Do you love lemonade? I do, and if you are a lemonade lover like me, you will find this frozen lemonade concentrate a brilliant idea.
This is a homemade, made from scratch recipe and is totally customizable to suit your taste in terms of the tartness and sweetness of your lemonade.
Homemade lemonade is typically made by diluting freshly squeezed lemon juice with water and ice and sweetening it with sugar or honey.
Of course, you can also make lemonade with store-bought lemonade concentrate, but nothing beats the authentic, all-natural goodness of freshly squeezed juice for your lemonade.
Why make your own concentrate?
This homemade frozen lemonade concentrate works in the same as the store-bought concentrate, except that this one is homemade and uses only all-natural ingredients - there are no artificial stuff in there and no preservatives too.
Plus, you can totally adjust the taste. If you prefer your lemonade with a stronger tart taste, you increase the amount of lemon juice in the concentrate, but if you prefer lemonade that is more on the sweet side, you can increase the sugar concentration accordingly.
All in all, with this frozen lemonade concentrate, all you need do is pop the frozen lemonade concentrate into a glass or pitcher, add some ice and water to it and you have your favorite homemade lemonade drink in no time at all. No need to go through the hassle of buying, cutting, and squeezing lemon juice, and making fresh sugar syrup every time you want to enjoy a glass of homemade lemonade. And there is no cleaning up each time too. Convenient right?
In this post on frozen lemonade concentrate, I am sharing with you my recipe for making lemonade concentrate in 2 versions - the chilled liquid version and the frozen version.
Both are made using the same recipe, however, the liquid lemonade concentrate is kept chilled in the fridge and it does not last as long as the frozen version. It is, however, easier to use because you don't have to wait for the concentrate to melt first, unlike frozen lemonade concentrate. However, in terms of shelf life, the frozen lemonade concentrate tends to last much longer, just like most other frozen food.
How to Make Homemade Frozen Lemonade Concentrate
- Lemon Zest
Preparing the lemon juice and rind
- Start by washing your lemons clean. For this recipe, you would need about 6 medium-sized fruits.
- Dab them dry. Grate the rind of 1 fruit. You only need the rind of one lemon for this recipe, however, you can always grate the rind of all the lemons and store it in the freeze for your other baking or cooking needs.
- Juice the fruits. You can do this with a citrus juicer or a citrus press. After the 4th fruit, strain the juice and measure it. That way, you can stop juicing once you have the amount required. Cover and keep the juice in the refrigerator while you make the sugar syrup.
Making the syrup
- Next, prepare the sugar syrup. In medium-sized pan, add the sugar and water.
- Turn on the heat to medium-low and add the grated rind.
- Cook the syrup until the sugar is all melted. This should take about 5 minutes. Stir to expedite the process.
- Turn off the heat and let the syrup cool down to room temperature.
Mixing the concentrate
- Strain the sugar syrup (to remove the lemon rind) into a large pot or jar with a spout (for easy pouring into a bottle later).
- Add the strained lemon juice.
- Mix well.
- If you wish to make the liquid version of the concentrate, pour the concentrate into a clean and dry bottle. Put on the lid and refrigerate until ready to use. The concentrate is best used within 2 weeks.
Freezing the concentrate
To make the frozen version of the concentrate, pour it into smaller containers. For easy use, it is best to measure the concentrate into individual molds or ziplock bags and label the quantity accordingly. Freeze the concentrate until completely set. Always keep the frozen concentrate in covered containers or sealed zip lock bags.
Here's how you can do it:
- Line your muffin cups with cling wrap, leaving enough excess on the sides to wrap the frozen concentrate later (step 4 below).
- Pour the measured lemonade concentrate into each cup.
- Freeze the concentrate until it hardens completely (overnight is best). Remove the frozen concentrate from the muffin cups along with the cling wrap.
- Wrap the frozen cubes completely with the cling wrap. Place the wrapped cubes a zip lock back or covered container and return to the freezer until ready to use.
Using the lemonade concentrate
To use the concentrate, mix one part of it with 3 parts of chilled water. If you wish to add ice cubes, reduce the water and replace it with ice cubes. This will ensure your lemonade does not get too diluted when ice is added.
Making lemonade with liquid concentrate
- Lemonade drink in a pitcher (2000ml): Add 500ml of lemonade concentrate into the pitcher. Top with 1500ml of chilled water. Mix and serve. Reduce the water accordingly if you wish to add ice cubes.
- Lemonade drink in a single serving (350ml): Add 75ml of lemonade concentrate into the glass. Top it with 225ml chilled water. Stir to mix and serve. Reduce the water if you wish to add ice cubes.
- In baked goods or other treats: As specified in the recipe
Making lemonade with frozen concentrate
If you freeze your lemonade concentrate in larger blocks (for eg 500ml), it is best to let the concentrate thaw first before mixing it with water. If you freeze the concentrate in smaller molds, the concentrate will not take too long to melt and therefore, need not be thawed first before using.
