With the first day of summer coming up in just a couple days, I thought I would share a post on how to make homemade lemonade. For me lemonade is a nostalgic drink that was only served in the summertime. Growing up in the Midwest, and it being pretty cold the rest of the year, summer was when we had lemonade.
I remember drinking lemonade all the time in the summer, and I even hosted my own lemonade stand in my front yard frequently. There is nothing better than a cold glass of lemonade on a hot summer day. And it’s even better if you make homemade lemonade yourself. It’s better for you and it’s even more tasty! So, I am going to show you how to make homemade lemonade.
Ingredients for Homemade Lemonade
The first thing you’ll need is lemons. I recommend using traditional lemons and not Meyer lemons for this recipe, as Meyer lemons are sweeter than traditional lemons. And if you use Meyer lemons, this might be too sweet, or you’ll need to adjust the sugar. I recently got a bunch of lemons from a tree, so that’s what I used in this lemonade. But, you can just as easily buy them at the Farmer’s Market or at the grocery store.
Organic Cane Sugar
The second ingredient in homemade lemonade is sugar. Lemonade is a sweet drink, so sugar is key! I use organic cane sugar, which is the organic equivalent of granulated or white sugar. I highly recommend switching to organic cane sugar if you can as it’s so much better for you and the environment, and it tastes better too! And with a recipe that has so few ingredients, those ingredients really matter. My favorite is Florida Crystals Organic Cane Sugar. But, even something like the O Organics brand at Vons will be great!
The third ingredient in homemade lemonade is water. I use water and sugar to make a simple syrup, this is what sweetens the lemon juice. Then more water is added to the sweetened lemon juice to create homemade lemonade.
Why Make a Simple Syrup?
I make a simple syrup because this way the sugar is completely dissolved and you don’t run the risk of it all sinking to the bottom of your homemade lemonade. When you use organic cane sugar, the crystals are a little larger than traditional granulated white sugar, therefore, it’s best to make a simple syrup to assure its completely dissolved.
Why use organic ingredients in this recipe? You all know I’m a huge organic advocate, and I bet you may be thinking sometimes, Why would I even bother to use organic ingredients in something that is so sweet and indulgent? But, that is the exact reason why you should use organic ingredients! Sweet things need to have flavor in order to be good, otherwise they are just sweet and they don’t taste like much else. Organic ingredients are more pure than conventional ones, therefore they actually have more flavor than the non organic options. Say it with me, organic means more flavor! And not just more flavor but a more true and pure flavor. And organic ingredients are much healthier for you to eat in general as they do not contain GMOs or anything artificial. Plus, you are being environmentally friendly when you choose organic ingredients!
So, I highly recommend that you buy the best organic ingredients for this recipe! You can also shop my Amazon Storefront for all my favorite organic ingredients here. Tip – hover over each ingredient to see the name. And if you want to learn more about organic foods and the difference, read my post here on Food Labels and What They Mean.
Makes 6 to 8 servings
113 grams (1/2 cup) organic cane sugar
5 1/2 cup waters
1 1/4 cups fresh organic lemon juice (about 4 to 6 lemons depending on size)
1 organic lemon
In a small saucepan, add 1/2 cup of water and the cane sugar. Put over medium heat and stir with a spatula or whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.
Juice the lemons and add the lemon juice and simple syrup into a large pitcher. Add in the remaining 5 cups of water and stir to combine completely.
Slice the additional lemon, and place slices in the pitcher or in the glasses for serving.
High Altitude — Follow the recipe as noted.