Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

| July 28, 2019 | 65 Comments

Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

Follow our easy, step-by-step, photo illustrated recipe to learn how to make our best fresh squeezed Lemonade. We also review the Zulay Kitchen Professional Citrus Juicer and share our results. Printable recipe included.


Lemonade, enjoy!
Fresh Squeezed Lemonade Recipe, one of our favorite drinks to cool down with on a hot summer day in the South. Don’t you like the jar? Smile.


Lemonade, slider
Disclaimer: Zulay Kitchens provided me with one of their Zulay Professional Citrus Juicers to test and review. All comments are strictly my own. Links to their Amazon page and their own website are included. I do not receive any financial compensation when you click these links, but I hope you’ll check them out. Thank you in advance.

“When life hands you lemons, make lemonade,” as the old saying goes. And, when Zulay Kitchens offers you one of their Professional Citrus Juicers to test and review, you make LOTS of lemonade. Fresh Squeezed Lemonade that is.

Throughout the biggest part of the year, the North Carolina State Fairgrounds has a large Flea Market every weekend. They do miss about a month or so when it’s time for the actual fair.

I always enjoyed going to the flea market, and even sold stuff there off and on for a year or two. I’ve been there when it was so cold you could hardly stand it, and days when it was so hot you could hardly stand it.

During the summer months, one of my favorites at the Flea Market and even at the Fair has always been getting to enjoy a cup of cold Fresh Squeezed Lemonade. There were always several booths and food carts that offered to make you a cup of the sweet citrus favorite, fresh and right on the spot.

I’d stand and watch as they sliced a lemon into halves, then placed a half on a manual juice squeezer to get every bit of juice out of that lemon. Then, they would pour just a small amount of what I later learned was simple syrup (water and sugar) into the cup. They’d add the freshly squeezed lemon juice and then fill the cup with ice and cold water. Taking another plastic cup, they would make a shaker out of the two cups and give it a few shakes to mix everything together. They’d hand me the cup of Lemonade, and I’d hand them about $2.50 of my money. Smile.

But, on a really hot day, Fresh Squeezed Lemonade was a welcome thirst quencher. It always hit the spot.

Recently, Zulay Kitchen, a USA based company, offered to send me one of their Professional Citrus Juicers to test and review here on Taste of Southern. It was a citrus juicer like the ones those folks at the fair and flea markets use.

Admittedly, it may be a bit large for the average home kitchen, but I wasn’t going to let that deter me from trying it out. Afterall, I do love that Fresh Squeezed Lemonade when I can get it. Making it at home, whenever and however I wanted it, sounded like a winner to me. Smile.

So, come along as we test out and review the Zulay Professional Citrus Juicer and use it to make some of my favorite Fresh Squeezed Lemonade. This is the way I like my lemonade. You can certainly adjust the sugar and lemon juice ratio to meet your own personal taste preferences. But, either way you make it, you’re going to need some freshly squeezed lemons.

Zulay Kitchens offers various handheld juicers that are much smaller if that’s what you need. I’ll provide some links for you to check those out and all the other kitchen type products that they offer. I hope you’ll visit with them for a bit.

Ready to make some great tasting Lemonade? Alright then, let’s head on out to the kitchen, and let’s get SQUEEZING.


Lemonade, you'll need these ingedients.
Fresh Squeezed Lemonade, made from scratch. You’ll need these ingredients.


Lemonade, full view of the Zulay Kitchens citrus juicer.
You’ll also need a way to get all that juice out of your lemons. You have many choices, but today, we’ll take a look at this Professional Citrus Juicer from Zulay Kitchen.

This thing is awesome. Let’s just go ahead and share that upfront. It may be a bit much for the average home cook, but it sure is fun to work with. Especially if you enjoy fresh squeezed orange juice, lemon juice, grapefruit juice and more.

Here are the links I mentioned so you can check out more info on the juicer and their other products.

