Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

Fresh Squeezed Lemonade is one of the best things about the summer. This refreshing 3-ingredient homemade lemonade recipe is so simple to make at home that you’ll never go back to the pre-made stuff! Makes 6 servings.

Love lemony drinks? Don’t miss Arnold Palmer Iced Tea Lemonade Mocktail and How to make a Lemon Drop Martini!

 A glass of fresh squeezed lemonade garnished with a lemon round on a blue and white towel

Who doesn’t love homemade lemonade in the summertime?

It’s one of my all-time favorites, and honestly, once you realize how simple this lemonade recipe is, you’ll never go back to the powdered/store-bought kind.

I’m a sucker for lemonade, as evidenced by all the lemonade recipes I’ve got on this site.

But it wasn’t until last year that I realized I was missing a classic—fresh squeezed lemonade.

Come learn how to make fresh lemonade and kick back with me this summer!

Why I love this recipe:

I’m a tart lemonade kind of gal, and this homemade lemonade recipe is just that—nice and tart.

The zippiness of the freshly squeezed lemon juice is balanced out by simple syrup—which adds just enough sweetness to take that edge off while letting the lemons sing.

We dilute it with cold water, and voila. You’ve got fresh lemonade in 10-15 minutes, depending on how long it takes to squeeze the lemons!

The key to this recipe is freshly squeezed juice. Please, please, please do not use the shelf-stable, bottled lemon juice you can find at the store—you’ll be missing out on the wonderful tartness of the fresh lemons.

Other lemonade recipes to make this summer: Vodka Lemonade with Raspberry | Blueberry Lemonade | Mixed Berry Mint Lemonade | Homemade Mint Lemonade | Strawberry Lemonade | Watermelon Lemonade

Looking for another refreshing summer drink? Be sure to check out my Nonalcoholic Drinks Recipe Index.

Homemade lemonade ingredients in bowls and jars on a blue and white towel

What you’ll need to make this recipe:

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In addition to these tools, you’re going to need some ingredients to make this lemonade, as well.

  • Lemons—or cold pressed fresh lemon juice from the grocery store. We find it in the refrigerated section with the pre-cut fruits. Please do not use the shelf-stable lemon juice—this lemonade recipe won’t taste nearly as lovely if you do that.
  • Cold water—to dilute the lemon juice
  • Simple syrup—I know a lot of lemonade recipes will tell you to mix sugar and water together, but I’ve found that having simple syrup makes the process easier and also so you can drink your lemonade faster.

This lemonade is very tart and refreshing. You can add extra simple syrup if you like yours sweeter!

A collage of four images showing how to make easy homemade lemonade in a pitcher

How to make Homemade Lemonade

If you haven’t already, make the simple syrup. Basically, you’re going to combine equal measurements of water and granulated sugar. (I like to use a cup of water with a cup of sugar and save the extra in the fridge for later.) Toss them into a saucepan, heat until the sugar dissolves, and let cool.

Now it’s lemonade time.

Juice the lemons. I like to use a citrus juicer or reamer and squeeze the juice directly into a liquid measuring cup that has a fine mesh strainer on top. Why? This prevents pulp and seeds from falling into the lemon juice.

In a pitcher, combine the freshly squeezed lemon juice with cold water and simple syrup.

Stir until combined, then give it a taste.

This recipe for homemade lemonade is nice and tart, which is how I like it, so if it’s too tart for you, add a little more simple syrup until it tastes balanced.

Pour the lemonade over ice or pop into the fridge for 30 minutes-2 hours to chill even more. Garnish with lemon slices, too!

Three glasses of homemade lemonade on a blue and white towel

Erin’s Easy Entertaining Tips

This recipe is an easy one to pull off because it requires very little time and skill, making it perfect for entertaining. In fact, the most time you’ll spend on this recipe is juicing the lemons.

Because of this, I think Homemade Lemonade is the perfect summertime entertaining drink, whether you’re hosting a backyard barbecue or another low-key get-together. (This is also excellent for a lemonade stand.) This recipe is beloved by adults and children, and it’s so easy to sip.

Here are a few tips and tricks for making entertaining with fresh squeezed lemonade a little easier.

