Vodka Lemonade

Meet the ultimate summer refresher, the Vodka Lemonade cocktail. This easy, two-ingredient drink is perfectly balanced between sweet-and-sour lemon and a punch of vodka.

A glass of lemon-based cocktail surrounded by a cutting board and lemons.

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Vodka Lemonade recipe

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. And when life gives you lemonade, you make cocktails. That’s my motto, at least.

Lemonade makes the perfect cocktail mixer. It lends its cool sweet tart flavors when mixed with alcohol to create delicious drinks, like this limoncello lemonade.

Vodka and lemonade is a classic combination. Vodka is light and flavorless, and good lemonade will mask any alcoholic flavor, leaving you with a refreshing lemonade cocktail.

Let’s get to know this easy cocktail recipe, the ideal ratio and how to make it even better.

More two-ingredient drink recipes: Cape CodderGreyhoundScrewdriverVodka Soda

A lemon twist on a skewer over a yellow cocktail around cut lemons on a white marble surface.

Why you’ll love this recipe

The Vodka Lemonade is a vibrant, cool and refreshing cocktail full of flavor, and you’ll love it, especially in the summer months.

  • Made with just two ingredients, it’s a cinch to throw together.
  • It’s light, refreshing and full of classic lemonade flavor. Perfect for a hot summer day! 
  • You can customize it with simple syrups, flavored lemonades and different types of alcohol.

This easy lemon cocktail is perfect for drinking by the lake, beach or pool, enjoying at a picnic or cookout or even happy hour inside when it’s too hot to be outside.

You could even make a big batch and serve it at your next party, like a wedding shower, bachelorette party or any kind of summer soirée. Plus, you can serve plain lemonade to any non-drinkers present and no one will feel out of place.

A lemonade cocktail with vodka and a twisted lemon slice on a skewer sits on a woven coaster.

Tools & glassware

To make this cocktail, you really only need a jigger or measuring cup to help you get the right measurements to make a perfectly balanced cocktail.

If you’re making your own lemonade (which I recommend if you really want to make this a next level cocktail), you’ll need a citrus squeezer or electric juicer to get the juice from fresh lemons.

You’ll also need to get out a saucepan to make the simple syrup that sweetens the lemonade.

A highball glass is ideal for serving this drink, but you can use any glass. Just halve the recipe if it’s a smaller glass.

02/20/2024 01:53 pm GMT
a cutting board with lemons

Ingredients

You only need two simple ingredients for this cocktail, so quality matters. 

Here’s what to stock up on at the grocery store:

Lemonade: You can use any kind of lemonade to make this recipe. Regular lemonade or flavored lemonade, homemade lemonade or store-bought lemonade, fresh or from a powdered mix — it’s up to you! The brand Simply Lemonade is my favorite store-bought lemonade. 

Homemade lemonade made with fresh lemon juice is very worth the effort if you have the time. You’ll need sugar, water and fresh lemons. 

Vodka: Plain vodka is what is classically used in this recipe, but you can have fun with flavors here too, like citrus vodka, spicy vodka or sweet tea vodka. Spring for a quality vodka, as cheaper vodka can have a more cloying, alcoholic taste. Tito’s, Reyka and Deep Eddy are favorite vodka brands to try. 

Garnishes: Finish it off with fresh fruit, a sprig of fresh herbs like thyme or mint or a piece of candied lemon. Slices of lemon and fresh strawberries would be the perfect fruity twist.  

A close up of the lemon twist garnish on a lemonade cocktail.

Variations and substitutions

Try one of these variations on this recipe to find your perfect summer drink:  

Vodka limeade: Use fresh limeade instead for a sweet-tart twist.

Flavored vodka lemonade: Use lemonade variations like blueberry lemonade or strawberry lemonade. A flavored simple syrup, like peach syrup, also works. Add it when making the lemonade or simply add a splash to the cocktail and stir it in.

Sugar-free vodka lemonade: Use sugar-free simple syrup to make the lemonade. This will make this recipe so light and refreshing, without the added sugar.

