Prevent Underage Drinking with Instagram-Worthy Holiday Mocktails

Non-alcoholic candy cane punch mocktails for the holidays.
Non-alcoholic candy cane punch mocktails for the holidays.

“If it’s not on Instagram, it didn’t happen!” How many times have parents heard that phrase from their teen? Celebrate safely and in style this holiday season with social media-worthy holiday mocktails (non-alcoholic drinks) to prevent underage drinking.

Talk It Out NC, a North Carolina initiative to reduce underage drinking, is mixing up some holiday fun for teens with creative non-alcoholic drink ideas. Experts say the winter holidays are some of the booziest holidays of the year! Talk It Out NC wants to help parents keep teens safe this holiday season.

Teen Drinking Facts

  • The average age most teens try alcohol for the first time is just 14.
  • 10 percent of 12-year-olds admit they have tried alcohol.
  • More teens die as a result of alcohol use than all other illicit drugs combined.

“The rise in underage drinking during the holidays is something all parents should take seriously,” says Jim Van Hecke, Deputy Director of Education and Outreach for the ABC Commission. “The holiday season is the perfect time for parents to have important conversations with their children about the dangers of underage drinking. This is also a great opportunity to show teens how to have fun without alcohol. That’s why we are encouraging teens to celebrate in style, but to keep the focus on fun and avoid underage drinking.”

Instagram-Worthy Holiday Mocktails:

These drinks are so tasty parents might want to have a mocktail with their kids. It’s also a good opportunity to talk about not needing alcohol to have a good time.

Pop Rocks Holiday Mocktail

Pop rocks holiday mocktail.

The key to this mocktail is putting Pop Rocks candy on the rim of the glass.


Pop Rocks candy

32 ounces of cold ginger ale

1 c. grenadine syrup

1 Tbsp. light corn syrup

To make four drinks, pour corn syrup into a shallow bowl. Pour Pop Rocks candy into a separate shallow bowl. Dip rims of the glasses into the syrup and then into the candy. Set aside.

Add ¼ cup of grenadine to each glass. Add 8 ounces of ginger ale to each glass. Garnish with a maraschino cherry and enjoy.

Jack Frost Mocktail

Jack Frost Mocktail

Shredded coconut on the rim of the glass looks like snow!


Shredded coconut

2 c. crushed ice

1 c. pineapple juice

½ c. cream of coconut

1 c. sparkling white grape juice

Blue food coloring, 8-10 drops

1 Tbsp. light corn syrup

Pour corn syrup into a shallow bowl. Pour the shredded coconut into a separate shallow bowl. Dip rims of the glasses into the syrup and then into the shredded coconut. Set aside.

Pour remaining ingredients into a blender and mix. Pour into prepared glasses and enjoy! Makes four drinks.

Candy Cane Punch

Candy Cane Punch Mocktail

Candy canes are a great recipe for any holiday party!


1 qt. eggnog

½ gallon peppermint ice cream, softened

32 oz. ginger ale

Whipped cream

Crushed and whole candy canes (for garnish)

Pour all ingredients into a large punch bowl. Stir until combined. Ladle into glasses, top with whipped cream, and garnish with a whole candy cane. Makes six drinks.

More Teen Holiday Party Tips

  • Decorate the fireplace or a large window as the perfect holiday photo backdrop.
  • Set up drink stations and let kids have fun mixing their own mocktails.
  • Set up a cookie-decorating station and serve other holiday-themed foods.
  • Lock up liquor or other alcohol to avoid teenage temptation.
  • Be responsible when it comes to alcohol and set a good example.
  • Take the Talk It Out Pledge with your teen.