This is the Amazon link for the exact Red Juicer that I have:  Zulay Red Professional Citrus Juicer

This link is to all their products: Zulay Kitchen

Thanks for clicking the links and taking a look.


Lemonade, juicer top.
This is obviously intended to do some hard work and last a long time. I was impressed with it straight out of the box. This closeup of the top of the juicer gives you a look at how well it’s made. It measures about 11in x 7in x 18in in size and weighs right at 15lbs.

Its heavy and sturdy because it’s made from cast iron and coated in black, orange, or red colors. I chose the red to match my KitchenAid mixer. So cool. They even offer a chrome, gold or copper version.


Lemonade, strainer cup.
This is the strainer cup, where the work takes place. Just place half a lemon or orange on top of the pyramid shaped strainer and pull down on the handle. The handle lowers the top of the strainer cup down on the fruit, and a little light pressure squeezes all of the juice out for you.


Lemonade, cup is removable.
The bottom portion of the strainer is easily removed for cleaning. You might can see the notch around the part above that has the holes in it. You place the strainer in the bottom of the cup, give it a slight turn, and it’s locked in place and ready to go. The holes allow the juice to drain through while keeping the seeds and pulp in the cup. This part is made of stainless steel.


Lemonade, base of juicer.
The large base has rubber feet on the bottom to keep from messing up your counter top. They help hold the juicer in place while the base keeps everything stable while you’re squeezing the lemons.

Zulay Kitchen is a family owned company right here in the great USA. AND, and this is a really awesome part too, they offer a LIFETIME Money Back Guarantee on the juicer and their other products. What more could you ask for?


Lemonade, cut the lemons.
Okay, let’s make some fresh squeezed Lemonade with our juicer. Just slice your lemons in half.


Lemonade, place the lemon on the juicer.
Lift the handle, place the cut half of lemon on top of the strainer. The cup is about five inches in diameter. Plenty of room for even grapefruit.


Lemonade, pull the handle down.
Pull down on the handle. The leverage on this thing really makes squeezing these lemons so easy. It’s like it wants to do the work for you. If you look close, on the left, you’ll see that black rubber piece. That’s how far the handle will close down. It’s rubber, but make sure you keep your fingers clear of that part, so you don’t close the handle on your fingers. It also protects the finish on your juicer as the handle rests against it while it’s closed. Did I mention how easy it is to squeeze the juice from the lemon?


Lemonade, release the handle.
Lift the handle back up and lock it into its holding open position. The lemon has been flattened and all the juice squeezed out of it. That’s it, just that quick and easy. Smile.


Lemonade, cup.
A cup underneath catches the juice. I was able to get my 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup under the bottom to catch the juice.

I placed the juicer in my sink so I could get better pictures of it for you. I did have to hold the base a time or two while pressing down on the handle to keep it from trying to tip forward. It wasn’t a problem but thought I’d mention it. Also, I think it would be great if the juicer came with a plastic or stainless steel cup shaped more like the horseshoe inside shape of the base. Something like that would slip right in place to catch the juice. Again, this wasn’t a problem. I didn’t miss a drop with my measuring cup in place. Just a thought.


Lemonade, add sugar.
With the lemon juice ready, let’s make a simple syrup right in our pitcher. This is a half gallon sized pitcher that I’m using. In it, I added one cup of granulated sugar.


Lemonade, add hot water.
Then, I added one cup of HOT TAP WATER. Get it as hot as you can, then add it to the sugar.


Lemonade, stir until sugar dissolves.
Stir the water and sugar together until the sugar is fully dissolved.

I know most recipes call for boiling this simple syrup on the stove top, but why mess up a pot when you don’t need to? All you need is water hot enough to dissolve the sugar. Took me about 30 seconds, if that long, to get the sugar dissolved.


Lemonade, add the lemon juice.
Add the lemon juice.

