Pool Party Punch +making drinks for a crowd


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Story time.  I used to live in Hawaii.  When I was getting ready to graduate college, I decided didn’t want to stay in San Francisco.  While San Francisco is obviously a great place to find a job, I was just ready for a change.  But you know what, I really didn’t want to go back to Ventura either.  Let me preface this with Ventura is a great town, and I actually ended up back there after my little tropical detour.  I just didn’t want to go back at that point.  I had worked a ton in college, almost 40 hours a week, plus you know the whole college thing.  And you know what, I wanted to have some fun!  So totally on a whim, about 2 months before graduation I decided I was moving to Hawaii.  I bought a plane ticket and found a long term vacation rental studio apartment type place.  And so after graduation, off I went.

2007_0630(010)2007_0812(004)I lived in Hawaii for 3 years.  It was an amazing experience, I gained a very best friend.

DSC00357And brought home one fantastic souvenir.

DSCF0516Isn’t he cute?  P.S. This picture makes me feel so old because we look soooo young!

I also found a love of sweet juicy cocktails.  Think mai tais, my very favorite.  But also hawaiian punches, and well a few more mai tais.  Oops.  Sweet juicy cocktails, however, while delicious are baaaaad for you!  I’ve seen a mai tai can be anywhere from 250-620 calories.  Yikes!  I think a lot of my late 20s was spent realizing just how bad some of the foods I enjoyed in my early 20s really were for me.  And mai tais were definitely one major contributor of my weight gain.

mai tai

But you guys, I can not just drink a vodka soda.  Can. Not.  It’s so boring.  I know some people like them, but they are just not my drink.  So I have since been on a quest to find fruity, sweet, juicy cocktails to replace my beloved mai tai.  Which I will still enjoy, just now only on vacation.  And this recipe you guys is not only a great mai tai replacement, but a fantastic pool side drink for a party.  It is so easy to make in large batches.  And best of all, it’s only 92 calories per drink!  That’s less than half the lowest calorie mai tai.  Score!

pool party punch

Like this container?  I have used it for SO many events!  Find it here!  The second container has peach infused water, so you can keep yourself hydrated between cocktails 😉 

Pool Party Punch
Large Batch
Serves: 10
  • 1 59 oz bottle light juice- I used Minute Maid Light Mango Passion Fruit Drink
  • 1 33.8 oz bottle flavored sparkling water- I used strawberry
  • ½ bottle of vodka- a standard fifth size bottle
  1. Mix and drink responsibly.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 10 oz Calories: 92

Pool Party Punch
Single serving
Serves: 1
  • 6 oz- light juice- I used Minute Maid Light Mango Passion Fruit Drink
  • 3 oz- flavored sparkling water- I used strawberry
  • 1 shot- 1.5 oz- vodka
  1. Over ice add vodka and juice, stir.
  2. Top with sparkling water
Calories a touch more for this recipe because the large batch recipe has a bit more than an ounce of vodka, but a bit less than a full shot.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 10 Calories: 108

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Making drinks for a crowd

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  • Select a good variety- Here’s a good rule of thumb for what to have

    • Two types of beer- a light and a heavier imported.
    • Two types of wine- a white and a red.  I also usually include champagne as well because, well you know.
    • Mixed drinks- I like to make a large batch of a signature cocktail.  Instead of having all the different liquor options and mixer options.  Signature cocktails can be themed in flavor, ingredients or color to go with the party.  Apple Cider Sangria for Thanksgiving dinner.  Mimosa bar for a new years party or a brunch event.  Or a blue drink for a baby shower.  A red drink for a wedding shower. You get the idea.
    • Don’t forget some sort of non-alcoholic option for anyone who does not drink, or just something to have between drinks.  Something like peach infused water is great.  wink wink
  • Make enough- Ok here’s a good formula.  Plan that each guest will have one drink per hour.  Then add one.  So if your party is going to be from noon to 4pm.  That’s 4 hours, so you’ll plan 5 drinks per person.  This is a good average, some will have just 2 drinks, but some will have more.  Just my husband’s friends? No?
    • So you have 20 guests coming, for a 4 hour party.  You’re looking at 100 drinks.  Now obviously you can adjust the numbers based on who is coming to your party and the time of day, but again, here’s a good estimate

      • 4- 12 packs- 2 flavors- 48 beers
      • 6 bottles of wine- again 2 flavors- 24 glasses
      • 2.5 gallons of your mixed drink- which comes out to about 30, 10 oz portions.  This would be 3 batches of the above large batch recipe.  So you’ll need 3 bottles of juice, 3 bottles of sparkling water and 1 1/2 bottles of vodka.  Whatever could you do with the extra vodka?
      • That’s 102 portions.
  • Then make extra- ok see what we did above?  Great now add one or two of everything.  1 more 12 pack.  1 more of each bottle of wine.  And one more pitcher pool party punch- 2
    your mixed drink.  Whenever I’m doing a mixed drink I make a pretty huge
    portion, then I make an extra pitcher and keep it stashed in the fridge.  The worst thing is running out of drinks.  Extra is always better.
  • Keep it cold- I’m talking about your mixed drink here.  Beer and wine you can use the tried and true on ice method.  One of the trickiest things is keeping a large batch of a cocktail cold for an extended period of time, oh say the length of a pool party?  While said drinks are sitting out in the sun?  So you’re probably thinking, ice.  Right?  And of course, ice works, but as it sits it melts.  So you add more.  And it melts again.  And so on.  So your drink is getting increasingly watered down, which is no fun!  Tricky indeed.  But here’s the thing, it’s actually not hard, just takes about 3 seconds of pre-planning.  Fill a ziploc bag carefully with some of your juice and let freeze, preferably over night.  When ready to serve your drink, peel ziploc bag away from frozen block of juice and drop in your container.

Now, what are you sitting here for?  It’s Saturday, go enjoy the last weekend of summer, and don’t forget the sunscreen!  See you tomorrow with another fantastic, it’s-so-hot-out-I-need-a-cold-drink vodka cocktail!

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This recipe for pool party punch was originally posted by A Foodie’s Diet for Me.

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