Have you ever mixed or muddled fresh raspberries into your drink, only to be disappointed by the weak flavor and annoying stick-in-your-teeth-for-hours seeds? This raspberry simple syrup is a quick and easy way to capture the vibrant flavor of raspberries without all that hassle. Stir a spoonful or two into your cocktail or drink, and enjoy!
This works in all sorts of cocktails and mocktails, of course. My current favorite way to enjoy it (this is sacrilege, I know) is to mix two teaspoons of it with half a cup each of kombucha and sauvignon blanc. The result is a lightly sparkling spritzer with the perfect balance of tartness and sweetness.
Notes on This Recipe:
Yield: this recipe makes 1 ½ cups of finished syrup. I know that seems counterintuitive! If you take a cup measure full of sugar, you can pour almost ½ cup of water into it, thanks to the spaces between the crystals. A little bit more liquid is lost through evaporation, resulting in the final yield of 1 ½ cups.
Raspberry quality: use good raspberries! I see this common misconception in all sorts of things that you can transform low quality into flavor somehow. If you make syrup from bland, bitter berries, you’re going to get bland, bitter syrup. If you want a delicious syrup, use the best berries you can find.
Frozen berries: you can definitely make this with frozen berries. The final flavor won’t be exactly the same, but it’s absolutely still worth making.
Lemon juice: the lemon juice in this recipe is optional. I’m not a fan of super sweet things, so I enjoy the added tartness or brightness. I also think it helps the syrup retain its bright color better.
Storage: keep your raspberry syrup in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. If you want to make a big batch to keep longer, can your simple syrup instead of just refrigerating it.
Ratios: traditional simple syrup uses equal parts of sugar and water. I like to use another equal part of raspberries (but you can increase or decrease this for a stronger or milder raspberry flavor). This basic recipe uses 1 cup each of sugar, water, and raspberries, but feel free to scale it to fit your needs.
Cocktails and mocktails: use this raspberry simple syrup any time you want to add a bright pop of flavor to a drink. Try adding it next time you make lemonade! It’s also great in desserts, or even just drizzled over some vanilla ice cream!
Dissolving sugar in the water: do this over medium heat and only bring the water to a simmer, not a full boil. If you cook the syrup too hot for too long, you’ll end up making candy instead of syrup! Stir to dissolve the sugar.
Cook the raspberries: once the sugar is dissolved, you’ll add your raspberries. I find that an equal part of raspberries is enough to give a bold, vibrant flavor. You can add more if you want a stronger flavor, or fewer if you want a milder syrup. Keep simmering the mixture, stirring frequently, until the raspberries are soft and break down. (Use your spoon to smash any particularly stubborn ones!) This typically takes 5 to 7 minutes, but pay attention to the results rather than the time.
Cool and strain your syrup: once the raspberries break down, remove the syrup from the heat. Let it cool to room temperature, then strain it into a jar or bottle. Pressing on the raspberry pulp gets more syrup out, but may result in a cloudy look. It’s up to you whether it’s worth it! The cloudiness is harmless, just unsightly.
Looking for something to do with this raspberry simple syrup? Try mixing a couple spoonfuls into my traditional Brazilian caipirinha recipe!
Raspberry Simple Syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup raspberries
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice (optional)
- Mix the sugar and water in a pot large enough to comfortably hold all of the ingredients. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then stir until all of the sugar dissolves.
- Add the raspberries and continue to simmer until the berries break down, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Remove the mixture from the heat and allow it to cool to room temperature, then strain.
Want to remember this recipe for later? Save it to your favorite Pinterest board!