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TikTokers say apple juice masks the taste of tequila. But is it safe?

Commenters are praising the drink for making alcohol undetectable, but that just might be the issue.
tiktokers drinking tequila and apple juice
TikTokers are mixing apple juice with tequila.@michellebellexo / @timthetankofficial / @suitelifeoflisa via Tiktok
/ Source: TODAY

There’s a new cocktail going viral, but experts are saying drinkers should be careful.

Enter: tequila and apple juice. While the screwdriver remix’s origin is unclear, its proponents say the concoction masks the taste of any alcohol inside.

In her March 3 video, TikTok user @suitelifeoflisa wrote, “how have i never mixed apple juice & tequila before... u literally can’t taste the tequila at ALLL!!” The video generated 1.7 million views at the time of publishing. “cran is out, apple juice is in.”

In the video, the creator takes a sip while her facial expression shows a distinct level of surprise. As it turns out, she’s not alone in her reaction.

“I recently found out that tequila and apple juice is supposedly really good. We’re gonna find out,” says TikToker and bartender @michellebellexo in a March 21 video with 11.4 million views. “Sounds so nasty, but we’re gonna see.”

Michelle says her sister turned her onto the combination by sending a video and encouraging her to try it out, which she does for her 4.5 million followers. After pouring the spirit and Mott’s apple juice into a glass, she takes a sip.

“It’s really good you guys,” she says with a surprised look on her face. “So weird.”

“Everyone’s been talking about if you mix apple juice and tequila, you can’t taste the alcohol,” TikToker @timthetankofficial says in an April 4 video with 2.5 million views. “We’re going to do half tequila, half apple juice to see if this really works.”?

“Whoever made this combination probably just had nothing left in the fridge,” he adds. “I’ve been there before, I don’t judge.”?

This resonated with one commenter who said, “My husband and I did this ones ages ago because like you said we ran out of stuff, now we make it on purpose because of how good it was ?.”

After trying the drink, the creator pauses in disbelief. “No,” he repeats several times, confirming that he can’t taste the tequila at all.?

“I thought the combination was going to actually taste disgusting, but it’s actually really good,” he says. “Be careful with this one because it will sneak up on you faster than a ninja with night vision goggles, and I don’t even want to know what that looks like.”

Commenters on these videos all seem to enjoy the idea of a glass of alcohol that tastes like a glass of juice.?

“Thanks ? I love alcohol but not the taste of it ?,” wrote one TikTok user.

But another countered with a good point: “why drink it if you don’t like the taste?”

I wondered, is this all too good to be true?

What to watch out for

As an apple juice lover, I wanted to try this dubious duo myself to see if apple juice really negates the spirit’s taste.?

Pouring two ounces of Espolòn Tequila Blanco and an equal portion of Simply Apple into a glass of ice, I took a sip.

Instantly, I was transported to a college rager where “Baby Boy” by Sean Paul (featuring Beyoncé) was blaring and 21-year-old me gave a major thumbs up. It just tastes like apple juice with a little something extra. And the something extra doesn’t taste anything like alcohol.

Still, 41-year-old me with the hindsight of hangovers can see the drink’s dangers, and experts can too.?

“I think it’s perfectly fine to indulge in alcoholic beverages that you like and enjoy. But trying to mask the taste of alcohol so you can consume more or just get drunk without tasting it is a recipe for disaster,” says Natalie Rizzo, registered dietitian and nutrition editor for TODAY. “That mindset will likely lead to overdoing it on alcohol and getting too drunk, which can be dangerous.”

In many of these videos, people are trying the drink and then going in for more, showing how easy it is to overindulge.

“In one TikTok I saw, the person said they filled half the cup with tequila and half the cup with apple juice,” Rizzo says, adding most cocktail recipes include up to 2 shots maximum (filling a cup halfway with tequila is likely more than that). “Most people usually have more than one drink, so it’s really easy to overdo it on alcohol while drinking this concoction.”

The CDC recommends women limit themselves to one drink (about 1.5 ounces when it comes to tequila) per day, with men’s limit being set at two drinks (about 3 ounces of tequila). “Drinking too much over time can lead to high blood pressure, liver disease and an increased risk for certain cancers,” Rizzo says.

While she says it can be okay to occasionally go over the limit, Rizzo advises folks against making that common practice. And according to the expert, not being able to taste the alcohol in your drink of choice can make that practice of moderation much more difficult.

“You’ll probably drink it more quickly,” she says, possibly opting for seconds and maybe even thirds.

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