For the record, I squeezed four large lemons with this juicer. I took a photo of the juice but for reasons unknown, it was too blurry for me to use here. I did end up with just a smidgen over one full cup of lemon juice.

I added 3/4ths cup of the lemon juice to the simple syrup in the pitcher.


Lemonade, add five cups more water.
Then, add five more cups of COLD water to the pitcher.


Lemonade, stir well.
Give it a good stir. You’ve made Fresh Squeezed Lemonade. How easy was that?

This Zulay Kitchen Citrus Juicer made it super easy. Smile.

Question for you: How do you like your lemonade?  Sweet, or Tart?
Do you prefer a sweeter taste of sugar, or do you like a more tart taste of lemon?


Lemonade, orange juice.
Just so you know, I did squeeze three oranges just to test the Citrus Juicer out. It was just as quick and easy to do as the lemons were. Don’t you just love fresh squeezed orange juice with breakfast to start your day?

Maybe once oranges become a bit more plentiful (and cheaper) we’ll make some Orangeade for you as well. Stay tuned.

And, just think about all the great things you can make with the various juices. Lemon Pies, Key Lime Pies, Orange Sherbets, Lemon Pound Cakes, and the list goes on and on. You’ll have the juicer to do them all. Smile.


Lemonade, cleanup is easy.
Clean up for the Zulay Professional Citrus Juicer was super simple too. Just lift the strainer and bottom of the strainer cup out of the juicer, then wash them with some hot soapy water. Only two small pieces to actually wash and both of those are dishwasher safe.

I took a damp paper towel and wiped under the top part of the squeezer section and then just wiped down the rest of the juicer. Whew, even though it was easy, I’m ready for a glass of Lemonade. How about you?


Lemonade, enjoy.

With temperatures at 98-100F degrees here in the South for the past few days, this Zulay Citrus Juicer couldn’t have arrived at a better time. I’ve already placed more lemons on my shopping list. Smile

I’ve always enjoyed Lemonade as mentioned at the beginning of this post, but I think I’ll be enjoying much more of it throughout the rest of the summer now that I have this awesome juicer.

A very special THANK YOU to the folks at Zulay Kitchen for providing the juicer and letting me review it in my own words. I love it!!!


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Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

  • Author: Steve Gordon
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: Half Gallon


Fresh Squeezed Lemonade is a great thirst quencher when days get really hot. We test and review the Zulay Professional Citrus Juicer and make our favorite Southern Lemonade with this recipe.



1 cup sugar
1 cup hot water
3/4 cup lemon juice
5 cups cold water


Place sugar in half gallon sized pitcher.
Add hot water.
Stir well until sugar is fully dissolved.
Cut and squeeze the lemons to extract juice.
Add lemon juice to simple syrup in the pitcher.
Add cold water.
Stir again until fully combined.
Chill prior to serving. Ice is optional.


This is the way I like my Lemonade. You might prefer something more tart, or more sweet. Maybe even less tart, or less sweet. Keep a recipe of your combinations of sugar syrup and lemon juice to determine how you and your family like your fresh squeezed lemonade the best. Make it your own!

Keywords: Fresh Squeezed Lemonade, lemonade from scratch, Zulay, Citrus Juicer, simple syrup

Your Comments:

Have you ever made Fresh Squeezed Lemonade? What memories do you have of Lemonade or juicing lemons?

Share your Comments with us. It will only take a minute or two for you to leave your comments in the section below.

Just remember, all comments are moderated.  That just means that I personally read each and everyone before they are approved for viewing on our family friendly website. Thank you in advance for sharing.

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Be Blessed!!!


You might also like this: Eagle Brand Lemon Cream Pie

Or this:  Citrus Marmalade

Maybe this one:  Southern Peach Cobbler


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Category: Misc, Reviews-News

About the Author ()

Award Winning Food Preservationist, Fisherman, Author of three cookbooks. "From Mama's Big Oval Table, From Mama's Big Oval Table - BOOK TWO and Carolina Christmas Sweets and Appetizers." Online Contributor to Our State Magazine Newsletter.