- Lemonade drink in a pitcher (2000ml): Use the same measurement as above. For easy use, freeze the concentrate in 500ml volume ziplock bags or molds.
- Lemonade drink in a single serving (350ml): Use the same measurement as the liquid concentrate above. For easy use, freeze the concentrate in 75ml capacity molds. To make the lemonade, simply drop one cube of the frozen concentrate into your glass and top it with water. Let it melt completely before adding any ice and serving.
- In baked goods or other treats: Thaw the concentrate first and use as specified in the recipe.
How to juice and rind the lemons
- You can use any type of lemons for this recipe. For effective juicing, roll the lemons with your palm on your kitchen countertop before cutting and juicing. This helps with easier juicing of the fruits. You can use a citrus pressor or a citrus juicer. Both are better than trying to squeeze out the juice with your bare hands unless you have the strength to do that for about 5 to 6 lemons.
- Also, remember to grate the lemon for rind before you cut and squeeze them. It is a lot easier to grate the rind from a full, plump fruit than one that has been squeezed out.
- Lemon rind is optional for this frozen lemonade concentrate recipe. I like to add it to my concentrate because it really adds to the depth in flavor. You can leave the rind out if you like. Or, you can even drop a thin slice of the lemon into the syrup as it boils, in the same way, I do it in my homemade golden syrup recipe. This will also help with the additional flavor.
How to measure the lemon juice
- When measuring the lemon juice, do it after straining it. When juicing the fruits, you will end up with some of the seeds and pulp in it. These are best removed by straining the juice for a smooth lemonade concentrate.
Can you add the lemon juice into hot syrup?
- The sugar syrup is ready as soon as the sugar is all melted. However, the hot syrup stage is not the best point to add the juice. This is is simply to preserve the nutritional benefits of the lemon which is better preserved when there is no heat involved.
- Hence, I would recommend that you let the syrup cool down to room temperature before adding the juice in.
How to store the lemonade concentrate?
- In its liquid form, pour the prepared concentrate into a clean and dry bottle that has a lid. Keep it refrigerated all the time, with the lid on. It is best consumed within 2 weeks.
- In its frozen form, this concentrate is best kept in a sealed zip lock bag or a container with lid. Leaving it open in the freezer can dry it out. This frozen lemonade concentrate can last for a good 3 to 4 months.
Frozen Lemonade Concentrate Recipe
Here is the full printable version of my homemade frozen lemonade concentrate recipe.
Frozen Lemonade Concentrate
- 500 ml lemon juice (approximately 6 lemons)
- 440 g sugar
- 250 ml water
- 1 teaspoon lemon rind (grated)
- Wash and pat the lemons dry.
- Grate the rind of one lemon. Set aside.
- Roll the lemons on the kitchen countertop with the palms of your hand to soften the skin and loosen the pulp inside. Cut each fruit in half and squeeze the juice.
- Strain and measure the juice. Cover and keep refrigerated.
- In a medium-sized pot, add the sugar and water. Turn on the heat to medium-low.
- Add the grated lemon rind and stir to dissolve the sugar.
- Once the sugar is all dissolved, turn off the heat and let the sugar syrup cool down to room temperature.
- Strain to remove the lemon rind.
- Mix the strained lemon juice into the sugar syrup until well combined.
- For liquid lemonade concentrate, pour the concentrate into a clean and dry bottle. Keep the lid on and keep it refrigerated.
- For frozen lemonade concentrate, pour it into smaller molds or containers. Freeze until completely set. Remove the frozen concentrate blocks from the molds/containers and keep them frozen in a sealed zip lock bag or a container with a cover.
- To make lemonade in a 2 liters pitcher: Add 500ml of lemonade concentrate into the pitcher. Top with 1500ml of chilled water. Mix and serve. Reduce the water if you wish to add ice cubes.
- To make lemonade drink in a single serving of 350ml: Add 75ml of lemonade concentrate into the glass. Top it with 225ml chilled water. Stir to mix and serve. Reduce the water if you wish to add ice cubes.
- In baked goods or other treats: As specified in the recipe
- To make lemonade drink in a 2000ml pitcher: Use the same measurement as above. For easy use, freeze the concentrate in 500ml volume ziplock bags or molds and label accordingly. Let the concentrate melt/thaw first before mixing the lemonade drink.
- To make lemonade drink in a single serving of 350ml: Use the same measurement as the liquid concentrate above. For easy use, freeze the concentrate in 75ml capacity molds. To make the lemonade, simply drop one cube of the frozen concentrate into your glass and top it with water. Let it melt completely before adding any ice and serving.
- In baked goods or other treats: Thaw the concentrate first and use as specified in the recipe
And that's that. My easy frozen lemonade concentrate recipe.
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