Mai tais are a vibrant citrus cocktail that makes for a refreshing summer drink. However, if you want to get the tropical taste of a mai tai without any alcoholic content, then this simple recipe will do the trick.
To make a virgin mai tai, all you need to do is mix orange juice, pineapple juice, lemon juice, and lime juice, top it with grenadine and lime seltzer, then garnish with an orange slice, pineapple wedge, or any other fruit of your choice.
The result is a delicious, sweet, and fruity drink that everyone can try, even the kids. Read on to learn how to make a virgin mai tai cocktail, what ingredients you need, and more.
How to Make a Virgin Mai Tai Cocktail
This recipe takes 2 steps: mixing and serving. The first step requires mixing the juices together. It is important to store the juice mixture in the fridge until you are ready to serve the drinks.
Once you are ready to serve the drinks, fill a glass halfway with the juice mix, then top it with grenadine and seltzer. Add a fruit garnish of your choice and serve.
Serving and Storing Virgin Mai Tai Cocktails
Serving these virgin mai tais is very simple. Fill a glass with ice and the juice mixture, top with grenadine and seltzer, garnish, and serve. Just be sure the juice mixture is chilled ahead of time, as mai tais are meant to be served cold.
Storing this is also pretty simple since it does not have alcoholic content. If you have leftover juice mixture, just store it in the fridge. You can drink it just as a juice mix or make some more virgin mai tais the next day.
Most of the ingredients in a virgin mai tai are similar to those found in an alcoholic mai tai, the only difference being that this recipe skips the alcohol. The majority of the ingredients are citrus fruit juices, which you can either buy or squeeze fresh at home yourself.
The idea here is to recreate the flavor using nonalcoholic ingredients. Here’s a list of what ingredients you will need and why you need them:
- Orange juice: Mai tais are known for their orange color and flavor, so orange juice is a must. If possible, try to use fresh squeezed orange juice. However, if you cannot do so, pulp free orange juice works well.
- Pineapple juice: Unlike the other juices listed for this recipe, you can use canned pineapple juice for this recipe.
- Lemon juice: Fresh squeezed lemon juice is best for making the flavor of the drinks more vibrant.
- Lime juice: If you can squeeze from fresh limes, it will also help improve the flavor of the recipe.
- Grenadine: This is a red pomegranate and orange blossom syrup that sweetens drinks. It can be replaced with pomegranate juice and some sweetener of your choice.
- Lime seltzer: This will provide a little fizz to your drink. You can use lemon seltzer or sparkling water as an alternative as well.
For making this recipe, you will need measuring cups, a teaspoon, and a pitcher for your juice mix. When serving this recipe, you may use whatever serving glasses you like. You could even use a mason jar, if you wanted to.
As this is a nonalcoholic drink, it is not required to use any fancy mixers or tools that a bartender would use. However, if you have experience using these and have these tools readily available, you can certainly attempt to make virgin mai tais with bartending tools. It could be a fun thing to try at a party in front of your guests.
Tips and Tricks
If you do not have lime seltzer, you can replace it with lemon seltzer or sparkling water. You can also replace grenadine with pomegranate juice.
For a more classic mai tai flavor, add 2 teaspoons of almond extract to your virgin cocktails.
What does a mai tai taste like?
A mai tai is known for being fruity and sweet. It typically has a strong citrus flavor with a splash of pomegranate in it.
Are mai tais from Thailand?
It is commonly thought that that mai tais come from Thailand, but they were actually invented by Victor J. Bergeron in New York.
What color should a mai tai be?
Mai tais are usually orange with a little red on the top, creating a sunset gradient. The grenadine is what provides the red color in contrast with the orange of the fruit juices.
What garnish should I use for a mai tai?
Answer: You can use orange slices, lime slices, and even pineapple wedges. People often add a cherry to the drink as well. Feel free to experiment with whatever fruit garnish you desire.
Is grenadine cherry syrup?
Grenadine is commonly mistaken for cherry syrup, but it is actually made from pomegranate juice and orange blossom. You can make a grenadine substitute at home using pomegranate juice and some sweetener if you do not have any grenadine.
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Nothing is more refreshing than a yummy, cold drink on a hot summer day. With this recipe, everyone can partake in this tasty treat. Keep any leftover juice mix in the fridge to drink with breakfast, or experiment with different fruit garnishes. No matter what you choose to do, the result will be delicious.