Comments (65)

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  1. Mary B. says:

    Love lemonade all year long! I’ve noticed southerners like a lot more sugar than we northerners. It must be due to sugar costing so much in the grocery store and it was more plentiful in the south. Just my two cents. Love your blog, Steve, keep up the good work.

  2. Bett says:

    Sweet and tart. I too love the Chick-fi-let version.

  3. David Lee Utz says:

    Steve, I like the taste of the sweet not to sweet with a good pucker tart end note.

  4. Jo says:

    I think I am still looking for that perfect balance of sugar, water and lemon juice. I can’t wait to try your recipe, maybe it will be the magic one.
    I definitely like mine on the tart side. There is nothing more refreshing on a hot summer day than cold lemonade. Thanks for all your great recipes.

  5. Laurell says:

    I prefer my lemonade on the sweeter side, much like my sweet tea. I also like to make it strong so when the ice melts it doesn’t weaken the taste too much. Our “feels like” temp was close to 110 today! That’ll melt your ice! Blessings!

  6. Ann in Ohio says:

    I think your amount of sugar is perfect. I was raised on southern sweet tea as well. When my doctor says I should cut back on the sugar, I tell him I’ll die happy.

  7. Bill says:

    Hi Steve,

    I prefer my lemonade to have a balance of sweet and tart, which is really hard to achieve. I guess if I had to make a choice I would be leaning to the tart side.

    Your new juicer looks awesome. I still have one of those messy plastic things. Time to upgrade! ;-}

    Your recipe gets a five from me!

  8. Teddi Hocker says:

    Sweet—-just like Steve! Love your newsletter and recipes!

  9. Autumn says:

    I like my lemonade mostly sweet. A little tartness is okay but not too much! I enjoy your newsletters and your stories.

  10. Susan Cantrell says:

    I love lemon anything. When it comes to lemonade, I like it more sweet than tart. I enjoy your homey newsletter and down-to-earth, authentic Southern recipes. Thanks for brightening Mondays.

  11. Suzanne DeFratis says:

    Good day. I prefer my lemonade to be on the tart side. I don’t care for anything sweet. I even drink my tea unsweetened.
    I do enjoy your recipes. Keep them coming, please. I just adjust the sugar content.

  12. Robin Rabie says:

    The sweeter the better.

  13. Sherry says:

    Good day,Steve

    I prefer my lemonade on the sweeter side without drowning out the lemon.

  14. Tina says:

    I like my lemonade on the sweeter side

  15. Dianne M says:

    I like my lemonade a little on the tart side…Too much sugar and you’ve got syrup, instead of lemonade.

  16. Doris says:


  17. libby rouse says:

    I like my lemonade sweet!

  18. Cindy says:

    Gotta be TART so there’s no doubting it’s LEMONade!

  19. Pam says:

    Tart with a shot of bourbon….. smile

  20. Debbi says:

    Personally, I love lemonade with a nice tartness to it. I find that is the best thirst quenching drink when you are in the midst of the dog days of summer. Always reminds me of when I was young and the fireflies were out at night, summer just seemed like it would last forever❤️.

  21. David Wiley says:

    Hi Steve, I prefer my lemonade sweet with a bit of tartness in it.

  22. Barbara says:

    I like mine tart with a little bit of sweet.

  23. Preston says:

    I like my Lemonade with just the right amount of sugar to compliment the tart of the Lemons, If I could get Chick-fil-A recipe on there mixture for Lemonade, I would one Happy Man…

  24. Maggie says:

    I prefer slightly tart lemonade. It’s one of my favorite summer drinks! Really, I love about anything with lemons!

  25. Tim S. says:

    Lemonade isn’t lemonade if it isn’t tart. Add just enough sugar to take the edge off of the lemon and you’ve got the perfect lemonade!

