How to Make Homemade Hard Lemonade

July 2, 2020
Love those bottles of refreshing hard lemonade? Well, it's easy to make your own Hard Lemonade from scratch right at home, too!  Whip up some with just a little vodka and a batch of fresh-made homemade lemonade.  But be careful -- because just like with the bottled hard lemonade, this stuff goes down way too easy.
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Glass of Homemade Hard Lemonade Image

When it comes to summer sipping, there's not much better than a nice cold bottle of hard lemonade.  Unless it's a nice refreshing glass of Homemade Hard Lemonade, that is!

Sipping on some hard lemonade on a hot day sure does hit the spot.  Especially when it's with feet up on a lounge chair, poolside or at the beach, am I right?

Well with this recipe on how to make homemade hard lemonade, you don't have to rely solely on those packs of bottles from the store.  Just grab some lemons, some sugar, and some vodka and you're good to go with whipping up a batch yourself.

My husband Mark and I tinkered around with this recipe a few weeks back when we were making homemade pink lemonade for our 10-year-old daughter.  Us grown ups decided we'd leave the pink stuff for her, and mix up a spiked version to enjoy for ourselves.

Just grab some lemons, some sugar, and some vodka and you're good to go with whipping up a batch of homemade hard lemonade yourself.

We made a batch our usual way with regular plain vodka, and then decided to compare that to some made with vanilla vodka.  We had seen a hard lemonade recipe made with vanilla vodka a while back and were intrigued -- And so, decided to give it a go.

After just one sip, our minds were clear on which version was the best -- the straight-up regular vodka, by far.

Vanilla vodka in the hard lemonade was too sweet and made the flavor just seem "off."  We strongly recommend sticking with regular plain vodka to spike your lemonade.

Now, as for other flavored vodkas? -- We haven't tried them and can't speak to that.  If you try one you love that works great in this recipe, please stop back by and let us know in the comments!

Mason Jar of Homemade Hard Lemonade Image

Making a batch of hard lemonade is pretty much just like making a batch of regular homemade lemonade, with one key addition -- Vodka.

To whip up a batch from scratch, start by squeezing some lemons.

You'll need 1 cup of fresh lemon juice for a batch, which is about 6 lemons.  A batch makes a total of about 5 cups, so if you'll be serving several people you may want to make a double batch.


Once the fresh lemon juice is squeezed, combine the lemon juice and sugar in a pitcher or large glass jar (we used a large Mason jar).

How to Make Homemade Hard Lemonade Image

Stir the mixture together vigorously until all the sugar is dissolved.

Dissolving Sugar to Make Homemade Hard Lemonade Image

Then add in a some cold water and the vodka, giving everything a good stir to get it all well mixed.

Our recipe calls for 3/4 to 1 cup vodka, and we generally make ours with the full 1 cup.  Adjust the vodka amount to suit your personal taste.

Mixing Homemade Hard Lemonade with Vodka Image

Toss in a handful of ice to chill the lemonade down or pop it in the refrigerator for a bit before serving.  Then pour yourself a big glass -- or jelly jar full, like in our photos -- to enjoy and sip away!

Yes, sip away on your own Hard Lemonade from scratch made right at home.  But do be careful -- because believe me, this tasty stuff goes down way too easy.

Homemade Hard Lemonade with Vodka Image
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hard lemonade recipe, how to make hard lemonade, lemonade with vodka, vodka cocktails
Beverages
American
Yield: about 5 cups
Author:
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How to Make Homemade Hard Lemonade

How to Make Homemade Hard Lemonade

Love those bottles of refreshing hard lemonade? Well, it's easy to make your own Hard Lemonade from scratch right at home, too! Whip up some with just a little vodka and a batch of fresh-made homemade lemonade. But be careful -- because just like with the bottled hard lemonade, this stuff goes down way too easy.
Prep time: 15 MCook time: Total time: 15 M

Ingredients:

  • 1 c. fresh lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
  • 1 c. granulated sugar
  • 3 c. cold water
  • 3/4 to 1 c. vodka
  • 1 lemon, unpeeled and thinly sliced for garnish (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Combine lemon juice and sugar in a pitcher or large Mason jar. Stir briskly until sugar is dissolved.
  2. Add cold water and vodka, stir to combine.
  3. Serve immediately over ice, or refrigerate until chilled.
  4. Garnish with lemon slices, if desired.
TRACEY'S NOTES:
  1. To get the most juice out of your lemons, use the palm of your hand to roll each whole lemon several times on your counter top before squeezing. This softens the lemons and helps release their juices. If you have an especially firm lemon, pop it in the microwave for about 20 seconds to help release the juice.
  2. Increase or decrease the amount of vodka to suit your personal taste.
  3. We like this best made with regular, plain vodka. We've tried it with vanilla vodka, as well, which is too sweet and makes the flavor just seem "off." 
Created using The Recipes Generator

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