Tequila-Free Sunrise Mocktail

Are you looking for a brunch drink that’s not only fun but also non-alcoholic? Look no further! This sunrise mocktail brings the best of both worlds, combining the classic tequila sunrise and mimosa but without the alcohol. And the best part? It’s gorgeous, easy to make, and uses only four ingredients!

Two crystal champagne glasses, each garnished with an orange slice. The glasses are filled with orange juice and grenadine in a gradient fading from red-orange up to yellow-orange.

Reasons to love this sunrise mocktail

Special brunches deserve some special sips to go with them. Sure, mimosas and bloody Marys are the usual suspects, but mocktails can be just as fun.


You’ll be head over heels for this sparkling mocktail – it’s not only a beauty to look at, but it packs a punch of bright, yummy flavor with orange juice, sparkling water, and grenadine.

It tastes like a non-alcoholic cross between a mimosa and a tequila sunrise. It’s bubbly, sweet, tart, and fresh, making it the perfect drink to sip with your brunch.

You don’t need any fancy tools, techniques, or ingredients to make this recipe. Just pour and enjoy!

Hand holding a crystal champagne glass garnished with an orange slice. The glass is filled with orange juice and grenadine in a gradient fading from red-orange up to yellow-orange.

Ingredients you’ll need

You’ll only need four ingredients to make this drink (if you include the garnish).

  • Orange juice – Since I’m a pulp fan, I used orange juice with medium pulp in this recipe. Many people prefer orange juice with no pulp for cocktails and mocktails. I say, choose whatever OJ your little heart desires.
  • Sparkling water – You can use just about any flavor here, like plain, lemon, lime, tangerine/orange, mango, passionfruit, or grapefruit.
  • Grenadine – This vibrant, syrupy goodness adds color and some sweetness to this recipe. A little bit goes a long way!
  • Orange slice – Although this is an optional garnish, doesn’t it look cute? I used a cara cara orange, which is slightly pink in color to complement the colors in this drink.
Four image collage showing the process for making the recipe. Image 1 shows pouring orange juice into a champagne glass. Image 2 shows pouring sparkling water into the glass. Image 3 shows pouring grenadine into the glass. Image 4 shows garnishing with an orange slice.

Tips for success

This is one of the easiest drinks to make! Just pour your ingredients into a pretty glass (in the right order) and you’ll have a beautiful mocktail.

  1. Use fun glassware to dress up your drink – A champagne flute is my personal favorite. The elongated shape shows off the gradient in this drink.
  2. Use your favorite type of OJ – Pulp or no pulp – it’s up to you!
  3. Pour in order – Make sure to add the grenadine last. This way, it will sink to the bottom, creating a gradient instead of getting mixed into your drink.
Closeup shot of two crystal champagne glasses, each garnished with an orange slice. The glasses are filled with orange juice and grenadine in a gradient fading from red-orange up to yellow-orange.

FAQs

How do you create a gradient in your glass?

It’s all about density. Liquids with a higher amount of solute (i.e. stuff like sugar) are denser and will sink to the bottom of your glass, whereas liquids with less solute (like sparkling water) will float at the top.

For this drink, start by pouring in your orange juice and sparkling water, followed by the grenadine. The grenadine will sink to the bottom and create a sunrise-like gradient. If you pour in the grenadine first, the orange juice and sparkling water will combine with it and make your drink red-orange throughout.

What type of orange juice is best for this recipe?

Orange juice without pulp is typically used in cocktails and mocktails, but you can also use orange juice with pulp if you’d like. (I do!)

What is grenadine?

Grenadine is a non-alcoholic syrup that adds color, sweetness, and a bit of pomegranate flavor to drinks. Traditionally, grenadine is made from pomegranate juice. Most commercially available grenadines contain pomegranate flavor, not actual juice.

A crystal champagne glass garnished with an orange slice. The glass is filled with orange juice and grenadine in a gradient fading from red-orange up to yellow-orange. A whole orange and orange slices are shown to the right of the glass.

Recipe modifications

  • Different flavors – You can try different types of citrus juice like grapefruit or lemonade, switch up the flavor of your sparkling water, or swap out the grenadine for another flavored syrup.
  • Other garnish options – Instead of an orange slice, try a strawberry or a cocktail cherry.
  • Grenadine-free – Not a storebought grenadine fan? You can also make grenadine at home from real pomegranate juice. Alternatively, you can also use a fruit-flavored syrup that’s red in color.
  • Sweeter version – Add more grenadine and just a splash of sparkling water.
  • Less sweet version – Use 2 oz of orange juice and 3 oz of sparkling water, then cut back on the grenadine and use half of the amount listed.
  • Add a non-alcoholic spirit Swap out the sparkling water for 2 oz of an alcohol-free spirit like tequila or sparkling grape juice.
  • Make it a cocktail – Swap out the sparkling water for 2 oz of tequila, vodka, or sparkling wine.
Two crystal champagne glasses, each garnished with an orange slice. The glasses are filled with orange juice and grenadine in a gradient fading from red-orange up to yellow-orange.
Two crystal champagne glasses, each garnished with an orange slice. The glasses are filled with orange juice and grenadine in a gradient fading from red-orange up to yellow-orange. A whole orange and orange slices are faded in the background.
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Tequila-Free Sunrise Mocktail

Need a fun brunch drink? This sunrise mocktail has you covered. It's eye-catching, tasty, easy to make, and 100% alcohol-free.
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time5 minutes
Course: Drinks, mocktails
Cuisine: American
Keyword: alcohol-free drinks, brunch, non-alcoholic, orange juice
Servings: 1
Calories: 57kcal
Author: Chelsea Jackle, RDN

Equipment

  • 1 cocktail jigger
  • 1 champagne flute

Ingredients

  • 3 oz orange juice or more to taste
  • 2 oz sparkling water
  • ¼ oz grenadine
  • orange slice optional garnish

Instructions

  • Pour orange juice into a champagne flute. Then, add sparkling water to fill the glass. Finally, add the grenadine to create a beautiful gradient! Garnish with an orange slice.

Notes

  • Please note that nutrition facts are an estimate and can vary widely based on amounts and specific types used.

Nutrition

Calories: 57kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 0.2g | Saturated Fat: 0.02g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Sodium: 15mg | Potassium: 173mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 170IU | Vitamin C: 43mg | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 0.2mg

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2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Hi Chelsea, I love this recipe and think it would be a great science lesson for kids! Would you mind me adding this to a round-up post with a do-follow link back to the recipe? Sorry for contacting you here but I couldn’t find your email.

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