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Paloma Mocktail

Time: 5 minutes
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This is the best non alcoholic Paloma Mocktail recipe out there. It’s a balance of grapefruit juice, tart lime, and sweet agave with a splash of non alcoholic tequila. It’s refreshing, low in calories, and dare I say better than the margarita.

Let me teach you how to make a refreshing paloma and help you choose the tequila that is right for you (I review 3 different non alcoholic options below).

If you love grapefruit, try my Grapefruit Ginger Beer Mocktail. Or if you’re interested in a margarita, try my Spicy Margarita Mocktail or Cranberry Margarita Mocktail.

A Paloma Mocktail with ice, salted rim, and garnished with lime and grapefruit. The drink is surrounded by it's ingredients and a long handled stirrer.

What is a Paloma?

The Paloma is a Mexican cocktail made with tequila, lime juice, and grapefruit soda. It is close cousins to the Margarita which has orange liqueur instead of grapefruit soda. The paloma is tart and sweet with floral notes from the grapefruit.

My recipe is the non alcoholic mocktail version. It swaps the tequila for non alcoholic tequila and the grapefruit soda for freshly squeezed juice and club soda. I also add agave syrup to really amp up the classic paloma flavors. It is authentic in flavor and a perfectly balanced mocktail. You’ll also love how…

  • it’s fun to make with few, simple ingredients and equipment
  • low in calories and relatively healthy (lot’s of vitamin C in this one)
  • has non alcoholic tequila, not just juices
  • you can easily make one or a whole pitcher
Close up of a non alcoholic paloma and it's garnish. Another drink is in the background with more limes and grapefruits on the side.

Paloma Mocktail Ingredients

Here’s what you will need to make a non alcoholic paloma. Each ingredient includes notes and recommended substitutions.

  • Non Alcoholic Tequila: I use Lyre’s Agave Blanco Spirit, it’s my personal favorite. But keep reading because I review different zero proof tequila options so you can decide which is best for you. You can also omit this and still have a really great Paloma Mocktail.
  • Grapefruit Juice: For the best flavor, use freshly squeezed juice. In a pinch you can use bottled 100% grapefruit juice.
  • Lime Juice: Again, freshly squeezed tastes the best.
  • Agave Syrup: Use light agave to add subtle sweetness and balance the bitter flavors. Alternatives are simple syrup or honey.
  • Club Soda: This balances the flavors while giving the paloma a light and bubbly fizz. You can use tonic water, mineral water, or any other complimenting flavor sparkling water in its place.
  • Optional Garnishes: grapefruit slice, lime slice, and flaky salt for the rim of the glass.

Equipment Needed

  • Glassware: Palomas are typically served in highball glasses but I use low ball glasses for mine. Really you can serve it in any type of glass you prefer.
  • Citrus Juicer: This makes hand juicing the grapefruit and lime so much easier. I recommend using a large handled juicer over handheld (grapefruits won’t fit in the small juicers).
  • Spoon/ Stirrer: I use long handled metal ones, like these.
  • Cocktail Pins: I use these to hold garnishes in place.
Ingredients. Non alcoholic tequila, grapefruit juice, lime juice, light agave syrup, club soda, grapefruit slices and lime slices.

How to Make a Paloma Mocktail

Here’s a quick summary on how to make a non alcoholic paloma, the recipe card below will have complete details.

1. RUB THE GLASS with a lime wedge and immediately roll the rim in flaky salt.

2. POUR in non alcoholic tequila, freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, lime juice, and light agave syrup. Give it a light stir before adding ice to the glass.

3. TOP IT OFF with club soda.

4. GARNISH with a grapefruit slice and lime slice.

What Is The Best Non Alcoholic Tequila?

If you are new to zero proof tequila, have no fear! I have tested quite a few and narrowed it down to my favorite three brands.

Keep in mind, all zero proof spirits are unique and some will taste better than others depending on your taste preferences. These are my honest recommendations and opinions, in no particular order.

1. Lyre’s Agave Blanco Spirit. It’s light and bright with citrus and agave notes. It has the peppery finish you get from alcohol, without being overwhelming on the tongue. It’s only 3 calories per serving, vegan, and allergen free.

2. Free Spirit’s Tequila. If you love mezcal, this one’s for you! It is on the smoky side with notes of agave, smoke, and dark oak. It does have vitamins B3 and B6 for energy, is naturally gluten free, and only 10 calories per serving.

