Lemonade Recipe with Lemon Juice + Fresh Lemons

Glasses of homemade lemonade


Stir together a batch of homemade lemonade using fresh lemons and bottled lemon juice to save time. It’s a sweet and refreshing treat!

Glasses of homemade lemonade

If you want a treat, make it yourself.

It’s a rule of thumb that makes sense to me, especially with sweet drinks.

Because at the risk of being the fun police, even homemade drinks like lemonade are still treats (and mostly sugar).

So this is a treat we make ourselves, especially in hot weather. 

You might also like: How to Make a Homemade Sports Drink

Ingredients for homemade lemonade

This lemonade recipe requires just a few simple ingredients: lemon juice, fresh lemons, sugar, and water.

Squeezing fresh lemon with old-fashioned glass juicer

You can make this lemonade with all freshly-squeezed lemons, especially if you’d like to keep your kids occupied for a while. We use an old-fashioned glass juicer like this one but I’ve heard these handheld citrus squeezers work well too. 

Otherwise, enlist some bottled lemon juice to pick up the slack. We’ve tried a few different kinds and do notice a difference between the slightly higher-priced juices (fresher-tasting) and the store-brands (perfectly fine as well).

Stirring a pitcher of lemonade

Feel free to experiment with ratios. We were using a full cup of sugar before cutting it down. I find this version with less sugar perfectly sweet and satisfying.

And yes, this lemonade is lighter in color than the instant kind because it’s missing artificial food dyes. (And it tastes a whole lot better than the powdered kind too.) 

Pitcher of homemade lemonade

My kids have also been mixing this homemade lemonade with sparkling water to make a fizzy drink.

Hope you and your kids enjoy this sweet treat!

Glasses of homemade lemonade

Yield: 8 cups

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 2 minutes

Total Time: 12 minutes


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 8 1/2 cup water, divided
  • 1 cup lemon juice


  1. Make the simple syrup: Combine sugar plus 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat and stir until sugar is fully dissolved (you’ll know it’s dissolved when the liquid looks clear).
  2. Combine the simple syrup and lemon juice in a 2-quart pitcher.
  3. Add 8 cups of cold water.
  4. Chill before serving (or serve over ice).

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