On a hot summer day, what could be more refreshing than a glass of lemonade? Well, a glass of pink lemonade, of course. It might seem easiest to reach for a store-bought version, but the truth is that making this classic at home is effortless, and you’ll get a much tastier result. And there’s an added benefit: When you make it from scratch, you can control the level of sweetness. With only as much sugar as necessary to balance the flavors, my lemonade isn’t too tart nor too sweet—it’s just about perfect.
Strawberries are the secret to this lemonade’s bold hue. They lend a sweet berry contrast to the tart lemon flavor. The rest of the ingredient list is simple: lemons, water, and sugar. I start by making a variation of a simple syrup. I combine the sugar, water, and strawberries and bring the mixture to a boil. This step allows the sugar to dissolve quickly and completely, and a few minutes in the hot liquid is all it takes to coax flavor and color from the berries. A little cooling, a quick straining, some ice-cold water, lemon juice, and an ice cube or three, and you’ve got a refreshing pitcher of pink lemonade ready to go.