Also known as Sour Mix, Sweet and Sour Mix is a widely used cocktail mixer that consists of lemon or lime juice and simple syrup. The ratio of sweet to sour is an even 50/50.
Once combined, citrus and simple syrup receive a spirited shake, resulting in a flavorful lemonade/limeade concentrate.
Sweet and sour mix bestows a vibrant flavor profile that pairs well with any spirit and is the main ingredient in a panoply of famous cocktail recipes.
Every culinary tradition features sweet and sour mix with their native liquor, whether it’s margaritas in Mexico, Whisky sours in the U.S., or Pisco Sours in Peru.
If you’re planning on serving a sweet and sour cocktail at your next party or gathering, you don’t have to waste time squeezing lemons and boiling sugar water. There are numerous cocktail mixer companies to supply pre-made mix that tastes fresh.
Best Sweet & Sour Mix
Read on to check out my list of the best sweet and sour mixes on the market.
Collins Sweet & Sour Cocktail Mix
Collins has been a trusted household name for professional and amateur bartenders alike since 1934.
Collins thus has nearly 90 years of creating mixers and canned cocktails with the freshest, all-natural ingredients. They ensure that none of their products use high-fructose corn syrup.
Collins Sweet & Sour Cocktail Mix has 19% juice, using both lemon and orange juice concentrates in their recipe. Other ingredients include water, sugar, citric acid, and preservatives.
I think the orange juice adds more sweetness and a distinct citrus flavor that softens the sour acid of the lemon. I like using Collins mix with Whiskey for a tasty Whiskey Sour.
Zing Zang All Natural Sweet and Sour Mix
Zing Zang is a company created by bartenders, for bartenders, and you will see it as a standard brand for mixers behind the bar.
They use real fruit juices and essential oils with no artificial flavors, no high-fructose corn syrup, and no preservatives.
The Zing Zang All Natural Sweet and Sour Mix contains:
Zing Zang has won multiple Sip Awards and Proof Awards for its high-quality products and commitment to craft recipes.
Their sweet and sour mix is perfectly balanced, and in addition to sweet and sour, you get a bitter bite that makes its flavor profile more complex.
I’ll even use the sweet and sour mix in an Old Fashioned when I don’t have angostura bitters on hand.
Bittermilk No. 3 Smoked Honey Whiskey Sour
Winner of the sofi Award for Outstanding Cold Beverage and lauded by noteworthy publications like Imbibe and Southern Living, Bittermilk No. 3 Smoked Honey Whiskey Sour is an artisanal, small-batch mixer.
Bittermilk is the best choice to wow your guests, its unique ingredients make any drink a gourmet beverage.
Instead of cane sugar, Bittermilk uses honey that’s been smoked over oak barrels, mimicking the flavor inherent in bourbon and whisky.
It uses no artificial flavors, preservatives, or concentrates. In addition to smoked honey, Bittermilk No. 3 contains:
- Fresh lemon juice
- Florida Golden Cane Sugar
- Orange peel
Combine Bittermilk mix with a smokey whisky and ice, and you’ll have the perfect cocktail.
I also like combining this sweet and sour mix with mezcal for a smokey Mexican cocktail.
LAVA Sweet and Sour Mix
LAVA originated as a project of passion between two friends with decades of experience in fine dining.
They wanted to create a product that brought the qualities of fine dining ingredients to every household bar.
They source their gourmet ingredients from around the world to optimize flavor and authenticity.
LAVA sweet and sour mix is perfect in its simplicity, using precious few ingredients from the highest quality sources. It is a small-batch mixture made with:
It is the lowest calorie option on my list and my personal favorite. Its simplicity adds to its versatility. I use it for margaritas, lemon drop martinis, daiquiris, and more.
Royal Rose Real Sour Mix
Royal Rose is a Maine-based small-batch cocktail syrup and mix company that has received endless praise from The New York Times, Huffington Post, and Bon Appetit to name a few.
Originating in 2010, Royal Rose recently came under the leadership of co-owners Matt Page and Topher Mallory, who also co-own a local Maine distillery.
Like their small-batch alcohol, Page and Mallory use locally sourced, organic fruit, herbs, and botanicals to create its award-winning line of simple syrups and cocktail mixes.
The Royal Rose Real Sour Mix contains:
- Organic sugar
- Lime juice
- Lemon juice
This is the only USDA organic product, and while it may be pricey, you know you’re getting quality and supporting local domestic products. I use Royal Rose Sour Mix for a show stopping Pisco Sour.
Mr & Mrs T Sweet & Sour Mix
Named for founders Herb and June Taylor, who traded in their sauce business for cocktail mixes in 1960, Mr & Mrs quickly became a commercial success.
Their first cocktail mix was a bloody mary mix that garnered nationwide acclaim as the key ingredient for American Airlines’ cocktails.
Mr & Mrs T has since changed ownership to Keurig Dr. Pepper, which has expanded the selection of mixes to include novel and traditional recipes. Their sweet and sour mix is a straightforward recipe that contains:
- Cane sugar
- Citric acid
It may not be all-natural, but it has a long shelf life. I like to use it for Long Island Iced Teas.
Swig + Swallow Sour
Swig and Swallow is a fashionable and innovative mixer company out of Brooklyn.
They take convenience and efficiency a step further by offering a product that contains a half-full bottle of mix.
Customers can save time on dishwashing by adding alcohol directly to the half-full bottles, closing the cap, and shaking the whole mixture. The result is a carafe of the craft cocktail of your choice.
They also use a preservation process that is chemical-free to ensure a shelf life of up to 6 months in a fridge.
The Swig and Swallow Sour mix is a party-size jug half full of lemon juice, filtered water, and cane sugar. It comes with numerous instructions for various cocktails you can make by simply pouring in the rest of the ingredients.
I made their Tom Collins recipe.
Best Sweet & Sour Mix
- Collins Sweet & Sour Cocktail Mix
- Zing Zang All Natural Sweet and Sour Mix
- Bittermilk No. 3 Smoked Honey Whiskey Sour
- LAVA Sweet and Sour Mix
- Royal Rose Real Sour Mix
- Mr & Mrs T Sweet & Sour Mix
- Swig + Swallow Sour
Sweet and Sour mixes bring a vibrant tang to the adult beverage lineup.
Whether you’re looking for small-batch gourmet mixes or a budget-friendly option, you’ll find the best sweet and sour mixes on my list.
Check out other popular mixers, like the best strawberry daiquiri mixes!
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