Healthy Lemonade with Berries and Lavender
Summer is almost here and so are our busy schedules! Try this Healthy Lemonade with Berries and Lavender to de-stress and relax the mind!
With the warmer weather coming, this lavender lemonade will be your next favorite summer refreshment or cocktail! Read on to learn more about the calming effects of culinary lavender and how to incorporate it in your favorite foods!
Keep Calm and Lavender On
Want to de-stress this spring season? Lavender is helpful for reducing stress and calming our nerves. We have all experienced it in aromatherapy oils and skin care products, so why not try it in your favorite foods? Culinary lavender is becoming popular in the gourmet food world and for good reason! From scones to roasted vegetables, lavender is making its way past our noses and to our stomachs!
You may have recognized dried lavender in the delicate blend, Herbes de Provence. Just like this herb blend, lavender lends a nice aromatic taste with sweet and floral notes. Just make sure to buy culinary lavender as most lavender varieties are not for consumption and may leave a bitter taste.
Other foods that may help with stress levels? Try foods rich in vitamin-C, like citrus and red peppers, and magnesium-rich leafy greens. Both nutrients may have an effect on regulating our “stress hormone” cortisol. B-vitamins are also fight-or-flight nutrients that are involved with our neurotransmitters; you can find great sources of these vitamins in nuts, grains, and dairy. In addition to a healthy diet, getting enough sleep and exercise may help calm those nerves, and even reduce risk for heart disease.
Recipe for this healthy lemonade…
This lavender lemonade recipe is infused with stress-reducing culinary lavender and antioxidant-rich berries. Prior to serving, the trick is to steep the lavender in hot water for at least 20 minutes to enhance the aromatic properties. After steeping, make sure to separate the lavender buds with a mesh colander or cheesecloth, and save the strained lavender water for the recipe.
I made the typically sweet lemonade with only 1/4 cup of honey and added frozen berries for more flavor. I promise you will not miss the excess sugar in this flavorful summer treat. If you want to kick it up a notch, you can add your favorite alcohol for a colorful cocktail. For a non-alcoholic beverage, try ginger ale or seltzer water for a fun mocktail!
- To make the lavender water:
- 3-4 tablespoons dried culinary lavender
- 1/4 cup pure honey (or maple syrup if vegan)
- 1 cup boiling water
- 5 cups cold water
- 1/2 cup lemon juice (juice of three lemons)
- 1 cup fresh or frozen berries (thawed if frozen)
- In a 3qt (or small pot), bring 1 cup of water to boiling. Turn off the heat.
- Add in the dried lavender and honey, stir together with a whisk to mix evenly. Set aside and let it steep for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Pour the lavender water into a new container (or large pitcher) covered with a mesh colander to strain the flowers. Discard the flowers and save the syrupy liquid.
- In a large pitcher, combine the lavender water, lemon juice, remaining 5 cups of cold water, and berries. Stir well to mix thoroughly.
- Serve it with ice, optional.