Anyone who fancies fresh juices should try homemade lemonade. It doesn’t matter whether it’s the old-fashioned lemon-sugar combo or a homemade lemonade cocktail using the best masticating juicer. In the end, there isn’t a tastier summer-time drink.
Whether it’s a family brunch or a pool barbecue, a glass of homemade lemonade is never out of place. That’s because homemade lemonade complements different treats from salty pretzels and cheesy casserole dishes to meaty burgers and spicy Indian cuisines. But the sweet and sour kick isn’t all there is to homemade lemonade. Neither is its quick preparation. Let’s explore the benefits of homemade lemonade.
Is Homemade Lemonade Healthy?
Drinking homemade lemonade is a fun way to get our dose of water and lemon. Needless to say, these components are unbeatable individually. Now think of what they can do together.
Daily water recommendations stand at 125 and 91 ounces for adult males and females, respectively. Note that water needs vary with age, health, and physical activity. While some of this water is consumed directly, the rest comes from food and beverages. By sweetening the water, homemade lemonade raises our fluid intake.
Homemade lemonade without sugar has fewer calories than apple and orange alternatives. Homemade lemonade also raises our metabolism to aid calorie burning. That’s not all; its pectin component delays stomach emptying so we feel satisfied longer. This cuts our food intake.
Homemade lemonade accelerates food breakdown, allowing our bodies to extract nutrients from meals. This means we won’t bloat, burp, or experience heartburn. It also eases constipation by enhancing waste removal.
Thanks to lemon’s antiseptic properties, homemade lemonade eliminates foul breath by killing mouth and throat bacteria. It also triggers saliva formation, preventing the odor associated with a dry mouth.
Avoiding Kidney Stones
It has citrate that not only reduces urine acidity but also splits small stones. Moreover, the water flushes out toxins. In the absence of kidney stones, homemade lemonade is useful in preventing their formation.
How to Make Homemade Lemonade with Lemons
Who else wants to know our homemade lemonade easy recipe?
Step 1: Collect the Ingredients
- 3 lemons
- 3 cups of water
- 1 ½ cups honey
- Ice cubes
- Mint leaves
Remember, a lemon’s juiciness depends on its variety. Although they’re an orange-lemon hybrid, Meyers is sweet and sappy. Primofioris, on the other hand, are juicy but intense in taste. Less succulent options include Verna’s and Femminellos.
Weight also determines the sappiness. For example, if we hold two lemons equal in size, the heavier one is juicier. Freshness is equally important. Apart from blemish-free rinds, the fruit should be uniformly tender instead of squishy. For the honey, raw is better than processed. This is because our homemade lemonade will be richer due to the unfiltered royal jelly, pollen, and even beeswax.
Step 2: Make the Syrup
Put all the water and honey in a pot. Over medium heat, stir until the components mix. We can substitute honey with stevia, maple syrup, regular or coconut sugar. Coconut sugar is obtained by heating and evaporating the coconut palm sap.
The fact that it has a lower GI translates to a smaller blood sugar spike than cane variation. If you’re wondering why we’re putting the sugar in hot water rather than adding it to the homemade lemonade directly, cold water leaves the sugar at the bottom. Pour the solution in a jug and chill it.
Step 3: Prepare the Lemons
Wash the lemons regardless of whether they’re being peeled. That’s because the knife can transfer dirt from the skin to the flesh. Although a masticating juicer can handle them, unpeeled lemons ruin the flavor. We will remove the skin as we would other citrus fruits, piercing them with a knife and pulling them out with our fingers. Halve or quarter the lemons, keeping them intact to preserve its fluid.
Step 4: Extract the Juice
Put a jar under the spout and add the lemon portions in the chute. While at it, ensure the pulp collector is in place. Power the juicer and use the plunger to press the fruits, dropping other pieces as the chute clears.
Let the machine run for an extra 20 seconds to get all the juice. We recommend washing the juicer immediately after the job to prevent particles from drying on the parts. Since juicer models vary in their operation, read the manual first.
Step 5: Mix and Serve
After mixing the juice and syrup, add ice cubes for a colder homemade lemonade and mint to garnish. We could also put lemon slices on the glass because throwing them in the homemade lemonade may make it bitter. If it’s too concentrated, water comes in handy to dilute our homemade lemonade.
Again, preparing our homemade lemonade with 3 lemons isn’t mandatory. We can go as hard as we want with the flavor. We can cover our homemade lemonade and throw it in the fridge if we won’t drink it right away. However, the taste might deteriorate after a week. The homemade lemonade can also be frozen in paper cups with sticks to make popsicles. Another option is scraping the flavored ice to make granita.
Homemade lemonade with honey suits all ages. Therefore, we can prepare it for our kids to introduce them to healthy homemade juices. However, people with citrus fruit allergies and gastrointestinal conditions like peptic ulcers should go easy on homemade lemonade. We can add vinegar for an extra tang. What is your homemade lemonade secret ingredient? Share with us in the comment section below.
Nellie Rodriguez is a chef, author, award-winning blogger, and former food show host with 20 years in the food industry. She has no formal cooking training; most of her culinary skills were learned from her grandmother. When she’s not up to something in the kitchen, find her writing about food.