Ginger Syrup + Sparkling Water = Homemade Ginger Ale

January 27, 2011(updated on October 3, 2018)

ginger sugar pot

Earlier this week, I got walloped by one of those 36 hour stomach bugs. I spent a day bundling to ward off feverish chills and nursing a very tender belly. I couldn’t handle anything more than a few Saltines and a sip or two of liquid every hour.

half cup minced ginger

During my childhood, ginger ale was my mother’s prescription for any stomach trouble. We weren’t allowed to have it until the worst of the troubles were over (there’s no point in putting something in if you’re not yet capable of holding on to it) but goodness, was that first sip of sweet, bubbly soda divine.

ground ginger

Not wanting to head out into foul weather (and yikes, has our weather been terrible lately. Earlier tonight, we had a crazy confluence of snow and thunder) but needing a dose of that familiar remedy, I simply used what I had. I combined 1 cup of cane sugar, 1 cup of filtered water, 1 cup of chopped ginger and 2 teaspoons of powdered ginger to create a super concentrated ginger syrup.

steeping ginger in simple syrup

After half an hour of gentle simmering and an hour of unheated steeping, I ran the syrup through a fine mesh sieve into a pint jar. Then it was just a manner of spooning a small amount into a glass and topping it off with a pour of sparkling water (I adore my Sodastream for just this sort of thing). After a day of slowly sipping this homemade gingery ale, I felt much better. By the end of yesterday, I was even able to graduate from crackers to poached eggs over brown rice.

If you decide to make your own ginger syrup, don’t feel like you have to replicate my proportions. As you can see, my approach was just to combine equal parts fresh ginger, sugar and water. I added the powdered ginger mostly because I wanted to ensure a super gingery kick, however it’s entirely optional.

I still have half a jar of this gingery balm tucked into the fridge, and I’m continue to combine it with fizzy water or drizzle it into hot tea. There’s just nothing like ginger this time of year.

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51 thoughts on "Ginger Syrup + Sparkling Water = Homemade Ginger Ale"

  • I just LOVE making my own ginger-ale. I don’t have a sodastream, though, I get my bubbles the old-fashioned way–with regular (bread)yeast!
    After a couple batches of that, I started to experiment with other juices and spices and haven’t looked back. My favorite was an orange-lemon-lime-ginger-ale. Yummy!
    I hope you feel lots better, real soon~

    1. I love, love, love my SodaStream. I used to have a serious bottled seltzer habit and now I rarely buy a bottle because I can just make my own. I have one that holds the bigger CO2 cartridge, so it also lasts forever. I also like the fact that the CO2 cartridges get exchanged, so you’re not throwing anything away.

      1. I cannot afford soda stream.
        I went to the junkyard and bought an old CO2 tank for $8 bucks.
        I went to the gas place and traded my old ugly junk tank for a new full one. Cost $13 dollars for 20 pounds of CO2.
        I bought a $20 rebuilt beer regulator setup online.
        Then put a tire valve stem in a 2 liter bottle cap and made the hose the way all those instructables on the web instruct.
        I have less than $40 bucks in a setup that will charge 300 two liter bottles of soda. I have the Perrier recipe down pretty good now. 1/16 tsp Epsom Salt and 1/32 tsp table salt to 1.5 liters of filtered water. I cannot afford $2 bucks a bottle for real Perrier.

          1. That “food grade” designation is something invented by the Sodastream folks to scare people away from all other sources of Co2. I know all kinds of people using Co2 from other sources without any ill effect.

          2. There is a difference, its just the opposite of what you expect. The food grade cartridges are standard. The more rare cartridges you will usually find in sporting good and tool stores, they have oil mixed in the cartridge.

  • I recently made my own fermented ginger beer — (not alchoholic, more like a homemade fermented bubbly soda) sooo yummy! I love the ginger syrup too. Glad you are feeling better.

