The Great Pretenders

Want to have some great non-alcoholic beverages to offer your friends and family this holiday season? We’ve got you covered. For many years, AAA has published “The Great Pretenders” holiday drink guide, with creative and delicious recipes.

Festive Peppermint Cocoa Cocktail

Submitted by Erle Webber – Executive Chef Formerly The Ritz-Carlton, Dearborn MI

  • 6 each peppermint stick candy or candy canes, crushed
  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 cup non-dairy powdered coffee creamer
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • Whipped cream/peppermint patty candy for garnish

Place 3 crushed peppermint sticks in a food processor until fine powder. Add sugar, creamer, and cocoa and pulse until mixed. Add 1/4 cup mix to 3/4 cup boiling water for each serving. Use remaining 3 crushed peppermint sticks to rim your glass. If you like, serve topped with whipped cream and garnish with a peppermint patty candy.

Mackinac Mock-hito

Submitted by Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island, MI


  • ginger ale
  • fresh limes
  • granulated brown sugar
  • fresh mint sprigs


For two drinks, cut one lime into 8 wedges. Place 2 lime wedges into a sturdy glass with 2-3 sprigs of mint and 1 tablespoon of brown sugar. Muddle until all the
sugar is absorbed into lime juice. Add 1/2 a glass of ice and ginger ale. Stir it so the muddled fruit and spice are mixed, then top o with more ginger ale. Garnish with sprigs of mint and 2 more lime wedges to serve. Repeat for the second glass.


Submitted by Irridescence, Detroit, MI


  • 1 oz. lemon juice
    1 oz. orange juice
    1 oz. pineapple juice
    2 oz. Vernor’s (or ginger ale) dash of grenadine
    orange slice


Mix ingredients, pour into glass. Add orange slice garnish.

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Happy Holidays!

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