a budget.
Whatever it may be, variety is almost always a good thing. Here’s a list of five tasty, boozeless holiday drinks to offer your family:
Quentão de Vinho
An orangey, spicy Brazilian recipe for mulled wine easily translates into mulled juice. Take 4 cups grape juice, cranberry juice, or currant juice and pour into a large saucepan with 2 cups water, 1 sliced orange, 2 slices peeled ginger root, 5 cloves, 3 cinnamon sticks, and ⅓ cup sugar. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly for 2 minutes or until sugar has dissolved. Let boil for additional 10 minutes, then strain. Serve warm with cinnamon sticks and sliced oranges.Hot Buttered “Rum”
For this nonalcoholic spin on the classic, get 1 cup softened butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ⅛ teaspoon cloves, 1 pint softened vanilla ice cream, and 2 teaspoons rum flavoring. Cream together butter, sugars, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, and rum flavoring with an electric mixer. Blend in softened ice cream. Turn into a 4-cup freezer container. Seal and freeze (it won’t freeze solid). Serve by spooning 2 to 4 tablespoons of the mixture into mug. Add 1/2 cup boiling water and stir well. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.Mexican Ponche
This Christmas punch calls for 4 sliced oranges, 2 halved guavas, 5 sliced apples, ½ lb raisins, 1 cup of hibiscus flowers or tea, 10 sugar cane sticks (canned is fine), 4 cinnamon sticks, 5 cups of water, 1 bottle of cactus juice or nectar, and brown sugar to taste. Put all ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil. Pour into a bowl and serve hot.Coquito
The Puerto Rican drink usually comes with rum, but this one requires only 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk, 1 (14-ounce) can condensed milk, 1 (15-ounce) can cream of coconut, 2 cups fresh coconut milk or 1 (15-ounce) can coconut milk, a pinch of salt, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1 cup pineapple juice or white grape juice. Put all ingredients in a blender and process for 3 minutes on high until frothy. Chill and serve cold with a little cinnamon on top.Eggnog
It wouldn’t be a holiday drink list without eggnog. Here’s what you need: 4 cups milk, 1 cup sugar, 10 large egg yolks, 1 cup chilled heavy cream, grated nutmeg, 1 teaspoon orange zest (optional). In a medium saucepan, whisk milk, sugar, and orange zest over medium heat for 1 or 2 minutes or until sugar has dissolved. Whisk egg yolks in a large bowl. Slowly pour hot mixture into yolks while whisking. Return mixture to pan; cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until thick enough to coat spoon, between 20 and 25 minutes; do not let simmer. Quickly strain into a bowl. Stir in cream. Cool completely before covering and refrigerating until chilled. Serve cold with nutmeg sprinkled on top.