Cucumber Mint “Shrub” Soda

Cool refreshing homemade cucumber mint vinegar-based soda, tangy and sweet! Perfect for a hot summer day.

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes
  • Cooling time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 2-3 cups of syrup, enough for 2 quarts of soda


  • 4 cups water
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/3 cup white wine vinegar (can sub plain white vinegar)
  • A handful of mint leaves
  • 1 cucumber, peeled if the peels are thick, chopped
  • Seltzer water


1 Boil water and sugar: Put 4 cups of water and the sugar into a saucepan. Bring to a rolling boil and boil uncovered for 10 minutes.

2 Add white vinegar, boil and reduce: Add the white vinegar and boil uncovered for 15 more minutes, until the liquid has reduced to a couple of cups. (Now you have vinegar simple syrup.)

3 Add mint leaves: Stir in the mint leaves and boil for a minute more. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes.

4 Strain mint leaves, chill syrup: Strain out the mint leaves and pour the vinegar simple syrup into a jar. Chill until ready to make soda.

5 Mix with cucumber, ice, soda water: Fill a glass with ice cubes and a several pieces of cucumber. Add the syrup and soda water in about a 1:3 ratio, syrup to water, or whatever works for you to achieve the level of intensity you want for your soda. Stir with a spoon.