Mint Julep Mocktail Recipe

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Mint Julep Mocktail Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 16, 2024


The Mint Julep is a classic Southern cocktail traditionally made with bourbon, sugar, water, crushed or shaved ice, and fresh mint. As a non-alcoholic version, the Mint Julep Mocktail retains the refreshing qualities of the original, making it a favorite for those who prefer a booze-free option or for enjoying at events where alcohol may not be suitable. It's particularly popular during the Kentucky Derby, but its refreshing nature makes it a hit for summer parties and gatherings.

How Mint Julep Mocktail Tastes?

This Mint Julep Mocktail is a symphony of freshness with a minty aroma that tickles the senses. It's sweet, but not cloying, with a subtle herbal undertone from the mint. The crushed ice makes it incredibly refreshing and perfect for cooling down on a hot day.

Interesting facts about Mint Julep Mocktail

  • The Mint Julep was originally a medicinal concoction used to soothe stomach ailments.
  • The use of silver or pewter cups is traditional for serving Mint Juleps, as they frost up beautifully when filled with the crushed ice.
  • The Mint Julep became the official drink of the Kentucky Derby in 1938.


Fresh Mint Leaves

Using 0.5oz of mint is just the right amount to infuse the drink with a refreshing aroma without overwhelming the palate. Think of the leaves as the green flag that starts the race—without them, you're just watching cars on a track. Skimp on the mint, and you might as well sip sugar water.

Mary Mitkina


A tablespoon of sugar sweetens the pot—the mint's Romeo, if you will. It balances the herbs and the 'bourbon' beautifully. Too little, and it's like tea time with no biscuits; too much, and you're in Candyland.

Mary Mitkina


2oz of water helps dissolve the sugar, turning it into a simple syrup with the minty twist. It's the mediator that ensures peace talks between the sweet and the herbaceous. Without water, you're left with a grainy undiplomatic mocktail.

Alex Green

Non-Alcoholic Bourbon Alternative

2oz of this libation imposter gives you the warm flavors of a bourbon without the buzz. Like a body double in a film, it's there to make you believe in the story without any of the risks. No alt-bourbon? You'd have a minty lemonade entering a horse race.

Mary Mitkina

Crushed Ice

Enough to fill your glass, crushed ice turns your drink into a frosty wonderland. It chills the drink rapidly, marrying the ingredients into a cold treasure. Without it, it's like going sledding on a grassy hill—just not the same thrill.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Mint Julep Mocktail Drink

  1. Muddle the fresh mint leaves with sugar and water in a julep cup or a highball glass to release the mint oils.
  2. Fill the glass with crushed ice.
  3. Pour the non-alcoholic bourbon alternative over the ice.
  4. Stir until the glass becomes frosty.
  5. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint and optionally, a slice of lemon.

Pro Tips

  • Slapping the mint sprig between your hands before garnishing releases more aroma and makes the drink more fragrant.
  • Always use fresh ice made from pure, filtered water for the best taste and appearance.
  • Chill the glass before building the drink to keep it colder for longer.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Southern Comfort Food: The minty freshness complements the rich flavors of dishes like barbecued meats, fried chicken, or macaroni and cheese.
  • Desserts: Try it with chocolate-based desserts or fruit tarts to balance the sweetness with the mint's cooling effect.
  • Salads: A mint julep mocktail would go wonderfully with a fresh green salad, particularly one that incorporates fruits like pear or apple, to play with sweet and bright flavors.

Drink Pairings

  • Iced Tea: Serve alongside unsweetened iced tea for a non-alcoholic beverage station with a variety of options.
  • Sparkling Water: For those who prefer a lighter drink, combining it with a seltzer or sparkling water adds effervescence and dilutes the sweetness slightly.

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What you could change in Mint Julep Mocktail

  • If you can't find a non-alcoholic bourbon alternative, you can use non-alcoholic rum or a simple syrup infused with oak chips for a similar flavor profile.
  • For a sugar substitute, try using honey or agave syrup for a different sweetness.

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And of course - twists🍹

Cucumber Freshness Twist

Ingredients: Substitute 1 oz of water with cucumber juice. Recipe: Muddle mint as usual, but with cucumber juice for an extra crisp note. Follow the rest of the recipe and garnish with cucumber slices. Flavor: Adds a garden-fresh twist, perfect for those extra hot days when you want your drinks as refreshing as a dip in the pool.

Sparkling Mint Julep Mocktail

Ingredients: Top with sparkling water instead of regular water. Recipe: Muddle, mix, then top off with a burst of bubbles before garnishing. Flavor: Introduces a playful fizz to the party, for those who like to dance on their palate with every sip.

Ginger Zing Julep

Ingredients: Add a dash of ginger syrup to the muddling process. Recipe: Follow the standard instructions, adding the ginger zing. Stir generously. Flavor: Brings a warm spiciness to the mocktail, creating a zesty twist for those who enjoy a little kick in their step.

In case you forgot basics how to make Mint Julep Mocktail

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

The key to proper muddling is to crush the ingredients just enough to release their flavors and not overdo it. Over-muddling can result in a bitter taste, especially with herbs.

Learn everything on how to muddle

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Mint Julep Mocktail

Can I make a large batch of Mint Julep Mocktail for parties?

Absolutely! Just multiply the ingredients by the number of servings you need and mix them in a large pitcher. Add the crushed ice to individual glasses when ready to serve to prevent dilution.

What kind of glassware is traditionally used for a Mint Julep?

A Mint Julep is traditionally served in a silver or pewter cup, but a highball glass or a Collins glass can also be used if these are not available.

Is there a specific type of mint that's best for a Mint Julep Mocktail?

Spearmint is typically preferred for its sweet and milder flavor. However, any fresh mint can be used according to your taste preference.

How can I make the Mint Julep Mocktail vegan-friendly?

The Mint Julep Mocktail recipe provided is already vegan-friendly. Just make sure to use vegan sugar if you're concerned about bone char processing.

What are some occasion-appropriate times to serve a Mint Julep Mocktail?

Apart from the Kentucky Derby, it's great for garden parties, bridal showers, baby showers, or any warm-weather gathering where a refreshing, non-alcoholic beverage is in demand.

How long in advance can I prepare the non-alcoholic bourbon infusion for the mocktail?

You can prepare the non-alcoholic bourbon infusion up to a week in advance. Store it in a sealed container in the refrigerator to maintain its flavors.

What can be used as a garnish for a Mint Julep Mocktail besides fresh mint?

Lemon or lime wheels, fresh berries, or a sprinkle of powdered sugar can also make attractive and tasty garnishes for this mocktail.

How do I crush ice at home if I don't have a machine for it?

Place ice cubes in a sturdy bag and use a rolling pin or mallet to crush them to the desired consistency.

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