As someone who has been creating homemade beverage recipes for over 10 years, I’ve learned that making homemade sodas is way easier than you’d think. All you really need is a flavorful syrup and some seltzer water! This Sage Soda recipe is an herbaceous and inventive homemade soda. It uses the bold flavor of sage and turns it into a refreshing beverage that’s perfect for a warm spring or summer day! While sage is usually reserved for savory foods, this soda is ready to change your mind!
This recipe was inspired by my Sage Simple Syrup which is the key ingredient in this soda. Take the time to whip up a batch so you can enjoy the bright and herbal flavor of sage in any drink. This soda is the perfect drink for the whole family because it’s so quick and easy to make. The best part is that you can customize it based on your own flavor preferences!Jump to Recipe
💕 why you'll love this sage soda recipe
🪴 bright & herbaceous. The bright and bold flavor of sage is sometimes reserved for savory dishes, but this soda shows you that its easy to incorporate everyday herbs into all your beverages!
⏱️ quick & easy. You won’t believe how easy it is to make your own sodas at home using a simple syrup and some seltzer water.
🥳 kid-friendly. This is the perfect recipe to make with younger chefs in the kitchen, too, because they get to have a hand in flavoring their own sodas.
- sage simple syrup - sage has a bold, bright, and almost bitter flavor to it that can be overwhelming if used fresh. Using a sage simple syrup helps to balance out the savory notes of sage with a bright sweetness.
- soda water - this recipe calls for plain unflavored soda water, which is carbonated water. Sparkling mineral water has the addition of minerals, as the name suggests, which impact the taste of the water as well. In order to keep the flavor focus on the lemons in the recipe, I recommend sticking with unflavored soda water, or regular unflavored sparkling water (also sometimes called seltzer water).
- ice - yes, yes, we are adding ice to the recipe ingredients because soda should be served ice cold! Use whatever ice you have on hand. Larger ice will melt more slowly. You can even make specialty sage ice cubes for an extra special touch!
See the recipe card for the exact quantities.
All about bubbly water
All bubbles are not created equal, in fact, some are put in after manufacturing and some occur naturally! Here is a quick breakdown of the kinds of carbonated beverages available.
- seltzer water aka soda water aka sparkling water - unflavored water with carbonation added. No minerals are added, so the flavor profile is clean and pure. Sometimes called sparkling water, or soda water, and can be used interchangeably in any recipe noting either name.
- sparkling mineral water - usually naturally carbonated from the source of the water, like springs or wells. They also naturally contain minerals, which affect the flavor based on the mineral content. Sparkling mineral water is not interchangeable in recipes calling for seltzer water or sparkling water, because of the additional flavors added from the minerals.
- club soda - water that has carbon dioxide added, then had minerals added. The minerals that are added depend on the manufacturer, and they can sometimes give the club soda a slightly salty flavor. This can be handy in sweeter drinks, or cocktails. Because the taste difference is slight, club soda can usually be used interchangeably in recipes calling for soda water, sparkling water, or seltzer.
- tonic water - water that is carbonated and then has minerals added, with the most notable being quinine (pronounced kwai-nine). Quinine has a bitter flavor, so some brands of tonic water also add sugar or syrups to their beverages. Tonic is not interchangeable for soda water, seltzer, or club soda.
Step 1: Fill your chosen glass with ice.
Step 2: Add sage simple syrup to the glass.
Step 3: Add the sage simple syrup to the glass.
Step 4: Stir well to combine the flavors.
Step 5: Garnish with a sprig of sage or a single sage leaf.
Step 6: Pop a straw in your soda and serve immediately!
Hint: Want a bit of an extra pop of flavor? Add a squeeze of lemon juice to your soda just before serving!
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💡tips & tricks for getting it right
🍽️ serving tips
How and when to serve your homemade sage soda recipe:
- Serve your sage soda pop at any springtime gathering or summer barbecue. It’s also perfect for a baby shower or bridal shower.
- It’s great for both kids and adults, making it a great booze free option.
Choose your glass
- Glassware can make a big impact when you’re serving beverages! I love to use any cup that has at least a 12 ounce capacity.
- Classic milkshake glasses, known as soda fountain glasses or soda shoppe glasses, are super fun for parties!
- You can also serve this soda in a copper Moscow mule mug or a teacup for a tea party!
- Garnish your sage sodas with a fresh sage leaf or small sprig of sage to give a flavor clue to your guests.
- You can also garnish your sodas with a lemon wheel or wedge of lemon.
ℹ️ troubleshooting tips
Sure, this is a simple soda recipe. But! Things can definitely go wrong. Try these tips to make sure things go right, the FIRST time!
- use the right sparkling water - make sure to use plain soda water, sparkling water, or seltzer water. You can also use club soda in a pinch, but it tends to have a bit of saltiness to it because of added minerals. Avoid using sparkling mineral water or tonic water.
