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BEVERAGES

"100% natural" or "100% juice" does not necessarily mean no added sugar, hidden free glutamate or other additives.  Read the ingredients carefully and be skeptical, in particular of labeling such as "not from concentrate". See here for more information regarding juice.  Juice has gotten a bad rap lately for its sugar content, which I would argue has more to do with food politics than nutrition, but if you've been convinced by those who would argue that you might as well be drinking a soda if you're having a glass of juice, then maybe skip this page.

Non-Alcoholic Beverages:

GT's Kombucha

Ingredients (Trilogy variety): GT'S KOMBUCHA* (KOMBUCHA CULTURE*, BLACK TEA*, GREEN TEA*, KIWI JUICE*), RASPBERRY JUICE*, LEMON JUICE*, FRESH PRESSED GINGER JUICE* (* ORGANICALLY PRODUCED)

If you're into Kombucha (I'm not, but my husband is) then choose GT's!  Many of GT's varieties have nothing even questionable added.  My husband's favorites are the Trilogy, Mango and Original.  Kombucha is supposed to be one of the healthiest beverages you can get so if you like the taste, enjoy!

Blue Monkey Sparkling Watermelon Juice

Ingredients: 55% Watermelon Juice, Carbonated Water, Lemon Juice, Vitamin C.

This is my newest favorite beverage! Perfectly refreshing and an amazing alternative to typical carbonated drinks.

VitaCoco Peach Mango Coconut Water

Ingredients: COCONUT WATER, PEACH PUREE, MANGO PUREE, VITAMIN C

This is my favorite coconut water and one of the only ones without added sugar or "natural" flavor.  Even if you really want to like coconut water but just can't seem to make yourself, you might find that you love the taste of this one.  Note: VitaCoco plain coconut water now contains added sugar but the peach/mango variety does not.

Harmless Harvest Raw Coconut Water

Ingredients: 100% ORGANIC COCONUT WATER.

There are many brands of coconut water out there, some of which are processed or contain additives (in particular "natural flavor" and added sugar).  This is one of the few that does not!

Taste Nirvana Coconut Water

Ingredients: COCONUT WATER.

This is a great brand of coconut water. It tastes a little different than I expected the first time as it is naturally sweeter than a lot of other brands. And it comes in a glass bottle!

R.W. Knudsen Sparkling Apple Juice

Ingredients: SPARKLING APPLE JUICE FROM ORGANIC, WHOLE, RIPE APPLES; ASCORBIC ACID

Pure sparkling apple juice with only ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) added.  Refreshingly simple and delicious.

Gavioli Sparkling White Grape Juice

Ingredients: WHITE GRAPE JUICE, SPARKLING MINERAL WATER.

Gavioli sparkling grape juice is awesome and worthy of the finest celebration. They also make a red grape version which is equally delicious.

 

Make sure the ingredient list on the bottle is identical to the above ingredients (different ingredients might be included depending where you are).

R. W. Knudsen Just Blueberry Juice

Ingredients: FILTERED WATER (SUFFICIENT TO RECONSTITUTE), CONCENTRATED BLUEBERRY JUICE (100% AS RECONSTITUTED BLUEBERRY JUICE).

I love to treat myself to this amazing juice.  Try mixing it with sparkling water (and throw in some fresh blueberries if you like) for a particularly refreshing beverage. Note: not all R.W. Knudsen juices are just juice (even the ones that say organic and 100% juice may contain natural flavor, so check the ingredients).

Just Juice - 100% Pure Cranberry

Ingredients: CRANBERRY JUICE.

If you're a fan of cranberry juice, try this straight to discover just how much sugar is usually added to cranberry "juice".  This is real cranberry juice at it's best.  And while it's almost undrinkable straight, it's a great starting point for many great drinks.  I like it mixed with orange juice or sparkling apple or grape juice.

Filsinger's Organic Apple Cider

Ingredients: ORGANIC APPLES.

This apple cider tastes great, comes in a glass bottle, is organic and has a long shelf life (unlike most other fresh apple cider it doesn't need to be refrigerated until it's opened, so you can stock up when it's on sale and enjoy a hot mug of autumn any time of year).  Throw in some cloves, cinnamon sticks and allspice berries and simmer for a few minutes before garnishing with a cinnamon stick and curling up by the fire to enjoy it!

Foodland Ontario Fresh from the Orchard Apple Cider

Ingredients: APPLES.

If you're not interested in paying more for organic, this is the best apple cider for you.  ​There's nothing like pure apple cider to warm up with in the fall.  Throw in some cloves, cinnamon sticks and allspice berries, heat it up and mull for a few minutes before garnishing with a cinnamon stick and curling up by the fire to enjoy it!

The Ginger People - Ginger Soother

Ingredients: FILTERED WATER, HONEY, GINGER JUICE, LEMON JUICE.

This juice is VERY gingery and super-healthy.  And with honey and lemon it's not only delicious but also perfect for soothing for a sore throat!

Old South Apple Juice Concentrate

Ingredients: APPLE JUICE CONCENTRATE, FILTERED WATER (ONLY SUFFICIENT TO RECONSTITUTE APPLE JUICE CONCENTRATE), ASCORBIC ACID (VITAMIN C).

Pure apple juice from concentrate.  "No Name" also makes frozen concentrated apple juice with no additives.

Minute Maid Orange Juice

Ingredients: 100% ORANGE JUICE CONCENTRATE

Minute Maid offers this juice as a frozen concentrate or as "from concentrate" juice in various formats.  The only one I've had a problem with is the soda can format (the ingredients are the same so I'm guessing it's something the can is lined with).

 

While this juice is "from concentrate", it is actually more natural than most of the "not from concentrate" alternatives (see here).  If fresh-squeezed orange juice is an option for you, there's no comparison, but when that's not an option, this pure concentrated orange juice is a good choice.

San Pellegrino Sparkling Water

Ingredients: CARBONATED MINERAL WATER.

This is my favorite sparkling water and I love that it comes in glass bottles so you don't have to worry about BPA or other chemicals in plastic (and it tastes way better!) Indulge a little, while still choosing the healthiest possible beverage - water!

Note: for bottled water in general, make sure you read the ingredients (some that should just be water actually contain additives) and avoid flavored water as it often contains additives if not hidden MSG or sugar.

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Alcoholic Beverages:

Queen Street 501 Premium Semi-Sweet Cider

Ingredients: APPLES

This delightful cider is crafted by Brickworks Ciderhouse in Toronto, Ontario - the only cider company we've found that lists its ingredients and does not contain any added sugar or additives.  Yep, just apples!  Enjoy!

Batch: 1904 Premium Dry Craft Cider

Ingredients: APPLES

​This delicious cider is also crafted by Brickworks Ciderhouse in Toronto. Most other ciders contain added sugar and other additives, so if the ingredients are not listed, don't assume it's just apples! This one does list its ingredients and it really is just apples. Enjoy!

Trafalgar Masala Chai Mead

Ingredients:

Ridge Vineyard Wine

Ridge Vineyard is one of the few that lists ingredients on its wine. I haven't yet purchased a bottle to check what ingredients are listed, but the fact that they even list them is a great start! I will update this when I do!

Bonny Doon Wine

Bonny Doon is one of the few wineries that lists wine ingredients. I haven't had a chance to check the ingredients that are listed on this one either, but will update this once I do!

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Tea and Coffee:

Most pure tea and coffee will be Before Natural, but check the ingredients carefully just to be sure.  Likewise for pure rooibos (my favorite!) and chamomile.  As for other herbal teas, it can be very difficult to find ones without additives. Always check the ingredients carefully ("natural flavor" is added to many of them in particular) and don't assume the ingredients are fine unless they have a complete ingredient list (unfortunately this applies to most loose tea at tea shops).

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