Make Your Own Infused Water

Use your backyard bounty to add flavor and flair to drinking water.
Infused Water

Infused Water

Infuse water with the flavor of fresh fruit, vegetables or herbs.

Photo by: Photo by Mick Telkamp

Photo by Mick Telkamp

Infuse water with the flavor of fresh fruit, vegetables or herbs.

There are plenty of good reasons to drink more water. Good hydration improves circulation, helps fight illnesses, aids in digestion and weight loss, keeps hair and skin looking younger and reduces fatigue. Although the old “8 x 8” rule of drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day has come under scrutiny in recent years, most agree that drinking water is a healthy habit to keep.

When it comes to beverages, though, water is kind of dull. Sure, sometimes restaurants might class it up a little with a lemon wedge, but the water on the table is often the “backup" drink, should you reach the bottom of your iced tea or soda pop. Water lacks variety. Panache. In an increasingly health-conscious culture, bottled water sales are up and soda consumption is declining, but water continues to lack style points. That lemon wedge is a good start, but why stop there?

Infusing drinking water with fruits, vegetables and herbs straight from the garden is an easy way to bring flavor, variety and style to everyday hydration.

Many of the crops growing in the backyard are good candidates for adding taste and color to plain old water. The process is simple. Slice, cube or chop freshly-washed fruits and vegetables, then add 1/2 cup to 1 cup of produce per quart of water in an airtight container. To extract more flavor produce can be muddled, but will lose some of its visual appeal. Herbs can also be used to add flavor to water. Use 1/4 cup  to 1/2 cup of your favorites to a quart of water and bruise or muddle to help release flavor.

Refrigerate water overnight to allow flavors to infuse. Fruits and vegetables will usually last 2 to 3 days in the water before they begin to break down. Small batches are recommended, but the water may be strained to extend its shelf life.

Infused water can be strained and transferred into your favorite bottle for hydration on the go, or poured into serving pitchers with the fruit or vegetables left in to add a splash of color to the table. The following suggestions will get you started, but this list is far from comprehensive.


Slice or cube into 1- to 2-inch pieces. Thick-skinned berries should be cut or lightly crushed to help release flavor. Citrus can be used in smaller amounts.

  • Citrus: Lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit
  • Berries: Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries
  • Melons: Watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew
  • Other: Mango, apples, peaches, cherries


Cucumber-infused water is becoming more common, but other vegetables can be used to add subtle flavor to drinking water:

  • Cucumbers
  • Celery
  • Peppers
  • Carrots

Slice thin to impart more flavor. If using hot peppers, start with a single pepper per quart to gauge intensity.


Crush or bruise herbs to draw the most flavor. Herbs can be used on their own or combined with fruits or vegetables for more impact. The herbs we recommend here all pair well with a wide variety of produce: 

  • Mint
  • Cilantro
  • Rosemary
  • Lavender
  • Basil
  • Thyme


Try these refreshing flavor mashups or make up your own!

  • Cucumber-Mint
  • Peach-Basil
  • Blueberry-Lime
  • Orange-Rosemary
  • Carrot-Ginger
  • Watermelon-Mint
  • Lavender-Lemon
  • Apple-Cilantro
  • Cherry-Thyme
  • Cantaloupe-Hot Pepper
  • Lemon-Lime
  • Grapefruit-Tarragon
  • Strawberry-Celery

Next Up

How to Make a Fresh Berry Fruit Punch

Fresh currants are a wonderful addition to fruit salads, or a refreshing drink like this berry fruit punch.

How to Make Apple Cider

Surprisingly easy tips for making this fall favorite.

How to Make Herbal Sun Tea

Using the warmth of the sun, make some healthy, delicious sun tea from the herbs you've grown in your home garden.

Make Fresh Garden Juice

Jump on the juicing bandwagon and take your fresh fruits and vegetables from garden to juicer to glass.

Grow a Beer Garden and Sow Your Own Suds!

Hops gardens produce the perfect addition to a cold glass of beer.

Garden Juice Recipes

Juices and tonics are good for you and your produce. Try these garden-fresh juice recipes from chefs across the country.

Cold Comfort: Ginger Tea Is a Soothing Natural Elixir

Ginger has healing properties that are helpful in combating a variety of ailments.

Plant a Juice Garden

Get your healthy-veggie intake with plants perfect for juicing.

Summer Drinks: The Agua Fresca

Try one of these recipes for a refreshing sip blending garden herbs, veggies and fruit.

Homemade Chai Tea Recipe

Use homegrown herbs in the chai tea so nice they named it twice.