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Learn how easy it is to make your simple syrup! Add it to your favorite cocktails, coffee, iced tea, desserts, or cold drinks that need a boost of sweetness. 

close up photo of pouring simple syrup in glass jar on blue backdrop

If you’re acting as a home bartender this summer, you need a basic homemade simple syrup recipe in your back pocket. It’s the easiest way to sweeten your favorite cocktail recipes without overpowering the flavor, and it will stay in the fridge for weeks. After we perfected our Homemade Strawberry Syrup for our Strawberry Mojito Mocktail, we knew we wanted to add a regular simple syrup to the blog that can be used in virtually any recipe. 

Here, we’ll show you the perfect simple syrup ratio, how to make it in 5 minutes, and several ways to use it. It’s so simple that you’ll never want to buy sweet syrup at the store again! 

labeled ingredients for simple syrup: water and sugar

Ingredients You’ll Need 

Making simple syrup at home is as easy as it gets! You’ll need a simple 1:1 ratio of just two ingredients: 

  • 1/2 cup of sugar: Classic simple syrup is clear. To create this at home, it’s important to use white sugar. Once dissolved, it has a clear color and a great neutral flavor that won’t overpower the taste. We recommend Wholesome Sweet’s Organic Fair Trade Cane Sugar
  • 1/2 cup of water: Serves as the solvent to dissolve the sugar and helps prevent the sugar from burning to the bottom of the pot. 

Can I add different flavors to this syrup?

This recipe is a standard simple syrup recipe and is plain. If you’re interested in trying different flavor profiles, try one of these variations on the basic recipe:

  • Brown sugar syrup: Swap the cane sugar with either light or dark brown sugar. This will create a caramel-like syrup. 
  • Vanilla syrup: Add 1/2 tablespoon of vanilla extract after you remove the hot simple syrup from the heat. 
  • Thicker syrup: As is, this simple syrup recipe is slightly thinner than maple syrup. If you’d like to make a rich simple syrup similar in thickness to honey syrup, use a 2:1 ratio with 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water.
  • Berry syrup: Make sure to try our Strawberry Simple Syrup! We’ve included some berry flavor variations you may enjoy in that post. 

Equipment Needed

How to Make Simple Syrup 

  1. Combine the sugar and water. Add one part water and one part sugar to a small pot or small saucepan over medium heat. 
  2. Heat until the sugar is dissolved. Stir the mixture until the sugar has completely dissolved. 
  3. Remove from the heat. When the sugar has dissolved, remove the small pot from the heat and set aside to cool completely. 
  4. Refrigerate. Once cooled, transfer the simple syrup to an airtight glass jar and refrigerate until ready. 
close up photo of pouring simple syrup in glass jar on blue backdrop

How to Use Simple Syrup

Simple syrup is often used to sweeten beverages like coffee, tea, or cocktails. It helps to add a neutral sweetness to cold beverages without granules of sugar sinking to the bottom of the drink like turbinado sugar would. Give it a try in one of the following ways: 

Sweeten Cocktails and Mocktails 

Like pure maple syrup, agave syrup, or a similar liquid sweetener, this simple syrup can be used to sweeten homemade cocktails and mocktails at any stage of the drink-making process. 

It adds the perfect touch of sweetness to a number of our favorites, like our Frozen Strawberry DaiquiriCranberry & Orange CocktailMango Kombucha MargaritasCalamansi Margaritas, Classic Margaritas, and Homemade Strawberry Lemonade

In Morning Coffee and Tea 

I typically sweeten my morning Matcha Latte recipe with a tablespoon of agave, but an equal tablespoon of simple syrup is the perfect alternative if I’m out. If coffee is your morning beverage, add it to any of your favorite coffee drinks – try it with cold brewlattes, iced coffee, and more. You can even use it to sweeten our Homemade Almond Milk

Sweetening Desserts

Simple syrup isn’t just useful in sweetening beverages. It can also be used to sweeten desserts in several ways. 

First and foremost, you can swap it 1:1 for another liquid sweetener. For example, if a dessert recipe calls for maple syrup or agave, this traditional simple syrup is a great alternative. 

It can also be brushed or drizzled over our Vegan Vanilla Cake to help keep the cake layers moist. Or brush it over baked goods for a sweet, shiny coating!  

close up photo of simple syrup in glass jar on blue backdrop

Recipe FAQs

How long does simple syrup last?

When refrigerated in an airtight container such as a mason jar, this simple syrup will last for about three weeks. Unlike store-bought simple syrups, which are made with preservatives that prevent bacterial growth, this homemade recipe cannot be kept at room temperature.

Do I need to boil the mixture?

Nope! In fact, you do not want to bring this sugar-water mixture to a boil. If it begins to boil, the water in the recipe will begin to evaporate, and the simple syrup will thicken and potentially burn. Instead, heat the mixture just warm enough so that the sugar dissolves but not so much that it simmers or boils. Once the sugar is fully dissolved, immediately remove it from the heat and set aside. 

I don’t have a stovetop. Can I use hot water?

If you do not have a stovetop, you can make this simple syrup at home by whisking the sugar with hot water. Just make sure the water is warm enough to dissolve the sugar. We recommend heating water in a water kettle or in the microwave until warm enough! 

close up photo of spoon in simple syrup in glass jar on blue backdrop

More Homemade Recipes YOu May Enjoy:

Make sure you tag us on Instagram @sweetsimplevegan and @consciouschris and hashtag #sweetsimplevegan if you make this recipe. We love to see your photos! 

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close up photo of spoon in simple syrup in glass jar on blue backdrop

How to Make Simple Syrup at Home


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  • Author: Sweet Simple Vegan
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Learn how easy it is to make your own simple syrup! Add it to your favorite cocktails, coffee, iced tea, desserts, or and cold drinks that need a boost of sweetness.


Ingredients

  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup sugar

Instructions

  1. Combine the sugar and water. Add one part water and one part sugar to a small pot or saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Heat until the sugar is dissolved. Stir the mixture until the sugar has completely dissolved and the mixture is no longer cloudy.
  3. Remove from the heat. When the sugar has dissolved, remove the small pot from the heat and set aside to cool completely.
  4. Refrigerate. Once cooled, transfer the simple syrup to an airtight glass jar and refrigerate until ready.

Notes

  • Storage: Refrigerate in an airtight container for about 3 weeks. This homemade recipe cannot be kept at room temperature.
  • Brown sugar syrup: Swap the cane sugar with either light or dark brown sugar. This will create a caramel-like syrup.
  • Vanilla syrup: Add 1/2 tablespoon of vanilla extract after you remove the hot simple syrup from the heat.
  • Thicker syrup: As is, this simple syrup recipe is slightly thinner than maple syrup. If you’d like to make a rich simple syrup similar in thickness to honey syrup, use a 2:1 ratio with 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water.
  • Berry syrup: Make sure to try our Strawberry Simple Syrup! We’ve included some berry flavor variations you may enjoy in that post.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Category: Beverages

Meet The Bloggers

hey there! we’re jasmine & chris.

Hi, we’re Jasmine and Chris! We share fresh and fun recipes to show you that vegan cooking is easy, approachable and delicious. When we’re not blogging, you will probably find us enjoying live music, tending to our backyard garden or playing with our dogs Berry and Louie

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