We Asked an RD About the Tart Cherry ‘Sleepy Girl Mocktail’ That’s Taking Over the Internet—And Yup, Every Ingredient Will Help You Drift Off

Photo: Stocksy/ Martí Sans
Another day, another buzzy wellness trend taking over the internet. But today's is particularly compelling: the three-ingredient "sleepy girl mocktail" designed to send you into a deep slumber. But is it safe—and more importantly, does it work? (...She says, so obviously asking for a friend.)

To get to the bottom of the new sleep-boosting beverage trend, we spoke with a registered dietitian who shared what to know before you stir up your own batch. According to Frances Largeman-Roth, RDN, nutrition expert and author of Smoothies & Juices: Prevention Healing Kitchen, in theory, the drink should help you get better sleep—but there are a few things to keep in mind before integrating the new mocktail into your nightly ritual. We’ve got the full scoop ahead.

Experts In This Article

First things first, what’s a sleepy girl mocktail?

In a recent TikTok video by @gracie_norton, we learned that the buzzy sleepy girl mocktail is made by combining three simple ingredients: magnesium, tart cherry juice, and a splash of soda. And frankly, we’re the least bit surprised by the recipe designed for getting better sleep.

If you’re new to Well+Good, we’ve covered the sleep-enhancing benefits of magnesium and tart cherry juice countless times. That’s to say, they’re two of our all-time, sleep-expert-approved ingredients for counting less sheep and catching more Zs that actually works. So naturally, when we saw this sleepy girl mocktail pop into our feeds, we were instantly intrigued—as the combination of this trio of ingredients makes total sense, and especially on paper, it should be one of the best drinks for sleep.

@gracie_norton OUT LIKE A LIGHT mocktail ?‍??? tart cherry juice + magnesium is the perfect combo for a full night of sleep! I had really vivid dreams too! I take magnesium every evening but tend to toss & turn during the night at the end of my luteal phase. thanks for the inspo @caleeshea ?#easyrecipe #mocktails #mocktailrecipe #healthyrecipes #sleep #bettersleep ♬ Storytelling - Adriel

To make it, Norton combines one teaspoon of Moon Juice’s Magnesium-Om and one cup of Lakewood Organic Tart Cherry Juice in a glass. She mixes the two ingredients using a handheld frother (like this one available on Amazon for $12). Then, she transfers it into a square wine glass filled with ice (for aesthetic purposes, of course) and tops it off with a splash of OLIPOP’s Lemon Lime Soda. The result is a fizzy, vibrantly-colored drink that’s said to help you achieve some of the best sleep yet.

The health benefit breakdown of this sleepytime drink

According to Largeman-Roth, all three ingredients in this recipe have positive health benefits and can help with getting better sleep. For starters, she notes that tart cherries are rich in the amino acid tryptophan, which gets converted to serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps us relax. “Many studies have found that tart cherry juice has positive results related to sleep duration and quality,” Largeman-Roth says.

What’s more, magnesium can help with regulating sleep-wake cycles. “Magnesium is a mineral that may help regulate neurotransmitters involved in sleep. Some studies have shown that magnesium supplements can make it easier for folks to fall asleep and also reduce symptoms of restless leg syndrome,” Largeman-Roth says.

That said, not all kinds of magnesium supplements have the same effect. “Make sure that you’re using the right type of magnesium powder. You can use glycinate, citrate, or carbonate, but avoid magnesium oxide, which is a stool softener,” she says. Largeman-Roth recommends NOW Foods’ Magnesium Inositol Relax Powder. “It has a nice lemony flavor, so you can use it on its own, too.”

Lastly, OLIPOP’s sodas are made with plant-based fiber, prebiotics, and other botanical ingredients to help balance the body’s microbiome and promote overall well-being. “OLIPOP is a natural soda with nine grams of prebiotic fiber to promote digestive health,” Largeman-Roth says. And although it doesn’t have any particular benefit for sleep, according to the registered dietitian, it’s a great way to add fizziness and flavor to the drink. Plus, It comes in several other delicious flavors like Strawberry Vanilla or Ginger Lemon to help spice up your evening nightcap.

So, can this beverage actually help you get better sleep?

Of course, like any other social media trend, Largeman-Roth says it should be carefully considered before being introduced into your daily routine. “TikTok trends should always be taken with a grain of salt, especially when shared without legit credentials, such as a medical doctor or a registered dietitian nutritionist,” she says.

That said, Largeman-Roth says there’s certainly evidence behind the sleep-inducing benefits of both tart cherry juice and magnesium and doesn’t see anything wrong with the combination of the ingredients from a nutritionist’s standpoint. Meaning that though the sleepy girl mocktail has the dietitian’s blessing, "it doesn’t mean this combo of ingredients will work for everyone,” Largeman-Roth says. She also notes that 10 to 12 ounces of cherry juice will contain a substantial amount of sugar that can spike your blood sugar before bedtime—and that drinking a large glass of anything right before bed will likely have you getting up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom.

The solution? “I would suggest having this about an hour and a half before bedtime. It’s quite a substantial amount of liquid—at least 12 ounces or more—so you want to ensure you have enough time to empty your bladder before bed. If I were having this, I would cut the volume in half to avoid getting up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom,” Largeman-Roth.

This relaxing raspberry mocktail might also do the sleep-inducing trick:

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