How to Make Simple Syrups and Infused Liquor

353

with
Test Kitchen Chef
undefined
Savory Spice Shop

You’ve heard of simple syrups. They’re often what are responsible for the vanilla part of your nonfat vanilla soy latte or the lavender in that fancy gin drink at your favorite cocktail bar. Simple syrups are super easy to put together (hence the name!) but the flavors they add to drinks, vinaigrettes, desserts, and marinades are anything but basic.

The standard simple syrup is 1 part sugar and 1 part water, boiled together just until the sugar is dissolved—you can adjust that by using 2 parts sugar for a thicker, sweeter result or 2 parts water for a more subtly sweet thin syrup. Making it plain is fine—it’s a good sweetener for iced tea or coffee—but with an addition or two to the boiling syrup, you can add a ton of effortless flavor.

Try using Honey Powder instead of
sugar in your homemade simple syrups

Skip the Plain Sugar

One of the simplest ways to up your simple syrup game is to switch out the regular sugar for an alternative.

Try using Maple Sugar, Honey Powder, agave nectar, or even stevia instead of granulated sugar. A seasoned sugar—like any of our Vanilla Bean Sugars, Whiskey Barrel Smoked Sugar, Black Onyx Chocolate Sugar, or Cinnamon Sugar—adds both flavor and sweetness in one easy step. Various sweeteners will provide different levels of sweetness, so experiment and find your favorite ratio of sweetener to water.

Add-Ins

A few years ago, the Savory Test Kitchen created dozens of simple syrups and taste tested them all.

Favorite combos from this experiment included:

Try these in recipes like Grenadine-Infused Cupcakes, Urfa-Freckled Mango Smoothie, and the adorably named Bumbleberry Iced Tea.

Coconut-Lime Simple Syrup was another hit using a different technique: substituting the water in the ratio for another liquid—in this case, coconut milk. Helllooooo Piña & Lime Colada.

Infused Liquors

Psssttt…

If you’re making cocktails, simple syrups aren’t the only ways to infuse flavors. If you’re like me and prefer drinks on the “dryer” side, you can totally use dried seeds, herbs, and flowers to infuse the alcohol itself. Of course, I had to experiment with this a little in the Test Kitchen!

For the purpose of testing the flavors, I made the infusions fairly strong, with 1 tsp. of the seasoning in a jar with 1/4 cup of the given liquor. I let the infusion sit for about a week. The flavors will get stronger the longer you let the infusion go. My taste testers and I tried a little bit of each in cold seltzer. Here are some of the combos we loved:

This was a great suggestion from Stephanie, our Warehouse Operations Manager. It had all the warm spices that would be perfect for adding to eggnog or sangria in autumn and winter.

I’ll admit, lavender and gin is a longtime favorite combo of mine, and I had all the intentions of testing that out—until someone in the office mentioned lavender lemonade and I was sold.

Anise is one of those controversial flavors—you love it or you hate it. I love it, so I really enjoyed this twist for a simple vodka soda, but if you’re not a fan of the black licorice flavor, this probably isn’t for you.

Fenugreek has a super maple-y scent, so we liked the smooth and sweet flavor it added to the whiskey, with a nice subtle bitterness.

This was, without a doubt, declared the winner of the experiment. It tasted bright and had that unique spicy citrus flavor that only ginger can provide. Perfect to have on hand for more complex whiskey cocktails or for a quick drink with seltzer. Add a squeeze of lime and you’ve got an easy Kentucky Mule, no ginger beer needed.

 

If you want to do some experimenting on your own, we thought of a few more suggestions:

 

What simple syrups or infused alcohols will you be trying out? Let us know in the comments below! Don’t forget to tag us in all of your social media posts so we can see your awesome Savory creations.

 


Comments on this Article


No comments on this article. Be the first!

Add a comment:


Name:


Email Address: (will not be made public)




To help us reduce spam please click on the symbols in the image below







Subscribe via RSS Feed:

Tags

5280 Magazine adobo Alabama All Natural allspice Ashlee Redger autumn Back to School Bacon baking bananas barbacoa Barbecue barbeque BBQ BBQ Recipes BBQ Sauce BBQ Spices beans beef Behind the Product Behind the Scenes bison Black Dip Blackening bloody mary boiled brine bouillon bread Breakfast brine brining buffalo sauce buffalo wings burger Burgers cajun Cajun Blackening california paprika Caramel Caribbean Carolina BBQ Carolina Reaper Cedar Plank chai chasing bbq Chicharron Salt chicken chile Chile Flakes chiles chili chimichurri chinese new year chocolate cinnamon Cobbler cocoa coconut coffee cold brine Columbian Columbus Day comfort food condiments cookbook cookies cooking with seeds corned beef creole Cuban Cue Glue curry dairy free dairy-free Denver dessert Desserts dinner dip dip recipes dips DIY DIY Recipe Kits dressing dressings dried herbs Dry Brine Easter Easy Dinner Easy Meals Eggs extract extract recipes extracts fall Fall Recipes Family-Friendly Father's Day fish flavored drinks fresh herbs fudge game day Gardening garlic Georgia Georgia Peach Spice gift gift guide gift ideas gift packs gift sets gifts gluten gluten free gluten-free gluten-free menus gluten-free recipes gluten-free spices Grill grilling Growing From Seed guacamole Ham harissa harvest hatch green chile healthy Healthy cooking healthy eating healthy recipes herb recipes herbs holiday holiday brunch holiday cocktail party Holiday Cookies Holiday Gifts Holiday Meal Holiday Meals holiday menu holiday open house Holiday Traditions hot hot sauce hungarian paprika ice cream Illinois Irish jalapeno Jamaican Jamaican Jerk jerk Kansas City KC Barbecue Kebab Kentucky ketchup lamb Latin Lemon Lemon Bars Lemon Pepper lime Liquid Brine makrut mardi gras marinade Marinades Marinate Marinating marninate mayonnaise Meal Planning meatball Meatless Monday Mediterranean Memphis Memphis BBQ menus Mexican Meyer Lemon Middle Eastern MM Local mustard mustard seeds Mutton New Year's North Carolina onion organic paleo paprika Peach Peaches pepper peppercorns pickles popcorn pork Pork Chops Potluck pumpkin Pumpkin Pie Pumpkin Spice Pyramid Peak Quiche Quick and Easy recipes resolutions ribs Rudspice salad Salad Dressing salads Salmon salsa salt Salt Block Cooking salt free salt-free salt-free recipes salt-free seasonings salty Sauce savory savory spice Scallops seafood seed to seed seeds seedtoseed Shrimp Side Dishes sides Skewers Slow Cooker Smoke Cans smoked paprika Smoothie snacks sofrito soup South Carolina southwestern Spanish spanish paprika spice Spice 'n Easy Spice Club Spice it Forward spice to plate spicy spring Sriracha St Louis St. Louis St. Patrick's Day Steak Stocking Stuffer stocking stuffers sugar sugar free sugar free seasonings sugar-free summer summer recipes super bowl sweet Test Kitchen Texas Texas Barbecue Texas BBQ Texas Spices Thanksgiving Toast toasting seeds tomato Top Chef traditions turkey Valentine's Day vanilla Vanilla Beans Vegetarian vindaloo Weeknight Meals Whole Hog whole seeds wings winter Women's Bean Project