A Simple Mineral-Rich Sparkling Lemonade – No Carbs! (Also Great with Wine)

November 15, 2011 · 31 comments

Do you ever crave a fizzy beverage, but wouldn’t touch a soda pop with a ten-foot pole? Yes, there are some sparkling juice drinks at the store, but they still have varying amounts of sugar.

Do you love a glass of wine now and then, but again, would rather not have so much sugar, even the natural kind from grapes?

Do you drink reverse osmosis water, which is completely stripped of all its life-giving minerals? (So do we, more about that in future posts…)

I’ve got just the thing for you

Recently I went to see my Naturopath friend, Kathy, and she suggested that I drink sparkling mineral water as an alternative to wine when Kent and I go out to dinner. I was willing to give it a try, but had a little better idea… I could also just cut the wine down with sparkling mineral water, and decrease the sugar that way. This would also add a refreshing fizz and minerals, too. Now I can still enjoy a glass of wine when I’m watching my sugar consumption, which is a nice part of the whole dinner out experience. (Other times I’ll still have straight wine!)  OK, so a reader below in the comments tells me that DUH, this is called a spritzer.  But I always thought a spritzer was made with soda pop.  Shows what I know.  So it’s not a brilliant new idea, but it is still a good one, LOL!

I also figured out a great way to make a quick refreshing lemonade…

Keep in mind that if you think ahead, you can make fermented lemonade punch, or some kefir soda pop, so you have a nice fizzy drink and probiotics to promote the good bacteria in your gut for natural immunity, but if you want a last-minute refreshing drink, this one is delicious and without any sugar.

Mineral-rich Sparkling Lemonade:

  • About 2 cups of sparkling mineral water  (***NOTE:  My friend, Stan, emailed me with some concerns about the brand shown in the picture above.  I asked him to comment but he’s probably not awake yet on the West coast, so look for that to come in later this morning and then please tell us which brands you like!)
  • The juice of one lemon
  • About a half of a dropperful of Stevia liquid, or to your own taste – start small and you can always add more if needed. The brand really does matter, I’ve tried some that were really bad.

Enjoy!

Variations:

Kathy’s original suggestions included (instead of the lemon juice) a little lemon extract or vanilla extract. Do you have any more yummy ideas?

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  • { 31 comments… read them below or add one }

    1 Margaret Auld-Louie November 15, 2011 at 12:49 am

    Good idea to put it in sparkling water. I frequently add lemon or lime juice to my filtered water to make it tastier. I’ve tried to make the lemonade in Nourishing Traditions but it went moldy as I was making it, and that was after wearing myself out juicing all those lemons :(. I don’t have much luck even making whey–whether it’s from store-bought yogurt or raw milk, it tends to go moldy as I’m making it.

    Reply

    2 KitchenKop November 15, 2011 at 6:57 am

    Your whey goes moldy??? Mine did that once but only because I had so much and it sat in my frig for well over a year. Did you SEE mold or was there a smell or what?

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    3 Margaret Auld-Louie November 15, 2011 at 11:07 am

    Yes, it was definitely moldy. It is a blue, fuzzy mold, very obvious to see. I’m jealous that you can keep whey over a year! The longest I’ve kept it is a couple of months in the fridge before it went moldy. But usually I can’t even make it because it grows blue mold as I’m trying to make it, especially in the lid. I’ve given up on making whey. I also can’t keep squash for more than a month in our house because it goes moldy. Sometimes it goes bad in just a week or two. This is a problem because our CSA farm gives us our entire winter share of squash all at once in November, because they have nowhere to store it. And no, we don’t have a damp, moldy house. We live in a very dry climate–in a suburb of Denver. Our kitchen is in a walkout basement but it’s not moldy. The living room is on this level too and we have to run a small humidifier there in the winter because of dryness. It is so dry in our house that I get frequent nose bleeds in the winter if I don’t run a humidifier every night in the bedroom. So I am baffled as to why my whey and squash go moldy so fast.

    Reply

    4 KitchenKop November 15, 2011 at 11:16 am

    Well at least you know now that you’re not the only one, since Dorsey commented the same below!

    Reply

    5 Jennifer November 16, 2011 at 12:03 am

    If it helps, I have seen tiny black mold spots start to grow on the inside of the jar lid – it’s never transferred to the whey itself though, well I never gave it the chance, I threw it out because I did not want to experiment with the safety of it. I was thinking maybe it was just the type of lid used?? It was from a commercial brand sauce jar or something that I had for awhile and was recycling it. So, it also could have come from something else I used to store in it before. It was not an actually canning jar, which also could have something to do with it? But, I think my fermented garlic and pickles are still okay. The garlic has darkened a bit, but honestly, I forget they are in the fridge!)

