Recipe Review: Vintage Lemonade

It’s not really accurate to say this is a recipe review, because I’ve been using this recipe for 2 or 3 years now.  But it’s definitely one of my favorite drink recipes and is in the fridge pretty much all summer, so I wanted to share the awesomeness.

I found this vintage lemonade recipe on Allrecipes, and it’s always a hit with guests.  Teddy’s cousins always ask for it when they come over.  It’s great on its own, and it can be mixed with ice tea for an awesome Arnold Palmer or with seltzer for a lemonade spritzer.  Oh, and for a more adult twist, try adding a little vodka (sweet tea vodka or just regular old vodka works great)!

So here’s the recipe from Allrecipes, with my tips, additions, etc., in blue.


  • 5 lemons
  • 1 1/4 cups white sugar
  • 1 1/4 quarts water


  1. Place the lemons in your kitchen sink.  Add enough warm water to cover the lemons and add some white vinegar.  How much vinegar depends on how big your sink is, but somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2 cup vinegar should do it.  Let the lemons sit for 10 or so minutes.  Rinse while scrubbing with a brush.  Pat dry.
  2. Peel the rinds from the 5 lemons and cut them into 1/2 inch slices. Set the lemons aside.
  3. Place the rinds in a shallow bowl and sprinkle the sugar over them. Let this stand for about one hour, so that the sugar begins to soak up the oils from the lemons.  Don’t stir the sugar and lemon rinds – just let them sit there.
  4. Bring water to a boil in a covered saucepan and then pour the hot water over the sugared lemon rinds.  Place a metal spoon in the bowl to diffuse the heat and reduce the chance of your bowl cracking.  Also try placing the bowl on a folded kitchen towel.  Allow this mixture to cool for 20 minutes and then remove the rinds.
  5. Roll the lemons on a flat surface to get their juices going, then slice in half.  Squeeze the lemons into another bowl.  Don’t worry about seeds. Pour the juice through a strainer into the sugar mixture. Stir well, pour into pitcher and pop it in the fridge! Serve with ice cubes.

lemonade panel

Like I said, this is one of my favorite recipes.  I’ve never had any reason to make any changes to it, and it always comes out great.  That said, adding mint, basil, or berries will never hurt.

What are your go-to summertime beverages?


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