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July 4th may have come and gone, but summer fun is far from over! And the best way to keep up that summer spirit is to host a backyard barbecue. So, gather your friends, family, and loved ones and check out these fun and easy summer recipes for your next backyard summer cookout.

Summer Cookout Recipes

1. The Best Barbecue Sauce Recipe

What’s a backyard barbecue without a yummy barbeque sauce? Transform your summer dishes with the rich and smoky flavors of this savory recipe!

Makes 2 cups

  • ¾ c tomato paste
  • ½ c apple cider vinegar
  • ½ c molasses
  • ½ c brown sugar
  • 2 T Worcestershire sauce
  • 1-2 T chipotle adobo sauce
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat until bubbling. Remove from heat.

2. The Best Barbecue Chicken Recipe

Whether you use a charcoal grill or a gas one, this BBQ chicken recipe will have your guests anxiously awaiting your next event’s menu.

Serves 4-6

  • 1 whole chicken
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Vegetable oil
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • 1 ½ c The Best Barbecue Sauce

Clean the chicken and dry thoroughly with paper towels. Pull skin away from the chicken and rub oil or butter inside the skin. Cover the outside of the chicken in oil and salt generously.

For a charcoal grill, arrange the coals in a ring around the sides of the grill. Lightly oil the grates. Put chicken directly in the middle of the grill. For a gas grill, put on indirect heat at about 350 to 400 degrees. Cover and leave for about 30 minutes.

Open the grill and spritz chicken with apple cider vinegar. Cover and leave for about 30 more minutes before checking the temperature. When internal temperature reaches about 145 degrees, baste the chicken with 1 c barbecue sauce. Continue to grill until internal temp reaches 165 degrees. Remove from the grill and brush with the remaining barbecue sauce. Let rest for 20 minutes before carving and serving.

3. Fantastic Barbecue Shrimp Skewers

Who doesn’t love a good skewer? Slap this delicious recipe on the grill, and watch as your guests swarm to fill their plates!

Serves 4-6

  • 2 lb fresh shrimp
  • ½ c barbecue sauce
  • 2 T olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • Bamboo skewers

Soak bamboo skewers in water for about 10 minutes. Peel, devein, and rinse shrimp. Toss lightly with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Skewer shrimps with two skewers to prevent them from spinning when turning on the grill, leaving space between each shrimp.

Place on a medium-high heat grill and brush generously with barbecue sauce. When shrimps start turning white (about 2-3 minutes), flip to the other side and brush with more sauce. Remove from heat when shrimps are cooked through. If desired, brush once more with barbecue sauce before serving.

4. Grilled Summer Squash

If you’re looking for a quick and easy side dish, you’ve found it! Grilled summer squash is a simple dish packed with big flavor. Enjoy!

Serves 4-6

  • 2 c sourdough bread, torn into pieces
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp marjoram
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp coarse salt
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • 1 T olive oil + more for grilling
  • 3 zucchini
  • 3 yellow squash
  • 1 small white onion

For breadcrumbs: Combine herbs, garlic, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Toss bread with olive oil and herb mixture. Place on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for about 5-10 minutes (keeping a close eye, so it doesn’t burn). When golden brown and toasty, remove from the oven and pulse a few times in a food processor until crumbly (but not a fine powder). Return to oven for a few more minutes if they need extra toasting. Set aside.

Slice zucchini and yellow squash into strips lengthwise. Brush lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cut onion into thick rings and brush lightly with olive oil. Grill all three over medium-high heat until soft and slightly charred, turning over halfway through—this will only take a few minutes on each side. Remove from the grill to a platter, breaking up the onion rings. Sprinkle with bread crumbs and serve.

5. Simple Herbed Potato Salad

Another simple side dish that won’t disappoint — herbed potato salad! Amp up your summer grill-out with this creamy and delicious potato salad recipe.

Serves 4-6

  • 1 lb golden potatoes
  • 1 lb red potatoes
  • ¾ c white onion, chopped
  • ¾ c celery, chopped
  • 2 T fresh chives, chopped
  • 2 T fresh dill, chopped
  • 1 T fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • ¼ c apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T Dijon
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt

Boil potatoes until fork tender. Drain and cool. Chop roughly into small chunks and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine mayonnaise, vinegar, Dijon, salt, and pepper. Add more of any ingredient to taste. Add cooled and diced potatoes, onion, and celery and stir to coat. Add herbs and stir. Chill until ready to serve.

6. Delicious Grilled Creamed Corn

Are you looking for a tasty spin on grilled corn on the cob? Introduce this dish at your next backyard barbeque, and everyone will be lining up to get the recipe.

Serves 4-6

  • 8 ears of corn
  • 2 T butter
  • 1 T flour
  • 3 T cream cheese
  • ¼ c queso fresco
  • ¾ c heavy cream
  • ½ jalapeño, diced
  • 3 T chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Soak corn (husks on) in water for about 10 minutes, and grill over medium-high heat until kernels are tender. Let cool before shucking off the husks. Cut off kernels and set them aside.

Heat a large cast-iron or non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Add 2 T butter and flour; whisk until bubbly. Reduce heat to low. Stir in cream cheese, queso fresco, and heavy cream. When combined, add corn and jalapeño. Stir until coated, then increase heat to medium and cook until just bubbling. Remove from heat. Stir in black pepper and cilantro. Serve warm or chilled.

7. Sweet Peach Crumble

Peach crumble is an all-time fan favorite. Make sure your guests enjoy the true taste of summer with this deliciously crumbly recipe.

Serves 6-8

  • 7 c peaches, sliced
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 c almond flour
  • ½ c light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¾ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 8 T butter, finely diced

Spritz peaches with lemon juice and pour into a lightly greased 9×9-inch glass or ceramic baking dish. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Sprinkle over the peaches. Bake at 375 degrees for about 30-35 minutes. Let cool. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

Note: You can sub the peaches with 7 cups of any fruit of your choice! Blueberries and blackberries make a yummy combo.

8. Key Lime Summer Pie

This yummy dessert guarantees a sweet and tart flavor that you and your guests are sure to love. Bet you can’t eat just one!

Serves 4-6

  • 5 egg yolks, beaten
  • ½ c key lime juice
  • 14 oz sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 prepared graham cracker pie crust
  • 1 lime, sliced into wheels
  • Homemade whipped cream

Combine egg yolks, lime juice, and sweetened condensed milk. Mix thoroughly in a large mixing bowl. Pour into prepared pie crust — bake at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes. Remove and let cool, then refrigerate. Top with lime wheels and whipped cream.

9. Spicy Watermelon Margaritas

You’ll love this easy recipe for watermelon margaritas with a twist! Because isn’t everything better with a little extra spice?

  • 4 oz watermelon juice
  • 4 oz Blanco tequila
  • 2 oz lime juice
  • 2 oz jalapeño infused simple syrup
  • Salt for rim
  • Lime wheels to garnish
For simple syrup:
  • ½ c granulated sugar
  • ½ c water
  • 1 jalapeño, sliced with seeds removed

Combine water and sugar in a saucepan with jalapeño (increase amount of pepper and time simmering for spicier, decrease for milder; omit for sweet watermelon marg).

Salt glass rims and fill glasses with ice. Combine watermelon juice, tequila, and lime juice in a shaker or large container with ice. Shake to combine and cool liquid. Pour into glasses and garnish with a lime wheel.

Summer BBQ Menus

We’ve got you covered for great barbecue party ideas, too! Check out the themes below, complete with refreshing cocktails and more of our best barbecue food ideas. They’re made up of even more delicious summer cookout food to complete your barbecue!

Classic Backyard Barbecue

(with a cocktail hour to keep your guests happy while the chicken grills)

  • Mojitos
  • Jalapeño Poppers
  • Kettle Chips with Blue Cheese Dip
  • The Best Barbecue Chicken Recipe
  • Simple Potato Salad
  • Chocolate Sheet Cake

Shrimp on the Barbie

(shrimp: one of the easiest barbecue foods for a party)

  • Red Sangria
  • Caprese Salad
  • Fantastic Barbecue Shrimp Skewers
  • Cole Slaw
  • Grilled Summer Squash
  • Key Lime Summer Pie

Casual Cookout

(who doesn’t love a build-your-own hot dog bar?)

  • Spicy Watermelon Margaritas
  • Chips & Guacamole
  • Hot Dogs with All the Toppings
  • Baked Beans
  • Delicious Grilled Creamed Corn
  • Sweet Peach Crumble with Vanilla Ice Cream

BBQ Picnic

(perfect for packing up to take to your next paint party!)

  • Blueberry Lemonade
  • Veggies with Green Goddess Dip & Hummus
  • Veggie Skewers with Chimmichurri
  • Macaroni Salad
  • Chocolate Pudding with Homemade Whipped Cream

Make Summer BBQ Fun at Painting with a Twist

Food is at the core of every good backyard summer barbecue — especially with these standout barbecue recipes! But what’s a party without activities? Plan ahead to get everyone together by hosting a virtual painting event with Painting with a Twist at home! Keep the grill hot and the drinks cold while you and your guests paint brilliant summer artwork from the comfort of your own backyard.


Ready to take your date night at home to the next level? Spice things up this spring with these seasonally inspired recipes that are both healthy AND delicious! You just might prefer to stay in for dinner from now on.

