Beverages with BBQ

BBQs often happen when the weather is very nice outside. The sunny, warm weather become the ideal conditions for family and friends to reconnect with one another and enjoy the fresh air and vitamin D. Everyone needs some fresh air every once and awhile. Being out in the sun is so important for you and your health and barbecues are one of the easiest ways to enjoy the outdoors and have a lot of fun! It is important to note that barbecues are outdoors and the outside can get pretty hot, really quickly. In addition to that, barbecue pits let off a lot of heat and steam making the area feel hot. Factor that in with the fact that people are most likely running around playing a game and sports and you can see how barbecues can also be a common place where people get overheated and dehydrated. Hence why it is so important that when one is hosting a BBQ that they bring the necessary supplies to keep their guests cool and hydrated so no serious incidents can occur from the heat. Cool drinks are an essential part of the barbecue experience and not only do they keep you cool from the heat, but they cleanse your palate after a delicious, salty barbecue experience. So, it is definitely important that when planning a barbecue, you take into account what kind of drinks you want to have. Drinks are fun, especially in the heat so here are some delicious and refreshing drinks that you can try at your barbecue!

Ginger Peach Soda (womensday.com)

A very delicious and refreshing homemade soda you can try. People often love opting for cold sodas on hot days because the carbonation from the drinks feels really nice in the heat. Not many people are a big fun of drinking sodas though mainly for the fact that not many sodas are good for you and they often carry a lot of sugar. Even extensive research has been done on diet or zero calorie sodas and even then, the presence of low-calorie sweeteners have been proven to not be very good for you. This ginger peach soda is a much healthier alternative to soda. The seltzer offers a refreshing, fizzy taste that you crave on a hot day combined with the wonderful taste of peaches with ginger. This drink is truly one you should try to consider when planning out your next BBQ party and want to ramp up your refreshment game.
Yields: 8
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Ingredients
● 16 fresh mint leaves
● 2 very ripe peaches
● 1 cup of sugar
● 1 liters of seltzer
● 2 tbsp of freshly minced ginger

Directions
1. Pour 1 cup of water, sugar, and ginger into a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Allow the ingredients to gently simmer and stir until the sugar has dissolved completely. Remove the pan of syrup from the heat and cover it, allowing it too steep for about 30 minutes.
2. Pour the syrup through a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl and press the minced ginger against the sieve with the back of a spoon so that it is possible to extract the flavor. Discard the ginger after that. Then proceed with covering the bowl with a plastic wrap and refrigerate until it has chilled well.
3. Distribute the peach slices evenly over 8 tall glasses. For each glass, lightly press the peaches with the back of a wooden spoon so that the juice can be released. Then pour about 2 tablespoons of chilled syrup over the peaches. You can store any remaining syrup into the refrigerator for about two weeks. Add in the ice cubes and pour in the seltzer. Stir the ingredients together so that the syrup, peach juice, and seltzer are distributed evenly and garnish with two mint leaves.

Thai Iced Tea (dixiecrystals.com)


This Thai iced tea recipe is a nice break from the traditional iced teas that are normally enjoyed in American barbecues. You have heard of your normal sweet tea, peach iced tea, raspberry iced tea, and more, but it is not often that you see Thai iced tea being served at an American barbecue. They are absolutely so delicious and really hit that sweet spot for many people. The sweetened condensed milk offers a wonderful creamy and sweet taste to the exotic flavors of the Thai black tea that make this drink an utter obsession. More people should try serving Thai iced teas at their next barbecue or dinner because I guarantee you they would be a hit! Normal black tea is delicious too, but the Thai iced tea offers a wonderful spiced flavor that creates more of a flare in flavor than the traditional black tea. The best part is that it is super easy to make!
Yield: 5 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients
● ¾ cup of Dixie crystals extra fine granulated sugar
● 5 cups of boiling water
● Half and half or sweetened condensed milk to your taste preference (I would honestly prefer sweetened condensed, but you can make two different options for those who don’t want a drink that is too sugary)
● Ice
● 1 cup of a Thai tea mix

Directions
1. Combine the boiling water, Thai tea mix, and sugar into a pitcher. Allow it to steep for about 15 minutes and strain it into a clean container. Allow the tea completely and then cover it, refrigerating until you are ready to serve.
2. Fill up the five glasses with ice and add tea until the glass is about ¾ full. Add in the half and half or the sweetened condensed milk, first beginning with about 1 ½ tablespoons of cream and then adding more until you reach a desired taste. Serve immediately!

