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Here’s how to make grenadine syrup, that brilliant red syrup for making cocktails! It’s all natural and easy to make using pomegranate juice.

Grenadine syrup
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Did you know you can make homemade grenadine syrup? If you love cocktails like we do, you’ve probably made drinks with this vibrant red syrup. It stars in many grenadine cocktails and mocktails, and it’s very easy to make at home. Why make your own? Store-bought grenadine is usually made with high fructose corn syrup and additives. This version is all natural, skipping all those preservatives and unnatural sugars. And takes just 15 minutes to make! Here’s what to do, and a few more drink recipes that use it.

What’s grenadine?

Grenadine is a sweet tart syrup used in cocktails that’s bright red in color. While some people think it’s cherry, it’s actually made out of pomegranate juice! (The name comes from the French word for pomegranate, grenade.) Grenadine is used in lots of popular drinks: famously in a non-alcoholic Shirley Temple or the vibrant Tequila Sunrise!

Grenadine syrup

The trick to homemade grenadine!

Most homemade grenadine recipes result in a dark syrup: hardly the brilliant color you need in this syrup! Because it’s all natural with no artificial colors, you’d expect a less vibrant color than store bought. But you can get even better color to your grenadine syrup with this trick: use fresh pomegranate juice! This results in a brilliant hot pink color instead of dark muddy brown. Here’s how to make fresh squeezed pomegranate juice:

  • Grab some pomegranate seeds. You can also buy whole pomegranates: you’ll just need to seed them first. See below for how to seed a pomegranate.
  • Mash the seeds in a cocktail shaker to extract the juice. You can also use a tall glass and a wooden spoon.
  • Strain the juice. Use a fine-mesh strainer to strain out the juice. Easy as that!
Homemade grenadine syrup

How to make grenadine syrup (basic steps)

Here’s the basic outline of what you’ll do to make grenadine syrup at home. It’s so easy and to us, it feels better than grabbing a bottle filled with high fructose corn syrup at the store:

  • Make the pomegranate juice (see above).
  • Place pomegranate juice and sugar in a saucepan.
  • Heat until the sugar just dissolves, 1 to 2 minutes. Cool, then add a little lemon juice to add tart flavor.

Not sure you want to tackle it? Go to Best Grenadine Substitute.

Shelf life for homemade grenadine

Homemade grenadine syrup is less stable than the storebought version. Here’s what to do know about the shelf life:

  • 1 month storage: Store in a sealed container at room temperature, and it lasts up to 4 weeks.
  • 6 months storage: Add 1 ounce vodka or brandy to the syrup to fortify it, and it lasts up to 6 months.
Grenadine drinks

Here’s the fun part: what to make with grenadine syrup! There are lots of famous drinks that use grenadine: here are some of our favorites:

  • Tequila Sunrise This vibrant cocktail layers the colors of a summer sunrise using tequila, orange and grenadine.
  • Singapore Sling A classic cocktail with an impressively long ingredient list! It’s complex, fruity, bubbly and just plain fun.
  • Shirley Temple A mocktail classic! The classic version of this mocktail uses lime and ginger ale. Or make it a Dirty Shirley with vodka!
  • Clover Club This refreshing cocktail stars gin, grenadine and an egg white foam.

How to seed a pomegranate

If all you can find is whole pomegranates, here’s how to seed a pomegranate to make the fresh squeezed juice:

  • Cut the pomegranate into quarters and place them in a large bowl of water. Under the water, gently pull out the seeds with your fingers. Eventually, you’ll be able to turn the peel inside out to extract the seeds closest to the outer skin.
  • As you work, the pomegranate seeds will sink to the bottom, while the white pith from the fruit will float to the top.
  • When all of the seeds are extracted, skim off the white pith and strain out the water. Rinse the pomegranate seeds, then store the extra seeds in a sealed container in the refrigerator.

Want more recipes with pomegranate seeds? Head to our top Pomegranate Recipes and Pomegranate Cocktails!

How to seed a pomegranate

This grenadine syrup recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, and gluten-free.

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Grenadine syrup

Grenadine Syrup

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5 from 1 review

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: About ¾ cup 1x
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Here’s how to make grenadine syrup, that brilliant red syrup for making cocktails! It’s all natural and easy to make using pomegranate juice.




  1. Make the pomegranate juice: If using whole pomegranates, remove the seeds (see instructions above). Place the pomegranate seeds in a cocktail shaker (or tall glass) and mash with a muddler or wooden spoon until all the juices have been released. Then pour it through a fine mesh strainer into a measuring cup.
  2. Add the pomegranate juice and sugar to a small saucepan heat over medium heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. 
  3. Cool and stir in the lemon juice. Pour into a sealed container and refrigerate up to three weeks. For a longer storage time, add 1 tablespoon vodka or brandy to fortify the syrup.


*You can also use bottled pomegranate juice, but the color won’t be as vibrant. 

  • Category: Essentials
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Cocktails
  • Diet: Vegan

More cocktail recipes!

Outside of these grenadine drinks, there are many more great cocktail recipes! Here are some of our best drink collections:

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. Danielle Gibson says:

    How long would this last in the fridge?

    1. Alex Overhiser says:

      I would keep just 1 month.

  2. Gina says:

    Can you use Pom bottled pure pomegranate juice to make this?

    1. Alex Overhiser says:


  3. Kevin Hawkins says:

    I made your home made grenadine recipe and I have a question. What is the purpose of the lemon juice? Could you use lime juice as an alternative?

    1. Alex Overhiser says:

      It works as a preservative and brightens the flavor. Lime juice should work.

  4. Dana B says:

    Thank You So Much for this quick and easy recipe. After reading the ingredients in a bottle of grenadine there is no way I could drink it.

    This is awesome and so easy to make.