1. Lemon and Herb Roasted Chicken

A whole chicken? You can do it! Lemon and herb roasted chicken seems fancy, but it’s actually pretty simple — exactly what you want when looking for healthy dinner recipes for date night. Dining by candlelight is encouraged.

1 whole chicken (about 4 ½ lb)

4 T unsalted butter, room temperature

3 lemons, halved

½ bunch thyme

½ bunch rosemary


Black pepper

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a roasting rack on top. Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Rub the outside of the chicken with the softened butter, and stuff the inside with the lemon halves and recommended herbs — season with salt and pepper. Tie the legs of the chicken together with trussing twine and cut the excess string.

Transfer the chicken to the prepared roasting rack and roast until the skin is golden brown — approximately 35 to 40 minutes. Reduce the heat to 375°F and continue roasting until the chicken is cooked throughout — the meat thermometer should read 165°F. Let the chicken rest for 15 to 20 minutes before carving and serving.

Serve with: Garlic roasted potatoes and a big garden salad.
Pair with: Grenache Blanc or a gin and tonic.
Finish with: Try this 5-Minute Chocolate Pudding or a sweet and simple strawberry shortcake.

2. Steak au Poivre with Cognac Pan Sauce

Are you looking for a fancy-feeling recipe that takes the cake on best easy date night recipes? Then it’s time for steak night! Dress to the nines and don the table with a white cloth to bring that upscale steakhouse vibe into your home.

2 tenderloin steaks, 4-6 oz about 1 ½ in thick

2 tsp kosher salt

2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

2 T unsalted butter

1 tsp olive oil

1 shallot, sliced

1 c heavy cream

½ c cognac or brandy

¼ c chicken stock

Pat steaks dry with a paper towel and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Generously sprinkle both sides with salt and black pepper, and heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Add olive oil and 1 T butter and coat the bottom of the pan as it melts. Carefully place the steaks into the cast-iron skillet. Sear for about 3-4 minutes on each side for medium-rare, adding the second tablespoon of butter when you flip the steaks. When done, remove the steaks from the skillet and let rest.

Turn the heat down to medium-low. Add the shallots and cook until translucent. Slowly pour in the cognac while scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Stir in heavy cream and chicken stock. Bring to a low boil to thicken, about 5 minutes. Plate the steaks and drizzle with the pan sauce.

Serve with: Easy oven-roasted asparagus.
Pair with: A classic old-fashioned or bold Cabernet Sauvignon.
Finish with: Speaking of taking the cake… how about Minimalist Baker’s 1-Bowl Vegan Chocolate Cake or just a go-to classic chocolate cake for dessert?

3. Crispy Skillet Salmon with Lemon-Caper Dill Sauce

If you can believe it, this indulgent fish recipe by the Roasted Root is Paleo, Keto, and Whole30 friendly — plus low-carb, gluten-free, and dairy-free — so you can go back for seconds guilt-free. It will be the perfect addition to your list of easy healthy date night recipes.


2 ½ lb salmon fillets

1-2 T avocado or olive oil

1 tsp ground paprika

2 tsp dried dill

¼ tsp sea salt

Creamy Lemon Dill Sauce:

1 c full-fat canned coconut milk

2 tsp lemon zest

2 T lemon juice, to taste

3 T capers

2 tsp dried dill

Heat the oil in a large cast-iron or non-stick skillet over medium-high heat until hot.

Rinse the salmon filets and pat dry with a paper towel — season with sea salt, dill, and paprika. Place salmon fillets flesh side down, pressing them lightly, so the entire surface comes into contact with the pan. Sear for 3-4 minutes, until crispy and golden. Flip salmon and sear on the other side for 2-3 minutes. Flip the salmon again and cook another 1-2 minutes.

Add the coconut milk, lemon zest, lemon juice, capers, and dill to the pan. Cook until salmon reaches desired done-ness and sauce thickens, about 3-4 minutes. Add salt and/or more lemon juice to taste.

Serve with: This roasted broccoli comes with a little kick thanks to red pepper flakes.
Pair with: A dry Chardonnay or light lager.
Finish with: How about a guilt-free dessert, too? This pretty pink strawberry cake recipe is vegan, gluten-free, and totally delicious!

4. Spring Pea Risotto

Get creative in the kitchen with a next-level dish: risotto! It totally holds up as a main dish. Then keep the creativity flowing after dinner with a Twist at Home at-home painting kit. Best date night ever!

1 cloves garlic, minced

1 shallot, finely chopped

1 c arborio rice

2 c frozen peas, thawed

1 ½ c white cooking wine

2 ½ c chicken broth

1-2 T butter

Olive oil

Cook peas with 1 T butter and set aside. Warm chicken broth in a saucepan over medium-low heat. In a separate pot, heat 1 T olive oil on low. Add in the onions and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are translucent.

Toss in the rice, stirring constantly until rice is coated in the oil. Pour in the white wine and continue to stir. When absorbed, add in 1 cup of the warm broth and stir again. Continue to add broth and stir as the liquid is absorbed — this will probably take about 25 minutes. You may not use all of the broth. The rice should be sticky but al dente (soft at first and firm on the inside). When rice is cooked, stir in the peas. Sprinkle in salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with: A steak or herby chicken.
Pair with: A glass of Pinot Noir or Voignier.
Finish with: A batch of Lemon Thyme Coin Cookies or healthy lemon bars would be delightful dessert options.

5. Honey Dijon Pork Tenderloin

This recipe from Food52 takes a little planning ahead to marinate the pork, but the overall execution is a breeze — and the payoff is delicious! It may just become one of your favorite easy date night dinner recipes.

1 pork tenderloin

2 T Dijon mustard

2 T honey

1 T whole grain mustard

1 T soy sauce

½ lemon

1 sprig rosemary, stem removed and chopped


Black pepper

In a large resealable bag, combine both mustards, honey, soy sauce, lemon juice, and rosemary. Seal the bag and shake to combine.

Rinse the meat in cold water, pat dry, and place it into the marinade bag. Squeeze the air out and spread the marinade all over the pork. Marinate the pork in the fridge for 3 hours minimum or overnight. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking.

Preheat oven to 400° F. Remove the pork tenderloin from the marinade and season all sides with kosher salt and pepper.

Heat a large, oven-proof sauté pan or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add a few tablespoons of olive oil, and sear each side of the tenderloin until golden and crusty — total 10 minutes. Put the pan into the oven and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, until the meat thermometer reads 137° F.

Remove from the pan, place on a cutting board, cover with foil, and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Carve into diagonal pork medallions for serving. Serve with any of the tasty juices that escaped while carving.

Serve with: A side of super-simple sautéed green beans.
Pair with: A light-bodied Pinot Noir or mix up a Greyhound with a sprig of rosemary.
Finish with: Hummingbird Cake or vegan Blueberry Pie Bars would be the perfect end to the perfect date night.

6. Arugula Pesto Pasta

This recipe is rich, flavorful, and packed with a healthy seasonal green — and it might just be the most photogenic pasta you’ve ever seen (hello, date night Insta post). Swing by your local farmer’s market for the freshest arugula. Feel free to sub the suggested pasta with a gluten-free option, whole wheat variety, or even cauliflower gnocchi.

2 c fresh arugula

½ c fresh basil

½ c shaved parmesan

½ c walnuts, toasted

¼ – ½ c olive oil

2 T lemon juice

2 cloves garlic

½ tsp salt

8 oz cooked tagliatelle or pappardelle pasta

Black pepper, fresh basil leaves, and parmesan for garnish

To toast the walnuts, preheat the oven to 300° F. Spread nuts on a rimmed sheet pan and bake for about 5-7 minutes until lightly browned — keep a close eye on them so they don’t burn. Let cool.

Cook the pasta. When al dente, remove ½ cup pasta water and set aside. Drain the pasta (don’t rinse), and set it aside.

Blend toasted walnuts, arugula, basil, parmesan, lemon juice, garlic, and salt with ¼ c olive oil in a food processor. Add more olive oil if the mixture is too dry. Blend until pesto is smooth.

Pour the prepared pesto into a large skillet over medium-low heat. Toss the freshly cooked pasta into the pan plus 1 T pasta water and coat with the pesto. Cook until warm throughout. Serve in bowls and add a squeeze of lemon juice. Top with black pepper, fresh basil leaves, and more parmesan.

Serve with: A fish or crusty bread with olive oil.
Pair with: Pinot Grigio or a dry rosé.
Finish with: Keep dessert simple with your favorite store-bought gelato—or maybe go out for some at your favorite local place.

7. Spring Roll Bowls

Want a recipe that’s fresh, bright, colorful, and healthy? The Spring Roll Bowl below, or this variation from Pinch of Yum with a garlic lime sauce, are two yummy and healthy date night dinner recipes. It’s also quick and easy so that you can continue your date at a Painting with a Twist event.

Peanut Sauce:

2 T natural creamy peanut butter

1 T lime juice

1 T pure maple syrup

1 T fresh cilantro, chopped

1 tsp fresh ginger, grated

1 clove garlic, minced

Sea salt

Black pepper


4 oz brown rice noodles

1 c fresh snow peas, halved

? c frozen edamame

½ c carrot, coarsely shredded

½ cucumber, cut into bite-size strips

2 T radishes, sliced

To make the peanut sauce, grab a small bowl and whisk together peanut butter, lime juice, maple syrup, cilantro, ginger, and garlic. Gradually stir in 2 T water until the sauce is the consistency of maple syrup — season to taste with salt and black pepper.

