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Fresh Orange Lemonade with Mint

Fresh Orange Lemonade with Mint is the perfect refreshment for those warm, sunny days when you crave something invigorating yet subtly sweet. This delightful concoction blends the tangy essence of fresh lemons with the sweet, aromatic zest of oranges, complemented by the cool, refreshing touch of mint.

Ideal for garden parties, family gatherings, or simply as a daily dose of sunshine in a glass, this recipe promises to uplift your spirits and tantalize your taste buds. Join us in discovering how to create this vibrant, thirst-quenching beverage that’s bound to become your new summer favorite.

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Simple and Quick to Make: With just a few common ingredients and minimal prep time, you can whip up this refreshing drink in no time.
  • Naturally Sweetened: By using agave or your sweetener of choice, this lemonade cuts down on processed sugars, making it a healthier option.
  • Perfect for Any Occasion: Whether it’s a casual backyard barbecue or an elegant afternoon tea, this orange lemonade with mint fits perfectly.
  • Fully Customizable: Feel free to adjust the sweetness or add more mint to suit your taste, making it a versatile recipe that everyone can enjoy.

Ingredients

  • Lemon: Choose bright and firm lemons with a glossy skin; they yield the most juice and add a vibrant zest to the lemonade. You’ll need them thinly sliced and freshly squeezed for this recipe.
  • Orange: Opt for oranges that are heavy for their size, indicating juiciness. Thinly slice one for the infusion and use the juice of others. The freshness of the orange enhances the drink with a sweet citrus note.
  • Mint Sprigs: Look for mint that is green and vibrant without any dark spots. Mint adds a refreshing and cooling flavor, giving the lemonade a uniquely invigorating taste.
  • Fresh Orange Juice: Freshly squeezed orange juice is preferable for its natural sweetness and flavor, void of any additives found in store-bought options.
  • Fresh Lemon Juice: Similar to orange juice, fresh lemon juice brings unmatched zest and tanginess, making all the difference in refreshing drinks.
  • Water: Plain, clean water serves as the base of this lemonade. It balances the intensity of the juices and the sweetness perfectly.
  • Agave or Sweetener of Choice: Agave syrup is a great natural sweetener that blends well, but you may use honey, stevia, or any sweetener you prefer. It’s about finding the right balance to cater to your sweetness preference.
  • Ice: For serving, ice not only chills the lemonade but also adds a refreshing coolness, making it perfect for hot days.

Substitutions and Additions

When crafting your Fresh Orange Lemonade with Mint, flexibility is key to suit your taste and dietary preferences. Here are some substitutions and additions that can take your beverage to the next level:

  • Lemon and Orange: If you find yourself without fresh citrus fruits, bottled lemon and orange juice can be used in a pinch. For a twist, try adding grapefruit slices or juice for a tangy yet slightly bitter note.
  • Mint Sprigs: No mint? No problem! Basil or cilantro can offer a unique flavor profile to your lemonade. If you’re looking for a minty taste without the herb itself, a drop of mint extract can also do the trick.
  • Sweeteners: For those avoiding agave, honey, maple syrup, or even simple syrup are excellent substitutes. Each brings its own unique taste to the lemonade, so you can experiment to find your preferred sweetness level.
  • Additions: To elevate your orange lemonade, consider adding a splash of sparkling water for a fizzy variation or blending the lemonade with ice for a slushie texture. For an adult version, a shot of your favorite vodka or rum can be a delightful addition. Berries, such as strawberries or raspberries, not only add a pop of color but also infuse the lemonade with additional sweet and tart flavors.

Instructions

Place lemon and orange slices into a spacious pitcher. 

Place mint sprigs in the container and gently crush them using the back of a wooden spoon.

Pour the juice, water, and agave into the mixture and stir thoroughly.

Refrigerate until serving. The flavor intensifies the longer it chills.

Recipe tips

  • Chill the Ingredients First: For an instant cold serving, make sure your ingredients, especially the water and fruit juices, are chilled before mixing. This step helps you serve the lemonade immediately if needed.
  • Adjust the Sweetness: Start with a smaller amount of sweetener and taste as you go. You can always add more if needed, but it’s impossible to remove excess sweetness.
  • Muddle the Mint Gently: When releasing the mint’s flavor, be careful not to over-muddle, as crushing the leaves too much can release bitterness.
  • Serve with Extra Freshness: Add a few fresh mint sprigs and citrus slices to your glass just before serving for added aroma and a beautiful presentation.
  • Keep it Fresh: Enjoy your orange lemonade within 24-48 hours for the best taste. After this, the citrus can start to taste slightly bitter.
  • Use Ice Sparingly: Too much ice can dilute the flavors of your lemonade. Use just enough to keep it cool, especially if it’s not consumed immediately.
  • Experiment with Ice Shapes: For special occasions, use ice molds in fun shapes or freeze small mint leaves inside your ice cubes for an elegant touch.

