When it comes to vodka, the Skyy is the limit. (See what we did there? Sorry not sorry). The spirit is colorless and flavorless (vodka is a neutral liquor by law), so you can mix just about everything with it in to make a drink (including more vodka).
The problem, then, is the glut of options. If you can use anything, then how do you narrow it down? Don’t worry — we got you. Below, you’ll find the best vodka mixers for nice, simple vodka cocktails. In each of the cases below, we recommend a two (or three)-to-one ratio mixer to vodka, but you do you. If you feel like classing your Vodka Club up a little, add a twist of lime or lemon and you’ll be cruising to booze town in no time.
Whether it’s called carbonated water, sparkling water, seltzer, or soda water, the liquid is all the same and it’s a perfect mixer for vodka. The water helps cut the spirit’s strength without diluting flavor while the effervescence adds just a little extra to a cocktail. Grab a flavored seltzer and it kicks things up a notch, all without adding calories. La Croix, anyone?
In a pinch, cranberry juice and vodka is all that’s needed for a simple yet effective drink. Depending on the amount, the cranberry can be a light accompaniment or it completely mask the cheap vodka. Just be aware that college flashbacks are likely to occur.
For a little more sweetness (or for when soda water and lime just won’t cut it), turn to lemon-lime soda. There are hordes of option on the market, all with their own unique tastes, so the flavorful addition can be customized to a drinker’s palate and preference.
Vodka isn’t often associated with tropical cocktails since most are left to rum or tequila, but a pour of tropical fruit with splash of vodka is as cool as an ocean breeze. For pineapple juice, start with the two-to-one mixer-to-vodka ratio and adjust from there, especially if you actually like tasting the vodka when you drink it. Other tropical fruit flavors (guava, mango, or coconut, for example) also pair really well.
One of the quintessential mixers, no bar is complete without it. Tonic water can be used with nearly any spirit, but is most notable for its starring roles in drinks like the Vodka Tonic (and, of course, a Gin and Tonic. Its bitterness comes from quinine, a medicine first used to help fend off malaria. The one thing to remember is that tonics can be high in sugar, so make sure to look at the label before you purchase.
Article originally published August 28, 2017. Last updated April 3, 2018.