Cook noodles according to package directions. Rinse well with cold water and drain. Cook edamame according to package directions. Divide noodles between two bowls, and add edamame, snow peas, cucumber, carrot, and radishes to each. Drizzle peanut sauce evenly over bowls.

Top with crushed peanuts, sliced jalapeño peppers, sliced green onions, fresh cilantro, and a spritz of lime juice.

Pair with: A mojito or Gewürztraminer.
Finish with: Satisfy your sweet tooth and stay healthy, too! Love and Lemons’ carrot cake recipe or this vegan coconut tapioca pudding should do the trick.

8. Chicken-Salad Salad

Grab a blanket, pack up this meal in a basket, along with a couple more springtime recipes like fruit or pasta salad, and have your date night picnic-style. This dressing feels indulgent but calls for honey and Greek yogurt to keep it on the healthy side — and the recipe is packed with nutritional fruits and nuts.


10 oz mixed greens, such as spring mix

12-16 oz chicken salad, prepared or homemade

½ c strawberries, hulled and sliced

¼ c red grapes, halved

½ c mandarin orange wedges, drained and dried

¼ c candied pecans

Poppyseed dressing

Poppyseed Dressing:

¼ c white wine vinegar

¼ c plain Greek yogurt

2 T honey

½ T poppy seeds

1 tsp ground mustard or Dijon

¼ tsp salt

Combine all ingredients. Adjust to taste.

Toss mixed greens in poppyseed dressing. Top with a heaping scoop of chicken salad, strawberries, and pecans.

Pair with: Prosecco or a sparkling rosé.
Finish with: Don’t forget dessert! Make it something easy to transport, like white chocolate chip blondies or these Healthy Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats by Ambitious Kitchen.

9. Green Goddess Spring Salad

This super springy salad should be at the top of every list of healthy springtime dinner recipes. Go vegetarian or add a protein like seared tuna or sautéed shrimp.

Green Goddess Dressing:

1 avocado, pitted and flesh scooped

1 lime, juiced

2 tablespoon light tahini

2 tablespoon olive oil

Large handful of fresh basil

1 teaspoon miso paste

Salt & pepper, to taste

Water, to thin


2 heads butter lettuce

1 head of broccoli, chopped into florets

1 c fresh green peas (can also use frozen)

1 red beet, peeled

2 T sesame seeds

2 T pumpkin seeds

1 c sprouts

For the dressing:

Combine all the ingredients in a food processor. Chill until ready to serve.

To prepare the salad:

Boil the peas in a pot of salted water for 5-8 minutes, adding the broccoli for the final 3 minutes until both are tender and bright green. Drain and place into a large bowl with ice and water to stop the cooking.

Remove and discard the outer leaves of the lettuce. Chop remaining leaves into bite-size pieces, rinse and dry. Set aside in a large bowl. Slice the beet and place in the bowl with the lettuce. Drain the peas and broccoli and add to the bowl as well. Pour over the dressing and toss to coat.

Pair with: A Sauvignon Blanc or Moscow Mule.
Finish with: A Strawberry-Rhubarb Crumble or this No-Bake Cheesecake will end your date night on a sweet note.

10. Homemade Spinach-Artichoke Pizza

Who doesn’t love pizza? It’s even better (and more fun) when you make it together! Spinach and artichoke is a delicious springtime combo, but feel free to choose whatever toppings you like — the dough will make two 12-inch pizzas, so you can even each make your own (no fighting over spinach-artichoke versus pepperoni!). Keep things casual by ending the evening with an at-home movie night.


2 c all-purpose flour (or more)

1 tsp sugar

¾ tsp salt

3 T olive oil

2 ¼ tsp active dry yeast + ¾ c warm water


10 oz fresh baby spinach

10 oz artichoke hearts

1 shallot, sliced

4-6 oz whole-milk ricotta

1 oz shaved parmesan

1 tsp red pepper flakes

½ tsp salt

½ tsp black pepper

For the dough:

First, prep the yeast: Stir active dry yeast (1 packet or 2 ¼ tsp) in ¾ cup warm water, then let it stand about 5-7 minutes until dissolved.

Mix 2 c flour, sugar, and salt together. Add yeast mixture and olive oil and combine. Knead the dough using your hands or a stand mixer with a dough hook, adding flour by tablespoon if necessary to reach desired consistency (smooth and slightly sticky).

Brush a large mixing bowl with olive oil and transfer dough to the bowl, turning the dough to lightly coat with oil. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draft-free area. Let dough rise until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour.

When risen, punch down dough. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Put pizza stone (cast-iron skillet or a baking sheet will work, too) in the oven while it is preheating. In the meantime, roll out the dough and top it with your favorite ingredients.

Pro tip: To make transferring the pizza more manageable, roll out the dough on a piece of foil lightly coated in olive oil. Leave the foil under the pizza to bake, removing after about 10 minutes to allow the bottom to get crispy.

To prepare the toppings:

Drain and chop artichoke hearts. Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Sautee the shallots until translucent, stirring to keep from sticking. Turn heat down to low and add ¼ c water. Toss in the spinach with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Cook until just wilted, drain, then set aside.

Spread the ricotta generously on the dough. Top with spinach, shallots, and artichokes. Sprinkle with parmesan.

Remove hot pizza stone from the oven. Slide pizza onto the stone and bake until dough is golden-brown and cooked through — some dark spots on the bottom are OK! Check after about 15-20 minutes and add time if needed. Remove from the oven and let cook for about 3-5 minutes.

Serve with: A big Caesar salad. Pair with a nice Syrah or casual lager.
Finish with: For dessert? Get some of your favorite movie-theater candy to snack on while you snuggle on the sofa.

Boost the Romance with Painting with a Twist

Seasonal ingredients and a deliciously healthy dinner are a great way to elevate your next at-home date night. And after dinner, take things to the next level by joining your local Painting with a Twist studio in a virtual Twist at Home paint and sip event for the ultimate finish to a romantic evening at home OR move your at-home date night to the studio for a memorable date night event!

Some merry music and decorations can help set the mood around the holidays, but it’s even better with a festive drink in your hand! Help get in the holiday spirit with these 10 fun and easy holiday cocktail recipes.

1. Poinsettia

Trade in your usual mimosa for the holiday season. The Poinsettia is one of the simplest (and prettiest!) holiday cranberry cocktail recipes you can make.

Serves 1

Prep Time: 5 minutes

  • 4 oz. prosecco
  • 2 oz. cranberry juice
  • fresh cranberries

Pour cranberry juice into a champagne flute. Top with prosecco. Drop in a few fresh cranberries for a pretty and extra festive touch.

2. Sugar Plum Spritz

Visions of this spritz will be dancing in your head all night! It plays with the flavors found in real sugar plums (contrary to their name, they are not just plums covered in sugar) and has a lovely balance of crisp lightness and warm spice.

Serves 4
Prep Time: 5 minutes for cocktail + 20-25 minutes for simple syrup

  • 8 oz Prosecco, chilled
  • 2 oz Aperol
  • 2 oz sugar plum syrup
  • 1 dash cardamom bitters
  • 1 plum

Sugar Plum Syrup

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3/4 honey
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1 plum
  • 1 apricot
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Slice the apricot and one plum into quarters. In a saucepan, combine the sliced plums and apricots, honey, water, almond extract, cardamom, and cinnamon stick. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the honey is dissolved, then turn to low and cook about 5 more minutes. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature. Strain into a container to remove the cardamom, star anise, cinnamon stick and larger fruit pieces, then refrigerate for at least 15 minutes. You can easily make this the day before so it’s ready to mix at cocktail hour!

Wet the rims of each champagne flute and dip them in sugar. Slice second plum into small wedges and add a wedge to each champagne flute. When the sugar plum syrup is chilled, pour 2-3 oz into each flute. Top each with 1 oz Aperol, a dash of bitters, and 2 oz chilled Prosecco.

3. Very Merry Red Sangria

We’ve got a sangria recipe for every season! Transition from our fall-flavored Thanksgiving Sangria to this winter version. If you prefer white wine, try the lighter Holiday Cheer Sangria instead.

Serves 4-6
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes + chill time (2 hours)

  • 1 Granny Smith apple
  • 1 red apple (such as Fuji or Jazz)
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 Anjou pear (can also use Bartlett or Bosc)
  • ½ c cranberries
  • ½ c pomegranate seeds
  • 1-2 cinnamon sticks
  • 3-4 whole cloves
  • 2 T maple syrup
  • ¼ c cranberry juice
  • ¼ c apple cider
  • ¼ c sparkling water
  • ¼ c triple sec
  • ½ c brandy
  • 750 ml bottle of red wine, such as Garnacha or Pinot Noir

First, prepare your fruit. Dice the apples and pears into small pieces with the skin on. Cut the orange and lemon in halves. Slice one half of each into thin wheels.

