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Lemon Basil Lemonade

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When lemon basil shows up in your CSA farm share box, make Lemon Basil Lemonade. That’s how we roll around here. Who wants a refreshing glass of homemade lemonade? 

Lemon Basil Lemonade | Letty's Kitchen

Lemon basil for Lemon Basil Lemonade

zest and lemon squeezing for Lemon Basil Lemonade

Deborah Madison gives a recipe for Lemon Basil-Mint Lemonade in her cookbook, Vegetable Literacy.  In the Mint Family chapter, in Deborah’s flowing literate words, she teaches us that basil and chia are both cousins of mint. So are lavender and thyme and rosemary. So if mint is wonderful in lemonade, why not lemon basil?

Lemon Basil and lemon zest for muddling Lemon Basil Lemonade

Lemon Basil Lemonade | Letty's Kitchen

Lemon Basil Lemonade is sort of like a mojito, the way you muddle the lemon basil, sugar and zest. You could definitely add tequila. You might want to try my Tequila Mojitos with Agave Nectar next. 😉

Wishing you a fabulous week–mix up a refreshing drink!

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5 from 2 votes
Lemon Basil Lemonade | Letty's Kitchen
Lemon Basil Lemonade
  • Generous ½ cup lemon basil leaves
  • ¼ cup organic cane sugar
  • Grated zest of 3 or 4 lemons
  • About ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • About 4 cups water (see note)
  • Ice cubes
  1. Put the lemon basil, sugar and zest in a bowl. Crush and “muddle” this mixture, until the basil is well bruised and the sugar has mixed in. Transfer to a pitcher, add the lemon juice and water and stir. Refrigerate, allowing the basil and zest to infuse more flavor, at least an hour. Strain and pour the lemonade over ice.
Recipe Notes

Deborah Madison suggests substituting sparkling water for some of the water. If you plan to do that, don’t put all of the water in the first mixing. Save the sparkle for the last minute for maximum fizz.

Here’s the old photo from when I first posted this recipe in September 2013. Bad, huh? I kept it here at the end of this post, just for grins and giggles.

Lemon Basil Lemonade


  • Marissa Sertich

    sounds like a delicious drink for these last few days of summer! Reply · 18 September, 2013

    • Marissa,
      I had leftover lemonade from that party. I put the jar on the fridge door and nursed it the next week whenever I wanted an alchohol-free treat. Reply · 27 October, 2013

  • Arabella

    Thanks for the recipes, I will make Lemon Basil Lemonade today!
    And some Mojitos this weekend. Reply · 18 July, 2017

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