Note from Crystal: I made this for my family last week and they all loved it. I used turbinado (raw sugar) instead of white sugar and it came out looking a little brown and funny, but it tasted great!
Guest Post by Holly from Sweeter Hours
In our house we always usher in summer with lemonade. It’s usually the drink we serve at parties in a big glass container with a tap or at playdates in sippy cups.
Even with coupons and sales, I don’t love the high price tag of all natural brands or the additives in the cheaper drinks. In addition, most lemonade drink mixes contain yellow food dye and high fructose corn syrup — both things our family tries to avoid.
So instead of buying lemonade, we make it ourselves. It’s not only easy, it is much less expensive and healthier, too! Here’s our recipe:
Rich Simple Syrup for Lemonade
- 2 cups sugar (you can use any type of white sugar)
- 1 cups water
Bring one cup of water to a slight boil and whisk in sugar until dissolved. Store in a mason jar once cooled in the refrigerator for up to a month. Use to whip up a batch of lemonade in no time.
You can jazz up simple syrup by adding fresh chopped ginger or fresh chopped mint leaves during the whisking. Strain ginger or mint out before bottling in the fridge. Simple syrup can also be used to sweeten ice tea for a yummy treat!
Note: I always double or triple this so that I don’t have to make it as often.
Easy Homemade Lemonade
- 1 cup lemon juice (you can purchase this at Aldi or the grocery store)
- 1/2 to 1 cup Simple Syrup (depending upon your desired sweetness)
- 4 cups of water
In a pitcher combine lemon juice and simple syrup, stir in water. Serve immediately over ice or refrigerate until ready to use.
For Holly Johnson, the sweet hours of life occur when she is practicing the art of mothering and making beautiful things. Sweeter Hours, her blog, chronicles a little bit of making stuff, a pinch of the green life, a whole can of amazing cookery, and of course, beautiful things for life.
Yes it is great. I made it for a lemonade sail and everyone loved it.
I make a batch of this for my kids using just water 3-4 fresh squeezed lemons and 8-10 drops of liquid stevia (per 16 oz. serving) to taste. Yummy no sugar treat!
Mama Green says
Thank you for sharing your lemonade recipe. I agree that turbino sugar is better than refined white sugar. My family has been loving Honey Lemonade. I posted this on my website: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mama Green says
Correction: My website address is greenliving34.blogspot.com
Tracy at QuickQuote says
Try using Meyer lemons instead of regular lemons, they are naturally sweeter. Then you can use less sugar if you want to!
Also if you are looking for alternative sweeteners, try Xylitol.
I use the frozen 7 oz. Minute Maid fresh lemon juice ($1.56 at my Walmart) to make a gallon of lemonade and I sweeten it with a couple squirts of stevia glycerite (syrup form of stevia). My picky husband drinks this every day. We started making this for him to drink on his low-carb diet but have kept it up even when he goes off the wagon!
I buy Newman’s own lemonade…no HFCS or food colorants…normally about $1.99/half gallon on sale.
What is simple syrup?
The recipe is in the post. 🙂
Duh. I see it now! I feel stupid. 🙂
Julia Phelps says
We use grade B maple syrup as our sweetener. Yes, it is more expensive than white sugar, but also a healthier alternative. The kids love it!
S. Novak says
Love your site!
We have been making our own lemonade for years. We made it with sugar for years but decided to try a different way. we now make it with stevia and it is fantastic!
We squeeze one bag of lemons and then add 1 tsp. KAL pure stevia extract powder with filtered water to make 1 gallon of lemonade. (This is actually a variation on a recipe we used to use form my brother in law who used to work at Auntie Annes. 🙂
This way we can keep it around all the time and not sacrifice our health for it. Lemons are alkalizing great for you so that makes it even better. All natural and yummy!
I have been looking for an alternate to real sugar. My husband has diabetes but we love our lemonade during the summer. I really like to follow a recipe exactly – what is your ratio of lemons to water. About how many lemons are in you bag? And how much water? I am so excited to try it. Thanks for sharing
Thanks for this recipe! I LOVE to add frozen strawberries or raspberries to my lemonade-just another way to jazz it up a bit and get more fruit into the kiddos!
I made similar recipe a couple of weeks ago for my daughter’s first birthday…A picnic theme in the back yard. Super cheap and fun! Hot dogs, watermelon, corn on the cob, chips, homemade lemonade, and iced tea. I made individual dirt cakes in jelly canning jars with flowering spoons sticking out of each one. It was so much fun!
Definitely trying this recipe! I was just wondering if one could use bottled lemon juice for lemonade because lemons themselves are so expensive around here. Thanks!
We use lemon juice all the time and it tastes good. I can really tell a difference between RealLemon and a generic brand though. Generic never seems to add up. One of the few items I am brand loyal to.
My husband says the same thing about the generic brands, so I stick with Real Lemon as well!
We only do homemade lemonade at our house, as well! We love it as plain lemonade, or jazzing it up with any kind of berry, cherry, or cucumber slices (especially refreshing!).
I’ve been doing something similar this summer and it’s always a big hit! I’ve had someone ask about the recipe every time I serve it. Here’s what I use:
1 cup ReaLemon Juice
2 cups sugar
Water & Ice to make 1 gallon
1 sliced lemon (optional)
Pour 1 – 2 cups warm water in the bottom of the pitcher. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Add ice, lemon juice, and water to make one gallon, stirring well. Add a sliced lemon if you wish.
Once we served it in a punch bowl and added a few lime and orange slices as well. It was beautiful and delicious!
Oh man, I don’t think there is anything better than homemade lemonade 🙂 YUM! Thanks for sharing!
Taylor @Stain-Removal-101.com says
Wow, this looks great. I especially like the idea of flavoring the simple syrup with some mint, to make more of a mint lemonade. That sounds absolutely divine on a hot day!
This reminds me of the soda fountain at our downtown drugstore:). We always add cherry to ours ….great refreshing summertime drink
The Working Home Keeper says
A great addition to homemade lemonade is fresh mint frozen into ice cubes!
The Working Home Keeper
I was just going to post a recipe for homemade strawberry lemonade this week. It’s my new favorite summer drink! All you have to do is cook down the fruit for about 10 minutes on your stovetop and use a colander to squeeze out all the juice. Add it to your favorite lemonade.
O Rivera says
My husband makes “limeade” same as above except with fresh limes. He always gets compliments!!!
Where do you buy your turbinado sugar?
This looks fantastic! I’ve actually started buying the organic lemon juice that Costco sells. It’s around $3 for a huge bottle. I just like it to flavor up my water. I bet the kids will love this.
I have made this and it is so good! I have forgotten about it, thank for the reminder!
Skinny Mom's Kitchen says
Omigoodness this looks FANTASTIC!! My kids have begging me for homemade lemonade every time they see lemons that I have for other recipes. This will be going on next weeks menu plan for sure. Can’t wait to try it. YUM!