- start small with the syrup - I like to add just a bit less syrup than I think I’ll need, starting with a half ounce, or 1 TBSP. You can always add more syrup later, but it’s hard to dilute the flavor once it’s added.
⚖️ scaling tips
Want to scale up the fun? This recipe is perfect for scaling up for a party! You can even use a 2-liter of seltzer water to make your own soda for parties!
Try printing your own custom soda pop labels for the bottles! Kids would love to pour themselves a glass of The Mad Hatter’s Sage Soda at a springtime tea party!
🔆 top tip
Start with less syrup than you think you need when making your sodas. You can always add more syrup if you want to increase the flavor of your drinks, but you can’t take it away after you add it!
♻️ substitutions & variations
Missing an ingredient? No problem. Check out these tried-and-true substitutions, or comment below with your question. I’m here to help you troubleshoot!
- club soda - you can swap club soda for seltzer water or sparkling water with little to no effect on flavor. Club soda does have added minerals, which vary based on the brand available in grocery stores. If in doubt, check the nutrition facts label to see what added minerals are in your club soda!
- ginger ale - You can use ginger ale in place of soda water, but you may want to lower the amount of simple syrup you use. Ginger ale already has sugar added to it, so your final soda could be quite sweet if you use more than ½ tablespoon of syrup.
Feeling like a rebel?! 😈 Feel free to stray from the recipe card using these variations, or leave me a comment with your own!
- apple or pear juice - try making a fall-harvest variation by using an ounce or two of apple juice or pear juice and a pinch of spice like cardamom. You'll be ready to get cozy in no time!
- cocktail - want to spike your sage sodas? Add in an ounce or two of vodka, tequila, or silver rum for an adult beverage. Be sure to keep the booze away from the kids table, please!
- tropical - add in an ounce or two of fresh pineapple juice or muddle in some fresh pineapple chunks for a tropical pineapple-sage soda. Pineapple sage is actually also a variety of sage leaf, and you can even make your syrup out of that! It is milder in flavor than traditional sage, so it's a good choice if you're not sure if you like the flavor of sage.
🧰 equipment needed & storage tips
🧰 tools needed
- drinking glass - I like to use a glass that have a 12 - 16 ounce capacity, so I can fit a whole can of sparkling water without having leftover. You can use a smaller more festive glass if you like! These soda can glasses are the ones featured in the photos. A special old fashioned milkshake glass would also make for a great presentation!
- small measuring beaker or jigger - these OXO nesting measuring beakers are so handy to use in so many recipes! They come in a graduated set perfect for measuring small amounts of liquid. You can also use a jigger if you have one.
- straw - you can get really festive with your straws, adding a layer of fun for your friends and family. I love using these silicone straws from GIR co. They clean up easy, are dishwasher safe, and come in so many fun colors. You can also use these fun paper straws that come in a variety of colors!
- cocktail mixing spoon - a cocktail spoon is a mixing spoon with a longer than normal handle. This is super useful when mixing beverages because it allows you to mix easily without getting your hand into the soda!
It is best to consume this soda shortly after drinking it because of the bubbles. If you are not serving it right away after making it, be sure to store it in an airtight container like these bottles from Bormioli Rocco that have stoppers.
Use caution when opening the bottles after storage— carbonation can build up in the bottle which can cause the top to burst off.
Do I need to use sage simple syrup for this cocktail?
Yes, take the time to make a batch of sage simple syrup for the best flavor. While you can muddle fresh sage leaves into a cocktail shaker, fresh sage can be bitter in flavor. The mild heat from the infusion process helps to balance out the strong savory notes of sage.
How can I make the sage flavor stronger?
You can make a stronger sage simple syrup, or you can reduce the amount of lime juice in the recipe. You can also infuse your gin with sage leaves for a few hours before making this cocktail.
- 1 glass of choice 16 ounce capacity recommended
- 1 small measuring glass or jigger
- 1 ounce sage simple syrup
- 12 ounces soda water substitute seltzer water or club soda
- Fill your chosen glass with ice and add 1 ounce of sage simple syrup to the glass.
- Top with sparkling water or soda water to fill your glass.
- Mix your drink well with a cocktail spoon to evenly distribute the syrup.
- Garnish with a sprig of sage or a single sage leaf.
- Pop a straw in your soda and serve immediately!
🧯food safety & other information
Food safety is an important ingredient in any recipe for success! Here are some tips to keep you safe in the kitchen!
- Use caution when opening the bottles after storage— carbonation can build up in the bottle which can cause the top to burst off.
- Spiking your soda? Never serve alcohol to anyone under legal drinking age. In the United States, the legal age for consumption of alcohol is 21 years of age.