Delicious + Healthy Homemade Lemonade Recipe
Summer may be coming to a close, but that doesn’t mean you can’t continue to enjoy summer’s finest treats. And, according to Cara and Pheobe, the Quarter-Life Cooks and founders of BigGirlsSmallKitchen.com, fresh lemonade is the quintessential summertime drink, perfect for Labor Day gatherings and even early fall festivities. Plus, it’s easy to make – and fully customizable!
As Cara and Pheobe explain, when you make lemonade at home, you can make it exactly to your taste: if you’re a sourpuss, go easy on the sugar syrup, and if you can’t take too much lemon, ease the flavor with a bit more water. Want to spike it? They’ve got you covered there too!
Lemonade, Spiked or Sober
3/4 cup sugar
4 large pieces of lemon zest
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 8 lemons)
6 ounces vodka
Make a simple syrup by combining the sugar, zest and 3/4 cup of water in a small saucepan. Over medium-high heat, cook until the sugar dissolves. When the mixture bubbles, turn the heat down and simmer for 2-3 minutes, just until it becomes slightly more syrupy. Remove from the heat and let the syrup steep for 15 more minutes, then remove the lemon zest.
Combine the lemon juice and the sugar syrup in a large bowl or pitcher. Add 2 1/2 cups of water. If you’re making spiked lemonade, add 4 shots of vodka. If you’re keeping it virgin, add another 1/2 cup to 1 cup water, tasting as you go to achieve your preferred degree of tanginess.
Serve over plenty of ice, garnished with mint leaves and lemon slices.
Eat more chocolate! See why here!