To say goodbye to 2023, we’re going to need something stronger than champagne. San Francisco-based bartender Lauren Fitzgerald has supplied us with plenty of cocktails (and mocktails) over the years, so in lieu of shots, we’re going to mix up a few of her recipes for a smooth and tasty finish to this year. Her creations range from sophisticated to alcohol-free to pretty darn strong. Raise your extra-large martini/margarita/moscow mule glass, here are 10 fantastic vegan cocktails to help you say adios to another year. 

Vegan bar cart essentials

In 2024, we resolve to drink more at home. Let us explain. We know we’re going to partake in the occasional margarita at our favorite local Mexican restaurant, but we’re saving $15 (at least) by enjoying a few libations in the comfort of our home. If you resolve to drink more at home as well, it’s time to stock up the bar cart.

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At the very least, you’ll need a few go-to liquors (or zero-proof liquors like Ritual or Seedlip). Whiskey, vodka, rum, and gin are some of the most commonly used spirits. Layer on flavor with a bottle of simple syrup (a flavored simple syrup like watermelon or strawberry is a bonus), lemon and lime juice, and club soda for a bubbly effect. Finally, a cocktail isn’t complete without the appropriate garnish. Salt, limes, dried orange peel, and high-quality maraschino cherries add the perfect finishing touch.

Your bar cart will expand and evolve over time, depending on which cocktails (or mocktails) you gravitate to most. Those who love whiskey sours should add aquafaba to the list, or perhaps margarita mix for a quick libation. May the recipes below inspire you and lead to a very happy new year. 

Vegan cocktails for New Year’s Eve

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1 Blood Orange Ginseng Margarita

‘Tis the season for blood oranges. Take advantage of this citrus by coupling it with lime juice, simple syrup, and a generous pour of your favorite tequila. The addition of ginseng adds a pleasant, earthy flavor to an otherwise tropical drink. 
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2 Grasshopper

Christmas may be over, but the craving for peppermint lives on. This luscious, chocolate minty beverage doubles as dessert—especially if you rim your glass with chocolate shavings. Alternatively, you could spike a vegan chocolate mint milkshake with a heavy pour of Baileys Almande and serve it in a martini glass. You do you. 
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3 Time After Time

This spiced whiskey libation will warm you right up on a chilly New Year’s Eve. The ingredients do require a well-stocked bar cart, but if you have to purchase these unique items, just think of it as equipping yourself for the new year. You’ll likely go through a few of these drinks the night of December 31, and there’s no doubt you’ll want to make it all winter long. 
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4 Pineapple Caipirinha

Find your island with this sweet, pineapple-forward cocktail. It’s straightforward candied pineapple, a bit of lime, and an adequate pour of silver cachaça. That’s it, and it’s delicious. We’ll have a few of these, thank you!  
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5 Square Root

It’s not just the alcohol that gives this citrusy drink a kick—ginger syrup packs a punch and the sparkling wine provides an unexpected note of effervescence. It’s sophisticated yet tasty—the ultimate pinky out, “treat yo’self” cocktail.  
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6 Alameda Buck ‘n’ Breck

This pretty orange cocktail is for the wine lovers who enjoy a bit of bubbly. Made with sparkling wine, pear brandy, and a bit of simple syrup, this pleasantly sweet drink guilds the lily with its sugar-rimmed finishing touch. One sip and you’ll feel 2023 melt away. 
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7 Whiskey River

Add a kick to your champagne (or sparkling wine) by adding a shot of bourbon. The burn is mellowed out with a splash of pineapple syrup making for a sippable yet strong drink.
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8 Kir Royale

Don’t want to fuss with a ton of ingredients or a cocktail shaker? This is your drink. Instructions: pour half an ounce of creme de cassis (a sweet, blackcurrant liqueur) into six ounces of champagne or sparkling wine. Drink. Cheers to simplicity. 
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9 Pomegranate Margarita (non-alcoholic)

Start dry January early with this wonderfully balanced mocktail. It’s got a tartness to it thanks to the lime and pomegranate juice, but the orange syrup prevents an unpleasant pucker. Not ready to give up alcohol? Add an ounce or two of tequila. 
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10 Hibiscus-Ginger Punch (non-alcoholic)

This is one punch recipe you don’t have to be wary of drinking too much of. It’s floral, fruity, and goes down easy. Like the mocktail margarita above, you can certainly spike it, just be aware of how many glasses you have. As much as we want to kiss the year goodbye, we also want to remember how we rang in the new year. 
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