Grilled Lemonade?!? Yep! You read that right. I’ve been preaching all summer about how we grill anything and everything at our house and this next recipe is proof positive. This unexpected, yet simple twist of classic lemonade will make you a believer. Everything really IS better when it’s grilled!! The addition of fresh thyme gives this thirst quenching drink a delightful herb flavor to suit even the fanciest taste buds. Add a splash of vodka to give it a grown up kick! Grilled Lemon and Thyme Lemonade is the perfect drink those summer days (and nights!).
Here’s all you’ll need: lemons, water, fresh thyme, sugar, honey (if you’re local we LOVE Bee Country!), and almond extract.
First add a cup of water to a small bowl. Submerge the thyme sprigs in water and let them soak while we prepare the lemons. The thyme’s getting grilled too so It has to be wet so it won’t catch fire on the grill.
Next slice the lemons in half. Spread out 1/4 cup of sugar on a plate or shallow bowl. Now dip the cut side of each lemon half into the sugar. Reminds me of those little candied lemon slices! The sugar will caramelize on the grill and balance the tart lemony flavor.
Heat your grill to medium-high heat. Place the lemons on the grill (cut side down) and grill, covered, for about 2 minutes or until the lemons begin to brown. If you haven’t grilled lemons before, it really is a lot of fun! Set aside and allow them to cool slightly. Basically cool enough so we can handle them. Did you know…heating the lemons will yield more juice!
Turn the grill down to medium heat and let’s get going on that thyme. Grill the thyme for 1-2 minutes, turning once, until slightly browned. Keep an eye on it! Even though we soaked it, fresh herbs can catch fire mighty quick!
Now in a small sauce pan combine one cup of water, 3/4 cup of sugar and honey. Bring the mixture to a boil and stir continuously to dissolve the sugar. This should only take a few minutes.
Then remove the mixture from the heat. Stir in the almond extract and grilled thyme. Allow the mixture to sit and steep for one hour and then discard the thyme. There you have it! Your very own homemade grilled thyme simple syrup.
Meanwhile, squeeze the lemons to obtain about 1-1/2 cups of lemon juice. Run it through a strainer in case you get a little sloppy like me and drop a few seeds in there. This is a great time to bust out your juicer or if you’re a fan of less mess (right here!) then go ahead and use that good old fashioned elbow grease! Add the juice to a large pitcher.
Next pour in the grilled thyme simple syrup and add 5 cups of cold water as well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Serve chilled over ice! Garnish with some lemon slices and a thyme sprig or two. There’s something about drinking grilled lemonade from a mason jar that just feels so right! One sip of Grilled Lemon and Thyme Lemonade and you won’t want to go back to the original version. You’ll also wanna check out our Sweet Strawberry Basil Sangria!
Grilled Lemon and Thyme Lemonade
- 15 fresh thyme sprigs
- 2 cups water, divided
- 1 cup sugar, divided
- 9 medium lemons, halved
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 5 cups cold water
- Step 1 Add a cup of water to a small bowl. Submerge the thyme sprigs in water and let them soak.
- Step 2 Slice the lemons in half. Spread out 1/4 cup of sugar on a plate or shallow bowl. Dip the cut side of each lemon half into the sugar.
- Step 3 Grill the lemons, cut side down, over medium-high, covered, for 2 minutes or until browned. Set aside and allow them to cool slightly.
- Step 4 Grill the thyme over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, turning once, until slightly browned.
- Step 5 In a small sauce pan combine one cup of water, 3/4 cup of sugar and honey. Bring the mixture to a boil and stir continuously to dissolve the sugar.
- Step 6 Remove the mixture from the heat. Stir in the almond extract and grilled thyme. Allow the mixture to sit and steep for one hour and then discard the thyme.
- Step 7 Meanwhile, squeeze the lemons to obtain about 1-1/2 cups of lemon juice. Strain.
- Step 8 Add the lemon juice, grilled thyme syrup, and 5 cups cold water to a large pitcher. Stir. Serve chilled over ice. Garnish with lemon slices and a thyme sprig and enjoy!
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