This DIY Homemade sour mix is an essential mixer for at home bars. With only 4 ingredients, this easy recipe will really elevate your cocktails to the next level!
Sour mix, also know as sweet and sour mix, is a very easy base for many different cocktail recipes. It consists of simple syrup (the sweet part) and citrus juice (the sour).
It’s perfect for parties because no one needs to sit behind the bar continuous squeeing lemons and limes. You can make a batch in advance, and you’re good to go for fresh, delicious cocktails in a moments notice.
Sugar for Simple Syrup
A simple syrup is a mix of water and sugar in a 1 to 1 ratio, simmered until the sugar dissolves in the water. It’s exactly what is sounds – super simple to make.
And while a 1 to 1 ratio is standard, the nice thing about simple syrup is, it is totally customizable. Want it more sweet, add more sugar. Less sweet, add less sugar.
You can also substitute honey, agave or other types of sugars for a more interesting and complex flavor.
Types and Amount of Citrus
While lemons and limes are the most common sour ingredients, you can easily mix it up with other citrus!
I personally prefer my mix pretty sour, so I like two cups citrus. But, if you like a more mild tartness, you can do one and a half cups citrus for a more mild flavor.
For this recipe I used 1 1/2 juice and 1/2 cup lime juice. But, you can also add grapefruit or orange juice for a more complex flavor!
Fresh squeeze lemon and lime juice is the best, but I’ve found that store bought pure lemon and lime juice like this brand is perfectly acceptable and still a million times better than the store bought sweet and sour mix. If you go the pre-bottled route, just make sure the juice is not from concentrate.
How to Make
Step 1: Make Simple Syrup
All you do is boil 1 cup of sugar with one cup of water. That’s it! Once the sugar has dissolved completely you let it cool and you’re good to go.
Step 2: Add Citrus Juice
Once the simple syrup has cooled, add the juice and shake it up. That’s it! It’s so easy and so much better than store bought.
Best cocktails with Sour Mix
This is the basis for so many cocktails, including whiskey sours, vodka sours, and margaritas.
Typically whiskey and vodka sours are all lemon juice and margaritas are made with all lime juice in their mix. Often times, and egg white is added to whiskey and vodka sours for frothy cocktail.
But again, it’s really matter of preference! Try it out and enjoy. You can always adjust the recipe to your liking the next time you make it.
This recipe will last 2-3 weeks in an airtight container in the fridge. I used a mason jar, which works great, but you can also use a pourable glass container like these, or a true home bar optional like these.
Homemade Sour Mix
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 cup fresh squeed lemon juice see notes
- ½ cups fresh squeed lime juice see notes
- Mix water and sugar on medium to medium high heat until the sugar has completely dissolved.
- Remove from heat and let cool.
- Mix in freshly squeezed lemon and lime juice.
- Store in an airtight container until ready to use in your favorite cocktails.
- This recipe is completely customizable. You can do all lemon juice (for whiskey or vodka sours) or all lime (for margaritas), or add grapefruit or orange juice for a nice twist.
- You can also decrease the amount of citrus to 1 1/2 cups total for a less tart mix.
- Honey or agave can be used in place of the granulated sugar.
- Fresh squeeze lemon and lime juice is the best, but I’ve found that store bought pure lemon and lime juice like this brand is perfectly acceptable and still a million times better than the store bought sweet and sour mix. Just make sure it's not from concentrate.
- This mix will last about 2 weeks in an airtight container in the fridge.