Friday Food : Lighten Up Guide to SONIC

I don’t always talk about the brands and stores I adore, but when I do you know it’s the real deal. SONIC is a drive-in I fell in love with long before I ever tried their food. Living near the Cleveland area, commercials from areas where they were located would occasionally pop up on TV. Each and every time I was devastated I couldn’t eat the latest and greatest trend! As I grew older friends who went away to college were able to eat there, but I was left to suffer.

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One fateful day I was down near Southern Ohio with Tom and Pete and we saw a SONIC! I could have cried tears of joy. We pulled into it and I readied myself for the adventure…guess what…they were CLOSED. Can you even believe it? Ugg. Needless to say I cried a little.

Eventually the restaurants moved to my area and now I have one not too far away from where I live. I also had one on the way to Mr B’s and would quite often partake of their breakfast menu.

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I guess you could conclude when I received an email asking if I would work with them on their Lighten Up Guide to SONIC summer promotion, it was one of my blogger dream come true moments. It also helped to receive the email on my actual birthday! Happy Birthday to me!

Here’s the back-story from SONIC aka The Ultimate Drink Stop on this promotion:

At SONIC Drive-In, we know summer is best spent in the sun and enjoying the outdoors. Many of our fans work to stay healthy all year, but especially for their summer vacations and trips. With over 20,000 zero- and reduced-calorie drink combinations, staying fit while enjoying your favorite SONIC summertime treats is totally doable! You shouldn’t have to give up flavor for fitness, and with so many low-cal drink flavor options at SONIC, it’s no sacrifice at all.

YAY! Thanks SONIC, right? And now I find myself taking another vacation with Tom and Pete (We’re headed to Virginia Beach TODAY) and with the Labor Day weekend right around the corner, what better time to stop in at your local SONIC and create a drink of your own, or try one of combinations my sister and I created? Summer may be ending, but that doesn’t mean it has to leave without a toast. Grab your favorite combination and let’s say “Cheers!”

Lighten Up Guide to SONIC

1. Orange Creamsicle

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Many people would think to use the orange Fanta available to make this combination, but I found a way to make it and reduce your calorie count! A small Fanta has 150 calories! Instead buy yourself a cup of Sprite Zero (which has zero calories) and add vanilla and orange flavorings (25 calories total). Yum yum yum it’s like a melted popsicle without the mess or guilt!

2. Picnic in a Cup

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I went simple with this mix and again bought a small Sprite Zero and added watermelon flavoring. At only 10 calories this was a lovely summer refresher. To me watermelon screams summer and screams picnic, which is why I gave the simple mix its name.

3. Here Comes Halloween

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Entering Fall there’s talk of leaves and pumpkins and bumps in the night. My immediate thought when I saw green apple on the menu was to make something with apple and caramel! However, unlike the chocolate and vanilla options, caramel seemed to be strictly a sundae topping at my local SONIC, so I had to revise my plan. Another Sprite Zero mix, this time with the green apple and again although simple it evoked memories of falls past and helped me get excited for what’s to come. At only 5 calories in a small, I’ll be able to splurge on a candy apple too!

4. Neapolitan 

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My sister was the brains behind this combination. I love how you can see the actual bits of strawberry! Inspired by my earlier ice cream treat I’m sure, she went full force on her own! Finally moving away from keeping Sprite Zero in business (ha) she opted to use Coke Zero and add strawberry, chocolate and vanilla. At 60 calories for the small, it may be one of the higher calorie items we created, but it was also one of the best. She shared it with her boyfriend and our mom too, and everyone approved!

5. Twisted Watermelon

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Another sister creation. She liked my Picnic in a Cup approach and went a step further and added fresh lime to hers. While she liked what she made, she said she thought the lime overpowered the drink. Our mom also agreed. Having had the watermelon by itself about a week before I could distinctly notice both flavors and really enjoyed her version. Total calories for a small? An easy to digest 10.

6. Chocolate Cherry Cordial  

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I honestly saved the best for last. For my final drink I opted for Diet Dr Pepper (zero calories) and added chocolate and cherry flavors. My drink even came with a cute little cherry on top! From start to finish this was easily one of the best drinks I have ever tasted in my entire life. We’re talking eyes rolled into the back of the head, pause and savor before taking another sip. Everyone I shared it with that day had the same reaction, it truly tasted like a chocolate covered cherry! Now here is the bad news. All these drinks should be 60 calories or fewer per serving. My CCC has 80 total calories for a small. Bummer. I personally think it is worth the other 20 calories, but I’ll let you be the judge. Also, IMHO it is so yummy, you won’t drink the whole thing in one sitting. Which means it may be more like 40 calories a serving if you split it in two!

It was a lot of fun to scan the menu and come up with new flavors and fun names. I’m hoping to make a few more drinks with the boys this weekend. The sis and I also had a blast as we always do when we go to SONIC. Great times sitting in the car, eating the food and chatting. And maybe posing for a few photo ops too!

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Thanks SONIC for asking me to help with your Ultimate Drink Stop creations! I can’t wait to hear what other people create during their visits.

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