Add half of the diced apples, cranberries, and pomegranate seeds to a large pitcher along with the maple syrup and juice from the intact lemon and orange halves. Cush with a muddler or wooden spoon, then stir. Add orange and lemon wheels, diced pear, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and the remaining apples, cranberries, and pomegranate seeds. Pour in the cranberry juice, apple cider, brandy, triple sec, and red wine, then stir to combine. Add sparkling water and additional maple syrup to taste. Stir it again to incorporate all of the ingredients.

Chill at least two hours before serving. When ready, ladle it into glasses with plenty of fruit in each one, and enjoy!

4. Red & Green Gin & Tonic

Deck your typical gin & tonic with red cranberries and green rosemary to turn it into a festive affair!

Serves 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes for cocktail + 20-25 minutes for simple syrup

  • 4 oz gin
  • 6 oz tonic
  • 2 oz rosemary simple syrup
  • 4-6 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 6-8 fresh cranberries

To make rosemary simple syrup, combine the water, sugar and rosemary sprigs in a saucepan. Heat until simmering and the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat and let it cool to room temperature. Remove the rosemary sprigs. Transfer the syrup to the refrigerator, and chill for about 15 minutes. Make it ahead of time for easier, in-the-moment bartending.

To serve the cocktail, fill two rocks glasses with ice. Pour 1 oz of the sage simple syrup and 2 oz of gin into each glass, then top with 3 oz of tonic. Give it a quick stir. Add a sprig of rosemary and a few cranberries to each glass for a festive red and green display!

5. Tangerine-Mint Margarita

With the right ingredients, a margarita can hang with other winter holiday cocktail recipes. Tangerine does the trick in this merry marg!

Serves 2-3
Prep Time: 10 minutes

  • 4 oz fresh tangerine juice
  • 4 oz blanco tequila
  • 2 oz triple sec
  • 2 oz lime juice
  • 2 oz simple syrup
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1 T tangerine or lime zest
  • Tangerine wheel
  • Mint leaves
  • Ice

To make sugar the rim, combine sugar with the zest of a lime or tangerine. Pour it onto a small plate. Wet the rim of 2 to 3 glasses with citrus juice, then dip each into the sugar, turning the glass to cover the rim.

Combine the tangerine juice, tequila, triple sec, lime juice, and simple syrup in a shaker with ice. Shake to mix and chill ingredients. Pour it into the sugared glass, over ice if preferred. Add a tangerine wheel and mint leaves to garnish.

6. Santa Clausmopolitan

Your guests won’t be able to resist this cleverly-named cocktail by Delish. Leave one out for Santa, and you’re sure to make the Nice List. Ho, ho, ho!

Serves 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes

  • 3 oz vodka
  • 3 oz cranberry juice
  • ½ oz triple sec
  • ½ oz fresh lime juice
  • ½ c fresh cranberries
  • Lime wedge, for rim
  • Sugar, for rim

Run a lime wedge around each martini glass, then dip it in sugar. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice, then add vodka, cranberry juice, triple sec, and lime juice. Shake until the cocktail shaker is cold. Divide the drinks between rimmed glasses and add cranberries for garnish.

7. Winter Spice Old Fashioned

Add this jolly riff of an Old Fashioned to your repertoire of holiday bourbon cocktail recipes.

Serves 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes for cocktail + 20-25 minutes for simple syrup

  • 2 oz bourbon
  • ½ oz spiced simple syrup
  • 2 dashes orange bitters
  • 1 dash aromatic bitters
  • Orange peel
  • Cinnamon stick for garnish

For Spiced Simple Syrup

  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1 c water
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 2 whole nutmeg
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick

To make spiced simple syrup, combine the water, sugar, and all the spices in a saucepan. Heat over medium-low until simmering and sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature. Strain out spices. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill for about 15 minutes.

In an old-fashioned rocks glass, add the bourbon, spiced simple syrup, and bitters, and stir to combine. Add ice and stir until cool. Squeeze the orange peel to release the oils, and add the peel to the glass along with a cinnamon stick to garnish.

8. Fig & Vanilla Bean Fizz

Tis the season for festive sips! Try this delicious vanilla bean and fig cocktail — it’ll make your and your guests’ list of the best holiday cocktail recipes you’ve ever had!

Serves 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes for cocktail + 25-30 minutes for simple syrup

  • 3 oz gin
  • 1 oz fig and vanilla bean simple syrup
  • 4 oz tonic
  • Fresh figs for garnish
  • Thyme sprigs

For Fig and Vanilla Bean Simple Syrup:

  • 1 c chopped figs
  • ½ c sugar
  • ½ c water
  • 1 vanilla bean, cut in half and seeds scraped

For the simple syrup, add all the ingredients to a small saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook until the figs break down (about five to seven minutes) while stirring frequently. Let the mixture cool, then strain the liquid.

Add gin, simple syrup and lemon juice to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously, and then pour it into two ice-filled cocktail glasses. Top each with 2 oz tonic. Garnish with sliced figs and thyme sprigs, and serve.

9. Peppermint White Russian

Meet the boozy relative of the Peppermint Mocha! Just as fall goes hand-in-hand with the iconic flavors of a pumpkin spice latte, the holiday season isn’t complete without the classic zing of peppermint. And what better way to get your peppermint fix than in this easy and delicious Peppermint White Russian!

Serves 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes

  • 4 oz vodka
  • 4 oz coffee liqueur
  • 4 oz peppermint schnapps
  • 2 oz cream or half-and-half
  • Whipped cream (optional)
  • Mini candy cane

Combine vodka, coffee liqueur, schnapps, and cream in a shaker with ice. Shake it until chilled and pour the mixture into a mug or rocks glass. Top it with whipped cream (optional but encouraged) and a candy cane.

10. Classic (Spiked) Eggnog

Last but not least is the pinnacle of all classic holiday beverages: spiked eggnog! Once your eggnog is made, you can add as little or as much “spiked” as you’d like! This recipe uses rum, though it’s more than acceptable to substitute a good bourbon, brandy, or even vodka!

holiday eggnog

Serves 4-6
Prep Time: 20-25 minutes + chill time (2 hours)

  • 6 egg yolks
  • ¾ c sugar
  • 2 c whole milk
  • 1 c heavy cream
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ c rum (optional)

Separate the egg yolks into the bowl of a stand mixer. Add sugar and beat together until mixture is smooth and fluffy.

Combine the milk, nutmeg, and cinnamon in a saucepan and warm on low heat until steaming (do not simmer or boil), stirring frequently.

While still warm, pour half of the milk mixture very slowly in a thin stream into the egg mixture while whisking constantly to temper the eggs. Continue whisking for several minutes after the mixture is incorporated. Then, slowly pour the milk and egg mixture back into the saucepan to combine with the remaining milk mixture, stirring constantly to prevent curdling. Cook slowly, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens.

Remove from the heat and stir in the cream. Strain out any curdled bits, if any. Stir in the vanilla extract and rum (or omit rum if desired). Chill completely before serving. Pour into mugs or glasses and sprinkle it with cinnamon.

Enjoy Your Holiday Cocktails at Painting with a Twist

The best way to spread holiday cheer is to share your holiday spirit — and spirits! — with the ones you love. Invite your friends to a painting event at your local Painting with a Twist to enjoy your holiday cocktails while you paint a festive painting and share an unforgettable holiday experience!

You’ve cooked the turkey, prepared the sides, baked the pie, and invited all of your closest friends to your annual Friendsgiving. But you forgot one thing — the drinks! If you’re in need of some spectacular Friendsgiving drink ideas, then check out these fun fall drink recipes to impress your friends and elevate your Friendsgiving.

Fall cocktail

1. Cranberry-Pomegranate Mimosa

Kick off a lovely Friendsgiving with a champagne toast! After all, is there anything more festive than bubbles? Almond-crusted goat cheese or baked brie with crackers would be a delicious pairing. And you can never go wrong with a decked-out charcuterie board for guests to graze on before the big meal.

Serves 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes

  • 4 oz prosecco
  • 2 oz cranberry juice
  • 1 oz pomegranate juice
  • Fresh cranberries or pomegranate seeds

Pour the apple juice and cranberry juice into a champagne flute. Top it with prosecco. Drop in a few fresh cranberries or pomegranate seeds for a pretty and extra-festive touch.

2. Spiced Pear Spritz

A pear cocktail? Really? Oh yes! This spritz has a lovely balance of crisp lightness and warm spice, and also best poured as you pass the apps. Try bacon-wrapped figs or crostini topped with prosciutto, goat cheese, and fig jam. Those bites look fancy but are super simple to make!

Serves 4
Prep Time: 35 minutes

  • 8 oz Prosecco, chilled
  • 4 oz Aperol
  • 2 oz pear syrup
  • Pear Syrup:
  • ¾ c water
  • ¾ c honey
  • 1 Anjou pear (can also use Bartlett or Bosc)
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Slice the pear. In a saucepan, combine half of the sliced pears, honey, water, cloves, and cinnamon stick. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the honey is dissolved, then turn the heat to low and cook for about 5 more minutes. Remove from the heat and let it cool to room temperature. Strain the mixture into a container to remove the cloves, cinnamon sticks, and larger pear pieces, then refrigerate for at least 15 minutes. You can easily make this the day before so it’s ready to mix at cocktail hour.

Add a slice or two of pear to each champagne flute. When the pear syrup is chilled, pour 2-3 ounces into each flute. Top each with 1 ounce Aperol and 2 ounces Prosecco.

