A classic Homemade Lemonade recipe that is quick and easy and has the perfect balance of sweet and sour. Perfect for sipping on hot summer days.
Lemonade is one of those drinks that tastes so much better homemade and it’s so simple to make. A few other drinks you may also enjoy are Homemade Limeade, Strawberry Lemonade Margarita, and this refreshing Strawberry Rose Sangria.
*Originally published June 2016. Text and photos updated.*
I will start off with just one thing……once you’ve had homemade lemonade you’ll never want store bought again. The flavor is so much better, it’s the perfect balance of sweet and tart, and you can use this as a base for so many other drinks!
You do need to make a simple syrup, which is super easy. This is necessary to dissolve the sugar otherwise it will just sink to the bottom…..no bueno.
Homemade Lemonade Ingredients:
- Lemons……of course! But really freshly squeezed lemon juice is the ONLY way to go. Don’t use the bottled lemon juice from the store as a short cut…..you will be disappointed. I use this hand juicer but if you prefer an electric one that is fine too. Meyer lemons are sweeter than regular ones so you may want to cut back on the sugar if you use them.
- Sugar: I find it easiest to make a simple syrup to dissolve the sugar. Other recipes just mix it with the water which never works and some have you macerate the lemons and sugar together which is more work to me.
- Water: I like to have the water and ice ready to go in a pitcher so it’s nice and cold. This is also important if you don’t want to wait for the simple syrup to cool. Otherwise, if you pour hot syrup into a pitcher it will break.
Best tips for juicing lemons:
- Pick lemons that are a little soft. In other words when you gently press them with your thumb it will give a little.
- Lemons that are medium to large in size will have more juice than small ones.
- Before juicing make sure the lemons are at room temperature.
- Roll the lemons with the palm of your hand on your counter and apply a firm pressure. This helps to break up the little juice capsules and makes it easier to juice.
Whenever I make this lemonade I always remember my childhood and one special party my grandma held for me just before I was married. We had my bridesmaids, their mothers, and my mom there.
My grandma served this lemonade with a light luncheon and I will always remember and cherish that day. It’s the perfect drink for sipping on hot summer days and for making memories.
- 2 cups (440g) sugar
- 7 cups (1.6 liters) water, divided
- 4 cups ice
- 2 cups (475ml) fresh lemon juice
- In a small saucepan bring the sugar and 2 cups of water to a boil to dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat. (This is your simple syrup)
- In a large pitcher, place ice and the remaining 5 cups of water (depending on how strong you like it). Pour in the lemon juice and simple syrup. Stir well. Garnish with lemon slices if desired. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Nutrition Facts: Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the information shown is just an estimate.