Why Aloe Vera Should Be Your Go-To Ingredient For Summer Cocktails

For many, summertime means stocking up on bottles of aloe vera gel or lotion as a soothing salve for sunburns. Or perhaps you have a planter or two of the aloe vera plant in your kitchen as a quick fix for minor burns. But did you know that you can, and should, drink aloe vera as well? According to Thrillist, not only is aloe vera juice tasty and hydrating, but it's good for you as well, citing research by biochemist Dr. Jeffrey Bland that points to aloe vera juice's ability to reduce bloating and gas and improve digestion and gastrointestinal function.

You can drink aloe vera juice on its own, but it's also amazing when added to a cocktail. For one thing, aloe vera juice helps improve hydration and liver function (via Healthline), two things that are negatively impacted when drinking alcohol. But really, the reason aloe vera juice should be your go-to ingredient for your summer cocktails is that it makes for some tasty — and creative — summer sips.

Aloe vera juice is a versatile ingredient

Aloe vera mixes quite nicely with gin. Add some cucumbers, shiso leaves, Chartreuse liqueur, and tonic water for a refreshing summer cocktail like this "Cucumber-Aloe Cocktail" from Bon Appétit. If you're more of a vodka fan, there's a cocktail that balances the slightly bitter flavor of aloe vera juice with the strong fruity flavors of apple juice, lemon juice, and raspberries (via Liquor.com). Liquor.com also shares the recipe for a tropical and frozen derivative of a "Missionary's Downfall" using rum, coconut cream, pineapple chunks, aloe vera juice, tarragon, and mint, which just might become your go-to drink on a hot, sweltering day.

Another option is to use aloe vera liqueur for your cocktails. You can make your own, but it's much easier just to grab a pre-made aloe vera liqueur like Chareau (via Total Wine). This could be used to make martinis, collins drinks, or even margaritas. This just goes to show how versatile aloe vera juice is. So whether your tastes run more to fruity or vegetal, stock up on some aloe vera juice or liqueur this summer for all your creative cocktail needs.