Easy DIY Cold-Processed Shrub Drink Recipe

Easy DIY Cold-Processed Shrub Drink Recipe

Discover the magic of homemade shrub drink- a tangy, sweet syrup that captures the essence of summer berries. This easy, no-cook method preserves the bright flavors of fresh fruit, creating a versatile ingredient for cocktails and mocktails alike.

What is a Shrub?

A shrub is a tantalizing blend of fruit, sugar, and vinegar that dates back to colonial times. Originally used to preserve fruit, shrubs have made a comeback in modern mixology. The perfect balance of sweet and tart, shrubs add depth and complexity to beverages while quenching thirst on hot summer days.

The Magic of Cold Processing

While some recipes call for cooking the fruit, our cold-process method maintains the vibrant, fresh flavors of the berries. By macerating the fruit in sugar, we gently extract its juices, creating a syrup that captures the essence of summer in a bottle.

Key Ingredients for Your Shrub

  • Fruit: Choose ripe, flavorful berries like strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries. Don’t be afraid to use less-than-perfect specimens – they’re perfect for syrup-making!
  • Sugar: Regular granulated sugar works well, but feel free to experiment with alternatives like turbinado or brown sugar for unique flavor profiles.
  • Vinegar: Red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar are excellent choices, offering a balance of acidity without overpowering the fruit.

Serving Suggestions

Shrubs are incredibly versatile:

  • Mix with sparkling water for a refreshing, non-alcoholic spritzer
  • Use as a unique cocktail ingredient, pairing with complementary spirits and liqueurs
  • Drizzle over fresh fruit or yogurt for a tangy-sweet treat
  • Create sophisticated mocktails by combining with herbs and citrus

Cold-Processed Berry Shrub Recipe


  • 1 cup (125g) berries (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries), washed and lightly crushed
  • 1 cup (200g) sugar
  • 1 cup (235ml) red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar


  1. In a medium bowl, combine berries and sugar, stirring until well mixed. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 24 hours, or until the fruit releases its juices and begins to form a syrup with the sugar.
  2. Strain the fruit mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a medium bowl. Press lightly on the solids to extract any remaining juice. Ensure all undissolved sugar is scraped into the syrup bowl. Whisk in the vinegar thoroughly.
  3. Transfer the syrup to a clean bottle. Label with the date and shake vigorously. Refrigerate, shaking the bottle periodically until the sugar completely dissolves, about 1 week. Your shrub can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 year, with the acid and sugar acting as natural preservatives to maintain its bright, fresh taste.

Make-Ahead and Storage

Store the shrub in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 year.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
881 Calories
1g Fat
216g Carbs
1g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Amount per serving
Calories 881
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 1%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 15mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 216g 78%
Dietary Fiber 5g 17%
Total Sugars 208g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 37mg 183%
Calcium 42mg 3%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 346mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

You may also like: