Easy Non-Alcoholic Mint Julep Recipes To Try

A tasty non-alcoholic mint julep is great for the Kentucky Derby or a warm Spring day as it is light and refreshing. 

The Kentucky Derby isn’t the same without a mint julep. Regardless if you watch the race or not, this drink is great at any time. Fresh mint and ginger ale make up the signature taste, and you can add non-alcoholic bourbon for a deeper flavor. Best of all, a non-alcoholic mint julep gives you all the fun and none of the regret from its alcoholic counterpart.

virgin mint julep

The Kentucky Derby and Mint Julep

You might be sipping a mint julep while watching the race from home or at Churchill Downs. But why?

Mint juleps were a Kentucky favorite long before the modern-day Kentucky Derby was established. Interestingly, a julep was traditionally suggested as a medical drink for stomach issues.

The contemporary mint julep originated in Virginia as a ‘Virginia dram.’ The drink followed the colony westward. The julep became the ‘official’ Derby drink in the 1930s, but the legend is that it was offered far earlier.

Churchill Downs is said to have planted mint outside the clubhouse in 1875 to prepare the first juleps. The drink was popular in the South then, so it was a logical extension of the culture to include it in the Derby.

The traditional Kentucky mint julep combines simple syrup, mint, and bourbon whiskey. A non-alcoholic mint julep is an excellent alternative for those who do not drink or prefer an alcohol-free option. There are additional alcoholic versions of the traditional, such as one that utilizes crème de menthe syrup.

non-alcoholic mint julep in kentucky derby

Non-Alcoholic Mint Julep Recipes

The wait is all worth it for a delightful non-alcoholic mint julep. It’s the ideal spring mocktail as the weather warms and thoughts of entertainment arise.

If you’re a traditionalist, you might argue that mint juleps must include bourbon! Fortunately, there are numerous alcohol-free spirit options available. And they are delicious!

Non Alcoholic Mint Julep With Mint Simple Syrup

virgin mint julep

A virgin mint julep can be made in two ways. One approach involves creating a mint simple syrup, while the other involves using fresh mint. Use an alcohol-free whiskey, like Ritual’s Non Alcoholic Whiskey Alternative, for the most authentic flavor.
Course Drinks

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup ginger ale
  • 2 ounces non-alcoholic whiskey
  • 1 ounce mint simple syrup
  • Crushed ice
  • Mint sprigs to garnish (optional)

Instructions
 

  • In the bottom of your glass, add mint simple syrup.
  • Fill your glasses halfway with crushed ice.
  • Add ginger ale and non alcoholic whiskey alternative. 
  • Gently stir.
  • Garnish with mint sprig and serve.
Keyword Non-Alcoholic Mint Julep Mocktail, Virgin Mint Julep

Non Alcoholic Mint Julep With Fresh Mint

For a non alcoholic mint julep mocktail with fresh mint you’ll muddle the mint instead of making a simple syrup.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces of non alcoholic whiskey alternative or ginger ale.
  • 1 handful fresh mint leaves
  • 2 cups crushed ice
  • ½ cup lemonade
  • Fresh mint sprigs (for garnish)

Instructions

  1. Muddle mint in your glass with a tablespoon of lemonade. 
  2. Add crushed ice. 
  3. Fill your glass halfway with lemonade.
  4. top with ginger ale or whiskey alternative.
  5. Garnish with a mint sprig and a straw for each. Place on a silver dish and serve.

Recipe from Mindful Mocktail

Non Alcoholic Mint Julep Mocktail With Crème de Menthe Syrup (Disneyland Copycat)

To keep your Non Alcoholic Mint Julep alcohol-free, make sure your creme de menthe is as well. You must purchase the crème de menthe syrup/cordial rather than the crème de menthe liquor. It’s also rather potent, so don’t use too much, or the mint will overshadow the other ingredients. This virgin mint julep recipe (Disneyland version) will be an absolute hit and is super simple to make.