  26. Debbie says:

    I like my lemonade more tart. At the farmers market in Raleigh they make the best lemonade and orangeade always with fresh lemons and oranges, mix both together, so good!!

  27. Angela James says:

    Yep more sweet is for me.

  28. Alicia Day says:

    I prefer my lemonade a little more on the tart side. I never squeeze my own lemons, but I’m sure this recipe would be delicious.

  29. cj thomas says:

    On the tart side. I love lemon.

  30. Cheryl Ann says:

    Growing up, both the tea and lemonade was sweet as can be! Loved it! But now I seem to have an internal limit on how sweet is too sweet! I think because I no longer use much sugar in general- a little bit goes a long way with me now. I stopped drinking pop about 20 years ago-and now can’t stand it. My coffee is now black when it too used to be loaded down. I drink a lot of water- always have though-even as a kid I sported a tall glass bottom copper mug of water with me wherever I went! Long before it was a thing! Dr constantly checked me for diabetes-cause drinking all that water was not considered normal back then! Funny how times have changed! Thank you for your newsletter-it really makes my day-My Family, The people I lived these memories with have all passed away-your updates allow me to reminisce and that is such a nice gift!

  31. Joan G says:

    Hmmm. I’m in the middle. I prefer not to have sweet and I prefer not to have tart.‍♀️

  32. John Lapitsky says:

    Tart! Tart! Tart! Sweet lemonade just makes me thirstier….

  33. Kathy Wolfe says:

    I’m straddling the fence…sweet/tart balanced.

  34. Karen White says:

    I prefer a balance but would lean more on the tart side

  35. sue morton says:

    I prefer the perfect balance of tart and sweet. If it’s too sweet, then the lemonade is not thirst-quenching and if it’s too tart, then it would be hard to drink it.

  36. Beverly says:

    I prefer my lemonade on the sweet side. Your newsletter with all the tobacco memories are so true. I grew up working in tobacco too. It was hard work, tobacco would be wet first thing in the morning and the sun would come out, then be so hot. We also primed by hand and initially used a mule to pull the tobacco sled. I come from a family of 10 kids and we all worked in the fields. We had to get up around 4 am and be in the field as soon as light enough to see to get that barn of tobacco pulled. Those were the days of family togetherness. I share your memories.

  37. Corky Hightower says:

    I like a light sweetness, with a good tart lemon taste.

  38. Robert Opalko says:

    Tart for me!

  39. Mary says:

    Lemonade has to be SWEET just like tea. If you’re going to the trouble to make fresh…do it right with sweet!

  40. Jim says:

    Sweet for me!

  41. Page Morden says:

    I prefer tart lemonade. Make all my lemon pies on the tart side.

  42. Annie Wolford says:

    I like it sweet! 🙂 Made this just after reading your newsletter last week… Delicious!! I made it with Meyer lemons and raw sugar, exactly according to recipe proportions. Was the most amazing lemonade I’ve ever tasted! Lol 😀 YUM!

  43. David Williams says:

    I prefer a balance between tart and sweet, but if I were to err it would be on the sweet side.

  44. M. Winborne says:

    I love lemonade. Being a NC gal I like my sugar water with a side of lemon! So sweet, sweet, is the way to go. Love the lemon squeezing contraption but I wouldn’t have the space to store it. Keep up the good work!

  45. Karen says:

    I like my lemonade a little on the tart side. Just a bit of a pucker.

  46. Annie Oakley says:

    I love my lemonade with lots of sugar. Never been a fan of sour anything.

  47. Kathryn Ransom says:

    This recipe is exactly what my Mother used to make and now I make. The sweet/tart ratio is perfect in this recipe. I wouldn’t change it a bit.

  48. Annie says:

    I prefer my lemonade on the tart side. Thanks for the review – I need to check into getting myself a juicer.

  49. Emily says:

    I am with you as to liking lemonade sweet. My Mom used to make sweet lemonade for Sunday lunch. She had a special pitcher she would use, which I still treasure for the memory of all those wonderful Sunday meals.

