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How to Make Naturally Flavored Sparkling Grapefruit Water [Recipe]

Naturally Flavored Sparkling Grapefruit Water

If you follow our blog, you have likely seen our post How to Prepare and Add Grapefruit to an IPA. After posting that article, we received an email asking, “What do you do with all of the ‘meat’ of the grapefruit after you take the rind/zest?”

That’s a two part answer.Grapefruit Flavored Sparkling Water

First part is the easy part. I love grapefruit for breakfast, so a couple of the grapefruits were cut in half and sliced like this. (Note: the grapefruit in that link looks a bit bland. If you have the choice, go with ruby red grapefruits)

Having used the zest and rinds of 6 grapefruits to add to our 10 gallon batch of IPA, I certainly wasn’t going to be eating that many, so I got creative and decided to make some grapefruit flavored sparkling water.

Typically, I make sparkling water in small batches using a 2.5 gallon keg, and it always seems like we run out of it way too soon, so this time, I decided to make a 5 gallon batch – flavored sparkling water is a great summer drink.

I’ve made sparkling lemon water plenty of times, but I had never tried making grapefruit sparkling water. Being a fan of all citrus, I figured why not try grapefruit this time. When making lemon water, I’ll usually use between 4-8 (10 if I’m feeling crazy) lemons into 2.5 gallons of water. I figured I’d end up using about the same number of grapefruits in 5 gallons of water since they are so much larger than lemons.

I had already eaten 2 of the 6 grapefruits for breakfast following prepping them for our IPA, so I was starting this little experiment with 4 grapefruits and about 4.5 gallons of water.

After juicing and double straining to remove all of the pulp, each grapefruit yielded approximately 6oz of juice. When all was said and done, I had about 24oz of fresh squeezed grapefruit juice to add to the keg. After smelling and tasting the juice, I thought it’d be plenty to give the water just a slight hint of flavor. Wrong.

Nothing. The four grapefruits were almost imperceptible after being juiced and added to 4.5 gallons of water. So back to the store. More grapefruits. 6 more.

I went through the same process as the first four:

  1. Slice the grapefruit in half
  2. Juice each half using a manual juicer
  3. Pour the juice into a measuring cup through a pulp strainer
  4. Add the juice to the keg, pouring through a strainer again

The second 6 grapefruits that I used yielded a bit more juice (about 8oz each).

Making Naturally Flavored Grapefruit Sparkling WaterAfter juicing 4 of the 6, I decided to add the 32oz of juice into the keg before juicing the final two.  Upon adding the juice and agitating the keg, I realized that lemon juice goes a lot further than grapefruit juice when trying to flavor water. I juiced the final 2 grapefruits, added the juice to the keg and finally had something I was happy with.

After 10 grapefruits and over a half gallon of grapefruit juice (72oz), I was finally on the way to having grapefruit flavored sparkling water. Now that I had a flavor I was happy with, all that was left to do was to carbonate the keg.

The final ratio of water to grapefruit juice ended up at 576oz to 72oz (8:1 water to grapefruit). In the future, my next batch might be closer to a 4:1 ratio.

Doing a large batch of sparkling water like this is basically just a scaled up version of this video about How to Make Sparkling Water.

UPDATE: The rinds of the last 6 grapefruits did not go to waste. My better half zested them and made a grapefruit sugar scrub. Hopefully will get her to share that recipe (for those who are interested).

About Brendan

A self employed e-commerce developer, Brendan co-created PartsLogix. In his "free time", he coaches volleyball, enjoys homebrewing, mountain biking and hacking up golf courses. Connect with him on Google+ or Twitter.