This recipe is so simple, and so cheap! Technically, it’s actually two recipes because there are two different ways to make it (plus a third option at the end!). There are many healthy-er sodas out there you can buy, but this homemade version has no sugar added and really is about a healthy as any soda could ever be.
- A thick juice or your favorite fresh fruit
- A heavily carbonated seltzer
The best seltzer to use for this is Syfo – it has the strongest and longest lasting bubbles of any seltzer I’ve found. I prefer to buy the miniature 10 oz. bottles because that’s all I can drink at once, however they do sell larger bottles if you have more than one person who will want a soda at once. Any seltzer that is unused will just lose its bubbles and become regular flat water. Another reason that I like using Syfo is because it’s made with purified water. Many seltzers are made with mineral water, which will change the taste of the final product. Also, be sure not to use club soda! Club soda contains sodium, whereas seltzer is simply carbonated water. Some other common selzters are Perrier and Voss, however both of these are mineral water, not purified water.
If you like using a cup, then pour about 1.5 inches of juice into the cup and fill up the rest of the cup with the seltzer. That’s it!
I usually end up using about 4 oz. of seltzer (half of the small bottles) and then saving the rest for later (by which I mean about 30 minutes later when I go back for a second soda). Obviously it’s a carbonated drink, so if you don’t use it within about 24 hours or less, there will be a significant reduction in the amount of bubbles, therefore giving you more of a watery juice than a good soda.
This juice recipe works best with a thicker juice. Juices that are already fairly thin like grape juice or apple juice might not flavor the soda quite as well as a blackberry or pomegranate juice. You want something that’s really almost difficult to drink it’s so think and syrupy.
My favorite juice to use is any of the Tulula juices. They are organic and can be found at many grocery stores and supermarkets. My go-to for soda-ing is usually the blackberry chia. Here is a link to their website so you can see all their flavor varieties.
The juiced used in the soda here is the organic Antioxidant Juice from Aldi’s – it’s organic and costs $3.89 for a big 24 oz. bottle. It’s a nice heavy juice, though not quite as thick as the Tululas are so you do need to use a bit more of it for that same flavor punch.
This recipe takes a bit longer than the ready-in-a-pour juice version, but it is so worth it.
- Remove the cap from your seltzer – I recommend using the mini seltzers unless you have a lot of people around who will want a soda.
- Pour out a tiny bit – just enough to make room for the fruit.
- Cut up your fruit of choice into long strips. You want them to be thin enough to fit through the mouth of the bottle but big enough that people can avoid drinking them. *Personally, I like using strawberries, though kiwi is also a fun one. I use about three strawberries or one kiwi per soda. Also, please note that when you add the fruit to the seltzer, it may start fizzing like crazy, so do this over a sink or somewhere that you won’t mind wiping up the overflowed soda afterwards.
- Put the cap back on the soda and leave it to steep in the fridge for 2-4 hours. The longer it steeps, the more flavorful it will be. However, you don’t want to leave it for more than a day or two or there may not be as many bubbles. Be sure the cap is TIGHT to keep those bubbles in as best as possible. *It’s important to put the fruit into the seltzer bottle – if you tried to pour the seltzer over the fruit into a glass, all the bubbles would dissipate while it steeped. That would work if you drank the soda right away, but you probably wouldn’t get as much of a fruit flavor unless you used a fruit that has been put into a syrup like marishino cherries or mandarin oranges.
One of the reasons this recipe is so healthy is that there is no sugar added – just the natural sugar from the fruit. Obviously, using juice gives you a much more sugary soda than using fresh fruit, so if you wanted to add sugar to the fresh fruit recipe, you certainly could of course. I would recommend using a natural syrup like maple syrup or honey. I’ve never needed that though, so I can’t say how it would be.
Something to Consider
If you don’t like using seltzer – if you’re someone who likes thick juce and thick soda – you can just get a home carbonater and add the bubbles to the juice directly. The SodaStream Jet is available on Amazon for $45 and there is a Big Boss Soda Boss machine available on Overstock.com for $75.