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Grapefruit Paloma Mocktail

This delicious Paloma mocktail is a refreshing Mexican drink the whole family will love. It has a fresh citrus taste and sweet-tart flavor. Enjoy it any time of the year, but it’s especially thirst-quenching on a hot summer day.

Looking for more non-alcoholic drinks? Try my watermelon slushie mocktail, green piña colada smoothie, or lavender lemonade.

Traditional palomas are a tequila-based cocktail made with grapefruit soda, agave syrup, and tart lime juice. Zero-proof Palomas taste just like the classic Paloma but can be enjoyed by all since there’s no alcohol in this non-alcoholic drink recipe.

What You’ll Love About This Recipe

  • Affordable – This non-alcoholic version doesn’t use any N/A tequila alternatives which can get expensive.  
  • Simple – My virgin Paloma recipe is made with a homemade grapefruit-flavored soda and uses only a few simple ingredients.
  • Refreshing – A refreshing drink that can be enjoyed any time of year: Cinco de Mayo, taco Tuesday, dry January, Valentine’s Day, or any day. It just may become your new favorite drink!

Ingredients

Here’s what you’ll need to make this Paloma mocktail recipe:

  • Grapefruit simple syrup – homemade syrup made with organic cane sugar, water, and fresh grapefruit.
  • Fresh grapefruit juice – juice from either fresh pomelos or pink grapefruit.
  • Sparkling water or club soda.
  • Fresh lime juice.
  • Sea salt rim (optional). You could also do a sugar rim and leave it bare.

How to Make A Paloma Mocktail: Step By Step

Here are some quick visual instructions. The full instructions and ingredient list will be in the printable recipe card below!

1. Salt the rim of your glass (optional).

2. Mix the juice and simple syrup.

3. Add ice and sparkling water. Serve with a lime wedge or slice of grapefruit.

Helpful Tips

  • For the best flavor, serve in a chilled glass on the rocks.
  • The color may vary depending on the variety of grapefruit you use. For a deeper pink hue, use Rio Red and Star grapefruit as these have red pulp. 

Quick Tip: Serving this grapefruit juice mocktail at a party? Make a larger batch and serve it in a large pitcher with fresh slices of lime and grapefruit.

Storage

This recipe only serves one so you likely won’t have any left over.

Making a large batch? Store the juice and simple syrup in an airtight container. When ready to serve, add ice and sparkling water. If separation occurs with the juice mixture, shake or stir it before adding it to your glass.

Make It Your Way: Substitutions & Variations

Please remember that recipes are just a starting point.

How can you make this non-alcoholic paloma recipe using what you already have? Here are some ideas…

  • No club soda or sparkling water? – you can also use mineral water, but the carbonation won’t be as intense.
  • Make a grapefruit rosemary mocktail – use fresh rosemary infused simple syrup instead of the grapefruit simple syrup or add a sprig of rosemary to your mocktail.
  • Make a spicy paloma mocktail – line the rim of the glass with tajin or add a couple of slices of jalapeno to infuse the flavor into your drink.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the flavor of a Paloma?

It has a tart, sweet, tangy flavor. The most predominant flavor is grapefruit juice with hints of lime.

What’s the difference between a Margarita and a Paloma?

Although traditional Margaritas and Palomas contain a few of the same ingredients, they have a different flavor. Margaritas are sweet and sour whereas Palomas are more citrus-forward with a subtle sweetness.

More Non-Alcoholic Drinks

I hope you love this Paloma Mocktail! If you make it, be sure to leave a comment & a star rating so I know how you liked it!

Grapefruit Paloma Mocktail

5 from 2 votes
Glasses of grapefruit paloma mocktails on a wooden cutting boards with fresh lime slices and grapefruit slices.
This delicious Paloma mocktail is a refreshing Mexican drink the whole family will love. It has a fresh citrus taste and sweet-tart flavor. Enjoy it any time of the year, but it's especially thirst-quenching on a hot summer day.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Serving Size 1 mocktail

Ingredients
 

  • ¼ cup fresh grapefruit juice 2 ounces
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice 1 ounce
  • 2-3 tablespoons grapefruit simple syrup see notes below
  • ice
  • sparkling water
  • lime and/or grapefruit slices for serving

Instructions

  • Salt the rim of the glass by rubbing a grapefruit or lime wedge around the edge and dipping it into a small plate of flaky salt. (Optional)
  • Mix the grapefruit juice, lime juice, and grapefruit simple syrup in the bottom of the glass until well combined.
  • Add ice and fill the glass the rest of the way with sparkling water. Serve with a lime wedge or slice of grapefruit.

Notes

The grapefruit simple syrup doesn’t have a 1:1 ratio of sugar to liquid so it isn’t as sweet as many simple syrups. Add more if needed.

Make It Your Way: Substitutions & Variations

No club soda or sparkling water? – you can also use mineral water, but the carbonation won’t be as intense.
Make a grapefruit rosemary mocktail – use fresh rosemary infused simple syrup instead of the grapefruit simple syrup or add a sprig of rosemary to your mocktail.
Make a spicy paloma mocktail – line the rim of the glass with tajin or add a couple of slices of jalapeno to infuse the flavor into your drink.

2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I made this for a Sunday brunch to go with blue corn pinion pancakes, a green chili quiche with bacon and onions and a yogurt, fresh berry granola bar It was surprisingly good, not too sweet and not too tart. I used 2 TBS of the grapefruit simple syrup per serving. It was a hit with the attendees. I will definitely keep this recipe for future use.

    1. Lindsey Jenkins says:

      Wow, what a feast! Thanks for taking the time to leave a rating and review, Erin! Glad to hear it was loved by all. 🙂

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