John Daly drink: This one’s a boozy spin on the Arnold Palmer drink, which is made with vodka plus half lemonade and half iced tea.

Sparkling vodka lemonade: Add a splash of club soda, ginger beer, ginger ale or champagne to the drink to give it some bubbles. Or use sparkling lemonade instead of regular.

Frozen vodka lemonade: Blend up all the ingredients with ice for a slushy consistency.

Vodka is poured over ice into a glass from a stainless steel jigger.
Lemonade is poured from a pitcher into a glass with ice and vodka.

How to make a Vodka Lemonade drink

Vodka lemonade is an easy cocktail. Here’s what to do:

  1. Add ice to a glass. This tutorial on making clear ice is a great way to elevate your cocktails at home.
  2. Next, add vodka over top of the ice.
  3. Then, top with the lemonade. Stir gently.
  4. Garnish it with a piece of lemon, a fresh mint sprig and maybe a cute straw.

If you are making a few, mix them up in a cocktail shaker to save time, but if you’re just making one this is an extra step. 

You can also prepare a large batch in a big pitcher for a party. Just be sure to label it appropriately if you are serving a non-alcoholic version too. 

A lemon slice twisted on a skewer is placed onto a lemon cocktail.

Tips & tricks

Here are some tips and tricks for making this recipe:

  • Use the best-quality lemonade you can.
  • Don’t use the cheapest vodka. Settle for something middle-of-the-road price-wise.
  • Jazz up the presentation with a garnish, like a lemon slice or fresh herbs.
  • Try other flavors of lemonade for fun twists. For example, strawberry-flavored would make strawberry vodka lemonade. 
Two vodka lemonades garnished with lemon slices on rattan coasters rest near herb sprigs.

What to serve with Vodka Lemonade

Vodka Lemonade is so good with summery foods.

Summer appetizers: Serve vodka lemonade with fruity appetizers like pineapple salsa or fig crostini. You could also go salty with popcorn shrimp or caprese skewers.

Main dishes: A summery salad with a lemon balsamic vinaigrette would be great, or go for a lemony entrée like creamy lemon chicken.

Citrus desserts: Enjoy lemonade with sweet and sour desserts like margarita barslemon tea cakes or lemon drop cookies.

A vodka lemonade sits on a rattan coaster.

FAQ

What drink is made with vodka and lemonade?

When vodka and lemonade are combined, it’s usually called a Vodka Lemonade. This drink is a sweet-tart sipper that’s light and refreshing.

What is the best alcohol to put in lemonade?

Lemonade can be mixed with many spirits, but vodka is the post popular because of its clear, colorless and flavorless qualities, allowing the lemonade flavors to shine through. You can also use gin, rum, tequila and bourbon or even a lemon spirit like limoncello.

More lemon cocktails

— Did you make this recipe? —

Please leave a ★★★★★ review or comment below.

A glass of lemon-based cocktail surrounded by a cutting board and lemons.

Vodka Lemonade

Yield: 1 cocktail
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
The most refreshing summer cocktail is the Vodka Lemonade. Combine high-quality vodka with fresh lemonade for the ultimate refresher for hot days.
5 from 1 vote
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ingredients

  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 4 ounces lemonade
  • lemon slices for garnish
  • fresh herbs for garnish

instructions

  • Fill a highball glass with ice. Add vodka.
  • Top with lemonade. Stir gently with a bar spoon.
  • Garnish with lemon slices or wedges and fresh herbs.

notes

Here are some tips and tricks for making this recipe:
  • Quality of ingredients matters in a two-ingredient drink.
  • Use the best-quality lemonade you can. 
  • Don’t use the cheapest vodka you can find. Go for for a middle-of-the-road brand, like Tito’s or Deep Eddy.
  • Jazz up the presentation with a garnish, like a lemon slice or fresh herbs.

recommended products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

nutrition information

Yield: 1 cocktail

amount per serving:

Serving: 1g Calories: 188kcal Carbohydrates: 14g Sodium: 8mg Potassium: 1mg Sugar: 13g Iron: 0.01mg
did you make this recipe?Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram with the hashtag #feastandwestrecipes!

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