A refreshing cup of lemonade on a hot sunny day is the most satisfying drink ever! Grilled lemonade takes lemons and adds a deeper dimension to them by grilling them over an open flame to caramelize the natural sugars and citrus flavor. It’s simply incredible!
Whenever the weather heats up, we find ourselves craving an ice-cold glass of fresh lemonade! We can all agree that the homemade version is much better than the store-bought stuff. It’s also so easy to make! The first time we heard about grilled lemonade, a unique take on our favorite summertime beverage, we were immediately interested in giving it a try. When we finally did, we fell in love with the deepness of the flavors. It’s a bit less tart than classic varieties and boasts a much fuller lemon flavor. In other words, it’s a must-try! Don’t be fooled, it doesn’t taste like burnt lemons at all. Grilling the citrus fruits brings out the natural flavors, and the addition of a bit of sugar before you place it over the flames means that you’ll also get a hint of caramelization in the final results. Impress your guests by serving up this homemade grilled lemonade at your next gathering!
This grilled lemonade recipe calls for, well, grilled lemons! That said, there are a lot of equipment options out there for you to choose from. You can use a gas or charcoal grill, and you can even use a broiler if you don’t have access to a barbecue.
After you’ve squeezed your grilled lemons and created a concentrate, it’s up to you to decide how much water and ice to add! If you like a stronger citrus taste, use less water. One thing we do always recommend is that you serve the final results over ice! You can also garnish it with a bit of fresh mint or basil. Yummy and refreshing!
How Do You Char A Lemon?
Start by slicing your lemons in half. Then, dip the cut side in a bit of sugar and place it cut side down on your preheated grill. Let them grill for about 4-6 minutes, and you’ve got yourself some perfectly charred lemons! If you’re working with a boiler, follow the same steps, but place the cut side up instead.
Other Ways to Use Grilled Lemons:
When you removed your grilled lemons from the heat, you’ll be required to juice them. Now, you have grilled lemon juice! There are a few more steps you’ll have to take to turn it into something drinkable, but you can also use the smokey and charred juice for other things! Consider adding it to a marinade or even to baked goods for a unique citrus flavor.
Grilled Lemonade Flavor Variations:
Use our recipe as your base, and then feel free to get creative! Here are some of our favorite flavor variations:
- Honey: Replace the sugar with 2 cups of honey.
- Sugar-free: Use a ¼ cup of stevia instead of white sugar.
- Berry: Blend a pound of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or a combination of all 3 and add it to the lemon concentrate before you add the water.
- Watermelon-mint: Puree 2-3 cups of watermelon and combine it with the lemon juice. Then, add some fresh mint leaves.
Another fun idea is to make ice cubes out of your favorite juice, and then simply add the cubes to your lemonade glass by glass. That way you’ll have different flavor options for all taste preferences!
If you want to make this recipe for a later date, you can absolutely freeze this unique drink. Follow the instructions on the recipe card below, but make sure not to add any water just yet. You can place the grilled lemon concentrate in a freezer-safe bag. Lay it down in your freezer, where it will keep for 3-4 months. When you’re ready to drink it, let it thaw overnight, and then add water to your taste preferences.
This beverage is best enjoyed cold, of course! If you have any leftovers after an afternoon outside, you can store them in a pitcher in your fridge. If you’re afraid that it will absorb the odors of the other food items, you can cover the top with a lid or with a with of plastic wrap. It will keep for 5-7 days.
If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious drink recipes:
Watch the video below where Caytlin will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTube, Facebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.
How to Make Grilled Lemonade
- 5 lbs lemons
- 2 cups water
- 3 cups sugar divided
- Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
- Add 1 cup of sugar to a shallow bowl or dish.
- Cut lemons in half. Press the cut-side into sugar and place cut-side down on the preheated grill. Let grill until lemon has softened and sugars have caramelized into a deep brown color, about 4-6 minutes.
- Remove from grill and let cool. Juice each lemon through a strainer into a large measuring cup. Keep juicing until you have 2 cups of lemon juice.
- To make the simple syrup, pour water into a medium-size saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in 2 cups of sugar. Continue cooking over heat until sugar is dissolved and liquid looks clear.
- Combine simple syrup with lemon juice to create a lemonade concentrate.
- When ready to serve, add water to the lemonade concentrate to taste. For a stronger lemonade, add less water. For a less sweet, more sour lemonade, adjust the ratio of simple syrup to lemon juice by adding more lemon juice or less simple syrup.