Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipes

These non alcoholic summer drink recipes make delicious beverages, real thirst quenchers for the entire family to enjoy. Generations ago, chilled refreshments were enjoyed in the warm summer weather by people of all ages.

Wholesome beverages called for seasonal fruits and other all-natural ingredients. If blocks of ice were still available beneath the sawdust in the log ice-house, the drinks were served chilled. You can easily prepare the homemade beverages that your ancestors enjoyed.

Mom's Favorite Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipes

Mom's Recipe Scrapbooks (c. 1920s)

Refreshing Non Alcoholic Summer DrinkEnjoy a Refreshingly Fruity Summer Drink
(Source: ©iStock/nata_vkusidey)

These non alcoholic summer drink recipes were super popular in Grandma's day. They make deliciously refreshing beverages that are great thirst quenchers and great for taking on picnics and for serving to family and friends.

Our forebears didn't have the convenience of a corner store to purchase chilled beverages nor did they have the ready cash. They used the basic ingredients they had at hand to make their own thirst quenchers. Try them and see what you think.


Stick cinnamon, 1 inch; blanched almonds, 1/4 pound; rich milk or light cream, 1 quart; rose water, 1 tablespoonful; sugar to taste.

Crunch cinnamon stick and almonds with a rolling pin. Add to milk or cream. Sweeten to taste. Place in top of double boiler and bring slowly to boiling point; strain through a fine sieve.

Chill and serve in small cups or tumblers as an afternoon beverage. Deep Southerners still favor this old Colonial beverage.

Milk of Almonds

Mexico, Europe, and the Middle East all claim this delicious refreshment, but its origins are so ancient that the dispute will likely never be solved. Simply enjoy it!

Almonds, 1 pound; sugar, 1 cup; boiling water, 2 quarts; almond flavoring, 2 tablespoonfuls.

Blanch almonds in boiling water, and remove skins. Allow to dry thoroughly and pound until fine in mortar, a few at a time, or grind fine in nut grinder. Combine almonds, sugar, and water.

Bring to boiling point and simmer 20 to 30 minutes. Strain into pitcher and cool. Stir in almond flavoring.

Cover and chill thoroughly. Makes 2 quarts. Dilute with water to taste, and serve chilled. (Add brandy only if desired.)

Apple Julep

Apple CiderVintage Julep Made with Fresh Apple Cider
(Source: ©topphoto/

Squeeze half a lemon into a 12-ounce glass, add a little cracked ice, and two ounces of simple syrup. Arrange green mint leaves in the glass, in the good old Southern style, and then fill the glass with apple cider.

Sprinkle a little grated nutmeg on the surface before serving. Freshly made cider is preferable as an ingredient in this feature. A good fall beverage.

Lemon Barley Drink

Pearl barley, 2 ounces; cold water, 1-1/2 pints; l lemon; sugar, 2 tablespoonfuls. Peel off 2 or 3 pieces of lemon rind, a bit larger than a quarter. Put barley into saucepan; add water and lemon peel.

Simmer for an hour; strain liquid into jug. Extract juice from lemon, and add, with sugar, to barley water. Cool.

Before serving, dilute to taste, add sugar if desired, and ice. A great favorite with children of great-grandmother's day, this beverage should not be stored more than a few days.

Apple Water

Apple Infused Water BeverageNaturally Flavored Apple Water Beverage
(Source: ©nalinrat/

Slice three large pippin apples, or another variety of apples, and pour over them a pint of boiling water, set in a cool place, when perfectly cold, sweeten it to the taste, and add ice, but only if preferred.

Mint Water

I so enjoy the all-natural mint water made using this vintage non alcoholic summer drink recipe. So easily made yet so delicious to drink on a hot day.

We have a patch of wild mint growing in a wet area near our house, and we use the leaves to make this refreshing drink. It tastes so good.

Mint leaves, finely chopped, 1/2 cup; tartaric acid, 1 teaspoonful; white sugar, 1/2 cup, or to taste; water, 2 cups.

Mix ingredients thoroughly, strain mixture through a cloth and squeeze out any excess juice from pulp, and add water to make 6 cups. Chill.

Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipe

Buckeye Cookery and Practical Housekeeping (1877)

Since ancient times, people of every race and culture have enjoyed cold, refreshing soft drinks.

History records that cooling thirst quenchers of sweetened fruit juices called sherbets were enjoyed by the Arabs long before the time of the Crusades

Fruity Sherbet

Wash ripe fruit (strawberries, currants, pineapples, cherries, or raspberries), and pass first through a coarse sieve and then through a cloth; to every quart juice add a quart water, sweeten to taste by mixing thoroughly with powdered sugar, bottle, and surround with ice, serve in wineglasses.

Pineapples must be grated before straining. Grapes, especially the Catawba and Scuppernong variety, are excellent for this purpose, and even the wild fox grape may be used. They must be mashed, and the juice washed out with water.

Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipes

Cookery (1895)

Lemon Nectar

2 pounds of lump sugar, 3 quarts water, 1/2 ounce citric acid and 1 teaspoon of fresh essence of lemon, 1 ounce burnt sugar. Boil sugar and water five minutes, allow it to cool, then add the citric acid, lemon essence, and burnt sugar. Strain and bottle.