Blackberry Lemonade (tasteofhome.com)

Everyone enjoys lemonade on a sunny day! It is one of the most common beverages to enjoy at a barbecue because of how refreshingly sweet and sour this drink is. This blackberry lemonade offers you a kick on the traditional lemonade so that your guests can try something completely new and different! Blackberries are similar to lemons in the sense that they can be both sweet with a slight bitter taste. Put together the flavors of both lemons and blackberries actually go so well together that you will want to repeat this recipe over and over again! Throw in some blue food coloring if you want to make your drinks look even cooler for the summer and voila! A masterpiece that many will enjoy!
Yield: 1 ½ quarts
Prep Time: 20 minutes plus chilling

Ingredients
● 1 to 2 drops of blue food coloring (this food is optional)
● 1 tbsp of grated lemon zest
● 1 cup of sugar
● 4 cups of water that is divided
● 1 cup of lemon juice
● 1 cup of blackberries

Directions
1. Use a large saucepan to bring about 2 cups of water and sugar to a boil. Allow it to boil for about 2 minutes while stirring occasionally and then remove the saucepan from the heat. Stir in the lemon juice, zest, and the remaining 2 cups of water. Allow it to cool slightly.
2. In a blender proceed to combine about 1 cup of the lemon mixture and the blackberries. Cover and blend until it is well blended. Strain the mixture and be sure to discard any of the seeds. After, pour this blackberry mixture and remaining lemon mixture into the pitcher, stirring well. Add in the food coloring if you wish to and refrigerate it all until it has chilled well. Serve it chilled in a glass over ice.

Strawberry-Lemon Mojitos (foodandwine.com)

Strawberries and lemons are another great combination that are instantly refreshing and hydrating when you are out in the heat. Though I will have to warn you that this particular recipe is not kid friendly at all and only for the adults since it incorporates the use aged rum. For all those adults who want a slight alcohol twinge to their summer drink without gravitating towards the beer. (Beer can get quite boring sometimes especially when the summer is made for trying new things!) The mint sprigs for garnish offer a minty and refreshing taste that will make the drink an instant hit for all adults at the barbecue. They will be lining up trying to figure out how they can copy this recipe for their own barbecue or for their own day of relaxation at home. Regardless it is the ultimate fruity cocktail to enjoy!
Yield: 4 drinks
Prep Time: N/A
Cook Time: N/A

Ingredients
● Ice cubes and crushed ice
● 3 ounces of fresh lemon juice
● 2 ounces of prepared sugar cane syrup or agave nectar
● 4 strawberries, plus 2 halved strawberries for garnish purposes
● 8 lemon wedges
● 8 ounces of gold or aged rum
● 24 mint leaves, plus 4 mint sprigs, for garnish purposes as well (optional)

Directions
Take a cocktail shaker and muddle up the lemon wedges with the whole strawberries and mint leaves. Add in the ice, rum, lemon juice, and sugarcane syrup next. Be sure to shake well. Strain into crushed ice filled in highball glasses. Garnish the drink off with berry halves and sprigs of mint.

Sparkling Strawberry Basil Limeade with Tequila (Optional) (halfbakedharvest.com)

The great thing about this recipe is that it can easily be converted between an adult type drink and a drink that is kid friendly. You can choose to add in tequila or not and either way that you decide to do it, this drink is still incredibly delicious and addictive. Everyone loves strawberries for the most part so you know that this is already going to be a hit for everyone. The best part is that if you want to create a kid friendly drink and also an adult drink you can easily do that as well that way the adults can feel as if they can try it with the alcohol to see how it would taste and the kids can drink it knowing that they are not missing out on all the flavors that this drink has to offer! In addition to that, another thing that makes this drink so unique and very cool is the fact that the ice cubes are not just normal ice cubes, they are actually made of lime juice so you won’t have to worry about downing your drink before it becomes all melted and watery. The incorporation of the lime juice (or tequila and lime juice) ice cubes will make this drink be incredibly full in flavor from start to finish!
Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour

Ingredients
● 1 ½ cups to 2 cups of quartered fresh strawberries
● 5 cups of sparkling water or regular water
● ½ cup to ¾ cup of granulated sugar depending on how sweet your strawberries already are (and of course taste preference)
● ⅓ cup of fresh basil
● 1 cup of fresh lime juice that is made of about 10-12 limes
Tequila Sour Lime Ice
● ½ cup of the fresh lime juice
● 1 tbsp to 3 tbsp of tequila (completely optional)
● 4 chopped up strawberries
● Strips of 1 lime

Directions
1. First begin by making the iced cubes. Start off by dividing strips of the lime and chunks of the strawberries into the ice mold or a mini muffin tin. Mix up the lime juice with the tequila (This is optional so if you wish to make these alcohol-free than do not add the tequila). Pour your tequila and lime juice or just your lime juice over the fruit inside the ice cube molds. Freeze them for at least one hour before serving.
2. Once the ice cubes are ready, move on to make the strawberry basil limeade. Blend up the strawberries, lime juice, and basil in a blender or food processor until it is very smooth. If desired you can strain the strawberry puree with a sieve or fine mesh colander. This would be recommended for those who are planning to serve this drink to kids. Otherwise if it is only meant for adults then you can leave the strawberry seeds in there.
3. Pour the strawberry, basil, and lime mixture into a large pitcher. Add in the sugar and stir until it is completely dissolved. Once you are ready to drink the limeade, then carefully add in sparkling water or regular water. Adjust the sugar according to your taste preference and from there serve it with the tequila-lime ice (or just lime ice) and some fresh lime and strawberries. Enjoy!

With these 5 recipes you now have the beginnings of a wonderful display of beverages that you can make for your next barbecue! Or bring it on over to a friend’s barbecue and have others enjoy it there! Either way these recipes are a great way to enjoy the barbecue with friends and family all while staying cool, happy, and hydrated.

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