Storage & reheating

For storing the Fresh Orange Lemonade with Mint, it’s best to keep it in the refrigerator. Use a glass pitcher or bottle with a tight-fitting lid to maintain freshness. Properly stored, the lemonade will remain delicious and refreshing for up to 3-4 days. It’s important to stir or shake it well before serving, as separation may occur.

While freezing lemonade is an option, it’s worth noting that freezing and thawing can slightly alter the texture and flavor, particularly of the mint leaves. If you do freeze it, use an airtight, freezer-safe container, leaving some space for expansion. Frozen lemonade can be enjoyed as a slush or slowly thawed in the refrigerator before serving.

This recipe is intended for cool enjoyment, so reheating is not applicable. However, for a warm twist on cold days, you could experiment by gently heating the mixture without the mint and ice, transforming it into a warm citrus punch. Remember not to boil to preserve the fresh flavors.

Recipe FAQ

Q: Can I make this lemonade recipe in advance?

A: Absolutely! This lemonade even tastes better when made a day in advance as it gives more time for the flavors to meld. Just remember to add ice or refrigerate until it’s time to serve.

Q: How can I make this recipe sugar-free?

A: To make this recipe sugar-free, you can substitute the agave or other sweeteners with a sugar-free sweetener like stevia or erythritol. Adjust the amount based on the sweetener’s sweetness compared to sugar, as this may vary by brand.

Q: Is there a way to make this lemonade into a cocktail?

A: Yes, you can easily transform this lemonade into a refreshing cocktail by adding 1 ounce of your preferred spirit (vodka, rum, or gin work well) to a glass of lemonade. Stir well and enjoy responsibly.

Q: Can I use bottled citrus juice instead of fresh?

A: While fresh citrus juice is recommended for the best flavor, you can use high-quality bottled lemon and orange juice in a pinch. Keep in mind that the fresh taste might slightly differ.

Q: What other herbs can I use if I don’t have mint?

A: Besides basil and cilantro, which were mentioned as alternatives, you could also try rosemary or thyme for a more earthy flavor profile. Use sparingly, as these herbs have a stronger flavor than mint.

Q: How can I make this lemonade fizzy without sparkling water?

A: If you don’t have sparkling water but still want a fizzy touch, you can use a clear soda like club soda or a lemon-lime soda. This will add both fizziness and a bit more sweetness to your lemonade.

Q: Can this lemonade be turned into a frozen treat?

A: Yes! Pour the prepared lemonade into ice pop molds and freeze. It’s a fun way to enjoy the flavors in a new form, especially during the warmer months.

Fresh Orange Lemonade with Mint
Yield: 4 drinks

Fresh Orange Lemonade with Mint

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Perfect for summer, this homemade orange lemonade is finished perfectly with fresh mint

Ingredients

  • 1 Lemon, thinly sliced
  • 1 Orange, thinly sliced
  • 3 Mint sprigs
  • 1/2 c. Fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 c. Fresh lemon juice
  • 3 c. Water
  • 3 T. Agave or sweetener of choice
  • Ice, for serving

Instructions

  1. Add lemon and orange slices to a large pitcher. 
  2. Add mint sprigs and muddle with the back of a wooden spoon.
  3. Pour in the juice, water, and agave; stir everything together. 
  4. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve. The longer it sits, the more intense the flavor.

Notes

  • Chill the Ingredients First: For an instant cold serving, make sure your ingredients, especially the water and fruit juices, are chilled before mixing. This step helps you serve the lemonade immediately if needed.
  • Adjust the Sweetness: Start with a smaller amount of sweetener and taste as you go. You can always add more if needed, but it's impossible to remove excess sweetness.
  • Muddle the Mint Gently: When releasing the mint's flavor, be careful not to over-muddle, as crushing the leaves too much can release bitterness.
  • Serve with Extra Freshness: Add a few fresh mint sprigs and citrus slices to your glass just before serving for added aroma and a beautiful presentation.
  • Keep it Fresh: Enjoy your orange lemonade within 24-48 hours for the best taste. After this, the citrus can start to taste slightly bitter.
  • Use Ice Sparingly: Too much ice can dilute the flavors of your lemonade. Use just enough to keep it cool, especially if it's not consumed immediately.
  • Experiment with Ice Shapes: For special occasions, use ice molds in fun shapes or freeze small mint leaves inside your ice cubes for an elegant touch.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 91Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 10mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 2gSugar: 17gProtein: 1g

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