  • I think this is a great idea, and what a great way to use those leftover chunks of ginger in my crisper! I always buy the smallest piece in the market, and I STILL don’t use the whole thing before it gets soft and squishy. Now I can utilize the remnants without wasting them.

    I was reading in the Little House on the Prairie series about ginger water that they made so workers in fields wouldn’t get sick rehydrating. I wonder if this syrup would be useful for something like that without the soda water?

    1. You can keep fresh ginger in freezer and just grate what is needed. If you do freeze your ginger don’t peel or thaw before grating. I buy it by the pound and keep it in a ziplock bag, so I have it on hand all the time. I always use a fresh ginger in my Asian cooking and in cakes.

  • that’s actually how i make mine. i add a pinch of cayenne (because i think it’s good for your stomach according to ayurvedic medicine) but other than that it is identical to yours. Also sometimes I feel like a squeeze of lime or lemon is just the ticket. I’m glad you’re feeling better though!!

  • You can also freeze peeled ginger root. I usually take a strong ginger tea to the hospital when I’m having surgery ( a too-regular occurance lately ) as the anesthetics make me violently ill. My ginger is waiting on me in the recovery room–on my surgeons’ orders ~ to help kill the nausea ! And just a spoon or two usually works –and works better then drugs !

  • I made crystalized ginger for holiday gifts & had some leftover syrup. I used to much the same way -lucky for me, no stomach bug – but, it crystalized a lot. Any suggestions? Ever have the same problem?

  • I made almost that same recipe, it’s very refreshing! I want to try “real” ginger beer one of these days, but this is so fast. Glad you’re feeling better 🙂

  • @Rose — you can solve the crystallizing problem by adding some corn syrup to your syrup liquid.

    I made a ginger syrup like this last year and used it as the preserving liquid for some figs I canned in the summer. Really, really good.

  • I always can the leftover syrup when putting up various fruits for just this purpose. On the shelf right now are jars of apple cinnamon, peach with Earl Grey tea, strawberry vanilla, and nectarine. I mix a tablespoon or so to taste with bottled seltzer in a 16 oz glass (have got to look into a soda stream). Our grandkids prefer this to commercial sodas when they come to visit!

  • I had that stomach bug a few weeks ago and it really zapped my energy. Wish I had thought about making some ginger ale to cure my ails. I’ve got a ton of homemade crystallized ginger that you just reminded me about. I think I’ll be making some gingersnaps this weekend. Thanks for the great blog! I started venturing into canning about a year ago and I love it. I just wish I had more space to do it!

  • LOVE my sodastream! We have the original model and it’s used at least twice a week. It’s even better now that local places carry the bottles and the charger cartridges!

    I’ll be trying your ginger syrup recipe soon. I haven’t had good luck making a ginger syrup that is ginger-y enough for me. this sounds like just the ticket.

    You don’t need to use corn syrup to prevent recrystalization. Agave nectar works also – I use it for making marshmallows.

    1. Eva,I would like your recipe for marshmallows. I can’t do corn products and that keeps me from having a lot of different foods. Are there web sites that show an exchange for recipes that you know of? Thanks.

  • I kid you not, I was thinking to myself whilst watching tele and knitting yesterday: funny that right now as a culture we’ve figured out and popularized how to make everything at home (like mustard, jam, vanilla extract, whatever) but no one has really come up with a way to make things like a better-for-you Dr. Pepper or Coke at home.

    I don’t drink soda, but I LOVE ginger ale! And I think I could definitely allow some homemade ginger ale into my day. Thank you so much for posting this!

  • Thanks for the recipe. i will try this.
    I have seen that quite a few people talk about making crystalised ginger, my husband loves this and I buy it for him as a special treat. I have looked for recipes, but I wondered whether you or you followers have a tried and tested recipe I could try.

