Infused Water: How to Make It and Why You Should Be Drinking It

Written by Kristen, Nutrition Expert on Tuesday, July 05, 2016

We’ve written before about the benefits of staying hydrated , and the topic of appropriate fluid intake is at the forefront of many people’s minds during the warmer summer months. When it comes to hydration, we know that water is a better, more healthful option than sugary, flavored beverages. We also know, though, that the taste of plain water is just not appealing to some. Thankfully, water infused with fruit, herbs, and even vegetables is making plain water everywhere more appealing.

Infused water is incredibly simple to make. The process basically requires soaking fruit, herb, and vegetable of choice in water. Flavor options include:   

     

  • Fruit – Lemon, lime, orange, strawberry, blueberry, blackberry, raspberry, cherry, watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, pineapple, peach, kiwi
  • Herb/Spice – Mint, sage, basil, cilantro, rosemary, lavender, ginger
  • Vegetable – Cucumber, fennel, jalapeño, celery

And more! There really are no rules when it comes to flavor combinations and methods, but here are some tips to get you started:

  • Use a jar with a lid if you have one. Place ingredients in jar and pour cold water over them. Gently shake, and allow to chill in the refrigerator for a few hours prior to enjoying. Don’t worry if you don’t have a jar; infusing can be done in any drinking glass. Simply stir instead of shaking.
  • Start simple. Lemon, mint, and cucumber are excellent on their own.
  • Then experiment based on personal preference. Cucumber-watermelon, blackberry-sage, strawberry-pineapple, and cilantro-jalapeño all pair well together. Don’t be afraid to get creative!
  • The more surface area exposed, the stronger the flavor. Use thin slices of lemon, lime, orange, peach, and cucumber, and smaller chunks of melons, pineapple, and peach.
  • Gently squeeze herbs before using them. This will help release their natural oils, which are what contribute flavor.
  • Beware that berries will change the color of the water. Their red, blue, and purple pigments are water-soluble (and anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory) and will give your water a red, blue, or purple tint.
  • Reuse the fruit! And the herbs and vegetables. The infusion process can be repeated a few times before ingredients no longer lend any flavor. At that point you can either eat or discard ingredients.

For those who find plain water boring and unpalatable, infused water is definitely worth a try. It’s even worth considering if you’re someone who loves plain water. Fruits, herbs, and vegetables infuse water not only with flavor, but also with vitamins, minerals, and plant chemicals—all of which promote health and wellness naturally and without added sugar or artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives. So, give infused water a try and you're sure to reap the increased benefits of hydration .