Here's a summertime favorite with a healthy twist. An easy homemade lemonade recipe with honey simple syrup and fresh lemon juice.
One of my favorite treats for hot summer days is the fresh-squeezed lemonade you get at local festivals. You know the lemonade stands where they squeeze the lemon juice while you wait, and shake it with superfine white sugar and ice?
Well, this easy version is one of my favorite recipes you can make at home without refined sugar. It tastes so much better than store-bought lemonade - refreshing, healthy, and perfect for summer!
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The essential ingredients for this easy honey lemonade recipe couldn't be simpler. Here's what you'll need.
- Filtered water
- Honey - I like to use a honey that complements the citrus flavors. Try orange blossom honey, or a berry honey like raspberry or blueberry, if you can find it. You can also use your favorite local raw honey, clover honey or wildflower honey.
- Lemons - Look for lemons that are heavy for their size and give slightly when pressed. They will have more juice and will be easier to squeeze.
How to make lemonade
This recipe starts with making honey simple syrup. Which is a fancy way of saying honey dissolved in hot water. This makes it easy to mix into the lemon juice. If you've ever tried to stir honey into a cold drink, you know it just stays together and sinks to the bottom of the glass.
Squeezing the lemons goes pretty quickly with a handheld citrus juicer. I have a few different ones and this is the one I like best. You can have all the lemons juiced in the time it takes to heat the water.
Pro tip: Before cutting the lemons, press and roll them on the cutting board with the palm of your hand to make them easier to squeeze.
Then all that's left to do is stir together the honey syrup, lemon juice, and remaining water and let it chill in the fridge.
Serve this simple lemonade in tall glasses over a full glass of ice. Add a squeeze of orange for an extra citrusy sweetness. Or add a squeeze of lime juice for a hint of lemon lime flavor.
And use biodegradable paper straws (I like these bamboo ones) or glass straws instead of plastic straws.
Now that you have the basic honey lemonade recipe down, let your creativity run wild with lemonade add-ins and flavor combinations. Here are a few to try:
- Add frozen fruit - this is a trick I use to keep drinks cold all summer long. Try frozen peaches or watermelon cubes.
- Add fresh fruit - strawberries are a classic combination for strawberry lemonade. Just muddle a few strawberries in the bottom of the glass and garnish with sliced strawberries.
- Add fresh herbs - lavender, rosemary, mint, basil - try different combinations with different types of honey or fruit juice for your own mocktail. A lemon wedge and fresh mint leaves is a classic way to serve it.
- Make popsicles - frozen popsicles are a summer essential and lemonade makes the perfect base for any type of fruit you want to add. (I use these popsicle molds.)
- Make lemonade ice cubes. Just pour into an ice cube tray and add to any drink to keep it cool without diluting. Try it in iced tea!
You can also swap out the honey for maple syrup to make a vegan lemonade or use one of the low carb natural sweeteners, like stevia or monk fruit, for a keto version.
Add it to your summer meal plan and make your honey lemonade during your weekend meal prep session.
However you make it, this easy lemonade recipe with honey simple syrup is the perfect refreshing drink for hot days!
More cool summer drink recipes
- Cold Brew Iced Tea
- Dairy-Free Iced Latte
- Frozen Watermelon Blueberry Smoothie
- Strawberry Lime Smoothie
Easy Lemonade Recipe with Honey
- 3 cups filtered water divided
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice about 6 lemons
- ice for serving
- lemon or orange wedges for serving optional
- Heat 1 cup of water in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
- Remove from heat and add the honey. Stir until the honey dissolves. Pour into a large pitcher and stir in remaining 2 cups of cold water and lemon juice.
- Chill and serve over ice with orange wedges or a lemon slice.