Looking for a refreshing, delicious summer drink to serve your guests and family? Here it is! This fantastic Fresh Strawberry Limeade is a perfect choice. The sweetness of the fresh strawberries, mixed with the unique tartness of the lime, and the beautiful vibrant color will awe any recipient.
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It is strawberry season, and if you have an abundance of fresh strawberries on hand, why not make this awe-inspiring fresh strawberry limeade. Lime and strawberries go very well together. This week mom and I took our annual strawberry picking adventure. We usually go several times during the season, but at least once, we pick for the winter and freeze to have delicious strawberries for wonderful recipes all year around.
Strawberry Limeade can be made with frozen strawberries if fresh strawberries are not available, though I will have to say there is nothing quite like the fresh version. It is quick and easy to make and can be stored in the fridge for several days. It is also easy to adjust to the individual taste.
Why Strawberries and Limes are Perfect for Summer
Strawberries and limes are always great together, but especially so during summer. There’s just something light yet incredibly refreshing about this sweet, tart combo on a sunny day. You can drink an entire glass without feeling like you’ve over-indulged.
It helps that limes and strawberries have their peak season during summer. I can’t think of many tastier treats than fresh, locally grown produce. Plus you can enjoy it while knowing you’re supporting a local business.
The only downside to fresh summer fruit? It can be messy to eat. But when you enjoy it in the form of a refreshing drink, you don’t have to worry about sticky fingers!
What is Strawberry Limeade?
Strawberry limeade is a refreshing cold drink made with only four ingredients: lime, strawberries, maple syrup (or sugar) and water. The ingredients are mixed in a blender and ready to serve immediately.
For those of you who do not live in New England, maple syrup may not be readily available, so today, I am showing you how to make a simple sugar syrup that can substitute for the maple syrup in this recipe.
Why Do I think you will like this recipe?
- Quick and Easy to make
- Refreshing and Delicious
- Perfect Summer Drink
Lime is a wonderful tart citric fruit that is packed with vitamin C and antioxidants that boosts the immune system.
Strawberries brighten the summer with their vibrant red color and deliver many health benefits. Also rich in vitamin C, potassium, fiber, and antioxidants, strawberries are believed to protect the heart, regulate blood sugar, and fight cancer.
Maple or Sugar Syrup:
Maple syrup is made from the sap of the maple tree. It is collected in the early spring when the days are warm and the nights are cool. Then it is reduced to a thick, sweet syrup, a perfect natural sweetener. Maple is believed to have some health benefits making it a better sweetener than refined sugar.
Who can argue with the many health benefits of water. Without it, we could not live but a few days. It is well known that most people are chronically dehydrated, and yet water is necessary for almost every function in the body. We need to drink more water.
How to Make Strawberry Limeade:
Strawberry Limeade is an easy and quick drink to make.
- measure the sweetener or make the sugar syrup
- wash and prepare the strawberries
- squeeze the lime juice from the limes
- add everything to the blender and blend until smooth
How to Hull Strawberries for Limeade
Did you know the “hull” is part of the strawberry? It’s the leafy greens on top. When people talk about hulling strawberries, they mean removing the hull and a small, somewhat flavorless part of the interior.
Now that you know what hulling is, I’ll tell you how to do it with just a paring knife.
Wash and dry the strawberries first. Working with one strawberry at a time, gently pull the leaves up and away from the berry. It just helps you see what you’re doing. I like to do this above a cutting board in case I drop a strawberry. Some of them are so small!
Now, insert the paring knife about a half-inch deep at a slight angle. You’re going to cut a small pyramid or cone shape out of the berry.
Move the knife in a circle around the top. The hull may slip out on its own when you’re done. If not, give the leaves a gentle tug to remove this section. Repeat until all strawberries have been hulled. The tops make a great compost ingredient!
There are lots of other ways to hull strawberries. You can also insert a straw through the bottom so it pokes through the core and the leafy green top. I don’t usually do this because unless the berries are really soft, the straw can break or bend. I just find it a bit more cumbersome than a paring knife. Using a grapefruit spoon is another great option. But like I always say, you do you!
For your strawberry limeade, you can also cut them in half vertically. I find this makes the process easier whether you’re mashing by hand or using a blender. But this cut is not technically part of the hulling process.
- Lime can be substituted with lemons
- Strawberries can be substituted with raspberries
- Maple syrup can be substituted with a sugar syrup
Limeade Love: Adjusting the Sweetness
I love this strawberry limeade because it’s so easy to customize. You can tweak the sweetness for an entire batch, or each person can adjust their own glass. And there are many ways to do it!
- Too sweet? For mellowing out an entire batch, add ice cubes to the blender. This will evenly dilute the batch as the ice melts. No blender? Add one additional cup of water, mix, and taste. Repeat until you achieve the desired flavor. For a single glass, add a bit of water and mix.
- Not sweet enough? Start with adding 1.5 tablespoons of syrup plus the ½ cup in my recipe. Blend, taste, and repeat until you’ve got it just right! To sweeten just a serving, add a splash of maple or sugar syrup straight to the glass. Mix thoroughly and taste.
