Perfect Lemonade

DrinkFavorite SummerLemonadeMeyer Lemon

Simple and easy method for perfect lemonade every time! With simple syrup and fresh lemon juice.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Lemonade: sugar, water, lemon juice. Easy, right?

Well, the problem is that if you just stir all of these together the sugar will sink to the bottom. So the best way to make lemonade is to make a simple syrup first, by heating water and sugar together until the sugar is completely dissolved, and then mix that with the lemon juice.

The proportions will vary depending on how sweet and strong you like your lemonade, and how sour your lemons are to begin with. Late season lemons are less sour than early season lemons. Meyer lemons are sweeter than standard lemons.

Start with the proportions of 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of water, 1 cup of lemon juice. Reduce the sugar amount if you are using Meyer lemons or if you like your lemonade less sweet. (I usually use 3/4 cup of lemon juice.)

Make the simple syrup, combine with the lemon juice, and then add more water (and ice) to dilute the lemonade to your taste.

Simple syrup you can easily make ahead and chill for later use. If you have a bunch of lemons you need to process, you can juice them and freeze the juice too.

Lemonade

Perfect Lemonade Recipe

Print
  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6

For more intense lemon flavor, grate the zest from one fresh lemon and add the zest to the simple syrup as you are making it. Once the sugar has dissolved in the water remove from heat and let the zest seep in the simple syrup for several minutes, then strain out the zest when you add the simple syrup to the lemon juice.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white, granulated sugar (can reduce to 3/4 cup)
  • 1 cup water (for the simple syrup)
  • 1 cup lemon juice
  • 2 to 3 cups cold water (to dilute)

Method

1 Make "simple syrup":  Place the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Stir so that the sugar dissolves completely and remove from heat.

2 Juice the lemons: While the water is heating for the simple syrup, juice your lemons. Depending on the size of the lemons, 4 to 6 of them should be enough for one cup of juice.

3 Combine lemon juice, simple syrup, water: Pour the juice and the simple syrup sugar water into a serving pitcher. Add 2 to 3 cups of cold water and taste. Add more water if you would like it to be more diluted (though note that when you add ice, it will melt and naturally dilute the lemonade).

If the lemonade is a little sweet for your taste, add a little more straight lemon juice to it.

4 Chill: Refrigerate 30 to 40 minutes.

Serve with ice, sliced lemons.

Hello! All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. Thank you!

Print

Products We Love

This post may contain links to Amazon or other partners; your purchases via these links can benefit Simply Recipes. Read more about our affiliate linking policy.

Links:

Lavender Lemonade here on Simply Recipes

Whole lemon lemonade - from Marc at Mental Masala.

Lemonade

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

More from Elise

234 Comments / Reviews

No ImagePerfect Lemonade

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Johnnybuoy4

    This is a great recipe I’ve made many times. However, I use Splenda Instead of sugar which helps With the calories and dissolves easily in plain hot water from the tap. I also don’t want it tasting too sugary so I add it to the mixture afterwards to taste. Delicious and refreshing.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  2. Marsha

    I have shared this recipe with friends who have loved it! A hint from one of them said they purchased Caster Sugar for their sugar because it dissolves so well. Grands visiting next week.
    Always make a point of baking with them. This time showing them the joys of Summertime Lemonade!

    xxxxxyyyyy

  3. ron

    very good taste great temperature reached 103 this week nice thirst quencher :)

    xxxxxyyyyy

  4. Margaret Francis

    Great. My granddaughter loved and asked for the recipe. Delicious!!!!!!!

    xxxxxyyyyy

  5. Upama Bose

    It’s simple , easy to make , very fast ,useful drink for someone who is in hurry and wants to maintain weight and hydration. I’m a fan of lemonade and drink this whenever I get home.

    xxxxxyyyyy

View More
LemonadePerfect Lemonade