    1. Sue, it’s soooo easy! Peel and slice ginger and place in a saucepan. Add equal parts water and sugar to cover the ginger completely (I always add a bit more so I have extra syrup). Bring this to a light boil then reduce heat and simmer for about 45 minutes. Remove the slices with a slotted spoon and drain them in a strainer. Then toss them with sugar and lay them out on a cookie sheet until they are dry enough to put into a container without becoming a sticky blob (I usually just leave them out overnight and they are ready in the morning). If you leave some pieces in the syrup and put those in a jar in the fridge, they are excellent flavor bursts when chopped and added to things like apple pie, spice cookies, pineapple upside down cake…

  • What a fantastic idea! Gingerale was always a staple in my house growing up for a stomach bug as well!

  • Ah, I’ve been wanting to try homemade ginger ale for a long time, but it seemed like it would be such a big process. You make it look pretty doable. 🙂

    I hope you’re feeling better!

  • I have been making a similar recipe for a few years and LOVE it. I recently found a recipe for candied ginger, which requires boiling the ginger first. I thought I might try to get 2 uses out of the ginger, ginger ale and candied ginger.

  • Actually, there IS a point to drinking Ginger Ale even when you know you’re going to puke again. It tastes a lot better coming up than without it. Wasteful, sure, but worth it.

  • Hey, I have a blog for the Philadelphia area called Wing Quest, the goal of which being to find the best wings in Philadelphia. I was just curious as to what it would take to have our blog featured on your site or even just a link shout out. We would be more than glad to return the favor. Our web address is


  • Thanks for the recipe. It came a day after my husband had the stomach bug and so I wish I’d seen it a day earlier. But we made it tonight anyways just for fun.
    I had a similar thought to others about it making a double use out of the ginger. I should have peeled my ginger because when it was done seeping it was nice and tender and like candied ginger. I peeled some of the pieces and spread them on waxed paper to cool. We’ll chop them up to use in baked goods or something.

  • This reminds me of all the ginger beer we used to make as kids (don’t worry it wasn’t alcoholic!). so, so good! One of the many problems with ginger beer is that you had to bottle it and then WAIT for a few weeks to drink it! Talk about torture! I like your option so much more 🙂

    Also, is your jar of ginger your BlogHer food ginger? Sadly I had to leave all mine behind. But it went to a good home!

  • I got a soda stream for the holiday and love love love ginger ale can not wait to try this when I get back from Oakland….

  • I made this heavenly syrup and just love the taste. I used it to flavor the applesauce I used in your banana bread recipe. The bread is now in the oven, I ‘ll let you know how it works! The applesauce is just incredibly good!!

  • Love this! I use it in so many things (mine is made with just the sugar, water, and ginger). I candy some, leave some in the syrup and add it to baked goods like pies, spice cookies, jams… and then have a jar of syrup. The syrup makes ginger ale, ginger martinis, ginger and Pimm’s with soda, a marinade kick, dressings…It’s one of my “secret” ingredients!

  • Thank you for any other informative web site. Where else may I get that kind of info written in such a perfect approach? I have a undertaking that I’m simply now running on, and I have been on the look out for such information.

  • Just came across this recipe and have been loving it for the stinking hot summer we are having here in Australia. Thank you!!

  • I made some ginger syrup a few months back and found that it is absolutely de-li-cious mixed in with some hot apple cider and a splash of rum.

  • I’m new to canning and love your site. I was hoping I could pick your brain on the subject of ginger. From what I can tell, it’s is a low acid food, so shouldn’t be canned on its own. But I like to make a lemon ginger “tea” and was wondering if it would be safe for canning. It’s just a whole lot of lemon juice and a whole lot of ginger, boiled with some water, then pureed. I’d love to can it. Have you ever tried such a thing?

    1. Jen, the thing to do would probably be to make a concentrated syrup of lemon juice, ginger and sugar and then dilute it with hot water when you want to drink it.

  • Hello! I’m quiet new to canning and have a question about syrup. Can I preserve a syrup in waterbath or with pressure? Can I keep it on a shelf?

  • Oooooooooooooooooooooooooo my Gawd! I just made it and I love it. Thank you for posting.

    It is dericious!

    : )