    I used to do this all the time with sparkling water and lemons!! (now its on rare occasions since I can’t spend the money like I used to b/c we are both back in school and PT workers) I really do love the bubbles, so it’s a great alternative for me :D I remember reading once about there being a difference b/t the sparkling water brands. Apparently, there are some who say Pellegrino is the safe brand b/c it is from the natural source, while Perrier is not and has added carbonation (which is interesting b/c it does say in the ingredients it has added carbonation, but the front – I think – says it’s from a natural source…?)

    Reply

    6 Jennifer November 16, 2011 at 12:07 am

    So, just read about that Uranium thing. That’s new.

    Reply

    7 Jennifer November 16, 2011 at 12:16 am

    And one more time,
    Google Chrome translates other languages for you, so here is the English report from the Deutsch.
    (The translation for the PDF is not readily available like the webpage)
    “That’s the problem: Uranium charged for drinking and mineral water – sometimes so strong that health risks are not excluded. At risk are infants and toddlers. The problem is not the radioactivity of uranium, but the chemical toxicity of heavy metals: Heavy loads can cause such damage to the kidneys.
    That’s the state:
    For bottled water it is as yet no generally accepted limit. Only water that is advertised with the words “suitable for the preparation of infant food” may contain not more than two micrograms of uranium per liter.
    For drinking water , since 1 November 2011, a limit of 10 micrograms of uranium per liter. This is so high, that, although adults, but infants and young children are adequately protected.
    The calls foodwatch:
    Limit of 2 micrograms of uranium per liter: both for drinking water and mineral water has a uniform limit of 2 micrograms of uranium per liter apply. Scale must be infants and toddlers, by a uranium pollution in the water faster and more likely to damage than adults.
    Obligation to provide information and warnings: As long as no safe limits apply, providers are under an obligation: bottler of mineral water on the label must inform about the uranium content and print warnings if the content is more than two micrograms per liter. Waterworks must inform their customers involved in this case.”

    Reply

    8 Courtney November 17, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    Wow!! I have had whey at one time in my fridge for two years maybe more (it was way in the back and I forgot about it) that still seemed good. It had to have been back there for about 2 years because that was the last time I was able to make some. My whey never gets moldy.
    I had yogurt back there too that was about that old that still looked good and actually still smelled okay but I was afraid to try it. I wondered if whey went bad and how you can tell.

    Reply

    9 Margaret November 17, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    Wow, you are so lucky. My yogurt goes moldy (grows blue mold on it) within a couple of months, if not sooner. This is store-bought yogurt so it’s not like it’s picking up mold while I’m making it. It’s just sitting in the fridge, closed up.

    Reply

    10 KitchenKop November 17, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    Courtney, your nose knows. :)

    Reply

    11 Melissa @ Dyno-mom November 15, 2011 at 9:12 am

    Moldy? I have to agree with Kelly, I have never heard of that either. Some fermented drinks, especially when using sweeteners like succanat and rapadura, will get a whitish film and a scum around the edges of the container. This is just from the excess minerals and totally harmless. Mold will be fuzzy, fur-like and a black or green. Hmmm…

    Reply

    12 Gina November 15, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Love this idea! But I tried stevia in the packets and it had an terrible after taste. Is there an after taste with the liquid stevia? If so, is there another sweetener to use? Thanks

    Reply

    13 KitchenKop November 15, 2011 at 9:33 am

    I’ve tried other Stevia that was gross, too, but the kind pictured above was really good, and you have to be careful not to use too much.

    Reply

    14 Dorsey November 15, 2011 at 9:37 am

    First…. I too have had the drinks mold while processing. Have never been successful in this endeavor…. and yes, it was real mold. I was told it could be because the mixture was picking up other stuff from the kitchen so moved it to another room….. but no better success.
    Second…. Another fizzy treat which is not totally devoid of carbs and “sugar” but really tasty if had in moderation: About 2″ of organic cranberry juice that has no added sugar so very tart….. simple syrup made from coconut palm sap sugar…….and glass filled with sparkling mineral water. I even got my soda addicted married daughter off the poison with this recipe.

