Mourning Mexico, I mean, winter, with a Bloody Mary

I’ve been on hiatus a while, mourning the fact that my trip to Mexico is long over, and reliving said trip by repeatedly drinking mojitos and diet & rums with lime while pretending I can hear the ocean. No, it’s true, but I’m sure that’s not why you’re here, so I’ll move along.

Squaring away my first mojito on the beach.

Squaring away my first mojito (using liquid Stevia) on the beach in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

But the beach… okay, fine.

I’ve been on a Bloody Mary kick more recently, so I thought I’d talk to ya’ll about it a bit. This particular kick seems to happen every winter-to-spring transition time, where I just can’t fucking stand the sight of my down jackets anymore and it won’t stop snowing. I think it’s some kind of weird byproduct of my genetic desire to hibernate while in reality, I still have to leave the house. Regardless, I’ve done a little digging on the nutritional makeup of a Bloody Mary for ya’ll, and good news: this one’s got a lot of healthy qualities to it, so best get drinking.

The Bloody Mary, very obviously, begins with a tomato juice-like base. Depending on one’s preferred flavor profile, you might use a tomato juice concentrate or tomato juice (like a basic Campbell’s Tomato Juice) – or something like V8 Juice. Which one you choose largely has implications for calorie count, but in general the carb and sugar counts are about the same for each: for about 4 ounces of juice, you’re looking at roughly 10 carbs (which doesn’t make this recipe zero carb, but it’s close) and about 6 grams of sugar. V8 Juice has a little more fiber than tomato juice, so that could be factored in to a diabetic equation, as well. This is probably the first beverage I’ve written up that has any added sugar at all in it.

I should also note that I typically buy the low sodium version of Campbell’s tomato juice for my drinks… tomato juice and its ilk, such as Clamato Juice, are very high in sodium and that can be an issue for some folks. Low sodium options don’t especially change the flavor, but allow you to choose the flavor level you prefer while avoiding some additives.

The Bloody Mary typically uses vodka as its basic liquor, and straight vodka is very low calorie and should have no residual sugar. If you like your drinks spicy, a chili- or other spice-infused vodka would be interesting (you’re on your own with that bc spicy shit makes me miserable). The rest of the ingredients in a Bloody Mary are largely up to you, and most won’t affect a carb count (unless you decide to garnish with 50 olives, 10 pieces of bacon, etc., which might require dosing for fat or protein). I’ve listed some options below (my photo has a turkey jerkey garnish).

A caution: many restaurants and bars use mixes to make Bloody Mary drinks, which makes them a little harder to assess, carb- & sugar-wise. However, Bloody Mary mixes are often just combinations of tomato juice, tabasco and spices – and, many places also carry straight tomato juice, so my recommendation is to ask what’s in the drink before you order. Find out if they are using a mix, and if so, what the ingredients are – and if you think there’s too much of something troublesome in it, ask then if they would make you something using tomato juice instead, and then add your own spice combination. I’ve never had any trouble over this, so it probably happens with some frequency.

The Bloody Mary, with a turkey jerkey garnish.

The Bloody Mary, with a turkey jerkey garnish.

The Bloody Mary (~10g carb & ~6g sugar per serving)

Ingredients:

  • 4-6 oz low sodium tomato juice or V8 juice, depending on your preference
  • 2 oz vodka
  • 1/2 fresh squeezed lemon
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce (modify depending on preference)
  • Additional spices, up to you on quantity – also can be used to rim glass:
    • Fresh lime
    • Ground black pepper
    • Horseradish
    • Hot sauce or Tabasco
    • Flavored salt (I have fancy lime-flavored salt and I crush a little bit in mine)
  • Options for garnish:
    • Olive(s)
    • Celery stick(s)
    • Bacon (I’m using turkey jerky in my photo)
    • Shrimp
    • Banana peppers
    • Other vegetables, like tomatoes

Directions:

  • Combine spices and lemon juice in small dish and use masher to blend spices in with lemon juice
  • Add vodka to mixture and blend again, to ensure spices are well distributed into liquid and melding with the liquid
  • Pour spices, lemon juice and vodka into cocktail shaker – add tomato juice and Worcestershire Sauce, and 3-4 ice cubes and shake well
  • Strain into a ~10 oz glass filled with ice
  • Rim glass with spices if you desire, using lemon juice
  • Garnish with your favorite items and enjoy

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