Water is so good for you.
Drinking water helps you stay hydrated, helps keep your skin healthy and can even help you lose weight.
Water is abundant (at least here in the US) and is practically free.
Yet, I constantly hear people say they don’t like water or that water is boring. It doesn’t have to be!
With the simple addition of some fresh cut herbs and/or slices of fresh fruits or veggies, you can turn your water into something that is not only tasty but is good for you. As the temperatures begin to climb and spring quickly turns into summer we need to be taking in more water. Plus, the addition of the herbs, fruits and veggies can bring you some added health benefits.
When developing infused waters, there is no specific recipe. You have to experiment with the things that sound good to you. I honestly never make an infused water the same way twice, today I will outline some of my favorite herbs, fruits and veggies and let you develop a recipe that speaks to you.
We have really great tap water so that is what I use. If you are not blessed to have great tap water then bottled water is a great alternative.
Infused sparkling water is really delicious and refreshing too. Plus, the added fizz can satisfy that soda craving. If you have a home soda maker you can carbonate the infused water for a sparkling treat. If you use bottled sparkling water you will want to consume the water within a few hours as the bubbles will quickly dissipate once the bottle has been opened.
I like to work with cold water, but I have heard of others who boil the water before pouring it over the herbs. I think cold water that’s allowed to steep in the fridge for a few hours works just fine!
I use a 2-quart pitcher and refill once or twice for up to 48 hours. At this time, all the herbs, fruits and veggies should be discarded.
I love fresh herbs. They are tasty and have some wonderful healing properties. Here are some of my favorites:
Basil – Basil is typically associated with Italian food, but is actually very versatile. Basil is believed to have anti-aging properties and can also reduce inflammation and swelling. Use a large handful of leaves per 2-quarts of water.
Mint – There are many varieties of mint available. Spearmint is my favorite. Mint is believed to help with digestion and improve bowel function. It is incredibly refreshing and is my favorite infusion herb. Use a large handful of leaves per 2-quarts of water.
Rosemary – A wonderful antioxidant that is thought to boost memory, Rosemary can also help improve circulation, reduce muscle soreness and help reduce bad breath. Use 2-3 stems per 2-quarts of water.
Thyme – Thyme is thought to help with respiratory problems such as cough and congestion associated with cold and flu. Thyme can also help reduce acne. Use 5-6 stems of thyme per 2-quarts of water.
Sage – Sage is an anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory. Sage can also help reduce throat problems and is believed to stimulate brain function. Use 10 – 12 leaves per 2-quarts of water.
Fruits and Veggies
Cucumbers – Peel and slice. Add 1/2 of a large cucumber per 2 quarts of water.
Melon – Cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon are all delicious. Remove the rind and the seeds. Add 1-2 cups of fruit per 2 quarts of water.
Citrus – Lemons are my favorite citrus but limes, oranges and grapefruits are wonderfully tasty as well. I prefer to slice my citrus and place it in my glass rather than letting it steep in the water. Sometimes the flavor can become to overpowering and bitter. Use a slice or two per glass.
Berries – Strawberries, blackberries, and blueberries are yummy and add a touch of sweetness. I typically leave the blackberries and blueberries whole and quarter the strawberries. Use 1 cup per 2-quarts of water.
Tropical Fruit – Pineapples, Kiwi, mangoes, papaya and passionfruit are tops in my book! These fruits add a hint of sweetness and a flavor that reminds me of a tropical drink on a sunny beach! Peel and slice these fruits before adding. Add about 1 cup of fruit per 2-quarts of water.
Putting It All Together
Place your selection of herbs, fruits and veggies into a 2-quart pitcher and cover with cold water. Refrigerate for several hours before consuming to allow the flavors to blend together.
The combinations of Infused Waters are endless and you will want to experiment to find your favorites. Here are a few of my favorites:
Basil, Mint and Thyme
Cucumber and Mint
Strawberry and Basil
Mango, Pineapple and Mint
What is your favorite combination? We’d love for you to leave a comment below.
Arkansas Women Blogger’s Calendar Cultivator and member Julie Kohl writes about her adventures with food, recipes, crafts and creativity on her blog Eggs and Herbs. As former Yankee who was “converted” to the south by her husband, Julie has grasped on to rural life in a sleepy, blink-your-eyes-and-you’ll-miss-it town in east central Arkansas. She raises chickens, horses, and English mastiffs and spends her summers off from teaching art growing an herb garden and crafting all kinds of delicious recipes.