Cocktails Without Citrus

Cocktails are a popular drink choice for many, but not everyone enjoys the taste of citrus in their drinks.

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Whether it’s due to personal preference or allergies, there are many reasons why someone might want to avoid citrus in their cocktails. Luckily, there are plenty of delicious mixed drink options that don’t require citrus.

Classic cocktails like the Old Fashioned, Manhattan, and Martini can all be made without citrus. These drinks rely on the flavor of the spirits and other ingredients, such as bitters and vermouth, to create a delicious cocktail. However, there are also many other options for those who want to try something new. From spicy margaritas to creamy White Russians, there are plenty of cocktails without citrus to choose from.

Creating a citrus-free cocktail program can be a challenge for bartenders, but it’s also an opportunity to get creative with ingredients. By using herbs, spices, and other flavorful ingredients, bartenders can create unique and delicious cocktails that are sure to please any palate. Whether you’re a bartender looking to expand your repertoire or simply someone who wants to try something new, there are plenty of options for cocktails without citrus.

Understanding Cocktails Without Citrus

Cocktails without citrus are becoming increasingly popular, both for those with taste preferences that don’t include citrus and for those who want to try something new.


Classic cocktails like the Margarita, Daiquiri, and Sidecar all rely on citrus for their unique flavor, but there are many other cocktails that can be made without citrus.

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Bartenders have been experimenting with different ingredients to create cocktails that are just as delicious without citrus. Some of the most popular ingredients used in cocktails without citrus include herbs, spices, and fruits like berries and pomegranate. Bartenders have also been using vinegar and shrubs to add acidity to cocktails without using citrus.

One of the benefits of cocktails without citrus is the ability to create unique flavor combinations that are not possible with citrus. Bartenders can experiment with different ingredients to create cocktails that are tailored to their customers’ taste preferences. For those who don’t like the taste of citrus, cocktails without citrus are a great alternative.

Popular Non-Citrus Cocktails

When it comes to cocktails, citrus fruits like lemon and lime are often used to add a tangy flavor.

However, not everyone likes citrus in their drinks. Luckily, there are plenty of delicious non-citrus cocktails to choose from. Below are some of the most popular ones.


The martini is a classic cocktail that has been around for over a century. It is made with gin or vodka and vermouth, and is often garnished with an olive or a twist of lemon.


The drink is typically served in a chilled glass and is a popular choice on cocktail menus.


The margarita is a tequila-based cocktail that is often served with a salt rim. While the classic version of the drink includes lime juice, there are plenty of non-citrus variations to choose from. For example, some margaritas are made with grapefruit juice or pomegranate juice instead of lime.

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The daiquiri is a rum-based cocktail that is typically made with lime juice and sugar. However, there are plenty of non-citrus variations to try. For example, a strawberry daiquiri is made with fresh strawberries and sugar, while a banana daiquiri is made with banana liqueur and cream.

Mint Julep

The mint julep is a refreshing cocktail that is perfect for hot summer days. It is made with bourbon, sugar, and fresh mint, and is typically served in a silver or pewter cup. While the classic version of the drink includes a splash of citrus juice, there are plenty of non-citrus variations to choose from.

Beer Cocktails

Beer cocktails are a popular choice for those who want a refreshing drink without the sweetness of a traditional cocktail. There are plenty of non-citrus options to choose from, such as the beer margarita (made with beer, tequila, and limeade) or the shandy (made with beer and lemonade).

Creating Non-Citrus Cocktails at Home

If you’re looking for a delicious cocktail without citrus, you’re in luck. There are plenty of recipes out there that don’t rely on lemon or lime juice for their flavor.


Here are some easy and quick recipes, as well as unique flavor combinations to try at home.

Easy and Quick Recipes

For those who want to whip up a cocktail without much effort, there are plenty of options. One classic is the Old Fashioned, which is made with whiskey, bitters, sugar, and water. Another easy recipe is a simple Gin and Tonic, which can be made with gin, tonic water, and a slice of cucumber for a refreshing twist.

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If you’re looking for something a little more unique, try a Spiced Rum and Apple Cider. This recipe calls for spiced rum, apple cider, and a cinnamon stick for a cozy fall drink. You can also try a Moscow Mule, which is made with vodka, ginger beer, and a squeeze of lime (but you can easily omit the lime for a citrus-free version).

Unique Flavor Combinations

For those who want to experiment with unique flavor combinations, there are plenty of options. Try a Cucumber and Mint Martini, which is made with cucumber-infused vodka, fresh mint, and a splash of vermouth. Another unique option is a Coconut Margarita, which is made with coconut milk, tequila, and agave nectar.

If you’re feeling adventurous, try a Beet and Basil Cocktail. This recipe calls for beet juice, gin, basil, and a splash of soda water for a refreshing and earthy drink. You can also try a Pineapple and Sage Cocktail, which is made with fresh pineapple juice, gin, sage, and a splash of club soda for a tropical twist.

No matter what your taste preferences are, there are plenty of non-citrus cocktails out there to try at home. Whether you’re looking for easy and quick recipes or unique flavor combinations, there’s something for everyone.

Please drink responsibly, be fully accountable with your alcohol consumption, and show others respect.

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Paul Kushner

Written by Paul Kushner

Founder and CEO of MyBartender. Graduated from Penn State University. He always had a deep interest in the restaurant and bar industry. His restaurant experience began in 1997 at the age of 14 as a bus boy. By the time he turned 17 he was serving tables, and by 19 he was bartending/bar managing 6-7 nights a week.

In 2012, after a decade and a half of learning all facets of the industry, Paul opened his first restaurant/bar. In 2015, a second location followed, the latter being featured on The Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

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