This refreshing cranberry lemonade is made with homemade rosemary-infused cranberry syrup and fresh citrus juices. It's a festive drink with lots of crisp tart flavor. It's simple to make, and it's ready in just 20 minutes!
It's Christmas all the way with this crisp and refreshing cranberry orange lemonade! With homemade cranberry syrup and fresh lemon and orange juices, it's a fresh and festive drink you can sip all night long.
It's easy to make and you can prepare it in advance, too. To make the cranberry syrup, simply simmer the cranberries on the stovetop with sugar and rosemary, then strain it to remove any solids. Pour the syrup into a pitcher with fresh lemon juice, orange juice, water, and ice. Then pour it into glasses, garnish, and serve.
This cranberry lemonade is what we serve as a non-alcoholic drink at Christmas parties, Thanksgiving gatherings, and holiday brunches. But it's easy to turn it into a cocktail, too. For a boozy version, add vodka either right to the pitcher or into individual glasses.
Cranberry lemonade ingredients
With a few simple ingredients, you can make this refreshing cranberry lemonade at home, too! Here's what you need to make the cranberry syrup:
- Cranberries – fresh or frozen both work equally well.
- Sugar – we use granulated sugar for this recipe.
- Rosemary – aromatic fresh sprigs of rosemary give this syrup lots of flavor.
Here's everything you'll need for the cranberry orange lemonade:
- Lemon juice – fresh is best for lots of bright citrus flavor.
- Orange juice – fresh is also best but you can use store-bought in a pinch, or if that's what you have on hand.
- Orange slices, lemon slices, rosemary, and frozen cranberries – for garnish.
How to make cranberry lemonade
Making homemade cranberry lemonade is simple and easy, and perfect for holiday parties. We start by making cranberry syrup, then combine it with some fresh citrus juice and serve it over ice. Here's how we make it in a few simple steps:
- To make the sweet cranberry syrup, add all ingredients to a pot on the stove. Simmer, uncovered, for about 5 minutes then mash the cranberries with a fork as they cool.
- Strain it through a fine-mesh sieve to remove the cranberry pulp and rosemary. Now you've got a rosemary-infused cranberry syrup you can use now or save for later.
- If you're using it now, combine the cranberry syrup, water, lemon juice, and orange juice in a large pitcher.
- Just before you're ready to serve, add the ice to the pitcher, pour it into glasses, and garnish. Cheers!
Full recipe instructions are in the recipe card below.
Definitely! You can make the cranberry syrup and mix the citrus juices together with water in advance (steps 1-3) and store it in the fridge. Just wait to add the ice until right before you're ready to serve.
The cranberry syrup will keep in the refrigerator in a sealed jar or container for up to a week.
We use regular granulated sugar, but you can also use an equal amount of honey as a natural alternative.
When to serve cranberry lemonade
When we're hosting during the holidays, we always have a festive non-alcoholic drink available for non-drinkers. This cranberry lemonade, with its bright red cranberries and sprigs of green rosemary, is the perfect holiday mocktail that everyone, kids included, will love.
Tasty party appetizers for the holidays
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- 2 cups cranberries, fresh or frozen
- 2 cups water
- ¾ cup sugar
- 4 5-inch rosemary springs
Cranberry Orange Lemonade
- 4 cups water
- ½ cup lemon juice
- ½ cup orange juice
- Orange slices, lemon slices, rosemary, and frozen cranberries, to garnish
- Make the cranberry syrup by adding the cranberries, water, sugar, and rosemary to a small pot over high heat. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Take the pot off the heat, mash the cranberries with a fork, then let it cool.2 cups cranberries, 2 cups water, ¾ cup sugar, 4 5-inch rosemary springs
- Strain the cranberry syrup through a fine-mesh sieve.
- Pour the cranberry syrup, water, lemon juice, and orange juice into a large pitcher.4 cups water, ½ cup lemon juice, ½ cup orange juice
- When you're ready to serve it, add ice to the pitcher then pour it into tall glasses and garnish with cranberries and a sprig of rosemary.Orange slices, lemon slices, rosemary, and frozen cranberries
If you love lemonade as much as we do, check out all of our lemonade recipes!