A delicious twist on the classic derby drink, this refreshing Mint Julep Lemonade will be your favorite summer drink!
Made with just a few simple ingredients, this delicious and refreshing Mint Julep Lemonade is perfect for celebrating derby day. Much like the classic Mint Julep, this lemonade recipe includes muddled mint, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and the finest Kentucky bourbon. This hard lemonade recipe is fantastic for sipping all spring and summer long!
MINT JULEP LEMONADE
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The first Saturday in May is always reserved for the running of the roses, better known as the Kentucky Derby. The first in the triple crown series, the Derby is much more than just a horse race. It’s big hats and Southern-style, it’s gentlemen’s charm and the finest Kentucky bourbon. The drink of choice is always a classic Mint Julep.
Whether you’re on the rail cheering for your winning horse, or simply at home taking in all of the excitement that the Kentucky Derby has to offer, we’ve got a drink that’s perfect for celebrating Derby day! This refreshing Mint Julep Lemonade is a twist on the classic julep cocktail. Much like a classic homemade lemonade recipe, it’s made with freshly squeezed lemon juice and simple syrup. However, this lemonade isn’t for the faint of heart – there are 2 ounces of bourbon in each drink, so imbibe wisely!
Making this Lemonade Cocktail
- For this Mint Julep Lemonade, I went with Woodford Reserve Kentucky Bourbon. This is the official bourbon of choice for the Kentucky Derby and is a great quality liquor. Feel free to use any other bourbon of your choice for this lemonade cocktail.
- Also, you may be tempted to use a bottled lemon juice for this cocktail – resist the urge. Freshly squeezed juice is so much better, and the bottled stuff pales in comparison. When purchasing lemons, I recommend buying at least one lemon per drink, plus additional lemons for slicing and adding to glasses.
- Fresh mint can be found with the fresh herbs in the produce section at the grocery store. As soon as you get your mint home, place it in a glass of water so it doesn’t wilt or dry-out. Some grocery stores also offer mint plants, which are a great value. Much like something you would find at a greenhouse, these mint plants are plentiful and continue to grow and produce additional leaves.
This delicious and refreshing lemonade cocktail is not only great for the Kentucky Derby but is fantastic to enjoy all spring and summer long. Great for outdoor parties, after a long round of golf, and perfect sipping outside in your favorite lawn chair. I love pairing this drink with a Cosmopolitan Cocktail for girl’s night so there’s a spirit option that appeals to everyone. Cheers!
Want more lemonade drinks?
- Champagne Lemonade
- Strawberry Basil Lemonade
- Moscato Pink Lemonade
- Peach Raspberry Lemonade
- Strawberry Lemonade Sangria
- More drink recipes…
Tools used to make this Mint Julep Lemonade recipe
Cocktail Shaker: This shaker is a bartender’s best friend! Easy to use and the best way to mix up your favorite cocktails!
Muddler: This classic bar tool is a must-have for incorporating fresh ingredients into your drinks. This muddler also comes with a bar spoon for stirring your cocktail to perfection.
Kentucky Derby Glasses: Get ready to watch the most exciting two minutes in sports with the commemorative glasses!
Mint Julep Cups: Prefer to go traditional? These cups are perfect for serving mint juleps all summer long!
- 2 ounces Kentucky Bourbon (like Woodford Reserve)
- 1 ounce simple syrup
- 1 ounce lemon juice fresh squeezed
- 4-5 Mint leaves muddled
- 1/2 cup Lemon sparkling water cold
- In the bottom of a cocktail shaker, add the mint leaves and muddle. Fill the cocktail shaker with ice. Add the bourbon, simple syrup, and lemon juice. Fit the cocktail shaker with a tight-fitting lid and shake vigorously.
- Fill a glass with ice, and pour the cocktail over the ice. Top off the cocktail with the lemon sparkling water. Garnish glass with a lemon slice and mint sprig, if desired. Enjoy right away while cold.