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Indulge Without the Bulge: Winter Cocktails Under 200 Calories

'Tis the season for holiday parties, office get-togethers, and curling up by the fire, all of which tend to come with a tasty drink in hand. Instead of gorging on calorie-laden eggnog and other waistline wreckers, try serving up these low-cal cocktails. Each one clocks in at less than 200 calories, so you can rock the holidays without a worry in sight.

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Hot Toddy
Bulleit Bourbon
Numi Teas
Malibu Island Spiced
Grand Marnier
Tanqueray Gin
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Hot Toddy

When temps drop, reach for this spiced-up beverage. The high rye content in the bourbon lends an extra kick to your drink, and we bet you'll only need one before you feel the warm fuzzies from the inside out.


  • 1 1/3 oz. Bulleit bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon fine-grain sugar
  • 2 pieces small cloves
  • 1 1/2 oz. boiling water

Add bourbon, fine-grain sugar, and cloves to an old-fashioned glass or mug. Add 1 to 2 ounces (or more, if desired) of boiling water and stir.

Calories: 126

Recipe courtesy of Bulleit Bourbon

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Pear Honeybush

We admit it may not be conventional, but try pairing your favorite tea bag with a hearty bourbon next time you want to sit by the fire and curl your fingers around a warm drink. Numi's Honeybush provides the perfect blend of earthy brew with honey notes, and pear juice adds an extra hint of sweetness to balance the beverage.


  • 1 Numi Honeybush tea bag
  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • 4 oz. fresh pear juice
  • Maraschino cherry, to garnish

Infuse tea bag in bourbon for 30 minutes, then remove bag, squeezing out excess. Pour ingredients into a shaker with ice; shake and strain into glass. Serve with maraschino cherry.

Calories: 190

Recipe courtesy of James Labe, Numi Teas

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Malibu Spiced Cidertini

Spike your next glass of fresh apple cider for a cocktail devoid of any diet-wrecking processed ingredients. The cinnamon-rimmed glass provides holiday spice after a long day of gift shopping.


  • 1 1/2 oz. Malibu Island Spiced rum
  • 4 1/2 oz. fresh apple cider
  • Pinch of cinnamon powder (about 1/4 teaspoon)
  • Cinnamon stick, to garnish

Wet the rim of a chilled martini glass and dip in cinnamon powder. Mix ingredients in shaker over ice. Strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a fresh cinnamon stick, if desired.

Calories: 139

Recipe courtesy of Malibu Island Spiced

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Berry Merry Mistletoe

With this drink in hand, there's no way you won't find yourself under the mistletoe with someone special. The waistline-friendly vodka pairs well with seasonal cranberry juice -- opt for the sugar-free variety for a lighter recipe.


  • 4 oz. cran-raspberry juice
  • 2 oz. Skinnygirl Bare Naked Vodka
  • 1/4 oz. fresh lime juice
  • Raspberries, to garnish
  • Rosemary sprigs, to garnish
  • Edible green with a red stem, such as a beet leaf, to garnish

In a shaker filled with ice, shake together the juice and vodka. Add lime juice. Serve on the rocks. Garnish with raspberries, fresh rosemary sprigs, and a beet leaf.

Calories: 152

Recipe courtesy of Skinnygirl

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Grand Marnier Raspberry Peach

Raise a glass with this tasty twist on plain ol' champagne, perfect for all those wishing merriment and good cheer. Party guests will love the berry flavor, and a little bubbly never hurt anyone.


  • 1 oz. Grand Marnier Raspberry Peach
  • 1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 oz. simple syrup
  • Splash of Moet & Chandon champagne
  • Lemon twist, to garnish

Combine all ingredients in a shaker, except the champagne, and shake. Pour into a flute and top with champagne. Garnish with lemon twist.

Calories: 170

Recipe courtesy of Grand Marnier

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Gin and It

Sip on this at your office get-together for a hint of sweetness paired with your typical holiday spices. The bitters include notes of clove, cinnamon, and nutmeg, ideal for any holiday hangout.


  • 1 1/2 oz. Tanqueray gin
  • 1 oz. sweet vermouth
  • 2 dashes DeGroff's pimento bitters
  • Lemon zest, to garnish

Build over ice in an old-fashioned glass and stir. Garnish with lemon zest.

Calories: 149

Recipe courtesy of Dale DeGroff, cocktail expert and president of the Museum of the American Cocktail

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Cinnamon Latte Martini

After building that epic snowman, revive your fingers and toes with this latte-inspired cocktail, minus the dairy. The coffee liqueur and ZICO coconut water provide a caffeine boost so you can move onto gift-wrapping without missing a jingle-belled beat.


  • 3 oz. ZICO Latte
  • 1/2 oz. cinnamon schnapps
  • 1/2 oz. coffee liqueur
  • 1 oz. vodka
  • Cinnamon stick, to garnish

Combine in a shaker with ice and shake. Serve in martini glass. Garnish with cinnamon stick.

Calories: 189

Recipe courtesy of ZICO

Originally published on, December 2013.

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Excellent ideas for all year long!

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