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Basil Lemonade


I live in Michigan. It gets to be a snowy wonderland that no one wants to visit many, many months out of the year.

Summer however? I can’t fend off visitors with a stick. Kidding. I would never do that. I love visitors. As someone who loves to cook and bake and has never mastered the art of scaling back a recipe for 2, it’s ideal to have people around.

Bonus if the people around love to eat and are adventurous in trying new foods.


In Austin, at BlogHer Food, they served a Basil Lemonade. I almost skipped past the lemonade all together because I normally stick to my rule of not drinking calorie-containing beverages unless they’re coffee-containing or alcohol-containing. Silly little rule of mine that works almost all of the time.

Something about this lemonade caught my eye…or perhaps it was my nose. Basil lemonade.

One sip and I was sold. Heavenly was this lemonade.


In order to not break my rule again, however, I was steadfast in my efforts to recreate this beverage, sans the guilt of empty calories from sugar. I squeezed the juice from 9 lemons, added in ice, water, and basil, and mixed in liquid stevia, along with some powdered stevia.

I left my Basil Lemonade fairly tart which was enjoyed by all, but the beauty of using an all-natural, calorie-free sweetener is that you can add as much, or as little, as you wish without altering the nutritional make-up of the recipe.

This totally hit the spot. So glad the Fourth of July is right around the corner…I think this will be perfect!


4.5 from 2 reviews
Basil Lemonade
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
Summer has never been so refreshing!
  • 9 lemons, juiced
  • 20-30 basil leaves
  • stevia or non-caloric, natural sweetener of choice, to taste
  1. Juice lemons and transfer to a pitcher. Fill the pitcher with ice and add 8-10 cups of water, or amount until desired tartness.
  2. Add basil leaves and swirl and mash gently with a wooden spoon in the pitcher. Sweeten, to taste, with stevia or other sweetener.
I served this to my parents and in-laws and I must say, it was a hit! So refreshing, incredibly easy to make, and a guilt-free beverage perfect for summer entertaining!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cup Calories: 14 Fat: 0 Saturated fat: 0 Unsaturated fat: 0 Trans fat: 0 Carbohydrates: 4.6 Sugar: 1.2 Sodium: 1 Fiber: 0.3 Protein: 0.3 Cholesterol: 0

 My friend Kelly is in town with her mom and sister, it’s been fun…even if I’m only catching them after work 🙁

Be well,


Share With Your Friends!


  1. The Candid RD
    June 25, 2013 / 7:13 am

    I love your rule, I follow the same one, of course. I mean beer or a foamy latte, of course that’s the worth the calories!
    Great recipe, and yes, perfect for the Fourth. Yum. We’ve got basil growing strong in our garden!

  2. Kylee
    June 25, 2013 / 10:41 am

    A beverage that has no caffeine or liquor? Nicole… I… don’t know what to say…
    (this looks good, but I’m totally adding vodka)

    • Nicole, RD
      June 25, 2013 / 1:20 pm

      Haha, vodka…rum…this drink has options ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Jessica
      July 9, 2013 / 1:20 pm

      my thoughts exactly!!

  3. Lizzie
    June 25, 2013 / 11:11 am

    I am the same way about beverages… it’s water, coffee, or beer for this girl ๐Ÿ™‚ This looks great, though!

    • Nicole, RD
      June 25, 2013 / 1:21 pm

      Lizzie: I love beer, too! We’d be great friends ๐Ÿ˜›

  4. Biz
    June 25, 2013 / 11:21 am

    I’ve never had that before but it screams summer! At least you can hang with your friend and her Mom after work!

  5. Megan (Braise The Roof)
    June 25, 2013 / 12:30 pm

    This lemonade sounds so refreshing! Plus, I mean…you could always add a little vodka on the weekend and then it would totally be keeping with your beverage rules. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Nicole, RD
      June 25, 2013 / 1:21 pm

      Great minds think alike ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. Grace @ FoodFitnessFreshAir
    June 25, 2013 / 3:52 pm

    Love your drink rule. I’d say I’m pretty much the same…minus the basil lemonade on my blog today (coincidence!). I’m curious how it would’ve turned out with stevia. I used a honey/simply syrup combo.

  7. calvin
    June 25, 2013 / 11:20 pm

    this looks yummy and an interesting combo of flavors. I will try it soon!

  8. Anne Marie@New Weigh of Life
    June 26, 2013 / 9:09 am

    This looks like a yummy summer drink – perfect for sipping by the pool ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Kristin
    June 27, 2013 / 1:15 pm

    I’m sure a few of those amazing, fresh strawberries would be great mashed up in here as well…along with the rum ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Amy
    June 29, 2013 / 9:17 pm

    I’m sold! Basil is one of my FAVORITE ingredients. I double the amount of normal people in pasta, spaghetti sauce, even pesto… I’d never thought to pair it with lemonade, but that’s brilliant!

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