If I were forced to choose a only one beverage to drink for the rest of my life, my choice would be lemonade.  (Margaritas would be a close  second, chocolate milk is probably third…)  Good old fashioned plain lemonade will always be my favorite, but I love plenty of flavored variations as well.  I’ve been happy as a clam with the plethora of strawberries around these days and using some of them in a fruity drink was only natural.  This recipe caught my eye one day and it just so happened that I had recently opened a bottle of sparkling water.  I bought a bag of lemons and whipped this up.  Only after I was pouring it into glasses did I realize I have actually made this recipe before.  This time around I actually used the sparkling water the recipe calls for rather than tap water.  It’s amazing what a difference that little bit of effervescence adds to the final product.  Last time it was pretty good but this time it was taken to a whole new level.  To me, a big pitcher of this lemonade seems like the perfect drink for summer barbecues and outdoor gatherings.

In case you are still planning your menu for Memorial Day, here are a few more crowd pleasing suggestions:
Teriyaki Burgers with Mango Pineapple Salsa
Garlic Lemon Chicken Kabobs
Cherry Tomato Salad
Classic Mac and Cheese
S’mores Cake
Ice Cream Sandwiches
Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Bars


For the strawberry syrup:
1 heaping cup chopped strawberries
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. lemon juice
2 tbsp. cold water
Pinch of salt

For the lemonade:
1 cup very hot water
2/3 cup sugar
1¼ cups freshly squeezed lemon juice
4½ cups cold sparkling water or seltzer


  • 01

    To make the strawberry syrup, combine the strawberries, sugar, lemon juice, water and salt in the bowl of a food processor or blender.  Puree until smooth.  Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds, pressing down to extract as much liquid as possible.

  • 02

    To make the lemonade, combine the hot water and sugar in a pitcher.  Stir until the sugar is dissolved.  Mix in the lemon juice and water.  Stir in the strawberry puree.

  • 03

    To serve, rub a wedge of lemon or one of the spent lemon halves around the rim of a glass and then dip in sugar.  Fill with ice if desired and then lemonade.  Garnish with sliced lemon or strawberries.  Serve immediately.

  • I don’t have a juicer so making my own lemonade hasn’t happened yet. Just do it already! Question for you….do you use a tripod for shots? And I mean camera…not jello ;)

  • This is just gorgeous! I love that chocolate milk is one of your favorite drinks:-)

  • What a simple beautiful presentation! I too, love anything lemon and combined with strawberries, it’s a match made in heaven! How great for these hot summer days coming up! Thanks, Chris

  • Annie

    I don’t have a juicer either. I do have a tripod but I rarely use it.

  • I love strawberry lemonade! Especially a recipe so fresh and flavorful as this. Thank you for sharing!

  • beautiful!!! i want one right now, even though it’s only 830 am…

  • Sounds tasty. I would put a little hooch in mine. Perhaps champagne in place of sparkling water. Thanks for the idea!

  • This looks absolutely refreshing! You know, I bet you could make this into a strawberry-lemonade margarita!

  • Lanette

    Just wondered approximately how many lemons it took to equal out to 1 1/4 cups lemon juice? It looks lovely and so refreshing- I’d love to make it this weekend!

  • Annie

    I don’t remember how many I used. Maybe six or seven? It depends on the size and how juicy your fruit is.

  • Lemonade is probably my favorite drink too! I love that it is tart but refreshing.

  • Perfect for summer!

  • What spectacular pictures. That looks just so refreshing.

  • Nikki

    you’re such an inspiration Annie – making your own lemonade from scratch. I love your website – exact kind of recipes I look for! Simple, but flavourful, and I don’t have to run around to 3 stores to get the ingredients – I usually have everything on hand already!

  • This would be perfect for our family BBQ this weekend!! It looks delicious and refreshing!

  • Payal

    your photography is really amazing! What a beautiful picture!! Can’t wait to try this recipe for this weekend!! We are going strawberry picking tomorrow and I already have lots of your yummy desserts lined up to make including the strawberry tart!

  • Annie

    Thank you so much!

  • Love, love this drink. Two of my favorite things. I guess for an adult libation, a bit of vodka could be just the perfect thing. Enjoy your long holiday weekend.

  • Annie

    Agreed! I haven’t tried it with vodka myself but that sounds great.

  • Lindsay

    Yum! I’ll have to try making this soon. Also, gorgeous pictures! All of these summer-time recipes being posted are making me wish the sun would come out already! It’s still pouring rain where I live, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed that bbq season will arrive soon! :)

  • Good heavens. I’m almost happy enough just staring at the pictures.

  • Your photography never ceases to stun me. This drink would be perfect for my picnic tomorrow! Thanks for sharing :)

  • Elizabeth

    Love your site and you do an amazing job of making recipes easy to follow. This will definitely be a summer staple and a slash of Bacardi Limon added might be warranted on occasion!

  • Oda

    Just made this! Yum

  • This looks refreshing…I like how you served it in a martini glass…It’s a great mocktail!

  • I got hooked on lemonade last summer when I was pregnant. I have been all about refreshing fruity drinks now that the weather is warm. I will have to give this one a try.

  • Gail

    Yum. I had leftover strawberries and lemons from an order someone cancelled on me… BUT!!! this recipe popped up just in time for a Memorial/Birthday party yesterday… :) Was delicious!! Thanks for sharing.

  • Melissa

    Wonderful recipe! A friend made them for her cook-out this weekend. Very refreshing for a 95+ day! She added lemon seltzer.

  • Lisa

    Can this be made ahead and kept in the refrigerator? You say serve immediately but I am wondering if I can make it the day before my party and then just sugar my rims before serving.

  • Annie

    Yes, you can make it in advance.

  • Jen V.

    Made this tonight. It was the perfect summer drink, very refreshing. Thanks for sharing!

  • Meghan

    I didn’t have enough lemons (3.5) to make this so I added lime juice to make a limeade. It was so delicious! It is a perfect and refreshing drink for this 100 degree weather in Texas. I also might add more strawberries, but I am more of a berry girl myself.

  • Annie, had this this weekend…really delicious and the color is so wonderfully beautiful. Even my husband, who had announced that he wasn’t into my “fruity drinks” started sneaking some! Thanks!

  • jannett

    Oooh this looks so good, definately gotta try this, thanks for the recipe!

  • jannett

    Oooh this looks so good, definately gotta try this, thanks for the recipe!

  • Steph

    This is one of my favorite beverages now! I wonder how it’d taste with a little alcohol?

  • Spolidoro1

    My daughter has been looking for a good Strawberry Lemonade Recipe. I will be giving this a try today. Thank you.

  • Jennandmike

    Looks so refreshing!

  • Peggy5290

    Love lemonade, love strawberries perfect for a hot summer day on the deck.

  • Moebetta85

    Sounds like a delicious recipe to try…is there a sugar substitute instead of white sugar, did anyone try yet? If so, what did you use and how much of it?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page regarding substitutions. Thanks.

  • Anna Lapping

    And a little vodka wouldn’t hurt, either.

  • Anna Lapping

    If you don’t want to use sugar and you grow your own stevia, you could put the stevia leaves in the water for the simple syrup before you heat it and let it steep for a bit as it cools.