  50. Clarnita Smith says:

    I love sweet lemonade!!

  51. milner smith says:

    when i was 13, on a trip from columbus, ga. down “the river” to the gulf, we would stop at small towns along the way. the first thing we did was find a local drug store. they all had soda fountains back then with the best cold fresh squeezed lemonade. not too tart, not too sweet, just the way i like it.

  52. Barbara Jenkins says:

    I like my lemonade more tart than sweet. Love this juicer!

  53. Shirley Ponder says:

    I prefer my lemonade a little on the tart side.

  54. Deb says:

    Hi Steve,
    I’m answering the lemonade question… not too sweet but then again, not too tart. I’ve always been a medium kind of girl. Best of both worlds. Smile.

  55. Beth says:

    More sugar for me:) I need to do this for my children before they go back to school.

  56. cj thomas says:

    I want that juicer. So tired of grinding away with my vintage glass model, and my old hands don’t work so well anymore.

    I am also an advocate giving my lemons and limes of a brief stint in the microwave before squeezing.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi CJ, It really is a nice juicer. I’m thankful for the opportunity to receive one. I have the old glass juicer as well and have used one for many years. Guess I just need to put it aside now. Smile. Thank you for your comments. I greatly appreciate your visits and your support. I hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  57. Fanica says:

    Freshly made lemonade is the only way to go. The plastic lemons or bottled juice they sell in the store gives the lemonade an artificial taste. I roll my lemons on the counter squeezing genty to release the juice before cutting them in half and I use an electric citrus juicer. I will be trying your recipe soon. Thank you!

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Fanica, I always rolled my lemons too, but I didn’t see any difference when using this juicer. It just squeezes it all out anyway. Smile. And YES, there is a difference in taste between the fresh lemons and just the bottled juice. Thank you for sharing your comments with us today. I appreciate your visits and hope you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  58. Deanna Wrenn says:

    I do like the juicer, but I prefer to stab a small hole in the bottom side near the”round” point and place the lemon in a measuring cup and microwave for 25-30 seconds. Remove from microwave and the cup. Squeeze into the pitcher you plan on using, and repeat with the other lemons. I find that I get well over half a gain of the amount of juice when I do this. Hope you will try this yourself. Deanna Wrenn

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Deanna, The juicer is indeed very nice. I’ve been having fun working with it. I use to always roll my lemons on the counter top to soften them up before slicing them to get the juice. And, I’ve tried placing them in the microwave for a few seconds, but not exactly the way you described. You’ve just got to do what works for you. With the juicer, I just cut the lemons in half and squeeze. It worked great. I know it’s not something most folks would have in their kitchen because of it’s size, unless you have lemon and orange trees growing in your backyard. Smile. I’m just thinking now that maybe I should open up a lemonade stand out by the sidewalk. Smile. Thank you for sharing your comments. I appreciate your visits and all of your support of our recipes. I hope you’ll continue to visit with us often. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

  59. Kathryn Ransom says:

    Steve, This recipe brings back so many memories of my Mother making lemonade in the summer. She used the old fashioned Federal green depression glass juicer/reamer. We kids helped her by reaming the lemons and boy was that fun !! Even more fun was to drink the delicious fresh lemonade we had just helped to make. Thank you for sharing this recipe and as always be blessed.

    • Steve Gordon says:

      Hi Kathryn, Thank you for sharing your memories of making lemonade. I have an old glass juicer, but not the green one you mention. Smile. Is it still in the family by any chance? I appreciate you sharing your memories of making lemonade with us. I appreciate your visits and your support and do hop you’ll stop by again… real soon. Be Blessed!!! -Steve

      • Kathryn Ransom says:

        Steve, Thank you for your response. Yes, the old Federal green depression glass juicer is in my possession. Love your Southern recipes and hope you continue for a long time.

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