Summer is here, which means rising temps...and as the temperature rises, so too does the desire for cold beverages.
If you're like many of my patients, it's likely that you want to enjoy summer and enjoy an icy treat...without wrecking your nutrition plans.
To that end, I have just the solution for you! Infused waters and infused ices are bursting with flavor, free of non-nutritive ingredients like artificial flavors, colors, and sweeteners, and they pack in a powerful antioxidant punch!
Here are 4 infused waters and 4 infused ice recipes that are perfect for better summer hydration.
4 Infused Waters + 4 Infused Ices
Strawberry + Basil
The Health Benefit: Strawberries are chock-full of vitamin C, while basil boasts anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties!
Make Strawberry + Basil Infused Water: Wash berries and basil; halve berries. Add strawberry halves and whole basil leaves to water. Let sit for at least 10 minutes for the flavors to infuse.
Make Strawberry + Basil Infused Ice: Wash strawberries and basil. Mince berries into fine pieces; finely mince basil. Add berries and basil to the wells of an ice cube tray. Add water. Freeze.
Parsley + Cucumber + Lime
The Health Benefit: Parsley is packed with vitamin K, vitamin C, and antioxidant nutrients like beta-carotene and luteolin. Cucumber and lemon provide an exciting nutrient profile, too. This blend packs in a flurry of flavor with just a tiny amount of produce.
Make Parsley + Cucumber + Lime Infused Water: Wash parsley, cucumber, and lime. Chop cucumber into 1/4 inch slices. Add parsley and cucumber to water. Squeeze in lime juice, to taste. Let sit for at least 10 minutes for the flavors to infuse. Because of the acidity, drink this combo through a straw!
Make Parsley + Cucumber + Lime Infused Ice: Wash parsley, cucumber, and lime. Finely mince parsley and cucumber. Add to the wells of an ice cube tray. Add lime zest to ice cube trays. Add water. Freeze.
Blueberry + Sage
The Health Benefit: The calming, warm flavor of sage pairs perfectly with the mildly sweet blueberry, with plenty of nutrition, too. Sage is full of flavonoids and phenolic acids, including rosemarinic acid (also found in sage's sister herb, rosemary). Plus, blueberries bring plenty of anthocyanins to the table (or rather, the glass).
Make Blueberry + Sage Infused Water: Wash blueberries and sage. Add blueberries and sage leaves to water. Let sit for at least 10 minutes for the flavors to infuse.
Make Blueberry + Sage Infused Ice: Wash blueberries and sage. Chop berries into fine pieces; finely mince sage. Add some chopped blueberries, some whole blueberries, and minced sage to the wells of an ice cube tray. Add water. Freeze.
Mint + Lemon + Ginger
The Health Benefit: This infused combo is bold on flavor...and it may help belly blunders. From motion sickness to pregnancy induced nausea, mint and ginger have traditionally been used to soothe upset stomachs and indigestion.
Make Mint + Lemon + Ginger Infused Water: Wash mint leaves, lemon, and ginger. Add whole mint leaves and a knob of peeled ginger to water. Squeeze in lemon juice, to taste. Let sit for at least 10 minutes for the flavors to infuse. Because of the acidity, drink this combo through a straw!
Make Mint + Lemon + Ginger Infused Ice: Wash mint leaves, lemon, and ginger. Finely mince mint leaves and a knob of peeled ginger, and add to the well of an ice cube tray. Add lemon zest to ice cube trays. Add water. Freeze.
Infused waters and ices make it easy for you to get your summer sip on, healthfully!
So how can you enjoy infused waters and ices more often this summer? Here are my tips:
- Add produce/herbs to your water bottle. Some water bottles (like this one) are made especially for infusing!
- Make a large pitcher of infused water and sip on it throughout the day. Enjoy the infused waters plain, then eat the berries when finished with your sips or add them to your next smoothie.
- Have ingredients on hand to make infused water for when you're craving something sweeter than plain water.
- Fill a large pitcher with water and fruit/herbs to serve at backyard BBQs this summer.
- When making infused ice, serve the infused ice over water or sparking water for a fancy flair.
- Serve infused ice with a 1/2 glass of white wine and a 1/2 glass of sparkling water for a light and fancy boozy beverage.
- Experiment with fun ice cube molds - some trays feature big ice cubes, some trays are for mini ice cubes, and some ice cube trays work better for putting ice inside a water bottle!
What will you sip on this summer? Share it with me in the comments below or over on Facebook! I love hearing what you have to say!