The best virgin piña colada recipes start with the same fundamental ingredients as the alcoholic versions do. Due to the original cocktail's strong mix of flavors, it's rather easy for you to eliminate the alcohol from the concoction and still have a delicious version of the drink. Even without the alcohol, you'll still make feel like you're sitting on a warm beach with your toes in the sand, relaxing to the sounds of the waves crash in the distance.
Maintaining the Basic Flavors
Rum has a very strong taste, so when you eliminate it from a drink recipe, it will sometimes become markedly different, or appear to be missing an integral ingredient. However, this isn't the case with a piña colada, as you can maintain the flavors of the drink even without the rum. Coconut and pineapple both have such distinct tastes, and they complement each other so well that a drink with the two mixed together is immediately recognizable as a piña solada - so much so that the rum isn't even missed.
Virgin Piña Colada
While many people think of frozen drinks as more exotic, that doesn't mean they're difficult to make. A basic virgin piña colada recipe requires just one step and a few simple ingredients.
- 1 ounce pineapple juice
- 1 ½ ounces crushed pineapple
- 2 ounces cream of coconut
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup crushed ice
- Pineapple wedge for garnish
- In a blender, combine the pineapple juice, crushed pineapple, coconut cream, vanilla extract, and ice.
- Blend until smooth and pour into a poco grande glass.
- Garnish with a pineapple wedge.
Ways to Garnish a Virgin Piña Colada
You don't have to be a professional mixologist to present a beautifully prepared piña colada mocktail to your friends. From sugar rims to fruit flags, take a look a few of the ways that you can garnish your virgin piña colada at home.
- Create a fruit flag - Mixologists call the classic cocktail skewer as a flag, and putting chopped pieces of pineapple, coconut, and cherry is a perfect way to top off your virgin pina colada.
- The quintessential garnish - Most people consider a pineapple wedge stuck on the rim to be the quintessential piña colada garnish.
- Brown sugar rim - A sweet way to garnish your pina colada mocktail is to give it a deeply colored brown sugar rim.
- Top with a paper umbrella - A colorful way that you can garnish your virgin piña colada is to drop a blue, pink, yellow, green, and so on paper umbrella on top.
Personalize Your Virgin Piña Colada
While the most identifying flavors of a Piña Colada are always coconut and pineapple, whether with or without alcohol, the basic recipe's formula makes it open to changes. Additions and substitutions can make a Piña Colada that has an entirely different taste but is just as tasty as the original. Some additions or substitutions to consider include:
- Mix all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and pour into the glass, serving it up on the rocks instead of frozen.
- If you can't locate any cream of coconut, you can use evaporated milk instead.
- You can substitute other fruits in place of the crushed pineapple like banana slices or cubed passionfruit to get an interesting mix of flavors.
- Add a dash of cinnamon to the mixture to spice up the classic tropical palette.
- Substitute light coconut cream for fewer calories with the same creamy consistency.
- Use frozen fruits instead of fresh when you're looking to make nonseasonal mocktails.
- For a particularly festive presentation, serve the mocktail in a hollowed out coconut shell.
Virgin Piña Coladas Are for Everyone
There's a social stigma about people enjoying nonalcoholic drinks if they're not recovering alcoholics, as if there's something to be ashamed of wanting to enjoy a wonderfully mixed drink sans the booze. This virgin piña colada recipe is here to teach an important lesson, that nonalcoholic drinks can - and should - be enjoyed by everyone.