3. Blood Orange Margarita

If you’re a sucker for a good marg but feel like it’s just a summertime drink, think again! The blood orange in this margarita makes it totally season-appropriate. Push traditional boundaries by serving these with seasonal Mexican delicacies like pumpkin empanadas, roasted squash blossoms, or calabaza en tacha — candied pumpkin.

Serves 2-3
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

  • 4 oz fresh blood orange juice
  • 4 oz Blanco tequila
  • 2 oz triple sec
  • 2 oz lime juice
  • 2 oz simple syrup
  • 1 T coarse salt
  • 1 T orange or lime zest
  • Blood orange wheel to garnish
  • Rosemary sprig to garnish
  • Ice

To make the salt rim, combine salt with the zest of a lime, blood orange, or your preferred citrus. Pour it onto a small plate. Wet the rim of 2 to 3 glasses with the citrus juice, then dip it into salt, turning the glass to cover the rim.

Combine the blood orange juice, tequila, triple sec, lime juice, and simple syrup in a shaker with ice. Shake to mix and chill the ingredients. Pour it into the salted glass — over ice if preferred. Add a blood orange wheel and a sprig of rosemary to garnish.

4. Sage G+T

Nothing says autumn like fresh sage! And this favorite fall herb is the perfect addition to a classic gin and tonic, as it plays well with the juniper notes of a good gin. Trade in the lime garnish for lemon and you’re all set. This cocktail will go best with savory dishes but can be served before, during, or after the meal.

Serves 2
Prep Time: 25-30 minutes

  • 2 oz gin
  • 3 oz tonic water
  • 1 oz sage simple syrup
  • 1 lemon
  • Sage Simple Syrup:
  • 4 fresh sage leaves
  • ½ c water
  • ½ c sugar

To make sage simple syrup, combine water, sugar, and sage leaves in a saucepan. Heat until simmering and the sugar has dissolved. Remove it from the heat and let it cool to room temperature. Remove the sage leaves. Transfer the syrup to the refrigerator and chill for about 15 minutes. Make it ahead of time to reduce stress on Friendsgiving day.

To serve the cocktail, fill rocks glasses with ice. Pour 1 ounce of sage simple syrup and 2 ounces of gin into each glass, then top with 3 ounces of tonic. Give it a quick stir. Add a lemon wedge and start sipping!

5. Rosemary Greyhound

Vodka drinkers, this is for you! Some homemade spicy herb-roasted nuts are a tried-and-true party snack and would complement the herb-and-citrus combo of this drink.

Serves 2
Prep Time: 25-30

  • 6 oz grapefruit juice
  • 4 oz vodka
  • 2 oz rosemary-infused simple syrup
  • Rosemary Simple Syrup:
  • 4 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • ½ c water
  • ½ c sugar
  • Rosemary sprig to garnish
  • Grapefruit wheel to garnish

To make rosemary simple syrup, combine water, sugar, and rosemary sprigs in a saucepan. Heat it until it’s simmering and the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat and let it cool completely. Remove rosemary sprigs.

6. Maple Old Fashioned

You can’t go wrong with this classic cocktail—especially when it’s dressed up with a little fall flair. Let your guests munch on homemade Chex mix while sipping what will no doubt end up on everyone’s list of best autumn cocktail recipes!

Serves 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes

  • ½ oz maple syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 2 oz bourbon
  • Orange peel
  • Ice

In an old-fashioned glass, add maple syrup, bourbon, and bitters, and stir to combine. Add ice and stir until the cocktail is cool. Squeeze an orange peel to release the oils and add the peel to glass.

7. Mulled Wine

Mulled wine might remind you of sangria, but this warm brew dates back to the Dark Ages! Fit for the kings and queens of Medieval Times, mulled wine will make your guests feel like royalty. Offer this one with dinner if you like—it’s not far off from that bottle of red wine you probably planned to serve. And like any good red wine, it pairs well with a cheeseboard.

Serves 6
Prep Time: 30-35 minutes

  • 1 bottle red wine, such as Beaujolais or Merlot
  • ¼ c brandy
  • ¼ c maple syrup
  • 2 oranges
  • 2 star anise pods
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 3 cinnamon sticks

Add the wine, brandy, maple syrup, orange wheels, star anise, cloves, and cinnamon sticks to a large saucepan. Heat the mixture over high heat and bring it to just below a simmer being careful not to let it boil. Reduce the heat to low and let the mixture warm for at least 20 minutes to ensure the flavors infuse. Strain out orange slices and spices, and pour the mulled wine into mugs. Garnish with a star anise pod, cinnamon stick, and/or fresh orange wheel.

8. Pumpkin Spice White Russian

A boozy twist on your typical PSL, this drink can be served hot or iced. Put on your best fall sweater and be sure to take a group selfie for this one. Serve with other fall favorites like pecan pie or pumpkin bread.

Serves 3-4
Prep Time: 20-25 minutes

  • 1 c fresh-brewed coffee
  • ½ c vodka
  • ½ c coffee liqueur
  • ¼ c pumpkin spice creamer
  • Whipped cream
  • Cinnamon

Brew coffee and pour it into a saucepan over low heat. Add vodka and coffee liqueur and stir until fully incorporated. Pour creamer slowly in a thin stream, stirring constantly to prevent curdling. When all the cream is added, continue stirring until fully incorporated. Increase the heat to medium and heat the mixture until it’s just below simmering. Ladle it into heat-proof glasses, top with whipped cream, and sprinkle with cinnamon.

For an Iced Pumpkin Spice White Russian, simply chill freshly brewed coffee beforehand or use cold brew. Combine all the ingredients and pour over ice. Whipped cream and cinnamon topping are highly encouraged.

9. Spiked Cider

Spike cider is one of the simplest but yummiest fall cocktail recipes you can make and a must on your list of Friendsgiving drink recipes! If you’re hosting any kiddos or know some of your guests will pass on the booze, you can easily make a non-alcoholic batch and add 1 oz spiced rum to individual mugs to please everyone. Serve as a nightcap with pumpkin pie or molasses cookies.

Serves 6
Prep Time: 15-20 minutes

  • 8 c apple cider
  • 2 c spiced rum
  • 1 apple, sliced
  • 1 cinnamon stick + more to garnish

Combine the apple cider, spiced rum, and cinnamon stick in a large saucepan or crockpot and heat until just below simmering. In the meantime, quarter the apple and cut it into thin slices. Ladle the cider into mugs and garnish with an apple slice and cinnamon stick. Easy as pumpkin pie!

10. Hazelnut Hot Cocoa

Take your cocoa game to the next level! Your guests won’t be able to resist this decadent drink. Serve it after dinner with a lighter dessert like shortbread cookies or cinnamon pecan bars — or as dessert itself!

Serves 4-6
Prep Time: 25-30 minutes

  • 3 c milk
  • 1 c heavy cream
  • ¼ c cocoa powder
  • 1 c hazelnut spread
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (+ more to sprinkle on top)
  • ¼ c hazelnut liqueur (optional)
  • Whipped cream

Slowly heat the milk, cream, cocoa powder, and hazelnut spread over a double boiler, stirring to combine. When all the ingredients are incorporated, add the vanilla extract and cinnamon and stir. Serve it with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Make it spiked by adding ¼ c hazelnut liqueur.

Share Your Fall Cocktails at Your Next Painting Event

Are your Friendsgiving drinks the best fall cocktails you’ve ever made? Why wait until next year to share them again? Get the gang together for a painting event at Painting with a Twist for a sip and paint session, or have everyone over again for a Twist at Home event!

August 28th is National Red Wine Day — and what better way to celebrate and cool down on a hot summer day than to whip up a batch of ice-cold sangrias! Make this classic cocktail with just a few simple ingredients or mix things up by trying out these delicious red wine sangria recipes. Either way, it’ll be a festive celebration!

red wine sangria

1. Traditional Spanish Red Sangria

This easy homemade sangria recipe will transport you to Spain with just one sip!

Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

  • 1 green apple
  • 1 orange (+ more for juicing)
  • 1 lemon (+ more for juicing)
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 1-2 T maple syrup or honey
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • 1 cup sparkling water
  • 1/3 cup brandy
  • 750 ml bottle Spanish red wine, such as Garnacha or Rioja


First, prepare your fruit and juices. Dice the apple into small pieces with the skin on. Slice your orange and lemon into thin wheels. Remove the tops and hull your strawberries, then slice. Juice the oranges until you have about 3/4 cup of juice and the lemons until you have about 1/4 cup of juice.

Add 1/2 of the apple and a 1/2 cup of the strawberries to a large pitcher and crush with a muddler or wooden spoon. Add orange juice, lemon juice, and maple syrup. Crush the fruit again, then stir. Add sparkling water, brandy, and red wine, then stir to combine. Add additional maple syrup or juices to taste. Add orange and lemon slices, plus the remaining apples and strawberries, and the ice. Stir it again to incorporate all of the ingredients.

Chill before serving — two hours is ideal. Finally, ladle it into glasses (be sure to put fruit in every serving!) and garnish it with an orange wheel. Enjoy!

Pair this easy homemade sangria recipe with traditional Spanish favorites like empanadas, paella, or carrillada — beef or pork braised in delicious tomato sauce. Yum!