  • Make your simple syrup in advance. This goodness keeps in the fridge for weeks, so when you’ve got time, throw together a big ‘ol batch, and let it chill out until it’s homemade lemonade time.
  • Squeeze the lemons in advance… or purchase a jar of freshly squeezed lemon juice in the refrigerated fruit section of your grocery. This’ll make it easier to put the lemonade together before guests arrive.
  • Make the lemonade 30 minutes to 2 hours before guests arrive so that it has time to chill out in the fridge. That way, it’ll be ice cold!
  • Make two pitchers if you’re hosting more than 6 people or keep extra ingredients in the fridge at the ready in case you run out.
Three glasses of lemonade with lemon garnishes on a blue striped towel

Frequently Asked Questions

How much juice is in a lemon?

On average, a lemon has about 3 tablespoons of juice in it. This, of course, is dependent on the lemon.

How many lemons do I need to make lemonade?

To make this recipe, you’ll need between 5-8 lemons.

Is fresh squeezed lemonade good for you?

I can’t speak to the nutrition of homemade lemonade. However, I can speak to this recipe being refreshing and not being too heavy-handed on the added sugar.

Is it good to drink a lot of lemonade?

Lemonade is a great, refreshing drink. If you’re drinking a lot of it, it could potentially do some harm to the enamel on your teeth since lemon juice is so acidic.

What is the best way to squeeze lemons for lemonade?

Use room temperature lemons. Roll them on the countertop before slicing down the equator. Use a juicer or a reamer to squeeze the juice out of them into a liquid measuring cup.

Quick tips for juicing lemons for lemonade

  • Don’t juice a cold lemon. A cold lemon won’t give as much juice as a room temperature one. If you keep your lemons in the fridge, let it come to room temperature, or pop it in the microwave for 20 seconds to get it to warm up.
  • Roll the lemon on the countertop because this will bring the juices to the surface.
  • Slice the lemon down the equator, not from the stem to the tip.
  • Don’t just squeeze it with your hands… use a citrus reamer or a juicer to get that good juice out of it. Personally, I like a lemon reamer better.
A glass of fresh squeezed lemonade garnished with a lemon round on a blue and white towel
Yield: 6 servings

Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

Fresh Squeezed Lemonade is one of the best things about the summer months. This refreshing 3-ingredient homemade lemonade recipe is so simple to make at home that you’ll never go back to the pre-made stuff!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 5 cups water
  • ½ cup simple syrup

Instructions

  1. Juice your lemons. To do this, you'll need a citrus juicer or a reamer. Place a mesh strainer over a liquid measuring cup and squeeze the lemons directly above so the strainer catches seeds and pulp.
  2. Pour the freshly squeezed lemon juice, water and simple syrup into a large pitcher.
  3. Stir until combined, and give the lemonade a taste.
  4. Add additional simple syrup if necessary.
  5. Cool in the refrigerator or serve over ice with lemon rounds, and enjoy!

Notes

If you like sweeter lemonade, consider adding up to another ½ cup of simple syrup to sweeten your lemonade. This lemonade is very tart and refreshing, though I understand that’s not everyone’s cup of tea.

Quick tips for juicing lemons for lemonade

  • Don’t juice a cold lemon. A cold lemon won’t give as much juice as a room temperature one. If you keep your lemons in the fridge, let it come to room temperature, or pop it in the microwave for 20 seconds to get it to warm up.
  • Roll the lemon on the countertop because this will bring the juices to the surface.
  • Slice the lemon down the equator, not from the stem to the tip.
  • Don’t just squeeze it with your hands… use a citrus reamer or a juicer to get that good juice out of it. Personally, I like a lemon reamer better.

Recommended Products

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6 drinks

Serving Size:

1 drink

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 55Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 18mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 0gSugar: 13gProtein: 0g

Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

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4 Comments

  1. It was hot yesterday at the picnic, so this lemonade really hit the spot. Not too sweet and not bitter.

  2. I am a HUGE fan of tart lemonade and this was perfect, loved that you used simple syrup too, no gritty sugar to try and stir in!

  3. Oh my word!! That looks dreamy! I am making this one for my kids this week as a celebration of summer!

  4. Nothing beats homemade lemonade! I thought we would have some leftover for making popsicles, but nope! Guess I’m going to have to get more lemons!

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