3. Rital Zero Proof Tequila Alternative. This one is balance of the two above. It is citrusy and smokey with the peppery finish. It is 0 calories per serving, and the least expensive non alcoholic tequila I have found.

Not ready for zero proof tequila alternatives? No problem, just leave it out! This Paloma Mocktail tastes great without non alcoholic tequila.

Two Paloma Mocktails with grapefruit and limes around them. There is also a plate of salt for the rim of the glass and a long handled stirrer.

Mixology Tips for the BEST Paloma Mocktail

Taste test and adjust. Making mocktails at home means you can taste, adjust, and find a balance of flavors perfect for you. For a sweeter paloma, add more light agave syrup. If you want it tart, squeeze another half lime over the top. For a tequila forward paloma, add another splash of zero proof tequila.

Make a pitcher of palomas for a crowd. Easily scale this recipe to as many servings as you would like. This mocktail is great for bridal showers, birthdays, baby showers, Cinco de Mayo, or whenever.

Spice is life! I love this recipe as written, but it is also great with a jalapeno kick. Add Jalapeno Simple Syrup in place of the agave or add a few slices of jalapeno to the grapefruit juice 15 minutes before making your paloma.

Step 4. Garnish the paloma with a grapefruit slice and a lime slice.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Does non alcoholic tequila taste like real tequila?

With modern advances, a few zero proof spirit companies have been able to replicate the flavors so non alcoholic tequila tastes like alcoholic tequila. It is important to note that not all non alcoholic tequilas are created equal and some will taste better than others.

Where can I buy zero proof, non alcoholic tequila?

Because non alcoholic tequila is becoming increasingly popular, you can find it online and in local grocery stores. Check your local CVS, Target, and Meijers (if you have them). If all else fails, you can order many non alcoholic spirits through Amazon and through other online bottle shops.

More Citrus Mocktail Recipes You Might Like:


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Enjoy Entirely, Elizabeth
An iced Paloma Mocktail with a salted rim, lime and grapefruit slices.

Paloma Mocktail

Elizabeth Swoish
Learn how to make the BEST non alcoholic Paloma Mocktail. It is refreshing, low in calories, a balance of grapefruit, lime, agave, and tequila flavors.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Beverage
Servings 1
Calories 47 kcal

EQUIPMENT

  • glassware - lowball, or your choice
  • spoon or stirrer - long handled
  • citrus juicer - large
  • cocktail pins - metal, for holding garnishes in place

INGREDIENTS
 
 

  • 2 ounce non alcoholic tequila - I use Lyre's Agave Blanco Spirit (more recommendations below)
  • 2 ounces grapefruit juice - about 1 grapefruit, freshly squeezed
  • ½ ounce lime juice - about half a lime, freshly squeezed
  • ½ ounce light agave syrup
  • 2 ounces club soda
  • grapefruit slice - optional garnish
  • lime slice - optional garnish
  • flaky sea salt - optional rim garnish

INSTRUCTIONS
 

  • Rub the rim of a lowball glass with a lime wedge and immediately dip it in a small plate of flaky sea salt.
    Step 1. Dipping the rim of a glass into lime juice and then salt.
  • Add non alcoholic tequila, freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, lime juice, and light agave syrup. Stir together gently.
    Step 2. To a glass add non alcoholic tequila, lime juice, light agave syrup, and ice.
  • Add ice and top it off with tonic water.
    Step 3. Top it off with club soda.
  • Garnish with a grapefruit and lime slice.
    Step 4. Garnish the paloma with a grapefruit slice and a lime slice.

NOTES

Options for Non Alcoholic Tequila:

  • Lyre’s Agave Blanco Spirit. A light and bright option with citrus, agave, and a peppery finish. It’s only 3 calories per serving, vegan, and allergen free.
  • Free Spirit’s TequilaSmoky with notes of agave and dark oak. It has vitamins B3 and B6 for energy, is gluten free, and 10 calories per serving.
  • Rital Zero Proof Tequila AlternativeThis one is balance of the two above. It is citrusy, smokey with a peppery finish. It is 0 calories and the least expensive.

Metric conversions are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information.

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By Elizabeth Swoish on February 5th, 2024
Elizabeth Swoish holding a camera up to her eye taking a photo.

About Elizabeth Swoish

Elizabeth Swoish is the founder and CEO of Entirely Elizabeth. She is a self-taught foodie and mocktail enthusiast with a business degree in data analysis. Learn more about her HERE or connect on your favorite social media channels.

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