There was an article by the AP’s Katie Moriarity in yesterday’s paper about Halloween Cocktails that I found intriguing. I’ve posted before about the resurgence of specialty cocktails (particularly martinis) that swept the nation with the success of Sex and the City. And the beat goes on.

The two in Ms. Moriarity’s article (The Warm Harvest Martini and The Purple People-Eater) while I’m sure are delicious also fall into the way-too-carby-to-enjoy-without-guilt category. I confess I just couldn’t get my mind around the whole gummy worm thing—yeach!–but I could be all about the flavor of a caramel apple. So, I decided to do my version of Pimp My Drink and make that one more user friendly for the ghouls and goblins of the low-carb set. After all, adhering to sound low-carb dietary principles shouldn’t take all the fun out of Halloween.

Using a little low carb ingenuity, here’s what I came up with.

Caramel Apple Martini
(makes 1 martini)

1 ounce apple cider (hard or non-alcoholic)
2 ounces vanilla vodka (or regular vodka plus a drop of two of real vanilla extract)
1/2 ounce Sugar-free Caramel Syrup (Torini, daVinci, Ambience)
pinch cinnamon

Rim & garnish:
1 tablespoon Sugar-free Caramel Syrup
1 tablespoon granular xylitol (available at natural food markets and online)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Place dry ingredients in a zip closure bag, seal, and mix well.
whole cinnamon stick (for swizzling)

1. Chill both the vodka and the apple cider well in advance (vodka in the freezer, cider in the fridge)
2. To rim the glass, place an ounce of Sugar-free Caramel syrup in a saucer. Place the cinnamon/xylitol mixture in another saucer. Invert a stemmed martini glass into the syrup to wet the rim, then dip into the xylitol mixture to coat the rim.
3. Put the cider, vodka, cinnamon, and sugar-free caramel syrup into a martini shaker with ice and shake well.
4. Strain into a stemmed glass, garnish with the cinnamon stick. Serve with a smile.

This year may it be all treats, no tricks! Happy Haunting!


  1. I just had to write and thank you. I finally got around to making your “Tender Almond Pie and Tart Crust” for dinner tonight. [I’d bought the ThickenThin not/Sugar quite a while back but then forgot about the recipe.] This was just awesome.

    I used the crust to make a simple 9″ quiche per Julia Child using 2 eggs, 1 cup of cream, and several strips of bacon that had been cut into 1/4 inch pieces, browned, and drained.

    Thank you again!

  2. I need some explanation, I think. I understand that beers, for example, advertise themselves as low carb, but the calorie content is still significant (150+ cal per bottle). I’ve read that alcohol is 7 cals per gram. Doesn’t alcohol become glucose eventually? Isn’t a low carb beer (on any other drink) quite misleading for this reason?

    COMMENT from MD EADES: I see your confusion. You’ve read right: alcohol does contain 7 calories per gram. However, alcohol doesn’t get converted to glucose; it’s metabolized as if it were a fat. That’s not to say that too much alcohol doesn’t have its own metabolic consequences: driving up triglycerides, spurring fatty accumulation in the liver, promoting insulin resistance in a different way than carbs do.

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