This refreshing and fun cherry mocktail looks elaborate, but it is actually super easy to make. It features a cherry-thyme syrup, soda water, and optional rose petals as a garnish. It is a great non-alcoholic drink for any occasion, and it is vegan and gluten-free.
How to Make Fruit-Flavored Syrups at Home
If you follow The Boozy Oyster blog, you know that homemade simple syrups are great for adding variety to your cocktails or non-alcoholic drinks.
You can flavor syrup with pretty much any fruit you like and you can make as much, or as little, as you want. You usually only need equal parts sugar and water and about twice as much fruit.
The only thing to keep in mind is that if you are using a fruit (or vegetable) that tends to have a subtle flavor, you might want to add more of it. For instance, for the rhubarb syrup for this Rhubarb and Rose Water Gin Spritz, I used 4 cups of chopped rhubarb because it doesn’t tend to pack a ton of flavor.
Where can I Find Edible Flowers for Cooking?
The answer is: in your garden!
If you have flowers like roses growing in your garden, they will probably be safe to eat because they haven’t been sprayed with pesticides like a lot of the flowers that they sell at supermarkets or floral shops. Those are never safe to eat.
You might also want to check this handy guide of edible flowers just to make sure that you are not consuming something poisonous by mistake.
The ones you see in these pictures are from my garden, and they tasted wonderful! They also add a delicious rose smell to this cherry mocktail.
If you can’t find edible flowers where you live, you could also use a tiny bit of rosewater to simulate the taste and smell of roses.
Other Uses for Homemade Syrup
In addition to putting them in yummy cherry mocktails like this one, you can also use syrups in several other ways:
- Pour some over ice cream
- Make a creative cocktail
- Combine your syrup with a little bit of booze and soak fruit in it to make desserts like this Cherry-Strawberry Puff Pastry Dessert
- Use it to add more flavor to oatmeal or chia seed pudding
- Mix it into plain yogurt to make it more interesting
- Bottle it and give it away as a gift
Sparkling Cherry Mocktail with Rose Petals
For the cherry-thyme syrup
- 1 1/2 cups cherries pitted and cut in half
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup water
- 5 thyme sprigs
For the mocktail
- 2 oz cherry-thyme syrup (recipe follows)
- soda water
- rose petals to garnish
- whole cherries to garnish
To make the cherry-thyme syrup
- Add all of the ingredients except for the thyme sprigs to a medium-sized, heavy-bottomed pan.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Lower the temperature and bring to a simmer. Add the thyme sprigs and simmer for 15 min or until the cherries start to break down.
- Strain the syrup through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean, glass container. Do not push on the cherry solids. This will make your syrup cloudy.
- Discard the cherry solids or use them as a sort of rustic jam.
- Let the syrup come to room temperature and refrigerate until cool.
To make the mocktail
- Fill a tall glass with ice.
- Add the cherry-thyme syrup and top with soda water to taste. Mix with the handle of a spoon or with a bar spoon.
- Garnish with rose petals (if using) and whole cherries.
- Serve immediately.
- This recipe yields about 1 cup of syrup. It will keep in the fridge for up to three months. Make sure to discard it if you notice white or black specks floating around in it.
- Keep in mind that this mocktail won't be as fizzy as commercially-produced sodas.
- You can use any type of cherry you like or a combination of them to make this syrup.
Here are other mocktails you might enjoy:
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Also, if you have any questions or just want to let me know that you liked the recipe, please leave a comment below. Hearing from other adventurous home cooks always makes my day!