Saffron and Rose Infused Lemonade

Saffron and Rose Infused Lemonade is a refreshing summer beverage. This delicious homemade lemonade is the best thirst quencher.

All you need is water, lemons and sugar to make a classic lemonade. Kick it up another notch by adding rose water, saffron and crushed cardamom.

This recipe makes ice cold and best testing gourmet lemonade. This pale orange colored drink is full of incredible flavors and smooth elegant taste.

We make a classic sugar syrup as a base of this recipe. We flavor that syrup with saffron and cardamom powder.

I am including stove top instructions as well as electric pressure cooker like InstantPot instructions to make sugar syrup at home.

Once you make simple syrup, you can make several different drinks with it. Simply add in fresh squeezed lemon juice to the concentrated syrup to make a perfect serving of fresh lemonade each and every time. You can also make a single glass or a pitcher of lemonade. 

This mineral rich lemon drink is easy, healthy and sure to be loved by your family ALL summer! Make a big pitcher and serve it for gatherings like backyard BBQs, picnics and potlucks.

This vegetarian lemonade recipe is also vegan, paleo, primal, gluten-free and dairy free.

RECIPE INSPIRATION

Few years ago, we had picked “Taste of India” in my cookbook club. It was fascinating book to read and I was the discussion meet host for that month.

So, I planned a quick menu around the book theme for the meet. It was breezy summer afternoon, so a refreshing drink and few Indian Chaat Appetizers were on my mind to serve to my girlfriends.

Instead of serving regular lemonade, I decided to jazz it up with pertinent Indian flavors. That fusion lemonade was such a big hit that day, many of my friends still tell me about it.

Since then I have been making this recipe often especially during Summer months. It’s an instant crowd pleaser. This exotic drink is sure to impress any foodie.

I highly recommend you make the flavored sugar syrup a day in advance. Overnight infusion helps build the robust flavors.

You can also make a big batch of concentrated syrup and freeze it for later use. Freeze it in ice cubes so it’s easier to defrost and make a quick drink.

Since saffron, rose and cardamom are all strong flavors, using a little goes long way. It however creates a complex flavorful lemonade that is refreshing and intriguing all at once.

Per cup serving, all you need is a few strands of saffron, couple drops of rose water and a crushed seed or two of cardamom pods.

WHAT ARE THE INGREDIENTS

Lemon Juice – freshly squeezed is the best but bottled will also work.

Raw Sugar – I prefer to use raw sugar for sweetener. You can use any of the sweetener of your choice like maple syrup, agave nectar or honey.

Rose Water – adds a light floral accent to the lemonade. It’s smooth, elegant and subtle flavor.

Saffron – my favorite exotic spice, adds beautiful color and unique aroma.

Cardamom – adds another layer of complex flavor to this lemonade. It also has extra cooling freshness.

Salt – a pinch of salt brings all flavors together and let’s them shine at once. Don’t skip to add a pinch to any lemonade to get the mineral taste.

Filtered Water and ice

Display of ingredients to make rose and saffron infused lemonade

HOW MUCH WATER TO ADD

Depending on how much water you add to the concentrate, it will affect the flavor. You can choose to make it strong or mild depending upon your preference.

Adding less water will make it a stronger testing lemonade. More water will dilutes it and give you a mellow flavor.

You can start off with strong and adjust more water as needed. Also as ice starts to melt, it adds more water, further diluting the flavors.

DIRECTIONS

To make Simple Sugar Syrup on the stove top 

Place sugar, saffron, crushed cardamom seeds and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Heat until sugar is completely dissolved, about 3 to 5 minutes.

To make Simple Sugar Syrup in the InstantPot

Add sugar, saffron and water to the pressure cooker pot and whisk to combine. Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 1 minute. When cooking is complete, use a quick release.

Let it cool down. Add the rose water and pinch of salt. Pour the syrup into a glass mason jar and store it in the refrigerator. It’s best to chill it completely before making the lemonade.

To make the lemonade

To make a full batch of Lemonade, fill a pitcher with 4 cups of cold water and lots of crushed ice. Add the lemon juice and chilled saffron simple syrup. Stir well to combine. Serve cold.

To make smaller, individualized portions, add 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice and saffron sugar syrup to 1 cup of ice water. Taste and add more syrup or water to adjust the taste. Enjoy!

Process shot collage with four photos showing steps involved in making simple syrup and lemonade.

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A hand holding glass of chilled saffron rose lemonade

Saffron and Rose Infused Lemonade

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Saffron and Rose Infused Lemonade is a refreshing summer beverage.  This delicious homemade lemonade is the best thirst quencher.

Ingredients

Instructions

MAKE SIMPLE SUGAR SYRUP ON STOVE TOP

Place sugar, saffron, crushed cardamom seeds and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Heat until sugar is completely dissolved, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Let it cool down. Add the rose water and pinch of salt. Pour the syrup into a glass mason jar and store it in the refrigerator.  It’s best to chill it
completely before making the lemonade.

TO MAKE THE LEMONADE

To make a full batch of Lemonade, fill a pitcher with 4 cups of cold water and lots of crushed ice.  Add the lemon juice and chilled saffron simple
syrup. Stir well to combine. Serve cold.

To make smaller, individualized portions, add 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice and saffron sugar syrup to 1 cup of ice water.  Taste and add more syrup or water to adjust the taste. Enjoy!


IF YOU WANT TO MAKE SIMPLE SUGAR SYRUP IN INSTANTPOT :

Add sugar, saffron and water to the pressure cooker pot and whisk to combine.

Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position.  Cook
at high pressure for 1 minute. When cooking is complete, use a quick release.

Notes

I prefer to add fresh lemon juice after the simple syrup is boiled and cooled. It adds instant freshness and reduces bitter aftertaste.

I highly recommend you make the flavored sugar syrup a day in advance. Overnight infusion helps build the robust flavors.

You can also make a big batch of concentrated syrup and freeze it for later use. Freeze it in ice cubes so it's easier to defrost and make a quick drink.

Since saffron, rose and cardamom are all strong flavors, using a little goes long way. It however creates a complex flavorful lemonade that is refreshing and intriguing all at once.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 210Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 49mgCarbohydrates: 54gFiber: 0gSugar: 52gProtein: 0g

Nutritional values are provided as a courtesy and the values are approximate. The values will change depending on the exact ingredients, measurements and brands used. As always, for specific health issues and dietary requirements please consult medical professional.

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