Recipe: Sparkling Cucumber Cooler

The 10-Minute Happy Hour

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For some reason, with the warm weather also comes a plethora of sweet cocktails. But if you like your drinks dry — which is to say, the opposite of sweet — then you're going to love my new must-have mixer behind the bar, not to mention this sparkling cucumber cocktail.

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I recently discovered Dry Soda when grocery shopping and was intrigued by the low calories. I'm not huge on diet substitutes but there was no weird sugar substitute in the ingredients — just pure cane sugar. I figured I could do with skipping some calories, and in general, I like my drinks on the dry side anyway. It seemed like a win-win to me.

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While I'm not a soda drinker, I do like the bubbles. The cloying sweetness of some sodas can kill a cocktail, and I find diet sodas leave an unpleasant aftertaste. I love the idea of a gin and tonic, but even that simple cocktail can be a little sweet for me.

I decided to try the Dry Cucumber Soda with gin and a squeeze of lime, which resulted in my cucumber cooler cocktail. It showcases fresh cucumber and mint and delivers a crisp cool sip without all the sugar. Serve alongside some raita and pita for a refreshing happy hour in under 10 minutes.

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Dry Cucumber Cooler Cocktail

Serves 2

6 ounces gin
2 wedges of lime
1 can of Dry Cucumber Soda or other cucumber soda
4 cucumber thin slices, sliced from the cucumber lengthwise and as thin as possible
2 to 4 fresh mint leaves

In two tall glasses filled with ice, combine the gin, cucumber soda and cucumber slices. Squeeze a wedge of lime into each glass and stir. Bruise a mint leaf or two and drop into each glass.

Recipe Notes

  • If you can't find cucumber soda, you can use a cucumber gin like Hendricks, club soda, and increase your cucumber peels to 3 per glass.

(Image credits: Maureen Petrosky)

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