Google+ Allergy-Free Vintage Cookery: Homemade "Shirley Temple" Soda


Monday, July 8, 2013

Homemade "Shirley Temple" Soda

Soda is a beverage that only appears on special occasions in our family, and never at our house, only out to eat or at parties.  Even then, because of our corn allergies, we only indulge in those brands that use sugar, not corn syrup.

That said, the boys still recall fondly the days before our allergies were diagnosed when they could order a Shirley Temple when we were out to eat.  For those of you who aren't familiar with this child's "cocktail," it generally consists of ginger ale or Sprite mixed with cherry syrup or grenadine.  Unbelievably sweet, and loaded with terrible ingredients.

One day, we were pondering a bag of black cherries and wondering how to use them up before they all got too mushy.  Inspiration struck when we decided to try to make our own Shirley Temple drinks, including the soda!

This drink is nowhere near as sweet as its namesake, but after avoiding real soda for so long, our palates couldn't take that level of sweetness anyway.  It is best drunk immediately, so the bubbles in the seltzer don't go flat.  Also, you will get some cherry bits settling to the bottom of the glass.  Yummy, but not found in the original drink.  No one would mistake this for a restaurant drink, but it was refreshing nonetheless!

Homemade "Shirley Temple" Soda

For the cherry syrup:

2 cups cherries, pitted and halved
1 Tbsp coconut sugar
2 Tbsp maple syrup
1/4 c. seltzer

In a small saucepan over medium heat, mix all the ingredients and cook them down until soft, about 15 minutes.  Transfer all or some of the cherry mixture to a blender and whirl, or blend with an immersion blender.  (You may wish to keep a few cherries whole because they're prettier)  Set aside.

For each glass of "ginger ale"

1 cup seltzer
1/2 tsp maple syrup
pinch of dried ginger
few drops lemon juice

In a decorative glass, combine all ingredients and mix slowly to avoid popping all the seltzer bubbles.  Add cherry syrup to taste, and serve with a garnish of cherries and orange peel.

Shared with Mostly Homemade Monday, the Hearth and Soul Hop, Allergy Free Wednesday, Anything GoesReal Food Wednesday, Healthy 2Day Wednesday, the Homemaking LinkUp, Wellness Weekend, Weekend Bloggy Reading, and Slightly Indulgent Tuesday.


  1. oooh! i used to love shirley temples! this sounds great!

  2. Shirley Temples were my favourite when I was a kid. They made me feel so grown up! Your healthier version sounds delicious too - there's nothing wrong with a bit of fruit at the bottom of a glass :)