Ingredients

  • 3 cup club soda
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tsp lime juice
  • 6 ounces thawed lemonade concentrate
  • 6 tbsp creme de menthe syrup
  • green food coloring
  • mint leaves (for garnish)
  • lemon (for garnish)
  • cherries (for garnish)

Instructions

  1. Dissolve sugar in club soda in a medium pot over medium heat, stirring constantly. Bring the lime juice, and lemonade concentrate to a boil.
  2. Remove the heat and whisk the crème de menthe syrup and food coloring. Then, refrigerate.
  3. Use this mixture as syrup: 3 parts syrup to 5 parts water. It makes around ⅔ gallon. Enjoy!

Non Alcoholic Mint Julep Benefits

Bring out your fancy cocktail glasses since a refreshing non-alcoholic mint julep is ideal for a party, is healthier, and can be prepared ahead of time.

  • Ideal for a party – Gather your pitchers and friends because this virgin mint julep is wonderful for sharing. Simply combine the mint simple syrup, ginger ale (or alcohol-free bourbon), and ice in a pitcher and serve to guests.
  • Can be made healthier – In classic simple syrup, sugar, water, and mint are combined in a 1:1:1 ratio. This recipe cuts the sugar in half and uses the sweetness of ginger ale to complement the mint nicely. Use diet ginger ale for an even reduced sugar option.
  • Can be prepared ahead of time – The flavored simple syrup lasts for about two weeks in an airtight jar in the fridge. Make one ahead of time so you’re ready for derby day!

There are numerous ideas for dishes that best reflect Kentucky, and many of them revolve around the Kentucky Derby, which is undoubtedly the state’s most famous sporting event. Since mint juleps are an iconic beverage served during the horse race, these non-alcoholic versions would definitely satisfy the sober and sober curious.

Looking for more cool, refreshing drinks? You should try making non-alcoholic seltzer and non-alcoholic drinks with tonic water.

Non-Alcoholic Mint Julep FAQs

What does a mint julep cost?

On Derby Day, the ordinary mint julep costs $15 and comes with a souvenir glass, but those with plenty of cash can spend up to $2,500 on a deluxe version in a beautiful cup carved with Churchill Downs’ twin spires symbol.

Keep in mind that you can also create low-cost non-alcoholic mint juleps at home by using store-bought ingredients and some recipes that you can easily find in your kitchen.

What is interesting about mint julep?

Mint Julep is derived from the Persian words “gulab” and “julab” in Arabic. Combining the two terms means rosewater, which is intriguing because roses are not an ingredient in Mint Juleps. 

Mint juleps were a Kentucky favorite long before the modern-day Kentucky Derby was established. Interestingly, a julep was traditionally suggested as a medical drink for stomach issues.

Why is it called a mint julep?

The mint julep has its origins in Arab. People assumed the beverage’s lovely and refreshing smell would instantly improve the quality of their lives. Indigenous mint replaced rose petals in the Mediterranean, and the “mint julep” became popular.

The contemporary mint julep originated in Virginia as a ‘Virginia dram.’ The drink followed the colony westward. The julep became the ‘official’ Derby drink in the 1930s, but the legend is that it was offered far earlier.

Is mint julep a bourbon?

The traditional Kentucky mint julep combines simple syrup, mint, and bourbon whiskey. A non-alcoholic mint julep is an excellent alternative for those who do not drink or prefer an alcohol-free option. There are additional alcoholic versions of the traditional, such as one that utilizes crème de menthe syrup.

A non-alcoholic mint julep can be made in two ways. One approach involves creating a mint simple syrup, while the other involves using fresh mint. Use an alcohol-free malt spirit for the most authentic flavor.

What does a mint julep taste like?

Mint juleps are summer in a glass—minty and refreshing and a little sweet. Like so many classic drinks, the enchantment of a mint julep results from a trio of flavors coming together: non-alcoholic whiskey bourbon.

If you’re a traditionalist, you might argue that mint juleps must include bourbon! Fortunately, there are numerous alcohol-free spirit options available. And they are delicious!