Meatless Monday - Holiday Cocktails

by Dianne Wenz

Vegans don’t like to celebrate or have fun, right? Wrong! Vegans love food, drink and celebrating just as much as everyone else! Veganism isn’t about depravation at all, it’s about celebrating life – the life of all living creatures.

You would think that all alcohol is vegan, but the truth is that some of it isn’t. Some beers and wines are filtered using gelatin or isinglass, which is the dried swim bladder of a fish. There are many, many beers and wines that are vegan though, and the website Barnivore is a good site to check for info. There are so many different brands in the world that it’s impossible it keep a comprehensive list, so if you’re really worried, the best thing to do is ask the company. With the exception a few types that contain honey or milk, most liqueurs are safe for vegan imbibing. Here are a few drinks that are perfect for your holiday celebrations!

Candy Cane Martini


  • 8 oz. vodka
  • 0.5 oz peppermint schnapps
  • 3 oz. sparkling water
  • Mini candy cane or starlight peppermint for garish


Pour the vodka, peppermint schnapps and sparkling water over ice in a cocktail shaker. Give it a quick shake, and then stir. Pour into martini glasses and garnish with a mini candy cane or a peppermint.

Makes 2 or 3 martinis depending on your glass size. 

Christmas Cosmos


  • 2 oz. vodka
  • 1 oz orange liqueur
  • 1 oz cranberry juice
  • Splash of lime juice
  • Lime slices and cranberries for garnish


Pour the vodka, orange liqueur, cranberry juice and lime juice over ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake until very cold and then strain into martini glasses. Garnish with cranberries on a cocktail pick and a slice of lime. 

Makes 2 or 3 martinis depending on your glass size.

This non-alcohol drink will please the teetotalers at your gathering, and they won’t feel like they’re being left out of the celebration.

Orange Ginger Sparkling Tea


  • 4 cups of Water
  • 4 Tea Bags, Black or Green Tea
  • 1 cup Orange Juice
  • 2 inch Piece of Ginger Root, peeled and sliced
  • 1/4 cup Agave Nectar
  • 1 liter Bottle of Sparkling Water
  • 2 oranges, sliced


  1. In a medium sized pan over medium-high heat, bring the water to a boil. Remove from heat and add the tea bags and agave nectar.  Let tea bags steep for 5 to 10 minutes and then remove.
  2. Blend the orange juice and ginger together in a blender.
  3. Mix the tea, orange juice and ginger, and sparkling water together in a pitcher.
  4. Serve over ice with orange slices for garnish.

Makes 6 to 8 glasses of tea.

Happy Holidays!