Easiest DIY Ever: Infused Simple Syrups For Fancy-Pants Drinks

There’s something about fall that makes us want to get crafty. There are DIY decorations to make, cozy baked goods to enjoy — and is it just us, or does knitting suddenly sound awesome? Of course, there’s no better place to seize this mood than the kitchen. While whipping up cocktails a few weeks back, we discovered our new favorite quickie craft: infused simple syrups.
The sweet additive has such an easy “recipe” that they should call it stupidly simple syrup. Because it’s so quick and flexible, you can make variations on it with just about any flavor. Got an orange laying around? Peppercorns? A rose, perhaps? You’re a cup of sugar away from artisanal cocktails.
This is a great way to enjoy flavored cocktails without having to rush out for fresh ingredients. (Sometimes, a girl just needs a strawberry margarita at midnight. In February). These syrups will last for up to three months when refrigerated. (We even like to pour some into ice cube trays to add a little flair to our post-work, pre-party gin and tonic.)
Read on for the basic steps, and our three favorite variations — plus, the cocktails to use ‘em in!

Base Ingredients:
2 cups white sugar
1 cup water

Step 1: Put water and sugar into a pot and bring to a rapid boil.
Step 2: After one minute, remove from heat and stir in your infusion.
Step 3: Let it cool completely, and strain into a container. What’s simpler than that?
Next stop — Mint Syrup!

Mint Syrup
Infusion: 1 bunch fresh mint, plus 3-5 leaves to store in the syrup.

This flexible syrup will work in just about any summer cocktail (including these classics). Simply substitute syrup wherever the recipe calls for mint and sugar, or mint and simple syrup.

Next up? Berry Syrup...


Mixed Berry Syrup
Infusion: 1 cup mixed berries (fresh or frozen)

This might be our favorite infusion. Not only can you mix into any traditional berry cocktail, but it makes a great addition to try out in almost anything. Add a tablespoon to a martini — you'll never look back.
Finally, sweet 'n' sour Lemon Zest Syrup...

Lemon Zest Syrup
Infusion: zest of one fresh lemon and juice of 1 whole lemon. (Store with a strip of lemon peel in the container.)

This syrup works in So. Many. Drinks. From the classic Gin Fizz to new favorite The Cowboy Martini, we could barely keep this list to one page. And, you'll basically never run out. This ultra-potent syrup packs a punch of sweet and sour with just a teeny dash.
Bottoms up!

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