It’s fun to make homemade soda pop! Soda pop is just carbonated punch but you can do better than that. Try carbonating your favorite lemonade or frozen fruit juice concentrate.
Carbonating Beverages: You Can Do So Much!When we were kids, we made homemade root beer with yeast. The yeast created the carbon dioxide bubbles in the beverage. There is an easier way—dry ice which you can buy at many grocery stores. With dry ice, you can carbonate:
- Juice beverages made with frozen fruit juice concentrates.
- Kool-Aid® and other beverages (not unlike many commercial soda pops).
- Fresh fruit beverages like lemonade, limeade, and strawberry lemonade (we’ll carbonate some strawberry lemonade today made with frozen lemonade concentrate and fresh strawberries).
- Beverages made with syrups. We carry both Torani syrups and snow cone syrups.
How to Carbonate Beverages for Your Own Soda PopCarbonating your beverages is easy. Just add one to two pounds dry ice for every gallon of beverages. We’ll give you the details (and important cautions) below. Plus we’ll share a recipe for carbonated strawberry lemonade. To carbonate your beverage, place one to two pounds dry ice for every one gallon of beverage, directly into the liquid. It is better if the dry ice is broken into several pieces, we use a meat hammer. Lightly cover your container with a lid or cover that can be easily pushed off be any pressure building in your vessel. (We use an Igloo brand 5-gallon beverage container with a push on/off lid and push the lid only part way down). Allow the dry ice to dissolve to carbonate your beverage.
Helpful Tips and Precautions
- You may need to stir your beverage two or three times during carbonation. Blocks of dry ice may freeze to the bottom of the container.
- The beverage may freeze around a single block of dry ice and greatly slow carbonation. It is better to have several smaller pieces of dry ice in the beverage.
- Once carbonation is nearly complete and the dry ice dissolved, tightly close your container to retain carbonation. If your container is nearly full and with a tight lid, your beverage will remain carbonated overnight.
- You can add more dry ice to increase carbonation.
- Carbonation may make your drink taste more lemony. If your drink is too strong, add water.
Important Precautions for Carbonating Your DrinksDry ice produces carbon dioxide that will carbonate your beverage. It is very simple to do but some cautions are important:
- Dry ice is extremely cold and will cause burns if it comes in contact with your skin. Always wear gloves or oven mitts when handling dry ice.
- Never allow children to be unattended around dry ice.
- Never put dry ice in a tightly enclosed container. Dry ice goes directly from a solid to gas. In so doing it expands, will create pressure in a closed container, and may explode. The container must be vented or fitted with a loose lid that will pop up under pressure.
- Never use dry ice in a closed room without ventilation. The carbon dioxide can displace oxygen in the room. If you experience shortness of breath, leave the room.
How to Carbonate a Single Glass of Soda PopSimply add a couple chunks of dry ice—with tongs, don’t touch them—to your glass of beverage. Let the dry ice dissolve completely before drinking. Do not leave your glass unattended while the dry ice melts. A child could pick up the glass, try to drink from it, and seriously burn his or her mouth or lips. Strawberry Lemonade Soda Pop Strawberry Lemonade Soda Pop Ingredients:
- One 12 ounce can frozen lemonade concentrate to make 64 ounces
- Water according to the producer’s directions
- About 2 cups trimmed strawberries to make about 1 cup puree
- 1/2 teaspoonstrawberry flavor (optional)
- dry ice
- Mix the lemonade according to directions.
- Puree the strawberries in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add the pureed strawberries to the lemonade.
- Add the dry ice and let it dissolve to carbonate your drink. See the directions and cautions above.