2. Sparkling Sangria

You’ll love this easy recipe for red wine sangria with a twist! Because isn’t everything better with bubbles?

Prep Time: 5-10 minutes

  • 1 red apple, such as Fuji or Gala
  • 1 orange
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 1-2 T honey
  • 1/4 cup orange juice or triple sec
  • 1/2 cup sparkling apple juice
  • 750 mL bottle Spanish red wine, such as Garnacha or Rioja
  • 750 mL bottle prosecco


Combine the orange juice, sparkling apple juice, red wine, and honey in a pitcher and stir to combine. Slice the apple and orange into small wedges and add them to the pitcher. Stir, then chill it until it’s ready to serve — at least two hours. Fill individual glasses about halfway, making sure to include some fruit in each serving. Top off each glass with prosecco, garnish it with a strawberry, and enjoy!

This bubbly drink is fun and festive. Serve it at a party with a charcuterie board of crackers, cheeses, cured meats, dried fruit, and nuts to be the hostess with the most-ess! It’s the perfect combination for your next paint party!

3. Tropical Sangria

This is the perfect version of sangria for sipping on the beach or by the pool. Plus, if you’re not the biggest fan of cocktails made with red wine, this one is excellent with a white, too.

Prep Time: 5-10 minutes


Dice the mango and pineapple, and slice the orange into thin wedges. Juice the orange to yield 1/4 cup. Add the mango, pineapple, orange wedges, and cherries to a large pitcher. Crush with a muddler or a wooden spoon. Add the pineapple juice, orange juice, rum, and wine. Stir to combine. Chill before serving — at least two hours. Serve it over ice, and garnish it with a pineapple wedge and a whole maraschino cherry. A tiny umbrella is strongly encouraged!

Enjoy this tropical treat while munching on shrimp (or fish) tacos! Warm up some corn tortillas and throw together a simple mango salsa and lime slaw to top your tacos, and you’ve got an easy and awesome summer meal.

4. Frozen Red Sangria

Frosé, meet your match! This frozen sangria recipe may just be your new favorite frozen cocktail.

Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

  • 2 cups frozen strawberries
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 T lime juice
  • 1-2 T honey or agave
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup triple sec
  • 1 ½ cups red wine, such as Pinot Noir or Garnacha
  • Ice
  • Fresh strawberries for garnish


Combine the frozen strawberries, honey, juices, triple sec, and red wine in a blender and blend until smooth. Add additional sweetener to taste. Add ice by the handful and blend it until you reach the desired consistency. Pour your frozen concoction into glasses, garnish each with a strawberry, and serve it immediately.

Sip this summer slushie while snacking on chips and homemade guacamole for a truly refreshing treat on a hot day!

5. Summer Berry Sangria

Want to make the most of summer produce? This fruity beverage packed with ripe berries will do the trick!

Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

  • 1 cup blackberries
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1-2 T honey
  • 1/2 cup sparkling water
  • 1/2 cup cherry liqueur
  • 750 mL bottle red wine, such as Garnacha or Pinot Noir


Add 1/2 cup of blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries into a large pitcher and crush with a muddler or wooden spoon. Add the honey and cherry liqueur. Crush the fruit again, then stir. Add the sparkling water and red wine, then stir it to combine. Add additional honey, sparkling water, or liqueur to taste. Add the remaining berries, and stir it all together to incorporate all the ingredients. Chill before serving — ideally two hours. Ladle it into glasses with plenty of berries and start sipping!

This easy homemade sangria recipe is the perfect complement to a big summery salad loaded with mixed greens, feta cheese, cherry tomatoes, corn, and any other fresh summery veggies. If you have a sweet tooth, how about a light dessert like flourless chocolate cake or lemon meringue pie?

Now that you’re officially a red wine sangria master, it’s time to share your cocktail creations with friends. Get everyone together at your local Painting with a Twist studio to paint, laugh, and sip on sangrias or other yummy cocktails while enjoying a fun painting experience!

Whether you’re hosting a summer cookout or making dinner for one, preparing a meal doesn’t have to be complicated or cause you stress! As temperatures continue to rise, you can cool down with these 12 colorful recipes that are light on calories but still full on flavor.

flavorful recipes

12 Flavorful and Filling Low-Cal Recipes

If you’re tired of cooking ‘the same old thing’ and need inspiration for your next family dinner or neighborhood get-together, the following recipes are a healthy way to satisfy the cravings of a multitude of tastes.

1. Zoodles with Summer Vegetables

Few meals are healthier (or prettier) than a plate full of summer vegetables, and this zoodle recipe from Pure Wow checks all those boxes and more. With less than ten ingredients, only four steps to follow, and just 240 calories per serving, these zoodles are a quick and delicious dish you’ll definitely want in your recipe repertoire.

2. Shrimp and Corn Stir Fry

If you’re already growing squash or tomatoes in your garden, these summer staples make a lovely complement to the seasoned shrimp in Taste of Home’s stir fry. This recipe can be ready in 20 minutes (prep included), making it a great go-to for those nights when you want to whip something up in a flash.

3. Peach and Prosciutto Flatbread

Fresh peaches are a summer favorite, and this flatbread from Delish is a wonderful way to enjoy them. By using whole wheat naan for the crust, you’ll save on calories without sacrificing on taste thanks to the sweetness of the fruit paired with the saltiness of the prosciutto.

4. Rainbow Panzanella Salad

This beautiful panzanella salad from Healthy Seasonal Recipes is full of tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, and onion to give it ample flavor, color, and crunch. It’s the perfect meal to bring to summer potlucks and events, and you’re likely to have others asking for the recipe after they’ve tried it.

5. Easy Tilapia Tacos

If you’re in search of easy dinner recipes for beginners, look no further than this fish taco recipe from Tasty. With a 98% positive rating, you know it has to be good! Not only are there simple steps for preparation, but many of the ingredients you likely already have on hand, which means Taco Tuesdays can now be a weekly tradition.

6. Chicken, Tomatoes, and Corn Foil Packets

When it comes to delicious healthy chicken recipes, few dinners are simpler or more satisfying than these foil packets from Delish. What’s more, this recipe is a great excuse to fire up the grill for the ultimate fast and fresh summer meal!

7. Homemade Artisan Bread

Looking for something to serve alongside a salad or meaty main dish? This easy bread making recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction will give you a lovely artisan loaf, even if you’re a bread beginner. With only four ingredients and no special pans or mixer required, this base recipe is soon to be on repeat in your kitchen.

8. Mediterranean Pork and Orzo

This Mediterrean-inspired meal from Taste of Home is incredibly quick to put together, leaving a lot more time to enjoy the people gathered around your table. Although it has a humble 372 calories per serving, this protein-packed entrée is sure to leave you feeling full and nourished.

9. Salmon Burgers

The salmon burgers from My Recipes will feel like a gourmet meal despite being so simple to prepare. They’re ready in ten minutes, and would work well alongside a green salad and a low calorie cocktail to make your summer entertaining complete.

10. Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

If you’re on the hunt for healthy, one-pan recipes, check out the sheet pan fajitas from The Modern Proper. These fajitas are a foolproof dinner your family or friends will love, not to mention the colors in the finished product are definitely photo-worthy.

11. Cherry Tomato Couscous Salad

The Israeli couscous salad from Love & Lemons can be a terrific light lunch or an appetizing accompaniment to your main course at dinnertime. But just because couscous is low-calorie doesn’t mean you’ll be left wanting! This versatile grain will surprise you with how filling it can be.

12. Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

Ice cream is practically synonymous with summer, and this recipe from Pinch of Yum is sure to please any sweet tooth (without ending in a sugar crash). For a fun easy dessert recipe, whip up this peanut butter banana potion right at home and see if you don’t finish it all before it makes it back to the freezer.

Share Your Culinary Creations with Your Friends

Spending time in your kitchen shouldn’t feel overwhelming or intimidating, so hopefully these low-cal recipes have given you more confidence about mealtime. And once you’ve mastered your cooking skills, why not explore your inner artist? Grab a few friends and head over to Painting with a Twist to share your culinary creations while painting an original artwork at the very same time!

Have you been counting calories since January 1? Whether you’re breaking up with sweets after the indulgent holiday season or you’ve made a New Year’s resolution to lose weight, calories might seem like the enemy and your Chardonnay might be the first thing to go. But don’t cancel your next paint-and-sip party on account of vodka soda calories just yet! Drinking and dieting don’t have to be mutually exclusive. With these simple low-calorie cocktails and mixed drinks, you can have your painting and drinks—and keep your resolutions, too!

1. Skinny Margarita


Nothing beats a good marg! This one is no exception…

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 oz Blanco tequila
  • 3-4 oz lemon-lime sparkling water
  • Juice from 1/4 of orange
  • Juice from 1/2 of lime
  • Salt for rim of glass (optional)


Combine the first four ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake well. Pour into a glass over fresh ice. Garnish with a lime wedge and enjoy!

(And a little something extra just for you: a Skinny Triple Sec substitute that has only about 19 calories/ounce—a fraction of the 100 calories/ounce found in most triple secs out there!)

Calories: 119 Sugar: 1.7 g (approx. per serving)

2. Kickin’ Cranberry Cosmo

Feel like you’re in an episode of Sex and the City—and feel good about your diet.

