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Naturally sweetened and vegan Mixed Berry Mint Lemonade is the perfect drink to make for an outdoor soiree or picnic! Raspberries, blackberries and blueberries are muddled with fresh mint, then mixed into the lemon juice, water and agave nectar base to create this crisp and delicious lemonade!
To celebrate, I put together a little vegetarian picnic that we could enjoy in the great outdoors. You know, before it gets too crazy warm outside. Because nobody wants to have a picnic when they’re going to become a sweaty mess.
So. With that in mind… let’s talk about these upcoming days!
The Earth Day Network encourages to “make big stuff happen” this year, like planting trees, work to make cities 100% renewable and to “take the momentum from the Paris Climate Summit and build on it. Let’s start now. And let’s not stop.”
Obviously, this message resonates with me. That’s why I’m sharing it with y’all today.
I remember speakers who talked to our classes about Earth Day and Arbor Day when I was in elementary school. And at the end of these days, we were always sent home with a seedling to plant in our yard.
And every year, I planted one of those trees. I hope they are flourishing today.
(Fun fact: The Arbor Day Foundation has planted more than 250 million new trees across America since it was founded in 1972.)
I haven’t attended an Earth Day or Arbor Day event in years, probably since my last year working at a newspaper, but I think about it every year. And this year, I want to take a more active role.
This year, in addition to this little picnic that I’ll be sharing this week and next, I want to plant a tree in our front yard. And I want to actively focus more on my personal impact on the environment.
I’m that person whose recycling bin is overflowing. We’ve had to ask neighbors if we can use their bins because ours was too full. Which is a good thing! And which is nice, especially since our city offers recycling for different materials, and we’ve lived places where recycling was not easily accessible.
But… we can do better.
We don’t compost. And we eat more meat than I’d like, especially knowing the negative impact CAFOs have on the environment, not to mention animal welfare. We love purchasing locally-sourced produce and meat, but we can’t get everything we’d like all the time. (Dallas peeps, if you know of a meat CSA, let me know, because I am absolutely interested!)
So I wanted to throw a vegetarian picnic. And we’re starting the party with Mixed Berry Mint Lemonade.
It’s vegan. (Like most lemonade, I KNOW.) But! It’s made without added sugar, instead featuring agave nectar. And it’s tart and slightly sweet and goes down smooth.
You can make this lemonade the morning of or even the night before and serve it up to your picnic guests chilled! They’ll never know it’s sweetened with agave instead of sugar. And you can use some of that mint that is growing like a weed in your backyard and just won’t quit.
Here’s how you can make it:
Mixed Berry Mint Lemonade
- 3/4 cup freshly-squeezed lemon juice
- 3 1/2 cup cold water
- 1/2 cup frozen mixed berries (blackberries, raspberries and blueberries), defrosted
- 13 mint leaves
- 5 tablespoons agave nectar
- In a bowl, muddle the berries and mint leaves.
- Transfer the berry and mint mixture to a pitcher.
- Measure in the lemon juice, water and agave nectar.
- Stir until combined.
- Chill for 1 hour, stir again, then enjoy!
You can use fresh berries instead if those are available.
For a fun, adult twist, add 1-2 oz. of vodka or tequila to your glass of lemonade!
Do you actively think about your environmental impact? What do you like to do to make your footprint smaller?
Do you have any Earth Day or Arbor Day plans?
Be sure to join me back on Wednesday for the next recipe in our picnic!