Cheers to Summer: Fruity Drinks for All!

When it comes to fun and creative ways to celebrate the end of the school year, I’m more vision than execution. I find myself scrolling through friends’ Facebook posts about doing fun things with their littles on the last day of school, thinking, “Oh, that would have been awesome!” One thing I can do is mix the heck out of a fruity drink. Today I’m sharing my top three non-alcoholic fruity drinks that you can make to toast the end of school. If your kids are like my daughter, they will love anything that is billed as “special.” Add an umbrella and fruit wedge and it’s Mom for the win!

Side note: When pouring these drinks for little kids, you don’t have to pour big portions…they will be pleased as punch (pardon the pun!) with a small glass and not climbing the curtains from the sugar rush…and if you’re like me and prefer not to drink all of your calories, you can also have a small portion and just savor every sip!

Tropical Punch

(from Our Best Bites first cookbook)

Ingredients

4 c. peach-mango juice (found in the refrigerated juice aisle)
1 (15-oz) can cream of coconut (found in the liquor aisle)
5 c. pineapple juice
1/2 c. freshly squeezed lime juice (about 3-4 limes)
1 liter Sprite or other lemon-lime soda

Instructions

Combine 3 c. of peach-mango juice with the can of cream of coconut in a blender. Blend until completely smooth. Combine blended mixture with all other ingredients, except for the Sprite, in a serving bowl or pitcher. When ready to serve, add Sprite and serve over ice. Garnish with slices of lime. Makes 16 servings.

Leftovers tip: Freeze any leftover punch and then partially thaw and either blend into a slushy treat or use an ice cream scoop to serve your littles when they’re drying off from a good run in the sprinkler!

Cheers to End of School 1

Cherry Limeade

(from Pretty Providence)

Ingredients

1 can frozen limeade concentrate, any brand–thawed to melty consistency (yes, “melty” is a word here!)
1 2 liter bottle of Sprite or other lemon-lime soda
1 10 oz. jar maraschino cherries, with juice
1 lime
Crushed ice

Instructions

1. Chill all ingredients in fridge until cool.
2. Slowly pour Sprite, melty limeade, and cherries into a large pitcher and mix slowly to preserve carbonation.
3. Fill glasses with pebble ice, then pour in your limeade.
4. Slice limes to garnish, and enjoy!

Frozen Strawberry (Mock) Margarita

(from Barbara Bakes )

Ingredients

1/3 cup sugar (coarse sugar is best, but regular will do)
2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped
1/3 cup fresh orange juice
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons agave
1 1/2 cups crushed ice
4 fresh strawberries for garnish

Instructions

1. Prepare the glasses. Add coarse sugar to a shallow bowl. Wet the glass rims with a lime wedge and press the glass top in the sugar to coat the rim.
2. Place the chopped strawberries, orange juice, lime juice, and agave into a blender and pulse several times to blend. Taste, and if necessary, add more agave. Add crushed ice and pulse until desired consistency is reached. Pour the drink into the prepared glasses.
3. Garnish each drink with a fresh strawberry. With the green leaves on top, slice them half through lengthwise from the bottom and place one on the rim of each glass right before serving.

So, there are my top three non-alcoholic fruity drinks to kick off the summer break!

What are your favorite summer beverages? Share in the comments below!


 

Sherri is a transplant from Oregon who came to be a Hawkeye in 2006 and stayed for the sweet corn...and for the Iowa boy she met along the way! She and her husband (Kyle) have a 9 year-old daughter, Aissa. Sherri earned her Ph.D. in Higher Education and Student Affairs at The University of Iowa and works for Ruffalo Noel Levitz as an Enrollment Marketing Consultant for colleges and universities. When she's not working, you can find her with her family, enjoying Iowa City and cheering on the Hawkeyes.

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