    Reply

    15 shannon November 15, 2011 at 10:16 am

    Love this idea. Thanks Kelly

    Reply

    16 Stanley Fishman November 15, 2011 at 10:45 am

    As with so many other things, it is wise to know what is in the mineral water you buy. The German organization FoodWatch did a study of the amount of uranium in over 400 brands of mineral water. FoodWatch found that over one in eight had a uranium level that FoodWatch considered unsafe for babies. This included popular brands like Pellegrino.
    Here is a link to an article on the subject:

    http://www.ekopolitan.se/news/bottled-mineral-water-these-are-levels-uranium-over-400-brands-one-eight-not-suitable-babies-fo

    Here is a link to the Foodwatch study. While it is in German, it is easy to understand, with the brands identified as containing too much uranium highlighted in Orange or Red.

    http://foodwatch.de/foodwatch/content/e10/e2569/e13515/e27816/Uran-in-Mineralwasser_20090518_ger.pdf

    I also check the fluoride content. Many brands contain a significant amount of natural Fluoride. Natural fluoride is so toxic that it was known in the middle ages as “The Devil’s poison”.Artificial Fluoride, which is added to many water supplies, is even more toxic.

    Reply

    17 KitchenKop November 15, 2011 at 10:59 am

    Thanks for the scoop, Stan! Can you help us lazy people and tell us which brands you found to be safe? Yes, I know I should look into this myself and not “blindly trust” since I’m always yapping about that here on the site, BUT I trust YOU any day. :)

    Kel

    Reply

    18 Nancy Trask November 15, 2011 at 11:26 am

    Kelly, I just scanned through the foodwatch site and the only brands I recognized that were listed as high in Uranium were Perrier and Pelligrino…nothing else looked familiar, although there were quite a few listed as high. I know I won’t be buying those brands again! I was getting water from a Spring in the side of the mountain on Monarch Pass in Colorado and found out it was high in Uranium, too. It can be a challenge to find pure water these days. I know Jordan Rubin has an awesome source from his Spring in the Blue Ridge Mountains of northern Georgia that has been tested and is one of the top 4 purist Springs in the world! That’s where I will be getting my drinking water from.

    Reply

    19 Stanley Fishman November 15, 2011 at 11:37 am

    Kel, I am honored by your trust. I stopped drinking mineral water a while ago, so I cannot recommend any brand. But the FoodWatch list I linked to shows many brands they consider safe, at least in terms of Uranium.

    Before trying a particular brand, I would look at the mineral analysis, which is not hard to find on the internet, as most companies post a pdf, and see how much fluoride it contained. I would also check the levels of nitrates, arsenic, and other toxins. Many mineral waters contain much less fluoride than tap water, and some mineral waters contain much less fluoride than others. I consider fluoride to be a deadly poison, though the Dental profession, the medical establishment, and the government consider it safe and beneficial at certain levels. I just do not believe them, after researching the subject for myself.

    Reply

    20 WordVixen November 15, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    This makes me so sad- San Pelligrino is the only thing that satisfies my occasional need for fizz without actually resorting to soda. Well, Natural Calm is pretty awesome too, but it’s easier to over do that!

    Oh well, I already had issues with them being owned by Nestle. Guess it’s time to wean myself off.

    Reply

    21 Gigi/geegeegee November 15, 2011 at 10:50 am

    I make the Lemonade punch (I have a small $10 electric citrus juicer so it goes a lot faster!) Last time I used blackstrap molasses for even more minerals (Which is why I was also shocked at the assertion that blackstrap molasses is “fairly carcinogenic”!) It’s quite strong, so I usually mix that with store-brand fizzy water. Limeade with Lime flavored water, Lemonade is great with grapefruit flavored water! :-)

    Reply

    22 D. November 15, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    Gerolsteiner (in the glass bottles) used to be highly recommended but I have no idea of it’s health benefits or non-benefits. I’m sorry but I just don’t pay attention to EVERY little THING – you’d go mad. Not only that, it drives the people around you completely nuts. Wine has been cut with sparkling water for quite a while now – it’s called a spritzer.

    I never use liquid stevia – it’s too hard to find a happy medium with that stuff; I use the packets from Sweet Leaf. Here’s a refreshing summer drink I’ve been making for some time. When our sons were playing on little league, we would take it with us and the other kids went nuts and wanted their mom’s to make it, too. Good endorsement!

