We hear it all the time: “Drink more water!” It’s a great rule to live by and necessary for staying healthy, but sometimes bad habits are hard to break and good habits are hard to make.

A lot of the bad habit comes from drinking too much soda. It’s really easy to get into the habit of grabbing a can from the fridge, popping it open, and sipping away. Some of us do this many times a day and I won’t even bother going into the ill effects on our health… we’ve heard it all before.

The reason we keep coming back to soda is not only the convenience factor, but the addiction to all of those sugars. Maybe you have noticed that most of the popular sodas are never really thirst quenching. Sure, they work for a minute and taste so very cool and refreshing, but a few minutes later your mouth feels like a sweetened oil slick and you need another drink to clean it up. Then another and another, and the cycle is endless. Sugary drinks make us drink more, which is why it is easy to get too drunk with sweeter cocktails.

Some of us (myself included), desire flavor and plain water just doesn’t quite do it all of the time. We need something extra, particularly in those first days when you are trying to kick the soda habit.

In comes all of the new water flavorings. Those often fruity little additives that require just a few drops to transform your water into a magical, flavored elixir. That is great and it’s becoming a popular way for people to drink more water, but there are many DIY ways to add flavor to water and everything you need is probably right in your refrigerator (next to the 12-pack of soda!).

Mojito Water is one of my personal favorites and each morning before work I fill up my water bottle with this tasty little treat. It has just enough flavor and sweetness to satiate my sweet tooth and I get my daily requirement of water. It also has that taste of a great Mojito (without the rum, of course).

For the mint syrup, you have two alternatives: buy or DIY. The first option is great if fresh mint is not available and there are some really good syrup companies out there. One of my new favorites for mint specifically is KISS Spearmint. It is refreshing and has a natural mint flavor and just a little bit flavors the full bottle.

When mint is plentiful, the homemade mint syrup is a great way to go and it is really inexpensive to make, especially if you grow your own mint. I’ve included a quick recipe below and don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of mint. Pineapple and chocolate mints make a very fun syrup and there are so many more to choose from! If you are new to growing mint in the garden, the only advice I will give is that it spreads and spreads quick (I keep my mints in containers for that reason).

Mojito Water Recipe

Prep Time: 2 minutes

Yield: 1 Water Bottle

Mojito Water Recipe

Naturally flavor your water and create the taste of a refreshing lime and mint Mojito.

Photo © S&C Design Studios

Ingredients

  • 1/2 ounce lime juice
  • 1/2 ounce mint simple syrup* (recipe below)
  • Water

Instructions

  1. Pour the lime juice and simple syrup into your water bottle.
  2. Fill with water and shake well.

Notes

To Make Mint Syrup:

1 cup mint leaves (rinsed)

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

Place the sugar and water in a small saucepan on medium heat. Bing to a gentle boil while stirring until all of the sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add mint. Cover and allow to cool completely.

Once cool, strain the mint from the syrup (you may have to double strain) and press the mint leaves to ensure all of the syrup is extracted. Bottle in a glass container with a tight-fitting lid and store in the refrigerator.

Makes a little less than 1 cup and stores for about 2 weeks.

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More simple syrup tips and recipes…

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