when I’m laying around a pool or lake in the summertime, the final touch that makes it a perfect relaxation, is a great summer drink! you may have noticed that it can be difficult to figure out what is gluten-free, when it comes to fun drinks. so I thought I’d share some of what I’ve learned.
Pina Coladas~ while you may be able to find a pina colada mix that’s gluten free, I find that making a real pina colada is just as easy and tastes much, much better! either way, you’ll need a powerful blender to crush the ice you’ll need for this drink. to make a real (non-mix) pina colada, I get Dole pineapple juice, a can of “Cream of Coconut” from Coco Lopez (available at many liquor stores in the metro), and some rum. just make sure that the rum is gluten free. I use Bacardi (I’ve heard the Bacardi Silver is NOT gluten-free, but the rest of Bacardi products are). the color of the rum isn’t too important, whether its gluten free is the main concern. so take the crushed ice and add 1 oz rum, 2 oz Coco Lopez, 2 oz pineapple juice, and mix together thoroughly (in the blender).
Margaritas~ you will again need a high-powered blender, in order to crush ice, in order to make a good margarita. you can make this one from scratch as well, or get a mix, as the mixes for these can be quite tasty! to make one by hand, add to the crushed ice 2 oz Rose’s lime juice, 1.5 oz tequila (Jose Cuervo products are gluten free), and 1.5 oz triple sec (Cointreau is gluten free). to make a flavored margarita, you can decrease the lime juice to 1 oz and add up to 2 oz of the juice of your choice. if you prefer to use a mix, the Margaritaville regular and strawberry flavors are both gluten free, as are both the Holland House and Mr and Mrs T brand margarita mixes.
Mojitos~ this is a good drink to get if you’re at a restaurant or bar, as it’s generally gluten-free (a few questions about the rum and other ingredients can give you more certainty). to make a mojito, I take about a dozen mint leaves and half an ounce of lime juice (about one lime) and muddle them. add to that 1 to 1 Tbl of sugar, and continue muddling. add the mixture, 1 to 1.5 oz rum (again, make sure it’s gluten free rum), and ice to a glass and then top off with up to 1/2 cup of soda water. I gave a range for most things, as you can adjust it to taste. also, you could add some strawberries or other fruit to make it more colorful and fancy! garnishes could include more mint leaves or lime wedges.
Sangrias~ this is another good drink to get if you’re at a restaurant or bar, as it’s generally gluten-free (and again, a few questions about the rum/ liquor and other ingredients can give you more certainty). when making this at home, it’s best to either prepare it the night before, or at least hours in advance, so the flavors can meld. start by pouring a bottle of red wine into a pitcher and add about 2 Tbl sugar (to taste). then add some of the following, squeeze juice from and also cut into wedges/cube (whatever you prefer and/or have on hand, but it’ll taste best if you have at least a few of these): an orange, a lemon, lime, pineapple, raspberries, or strawberries. also add a splash of orange juice, or lemon juice if you prefer and about 1/2 to 1 cup of rum. store in the refrigerator, and add 2-4 cups of ginger ale or soda water and ice before serving.