Homemade Pink Lemonade
is easy to make and a refreshing summer drink for every occasion or ‘just because’ it’s summer.
Have you ever wondered what makes lemonade pink? Adding red fruits would certainly make a pink drink but I was curious if there was a back story to what was originally used to make pink lemonade.
Way back in the late 1800’s there was a circus promoter/saloon keeper/gambler type who claims he accidentally dropped red cinnamon candies into his ‘yellow’ drink. Well there you have it, a ‘pink’ drink.
Another theory from way back then was that pink dye was used to add color to the lemonade. Thank goodness times have changed, today we can add fresh fruits to make our drinks turn pink.
It’s easy enough to blend up fresh strawberries, cherries or watermelon and add it to your homemade lemonade lemonade for a delicious pink drink.
Making homemade drinks is relatively easy though it does take a little bit of planning ahead. I make all my homemade drinks after breakfast. That way they have time to chill several hours before serving.
Whenever possible I like to use up the fresh berries or fruits that are starting to soften. They are usually sweeter which would then require less sugar to be added to the drink.
A basic homemade lemonade recipe calls for making a simple syrup which would provide the sweetness, then add in the fresh squeezed lemon juice and some filtered water.
However for my homemade pink lemonade this week I decided to use cranberry juice. I had one last bottle left and thought it would make a tart yet refreshing homemade pink lemonade, a perfect thirst quencher while relaxing on a warm summer day.
I used honey to sweeten my homemade pink lemonade. By adding cranberry juice to the lemonade I didn’t need much sweetener, two tablespoons of the honey was just right.
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 2½ cups fresh squeezed lemon juice (approximately 10-12 lemons)
- 1-2 quarts filtered water
- 1 cup Cranberry Juice - OR
- 1 cup strawberries, juiced in a blender and strained OR
- 2 cups watermelon, juiced in a blender and strained
- First make the simple syrup: Add sugar and the water to a sauce pan and heat until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat, set aside to chill.
- Squeeze the lemons adding the juice to a large pitcher. Pour in 1 quart of filtered water and taste for desired level of lemon flavor. Add either more lemon juice or water according to taste.
- Next stir in the cranberry juice. Taste for sweetness. Add in the simple syrup according to taste or you can add in more of the cranberry juice which is already sweetened.
- If you are using fresh fruits, add in half of the simple syrup and taste for desired sweetness. Add more as desired.
- Serve in chilled glasses, garnish with lemon slices and fresh mint.
You might also enjoy these Family Friendly Summer Drinks: