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Homemade Ginger Ale

I swear by ginger. In my experience, it is one of the few “natural remedies” that actually work. Personally, I have used it to boost my mood, increase my appetite, recover from nausea, and reduce pain from inflammation. It is also purported to help prevent certain kinds of cancer, improve circulation, ease morning sickness, protect against liver damage, and even strengthen your immune system.

So why not pop open a can of Ginger Ale from your local supermarket? First, store-bought ginger ale may or may not contain any real ginger at all and what it does have is likely heavily processed. Second, it has an obscene amount of sugar from high fructose corn syrup that drowns out any benefits it might offer. Third, it tastes entirely artificial and disgusting.

Instead, this homemade version has tons of real ginger, plus the citrus and mint add so much freshness that make this drink incredibly refreshing.

Homemade Ginger Ale Recipe

But first, a quick note on persistence… The picture above is one of my favorites on this site. The photo itself isn’t terribly amazing, but the struggles of taking it actually helped make this ginger ale recipe so much better.

I have only been doing food photography for a few months and I’m still pretty terrible at it. Sometimes I get lucky, but with this particular recipe, I took about a thousand horrible pictures over several sessions before I was about to give up entirely. Then, I decided to try again and add some mint just to round out the composition. The pictures finally turned out great! But when I tasted it, the flavors had changed completely. The mint added so much freshness and cut through the harshness of the ginger so well – it’s a perfect paring that never would have existed if I gave up too soon. The moral of the story? When in doubt, add mint and everything will be okay. 🙂

Makes 2 cups of concentrate, 6-8 cups of ginger ale

Ingredients:

  • 1 whole ginger root
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lime
  • 1/3 cup liquid sweetener (Agave)
  • club soda
  • Sprigs of mint (garnish)
  • Lime slices (garnish)

Ginger Root

The methodology is simple: we want to create a heavily concentrated ginger extract that can be mixed with club soda to create ginger ale. To do this, we’ll blend whole ginger root with water, then pour the mixture through a strainer to remove the pulp…

Step One

Take your ginger root (like the one above) and loosely peel it. You can use the backside of a knife or a vegetable peeler; the skin should come off fairly easily and it doesn’t need to be perfect. Then, chop it into loose chunks. You should have about 2/3 cup but the exact amount isn’t important.

Add the peeled ginger chunks to a blender with one cup of water and puree for at least 3 minutes to fully incorporate the ginger into the water.

Pour the mixture through a fine strainer into a bowl. Use your hands to squeeze out all the liquid, leaving behind a dry chunk of ginger pulp (similar to vegetable pulp after juicing).

Step Two

Take the chunk of ginger pulp and return it to the blender. The ginger still has plenty of flavor left, so we’ll blend it once more. This time, however, blend with about 1/2 cup of citrus juice instead of water. The citrus will add some acidity to help balance out the ginger flavor. Squeeze the orange and the lime into the blender and top off with water until you reach 1/2 cup. Just like before, blend for several minutes and then strain into the bowl with the existing ginger concentrate.

Step Three

Add about 1/3 cup liquid sweetener to the bowl of concentrate and stir. I hate using too much sugar in anything and this seems like a lot, but remember that this will be heavily diluted in the final beverage.

Finally, add to an air-tight mason jar and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. In my experience, it will keep for about 5-6 days.

Step Four

When ready to serve, add 1 part ginger concentrate to about 3 parts club soda (you can adjust this ratio to taste) to a glass with ice. It absolutely must be garnished with mint for optimal flavors, and you can add a lime wedge as well.

To get the best flavors, I like to gently shake the ginger concentrate, club soda, lime wedge, and 3-4 mint leaves in a martini shaker before pouring over a glass of ice.

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10 Comments

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  1. I am so excited to try this! I drink Reed’s Extra Ginger Brew like it is going out of style for nausea… this recipe looks amazing.
    I am so delighted to have stumbled across your website today. It is exactly the resource I was looking for. Thank you for the wealth of info and recipes. Awesome. Just awesome.

  2. Gingerbeer (as we call it in the UK) is my ultimate favourite drink! We can get a brand called Fentimans here, which uses all natural ingredients. It tastes soo much better than the cheap supermarket versions, but it’s rather pricey!! I can’t wait to give this a try 😀

  3. Does the concentrate freeze well? I don’t know if I would drink all of that in a week, but if I could pull it out of the freezer already portioned that would be great.

      • I discovered your website last summer (looking for dairy free recipes for my allergic daughter) and this ginger ale recipe quickly became one of my favourites. Nobody else in the family is a fan of ginger, but I drank it all summer long. Now that the weather is starting to warm up a bit, I’m fantasizing about sitting out in the sun with a tall glass of ginger ale.

        Anyways, the reason for the comment is because your ice-cube idea inspired me…1 part ginger ale cubes, 2 parts regular ice cubes, a bit of club soda…throw it in the blender and you’ve got yourself a ginger slushy! I can’t wait to try it out!

        And actually, the idea of just throwing a couple of ginger ale cubes into a glass of club soda sounds pretty good too. Sometimes I just want a hint of flavour, not the whole shebang.

        Thanks so much for this recipe!

        • Back again! I whipped up a batch a few days ago – put half in the fridge to drink and froze half into ice-cubes.

          Feeling a little under the weather today (darn kids always bringing home colds from school) and my throat is sore. I made myself a cup of honey lemon tea, and I decided to add one of my ginger cubes. Perfection! Cooled the the tea down just enough to drink, added great flavour and an extra boost of healthy anti-inflammatory awesomeness. Honey & lemon tea is my go-to drink whenever I’m not feeling well, and now my ginger cubes are a must have addition!

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