    Pink Drink – such a beautiful pink color. I make it often, and usually make three batches (one at a time of the recipe quantities below, because it is all that will fit into my blender) and then we put it in a big glass gallon jug in the fridge or freezer. Also, if you’re in a big hurry you can always use bottled organic lemon and lime juice.

    PINK DRINK LEMONADE

    1/4 cup (2 oz) *cranberry juice water (see note below)
    juice of 1/2 to 1 lemon (depends on size)
    juice of 1/2 to 1 lime (depends on size)
    14 oz filtered water
    a handful or two of ice cubes
    2 packets of stevia, or to taste

    Put all in blender; blend until ice is incorporated. Any or all of the ingredients can be changed to accomodate personal tastes. I sometimes use 1/2 cup of the cranberry water (cranwater).

    *cranberry juice water is made by using the concentrate and diluting it down to a 1:5 ratio. I order my cranberry concentrate from Vitacost or iherb.com

    For this recipe, depending on the size of your blender and allowing for the ice, you can also try using 1 1/2 tsp cran concentrate to 16 oz of filtered water, or you can try 1 – 1 1/2 TBSP cran concentrate to 20 oz of filtered water, and then adjust the lemon, lime and stevia to taste. You just have to guess with the ice cubes! If I’ve been able to secure organic lemons and limes, I will also put the rinds into the gallon jug after everything is mixed together, as a garnish and for extra flavor.

    I have friends who have adapted this recipe by adding mineral salts (like Redmond Real Salt) and it serves as a type of gatorade for them. Whatever works, I guess.

    Reply

    23 KitchenKop November 15, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    Ooooh, that sounds great!

    OK, so that’s called a ‘spritzer’? I always thought a spritzer was made with mostly soda… Shows how much I know. :)

    Kelly

    Reply

    24 D. November 15, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    You could be right about the soda, but in my neck o’ the woods anything that bubbles and is also inebriating is called a spritzer. It’s the bubbles that do it, I guess, however you get them in there! We have a local winery (Prairie Berry) and DH and I like to go there for their “tastings”. Then we buy what we think is really good this time around, and when we get home I usually add tonic water or seltzer water to fizz it up. It’s just a personal thing for me, not everyone likes fizzy stuff. The Red Ass Rhubarb is one of my favorites, as is the Wild Plum and the Pink Slip. (The people who own the winery are from my hometown, so we support them as much as possible, doncha know!) Not by drinking tons of their wine, but by spreading the word about their product. ; -)

    Reply

    25 KitchenKop November 15, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    I’ll take me some of that Red Ass Rhubarb, LOL!

    Reply

    26 D. November 15, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    You would love it. It’s truly yummy. The Wild Plum is my favorite from them (Prairie Berry).

    When we go out to eat Italian food (rarely ever go out to eat though) I order a Prosecco with Limoncello added. It is luscious and lemony and sparkly like champagne.

    Reply

    27 kym November 15, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    I always order spritzers, because I’m such a two drink screamer!!
    Sometimes they put it into a tall glass with ice cubes and make the wine proportions like a cordial. it’s great for designated drivers. Other times i’ll have it in a wine glass , a standard drink amount then fill to the top with soda water. Obviously, when I’m not driving.
    I’ve found lately as the bar staff are getting younger ( or I’m getting older) that they try to put lemondae or something equally offensive in my wine, so make sure you stipulate what you want.

    Reply

    28 Jeanmarie November 15, 2011 at 11:35 pm

    I love Gerolsteiner water, and re-use their bottles for my kombucha. (I got the idea from Three Stone Hearth in Berkeley.) I haven’t looked them up yet to see whether there’s something wrong with it, I hope not! It’s my favorite. But we don’t buy it often for budgetary and green reasons. (How sustainable is it, really, to import water from Germany??)

    Reply

    29 Sue November 16, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    I buy store-brand mineral water and mix it about half & half with cranberry juice. If I have some lime, I’ll squeeze that in also.

    Reply

    30 Lisa November 17, 2011 at 1:20 am

    How about those homemade carbonated water makers (like Sodastream)? I don’t think it should replace daily water consumption but it is more eco-friendly to carbonate your own filtered water, just curious about any health effects to adding the carbonation with the CO2 canisters.

    Reply

    31 GiGi Eats Celebrities February 21, 2012 at 12:53 am

    OOOOO! That looks simple and fun! Someone made me some that was lime flavored once, I am not quite sure why I haven’t tried making it myself. lol.

    Reply

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