An article about how to make herbal lemonade. A quick introduction provided by garden herbalist Sharon Falsetto Chapman.
Summer is here and it’s time to turn to the natural, fruity and/or herbal goodness of our gardens to quench our thirst. Or dream of tropical fruits from afar (depending on where you live) that you can also incorporate into a refreshing drink. Although there is no “one size fits all” guide for making herbal lemonade, this quick introduction should give you some pointers in the right direction!
What is Herbal Lemonade?
Herbal lemonades take their inspiration from the original homemade lemonade recipe which is basically:
Lemons + Water + Sugar
However, herbal lemonades don’t necessarily include lemons, and may go by names such as herbal (summer) drinks, herbal smoothies etc. The difference is in the sugar content.
Basic Ingredients for Herbal Lemonades
If you want to stick to the more traditional formula for an herbal lemonade, you’ll probably want to add sugar. However, I have found that not every lemonade recipe needs sugar (yes, even those of you who have a really sweet tooth!). Some fruits and herbs used in making herbal lemonades are naturally sweet and sugary. You may need some sugar for more bitter fruits and herbs, but the amount will vary. So, to amend the above formula, you’re probably going to need these basic ingredients for making a simple herbal lemonade recipe:
- Sugar (as required)
Other Tips for Making Herbal Lemonades
If you are going to make herbal lemonades, you’re going to need a blender/food processor. This is the easiest way to blend your ingredients together. To strain or not to strain? Some fruits/herbs will need to be strained from your juice after blending but others may not. Also, it depends on your preference. Do you want that extra fruity goodness in your drink, or do you prefer a waterier lemonade?
Ideas for Herbal Lemonades
There is no end of ideas for making herbal lemonades! Let your imagination take hold. Here are some fruits/herbs, we recommend adding to herbal lemonades:
- Berries: Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and more.
- Watermelon: Huge water content and very refreshing!
- Pineapple: Nothing says tropical like this beach vacation fruit!
- Citrus: Mandarin, orange, lemon, lime – all the usual suspects.
- Herbs: Hibiscus, mint, lemon balm, lavender.
- Out there and Extra: Cacao, vanilla, anise, almond.
Cautions for Making Herbal Lemonades
First and foremost, know your fruit or herb. Identify correctly and check for contra-indications for use. I cannot emphasize these two points enough. Yes, even some fruits and herbs have warnings attached to them. For example, many children are allergic to strawberries. Or if you are a diabetic, you want to watch for sugar content in some fruits. Also understand the water to fruit/herb ratio. You may need more or less water depending on the fruit/herb and/or preference.
Herbal Lemonade Recipes
If you enjoyed this article and would like to discover how to make some of these lemonades with the ingredients that we’ve listed, enroll in our Botanical Aromatherapy Membership School to access this summer’s cooling lemonade recipes. Download a beautiful, print-out-and-keep PDF recipe card with recipe ingredients, instructions, and health benefits of each ingredient. Plus, we have over 125 herbal and aromatherapy recipes for you to download and make!
And we have $15 off membership enrollment through July 31, 2023, with code LEMONADE15 at checkout! Visit us here to learn more.
About the Author:
The author of this article has been working in the health care industry since the 1990’s and in the aromatherapy industry since the 2000’s. She is a UK-certified aromatherapist, a NAHA Certified Professional Aromatherapist®, a gardener, and a certified herbalist with several years of study. She is also a botanical perfumer, working on launching her first fragrance line.
Sharon is both a published author and editor in aromatherapy, a consultant, and custom blend formulator. She is the author of Authentic Aromatherapy and the current chief editor of the NAHA Aromatherapy Journal. Sharon works from her garden studio in Sedona, Arizona, where she gardens and distills plants from her own aromatic gardens, surrounded by natural fauna and flora on an original pioneer homestead property.