  • Ingredients:
  • 5 oz. diet cranberry juice drink
  • 1½ oz. vodka
  • 1 tsp. lime juice
  • Optional garnish: lime slice


In a shaker filled with ice, combine juice drink, vodka, and lime juice. Shake well. Strain into a large martini glass. Drink and give off serious Carrie Bradshaw vibes.

Calories: 100 Sugar: 1g (approx. per serving)

3. Whiskey Sour

Are you a whiskey person? You’ll love this sugar-free take on the classic.

  • Ingredients:
  • 1.5 oz whiskey
  • 1.5 oz lemon juice
  • 1.5 oz water
  • 1 packet Stevia
  • 1 wedge lemon, for garnish


Put the ingredients in a cocktail shaker half-full of ice. Shake well. Strain into a glass. Garnish with a lemon wedge. Start sipping!

Calories: 112 Sugar: 0g (approx. per serving)

4. Cucumber Cooler Cocktail

This cooler will add a little more flair to a night of paint and cocktails than your typical Gin & Tonic!

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 oz gin (1 1/2 oz equals 3 Tbsp)
  • 4-6 slices cucumber
  • 1/4 medium lime (sliced)
  • 4 oz tonic water
  • 6 mint leaves
  • 1 Tbsp sugar (optional)


Add mint, lime, gin, and sugar (optional) to shaker and muddle. Add cucumber slices to the shaker and shake well. Pour mixture in a glass over ice and top with tonic or sparkling water. Stir and let sit for a few minutes to enhance the flavor—then drink up!

Calories: 162 Sugar: 11.2g or less (approx. per serving)

5. Classic Mojito


You can be painting palm trees and sandy beaches with this mojito in hand at Painting with a Twist! Doesn’t that sound dreamy?

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ½ lime
  • 5 sprigs mint
  • 1.5 oz light rum
  • Soda water
  • Ice


Put sugar, mint, juice from ½ lime plus the rind in a glass. Muddle together. Add rum and a handful of ice. Fill with chilled soda water and lightly stir. Now it’s ready to drink—no beach necessary.

Calories: 122 Sugar: 4.7g (approx. per serving)

6. Peach Basil Bellini

Do you prefer sparkling wine over liquor? Then you’ll be glad to know that Prosecco is one of the lowest-calorie bubbly beverages! Just add a splash of fruit juice or puree and you’ve got a guilt-free cocktail! This Bellini is a delicious place to start.

  • Ingredients:
  • 2 Tbsp smooth peach puree
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • 6 oz chilled prosecco


Blend fresh peach to make the puree. Add 2 Tbsp puree and a basil leaf to a glass. Smash the basil leaf, then remove. Fill glass with prosecco. Serve with a fresh basil leaf. Enjoy!

Calories: 100 Sugar: 1.5 g (approx. per serving)

Are you ready to try your hand at being a low-calorie mixologist? Then bring your friends and your bar-tending skills to a Painting with a Twist near you for a calorie-conscious night of painting, sipping, and fun!


Colorful Cocktails: Game Day Sangria
Colorful Cocktails: Game Day Sangria

If you’re in the mood for something new and exciting to get you in gear for tailgating- look no further. Inspired by the idea of hydrating, nourishing and amping yourself up for game day, this fruity sangria will transport you to a place between summer and fall where weekends are filled with promise and FOOTBALL!  Make everyone happy and whip up a batch of this creamsicle inspired Sangria- with a sweet and tangy fusion of summer and fall fruits. It’s perfect to satiate any palate with a refreshing zing!  Game Day Sangria isn’t just for afternoons before the big game, it’s DELICIOUS enough to make in a Painting with a Twist studio for a Friday night class! There’s no better way to celebrate a girl’s night out than a paintbrush in one hand and a Game Day Sangria in the other.



  • 1 Bottle White Wine (choose your favorite!)
  • 1 Cup Vanilla Vodka
  • 1 Cup Orange Juice
  • 2 Oranges
  • 1 Punnet Strawberries
  • 2 Pears
  • Crushed Ice


  • Fill pitcher with crushed ice.
  • Add wine, vodka, and juice. Stir.
  • Slice oranges and pears into quarters.
  • Slice strawberries into halves.
  • Add fruit into pitcher mixture.
  • Serve in wine glasses, making sure to scoop fruit out into each cup!
Colorful Cocktails: Champagnarita by Painting with a Twist
Colorful Cocktails: Champagnarita by Painting with a Twist

Welcome Thirsty Thursday with open arms and a round of deliciously colorful cocktails: The Champagnarita! It’s National Margarita Day with a twist! Dress up your favorite margarita in sparkles by adding a little bubbly to the glass. This is the ultimate girl’s night out drink – it’s a little sweet, a little sour, and a lot of delicious. Not to mention, it makes for a great selfie! BYOB to your next Painting with a Twist class and make a pitcher of Delish’s Champagnaritas. 

For an even more colorful take on this cocktail, think pink with this dazzling and darling recipe. You can also find a rainbow of other Champagnaritas here so there is something for everyone! Head over to your local Painting with a Twist studio and pick up a brush and a glass to celebrate!


  • 1oz Silver Tequila
  • .5 oz Orange Liquor
  • Champagne
  • .5oz Simple Syrup
  • 1oz Lime Juice
  • Kosher Salt
  • Lime Wedge
  • Crushed Ice


  • Pour Kosher Salt into a shallow dish.
  • Wipe glass with a lime wedge and dip the rim into the kosher salt.
  • Pour silver tequila, orange liquor, simple syrup, and ice into a shaker and stir.
  • Strain into glass.
  • Top with champagne.
  • Garnish with lime.

#NationalIrishCoffeeDay is this week and we couldn’t be more excited to talk about our favorite Irish Coffee recipe. There isn’t much to dislike about this steamy and sweet concoction. It’s the perfect blend to help you relax with a drink and wake up with a jolt! Not to mention, it almost always comes with whipped cream. This Colorful Cocktail recipe is classic. When it comes to Sangria recipes, we like to get a little creative – but the Irish Coffee needn’t be complicated. Simple ingredients make this toasty cocktail shine on a dreary winter’s day. However, if you prefer a little more flavor, there are endless recipes available at your fingertips. Like The Spruce’s creamy caramel recipe or Genius Kitchen’s rich, dark mocha recipe that hides a hint of Creme de Menthe for the most luxurious touch ever. 

Pro tip: Get really creative and add some snazz with a dollop of colorful whipped cream on top instead of the usual white. Our favorite color to make is PINK! It’s an easy way to achieve a striking (and fun!) result.


  • 1.5oz Irish Whiskey
  • 6oz  Hot Coffee
  • 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
  • Whipped Cream
  • Cinnamon Stick


  • Pour 1.5oz of Irish Whiskey into your glass.
  • Top with 6oz of freshly brewed hot coffee of your choice.
  • Stir in 1 tbsp of brown sugar.
  • Top with a generous amount of whipped cream.
  • Garnish with cinnamon stick.

December 20th is National Sangria Day and we have a classic recipe to lift your holiday spirit. Christmas is a wonderful time of year to gather with the ones you love to share stories, eat fabulous food, and clink wine glasses together for a toast around the fire. Recipes are kept sacred and treasured this time of year.  Everyone has a favorite – buttery sugar cookies, savory cheese straws, intricate casseroles, the list goes on and on. We look forward to these tasty treats all year so why not pair them with cocktail that tastes as inspiring as it looks. Introducing, Holiday Cheer Sangria.

Holiday Cheer Sangria by Painting with a Twist

In celebration of National Sangria Day,  we are sharing our favorite version of Holiday Cheer Sangria with you. This white wine version is fresh and crisp, just like the weather. For those who favor spicy reds, substitute with your favorite cabernet and garnish with a cinnamon stick for a wintry cocktail that’ll warm your heart. For a tarter take, use a beautifully pink hued White Zinfandel with a few orange slices as a garnish for a jammy and sweet Sangria.

White Wine Holiday Cheer Sangria
Holiday Cheer Sangria: Red, White Zin, and White Wine
Holiday Cheer Sangrias


  • Ice Cubes
  • 2 Bottles of White Wine
  • 1/2 Cup Brandy
  • 1/2 Cup Simple Syrup
  • 1 Cup Cranberries
  • 2 Lemons
  • 2 Diced Apples (Red Delicious and Granny Smith)
  • 10 Sprigs of Rosemary


  • To make simple syrup, bring equal parts water and refined sugar to a boil. Stir frequently. Let cool before using.
  • Fill large serving bowl with ice.
  • Add white wine, brandy, and simple syrup. Mix well.
  • Dice apples into small pieces and add to serving bowl.
  • Slice lemons and add.
  • Wash cranberries well and add.
  • Scoop out 1 cup worth for your guests and garnish with a sprig of Rosemary.


Thanksgiving Sangria is here to make us feel warm, cozy, and grateful this holiday season. It’s deliciously enchanting and the barrage of fruit packed into a glass pitcher makes for a gorgeous tabletop addition. Anyone can make this simple recipe that pairs perfectly with a warm helping of apple pie or homemade stuffing. Everyone makes Thanksgiving Sangria a little differently. Our favorite is a twist on the classic recipe. Add some seasonal cranberries and pinch of Allspice for a bountiful red wine Sangria. Not into the reds? Try this White Sangria recipe where they use autumn ripe Granny Smith Apples and Barlett Pears to compliment a sweet Moscato. Want something with a bite to it? Apple Cider Sangria has hints of caramel and ginger that will put you in a very thankful mindset. Thanksgiving dinner won’t feel complete without a fruity and spicy Thanksgiving Sangria to wash it all down with. Pour yourself a cup, let the satisfaction wash over you, and don’t forget to tell the people in your life why you appreciate them. Happy Thanksgiving, Twisters!

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. “

-William Arthur Ward


Colorful Cocktails: Thanksgiving Sangria by Painting with a Twist



  • Ice cubes
  • Bottle of red wine
  • 1 cup of tonic
  • 1 tsp Allspice
  • 6-7 slices of mixed citrus
  • 1/2 cup cranberries
  • 1/2 cup black cherries
  • Sprig of fresh mint


  • Fill pitcher halfway with ice cubes.
  • Add citrus, cranberries and black cherries.
  • Pour in the bottle of red wine.
  • Add Allspice and mix with spoon.
  • Top with tonic.
  • Slap the mint and wipe along the pitcher’s rim with leaves & garnish. (The slap releases oils that give the sangria a little something extra!)

Introducing, the Smokey Witches Brew: Pop. Clink. Fizz. Plop. Then, watch as the tendrils of smoke curl over the lip of your goblet.

Halloween is right around the corner and the time for serving up spooky cocktails is slowly running out. If you’re looking for the perfectly simple, yet perfectly delicious cocktail to make this Halloween, then look no further! A mimosa crafted to look like a magic potion is the answer. It’s ideal for the person who plans ahead AND for the person who waits until the day before Halloween to pick out a costume and cocktail sipper. Keep it simple, we say. The easier, the better. Luckily, a goblet full of Smokey Witches Brew is only a twisted version of the classically favored Mimosa! Adding a lump of dry ice is the most important ingredient. Use a pair of tongs(never touch dry ice with your bare hands!) to plop the dry ice cube into your colorful cocktail and watch it bubble over with spooky swirls of smoke. Not a fan of the classic Mimosa? Add any juice you want.  A lemon-lime soda could be a nice addition, too.

This recipe uses sparkling apple juice as a substitute for champagne to make it a fun and kid-friendly refreshment. Flavor possibilities are endless when it comes to personalizing your Smokey Witches Brew colorful cocktail. Country Living breaks down 29 fruity recipes inspired by the mimosa – All of which would work delightfully well to create the same smoldering cocktail that is creative and creepy enough to impress anyone. Happy Halloween, Twisters!


Colorful Cocktails: Smokey Witches Brew


  • Dry Ice
  • Handful of Frozen Raspberries
  • 1/2 cup of Prosecco
  • Splash of Orange Juice


  • Pour ½ cup Prosecco into a goblet.
  • Splash with orange juice.
  • Drop in a handful of frozen raspberries.
  • Using tongs or a fork, carefully insert one small piece of dry ice.**

**Caution your guests not to drink the dry ice cubes.  Read Betty Crocker’s advice when it comes to using dry ice in Halloween cocktails.

On National Coffee Day, we want to celebrate coffee the best way we can imagine- cocktails! Really though- what would we do without our daily cup of joe? We depend on it to give us the strength to face the day. Our work days are split into coffee breaks with our peers. Our weekends are held together by long conversations over a full mug or grabbing a massive coffee to go before a new adventure. We drink it all day, every day. It’s delicious, after all. Coffee has found its way into our lives as a necessity. Thankfully, there is a great way for us to appreciate the uber-important beverage that fuels our hearts, minds, and bodies. Our recipe is a boozy frappe will transport you to a decadent dessert paradise!  The best thing about frappes is how they taste, but the second best thing is how easy they are to change up. Our personal favorite is this version: a no-frills recipe that takes you straight to flavor town. But feel free to get a little crazy. You could try a salted caramel version, like this recipe from The Cook Craft Love blog. It’s a lush retreat into a frozen paradise of french vanilla and creamy caramel. Add extra chocolate syrup in with the Kahlua and bring some mocha madness to your mouth. Drinkwire lays out a whole list of amazing frappe recipes(amazing as in… Pumpkin Spice Frappe!) Add Kahlua and voila… cocktails! 

Take “treat yourself” to the next level: Blend up a batch and grab a paintbrush! You and your friends seriously deserve an icy pitcher of frappe cocktails. Happy National Coffee Day, Twisters!


  • Ice cubes
  • 2 ounces Kahlua liqueur
  • 4 ounces milk
  • Spoonful instant coffee
  • 1 scoop vanilla ice cream
  • Whipped cream
  • Chocolate Syrup


  • Fill glass with ice cubes.
  • Add Kahlua, milk, instant coffee and ice cream.
  • Transfer to blender and pulse for 20 seconds.
  • Pour back into glass and top with whipped cream.
  • Drizzle chocolate syrup on top.

At Painting with a Twist, we love a good twist in our cocktails, making the Tinto De Verano a perfect sip for any painting class. This simple and refreshing colorful cocktail is a fan fave! Originating from Spain, this red wine-based drink is similar to a Sangria but with a twist of lemon. With a splash of lemonade, a twist of lemon, and muddled mint, this cocktail is sure to be a fan favorite for all!

Many also call the Tinto de Verano the “Red Wine of the Summer.” Summer may be coming to a close where you are, but this cocktail will help you relish in the memories of summertime. This cocktail also has less alcohol in it, making it a perfect beverage to paint with!

Painting with a Twist Colorful Cocktails: Tinto De Verano
Painting with a Twist Colorful Cocktails: Tinto De Verano


  • Ice cubes
  • ½ cup of red wine
  • ½ cup of lemonade
  • 2 lemon slice
  • Mint leaves


  • Place ice cubes in a 20oz cup
  • Add red wine and lemonade
  • Twist in lemons
  • Add mint and stir

There are several versions of the Tinto to choose from! This recipe featured on The Spruce recommends adding lemon-lime soda instead, which, frankly looks super yummy too!


The leaves are turning and there’s a special feeling in the air anticipating the cozy nights and brisk days ahead. Here’s a delicious colorful cocktail to celebrate the changing of the seasons- going from summer to autumn feels like a major shift.

How to make a delicious Autumn Pear Spritzer

It seems like the perfect time to ditch the summer fruits and embrace the delicious flavors of fall. At Painting with a Twist, we love trying new colorful cocktails that embody every time of year. What’s the best way to welcome the changing leaves? A toast to the good life with an Autumn Pear Spritzer


  • Crushed Ice
  • 1 tsp organic honey
  • ½ cup prosecco
  • Slice of fresh pear
  • Sprigg of Thai basil


  • Fill a highball glass with crushed ice.
  • Drizzle 1 tsp honey into ice and stir vigorously with a spoon to distribute evenly.
  • Fill with ½ cup of prosecco.
  • Push sliced pear into the drink along the side of the glass.
  • Slap basil between palms to release flavor.
  • Garnish
  • Sip!

Additionally, this recipe is simple enough to pack up and bring to your next paint and sip class or perfect for sipping on the patio at dusk.

While this palette satisfying colorful cocktail is our own brainchild, we couldn’t help but take inspiration from the Lemon Tree Dwelling’s recipe for the Pear Prosecco Spritzer. Is basil not your thing? Maybe you have a heart for amaretto? If so, here’s a perfect recipe that is similar. Maybe even give them both a try to see what you like most. Cheers!!


Summer sunsets last deep into the evening. It’s the biggest thing I’ll miss once Autumn rolls around. It’s as if the summer days are patient- they wait for you to finish everything before the stage is set. Then the sunsets start small before they explode into a vibrant glow, like streaks highlighters across the sky. Every week, I try to carve out enough time to drink it in all its splendid color. Make the most of it by drinking in an equally beautiful colorful cocktail… maybe even a Sangria.

It takes sunset watching to the next level, I promise.

Imagine it now: You’re gathering with loved ones on the front porch to watch the sunset fade from a soft pink to a blazing orange that soaks into the entire sky while sipping on this colorful cocktail. It’s sweet, but not too sweet. And it’s icy cold refreshment makes you forget about the heat left over from the afternoon. Breath in the view, drink up the color. Let the stress of the day fall out of sight, even if momentarily. When I am here, this moment is my bliss.

Sunset Sangria
Sunset Sangria

We put together our favorite recipe for a Sunset Sangria, inspired by these from Rachel Ray. Our version is a Rose’ Sangria – with a hint of rum for a kick. It’s filled with bright red cherries and thick slices of fresh tart oranges.This recipe makes a batch of slightly effervescent sangria that tastes like the colors of a sunset. It can be mixed up for any occasion: watching the sunset, picnics on a hilltop, backyard bbq’s, or a girl’s night out at Painting with a Twist. You can paint your sunset and drink it, too!


  • Pitcher of ice cubes
  • 1 bottle of rose’ wine
  • ½ cup citrus rum
  • ½ cup lemon-lime soda
  • Handful of maraschino cherries
  • 1 orange, sliced


Directions (Makes 6 servings)

  • Fill pitcher ¾ full of ice cubes.
  • Pour in rose’, citrus rum, and soda.
  • Stir gently.
  • Drop in cherries and orange slices.


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