This lemon drink will keep good for several weeks. The sugar must not be burnt too dark a color.

Black Currant Drink

6 large teaspoons black currant jam, 1 pint of boiling water. Pour the water over the jam, stir well, and stand until cold. Strain if necessary.

Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipes

Aunt Babette's Cook Book (1889)

Strawberry Sherbet

A delicious summer drink is prepared in the following manner: Crush a quart of ripe strawberries, pour a quart of water over them, and add the juice of two lemons.

Let this stand about two hours, then strain over a pound of sugar, stir until the sugar is dissolved, and then set upon ice. You may add one tablespoonful of rose water. Serve with chopped ice.

Orgeat / Orangeade

Take four large, juicy oranges and six tablespoonfuls of sugar. Squeeze the oranges upon the sugar, add a very little water, and let them stand for fifteen minutes; strain and add pounded ice and water.

Lee's Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipes

Lee's Priceless Recipes (1895)

Strawberry Cordial

One quart strawberries (fully ripe), 1 lemon, 1 orange, 3 pints water, 1 pound sifted sugar; mash the strawberries through a sieve; add juice of lemon and orange and the water, and work together; let stand 2 hours; put the sugar into a bowl and strain the juice over it, stirring till sugar is dissolved; stand on ice before serving; a delicious drink.

Rhubarb Sherbet

Boil in 3 pints water 6 or 8 green stalks rhubarb and 4 ounces raisins or figs; when the water has boiled 1/2 hour, strain and mix it with 1 teaspoonful rose water, and orange or lemon syrup to taste. Drink it cold.

Pomegranate Drink

4 pomegranates, 1/2 pound of pounded loaf sugar, 1 pint of water, the juice of 2 limes. Put the red pips of the fruit into a basin with the sugar, bruise all together, pour over the water, then the lime juice, and strain several times through muslin.


A good orange, a few drops of essence of cloves, ditto peppermint, 3 or 4 lumps of sugar, a tumblerful of ice.

Lime Juice Drink

Fresh lime, ice water, loaf sugar, a little liqueur (optional). Squeeze the juice from the limes, strain it, and add pounded sugar to taste, and a little flavoring of liqueur, if liked.

Put a little of this mixture in a glass, and fill up with water. All the cups, such as champagne and claret cup, are improved by the introduction of slices of fresh fruit, such as apricots or pineapple.

Pineapple Water

One large ripe pineapple, 1 pint of boiling simple syrup, juice of 1 lemon. Peel the pineapple, slice, and mash it well in a basin, then pour on the simple syrup and lemon juice; stir well and cover. Let it stand 2 hours, then filter through a fine sieve, and add a quart of chilled water.

Welsh Nectar

One pound of raisins, 3 lemons, 2 pounds of loaf sugar, 2 gallons of boiling water. Cut the peel of the lemon very thin, pour upon it the boiling water, and, when cool, add the strained juice of the lemons, the sugar, and the raisins, stoned and chopped very fine.

Let it stand for a few hours, stir, then strain it through a jelly bag and bottle it for present use.

Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipe

The White House Cook Book (1913)

Chilled Strawberry Water

Take one cupful of ripe, hulled berries; crush with a wooden spoon, mixing with the mass a quarter of a pound of pulverized sugar and half a pint of cold water.

Pour the mixture into a fine sieve, rub through and filter till clear; add the strained juice of one lemon and one and a half pints of cold water, mix thoroughly and set in ice chest till wanted.

This makes a nice, cool drink on a warm day and is easily made in strawberry season.

Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipe

Second Edition of the Neighborhood Cook Book (1914)

Summer Pineapple Punch

A refreshing summer beverage, which brings an involuntary grace to one's lips as it is quaffed, is a fruit punch in which the pineapple plays an important part.

Put into a bowl the juice of three lemons, two oranges sliced and seeded, one grated pineapple and one cup sugar.

Let stand for one hour to extract the juice, then press and strain. Add to this juice two quarts of iced water and two slices of shredded pineapple, and serve.

Dr. Chase's Non Alcoholic Summer Drink Recipes

Dr. Chase's Third, Last and Complete Receipt Book (1891)

These old fashioned non alcoholic summer drink recipes were popular in Great Grandma's day, and people used them to make surprisingly good thirst quenchers.

Summer Currant Drink

Mash a few currants, and pour on them a little water, strain, sweeten, and add sufficient cold water to suit the taste.

Non Alcoholic Grape Wine

The juice of grapes, blackberries, raspberries, etc., pressed out without mashing the seeds, adding water, 1 pint, and sugar, 1/2 pound for each pint of the juice; then boil a few minutes, skimming if any sediment or scum rises, and bottling while hot, corking tightly, and keeping in a dry, cool place, gives a wine that no one would object to, if iced when drank.

Remarks. —They are nourishing, satisfying to the thirst, and not intoxicating, because there has been no fermentation. Made of grapes, this wine is in every way suitable for Communion. —Dr. Chase

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