Probiotic Lemonade and Limeade with Whey

IMG_0898I’ve been making my own Greek yogurt, which yields a decent amount of wonderful stuff called whey (not to mention being about 1/3 of the cost of store bought Greek yogurt). You can use whey in baking, you can condition your hair with it (seriously…you can)…there are so many possibilities.

Most recently, I have been using whey to ferment probiotic citrus drinks. It is the perfect time of year to begin making these lemonades and limeades as it is starting to get warmer outside. It has a delicious taste with just a tiny amount of fizz to it (produced during the fermentation process). During the fermentation, the good probiotic bacteria reproduce and multiply. This leads to a very healthy, delicious lemonade that gives your gut all kinds of good bacteria that will offer nothing but positives for your digestive system.

To make your own fresh, probiotic citrus drink, you need freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice. This can be a time consuming task if you are hand squeezing lemons or limes each time you make it. But, as always, work smart…not hard. You can make this drink very easily by following these simple steps:

1. Watch for lemons and limes (regular or key limes) to go on sale. I watch for such sales at the local produce market around the corner from my apartment. I’ve gotten 20 key limes for a dollar by doing this. Buy a whole bunch at a time. The more you buy at a time, the less often you will need to do this.

IMG_09232. Get an electric citrus juicer. They are inexpensive and will save a lot of time and energy.

3. Juice all of the lemons and/or limes with the citrus juicer and pour the juice through a strainer into a bowl to remove the pulp.

4. Pour the juice into ice cube trays and freeze thoroughly.

IMG_09225. Pop the juice cubes out and place them into containers labeled “lemon juice” or “lime juice” so you do not forget which is which, and store them in the freezer.

Now, you have fresh lemon and lime juice on hand not only for this probiotic citrus drink, but anytime a recipe calls for lemon and lime juice. It makes a difference to cook with fresh citrus juices rather than the old, bottled junk you buy from the shelf. The more time passes, the less and less that I need to even enter the shelf areas of the grocery store.

Next, you will notice you have lots of lemon or lime peels left from this. Little would you know that you can use these peels in your own homemade antibacterial cleaner. So, don’t throw them out…more savings are on their way via this very easy-to-make cleaning solution to replace your typical all purpose kitchen cleaner. It smells great and is a very effective cleaner and disinfectant.

Now, you are ready to make your lemonade or limeade.

Ingredients:

  • 8 ice cubes lemon or lime juice
  • 1 cup whey
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • Water

IMG_0907Directions: Place the ice cubes, whey and maple syrup in a 1 gallon glass jar. Fill the rest of the jar with water, leaving about an inch of space at the top. Place the lid on the jar and let it sit at room temperature for 2 days. Sweeten to taste with a sweetener of your choice. Personally, I don’t sweeten mine at all, but I like my lemonade pretty tart. Store in in the refrigerator or serve over ice. As is, without any added sweetener you may choose to add after the fermentation, this lemonade has 37 calories per cup, 1/4 of your daily need for vitamin C, and plenty of probiotic bacteria.

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