- Adjust the sweetness with a fruit hack. You can also change the sweetness without adjusting the water or sugar content. This method works best when you pick your own from a farm, or buy a flat of strawberries for several recipes. Only use strawberries that are small, firm, and bright red. Strawberries with this appearance are always the sweetest. Locally grown fruit is more likely to be sweet, if you can find it. Always avoid large berries or those with white tops.
This recipe is:
- Serve with a few thin slices of lime, sliced strawberries, and some fresh mint leaves.
- Some people like the drink as it is, but some people may like it less sweet. Encourage people to add water to fit their taste.
Make This Strawberry Limeade Into a Party Punch with a Little Seltzer
You can serve a crowd with just one additional ingredient. My recipe will get you about 8-10 cups of strawberry limeade, depending on exactly how many berries you use. You can also replace the water with seltzer water to make a delicious and healthy party punch.
You can tweak this recipe however you like, too. Start with a half-liter and see what you think. For ultimate fizz, you can use an entire 2 liter bottle. Guests can even mix their own seltzer and limeade in their cups!
How to Store this recipe:
Fridge: strawberry limeade can be stored in the fridge for up to a week.
Freezer: can be kept in the freezer for up to 3 months.
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Special Equipment or Tools:
Blender: It is useful to have a blender when making this strawberry limeade. If you do not have a blender, make sure to mash the strawberry by hand before adding it to the rest of the ingredients. I use a Vitamix Blender.
Citrus Squeezer: I find it helpful to have a citrus squeezer, but it can be done by hand also.
Don’t Have These Tools? Here’s What to Do Instead…
You don’t need a blender to make this recipe. It’s another reason I love this strawberry limeade. You can mash the strawberry yourself with a pastry cutter, potato masher, or even a whisk or a fork.
After washing and hulling the strawberries, add them to a large bowl. You want it to be a little extra-big to catch any splashes of juice. Then take your chosen utensil and mash, using a straight up and down motion.
I suggest mashing at a slow to medium pace. A lot more juice will splash out if you use a rapid or aggressive approach.
No citrus squeezer? No problem. Microwaving citrus will soften and loosen the fruit’s membranes. This makes it way easier to get the maximum juice possible. (2)
Microwave a few limes for 15 seconds. I suggest doing this in batches of 3-4 for best results. Then roll each lime on the counter several times. Slice each lime in half down the equator, not pole to pole.
Holding the lime over a cup or bowl, press a spoon or fork into the center. Start squeezing and twisting. You can also do this over a sieve if you really want to avoid any bits of lime pulp.
Tips and Tricks:
- If you plan to store the strawberry limeade in the fridge or freezer for a while, you may want to add less water to conserve space and then add the water right before serving.
- For an extra cold drink, replace some of the water with ice. Be aware that as the ice melts, it will dilute the drink.
- For a clearer drink, strain the strawberry limeade before serving.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Is Limeade the Same as Lemonade?
No, limeade is made with limes, whereas lemonade is made with lemons.
How Long Does Limeade Last in the Fridge?
It will last in the fridge for up to one week.
Can I Substitute Limes with Lemons?
Yes, you can, but the flavor will be different.
Can I use Sugar Instead of Maple Syrup?
Absolutely. Make a sugar syrup by heating an equal amount of sugar and water until sugar is dissolved. See recipe for details.
How Do I Make My Own Maple or Sugar Syrup?
The easiest way to make your own sugar syrup is super simple:
- Add equal parts water and white sugar or brown sugar to a small saucepan over medium heat
- Stir occasionally until the mixture comes to a simmer and the sugar is totally dissolved
- Let the syrup cool to room temperature. It’ll keep in the fridge for about 4 weeks if you put it in an airtight container
Making maple syrup requires access to trees and it’s quite a process. Making your own sugar syrup is much easier!
Should I buy Organic Strawberries?
It is always best to use organic strawberries whenever possible. Non-organic strawberries may contain pesticides.
How Can I Make this Strawberry Limeade Healthier?
- Use less sweetener.
- Use a natural sweetener like maple syrup, agave, dates, or coconut sugar.
- Buy organic fruit.
- Dilute with extra water.
The sweetness of the fresh strawberries, mixed with the unique tartness of the lime, and the beautiful vibrant color will awe any recipient.
- Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
- Total Time: 15-20 minutes
- Yield: Serves: 6-8
- 1 1/2 cup fresh strawberries
- 1 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/2 cup maple syrup (or sugar syrup)
- 5–6 cups of cold water
- Choose the sweetener: maple or sugar syrup. If using sugar syrup, start by preparing it (see the recipe below).
- Wash and prepare the strawberries. Squeeze the lime juice from the limes.
- Add strawberries, lime juice, sweetener, and water to the blender and blend until smooth.
Simple Sugar Syrup:
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
Add to a small saucepan and heat until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and cool.
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1. National Library of Medicine, Phylogenetic Origin of Limes and Lemons Revealed by Cytoplasmic Nuclear Markers
2. Well and Good, Microwaving Citrus Before You Squeeze It Can Help You Extract More Juice