According to Kim Haasarud, mixologist, founder of beverage consultancy Liquid Architecture and author of 101 Margaritas, a regular margarita contains about 330 calories. "If you're using store-bought margarita mixes, it may be even more than that, since they're loaded with preservatives and sugar," she said.
So what's a girl to do? Haasarud offers these simple suggestions and substitutions for making skinny margaritas:
"The best margaritas are made with fresh-squeezed lime juice -- it's low in calories and tastes much better," Haasarud said.
Haasarud recommends ditching unnecessary sugar in your margarita by eliminating the modifier (think triple sec). "You can always add a squeeze of fresh orange for a kick of orange flavor."
In lieu of simple syrup in a margarita, Haasarud suggests using agave nectar. Not only does it have about 20% fewer calories than simple syrup, but it's also a natural margarita complement since it comes from the same plant used to produce tequila. "I like using it much better than sugar," Haasarud said.
Look for agave nectar and sugar-free sweeteners (including triple sec flavor) by Monin, available at some grocers and online.
Another sugar substitute Haasarud recommends is Splenda. Grossed out by the aftertaste? Haasarud has a solution. "Add freshly-squeezed lime juice to mask the flavor."
Now that you know the skinny margarita guidelines, check out this simple and low-calorie skinny margarita recipe from Haasarud:
Total calories: 220 calories
Note: Substitute the agave nectar for sugar-free sweetener (try Splenda or Monin Sugar-Free Triple Sec) for a 140-calorie version of the drink. Not bad!
Mixologist and Herradura Tequila brand ambassador Mark Drew recommends this light, low-calorie margarita as the perfect cocktail for spring. Check it out!
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