Why do we think you'll love this butterfly pea lemonade? Because:
it's an amazing thirst-quencher to sip on those hot sunny days
it's a super fun colour-changing drink to prepare
it's sugar-free, easy on your waistline
Sounds good? Let's make it together!
We started from the classic lemonade recipe made with juiced lemons, sugar, and water. But to give it this beautiful colour you see in the picture, we replaced all the water with sweetened blue pea tea.
Blue pea tea is made by steeping dried butterfly pea flowers in hot water until they release their deep blue pigments.
Now, the awesome thing about these pigments is that they are super sensitive to changes in pH. If you mix them with an acid, like lemon juice, they'll turn purple.
So, when you pour cold blue pea tea into lemon juice, you'll see it change colour from bright blue to light purple right in front of your eyes. So cool!
If you don't stir the lemonade, you'll have a beautiful colour gradient from yellow to purple and purple to blue. No wonder why butterfly pea lemonade is also called galaxy lemonade!
Because, here at Foodaciously, we want things to look pretty and be healthy, we made this butterfly pea lemonade sugar-free using zero-calorie erythritol.
Erythritol is a safe and natural sweetener that looks like granulated sugar, and it's almost as sweet. But it has no sugars or calories.
We use it all the time in our sugar-free recipes, like this sugar-free lavender lemonade.
As for the butterfly pea flowers, they're usually sold as dried or pulverised flowers at your local Asian food store as they're native to Thailand and Malaysia. But you can also find them online easily.
You can use the dried flowers or the powder to make this lemonade. We'll give you instructions for both in the steps below.
- Dried Butterfly Pea Flowers
- Sugar-Free Erythritol (or caster sugar)
- Lemon Juice
- Ice Cubes (to serve)
Let's start by making the sweet blue tea which will be the base of the lemonade.
Add dried butterfly pea flowers (or 1/2 tsp of butterfly pea powder) to a pot, jug, or bowl.
Pour in boiling water and tip in the sugar or zero-calorie erythritol sweetener.
Stir well until the sugar is dissolved, and leave the flowers to steep for no more than 5 minutes.
You should now have a vibrant blue tea that's not too dark (we used a white bowl so you can see the intensity of the blue).
But if you want, you can make the blue tea lighter or darker.
Simply adjust the flowers' quantites or brewing time, keeping in mind that if you use more flowers or steep them for longer the tea will be darker.
If you need, you can find more tips and instructions on how to do it in our dedicated butterfly pea blue tea recipe.
Once ready, filter out the flowers and let the blue tea cool down completely in the fridge.
Next, squeeze the lemons and filter the seeds.
You can now mix the lemon juice with cold butterfly pea tea into a large jug and keep it in the fridge before serving.
When you mix them, the blue pea tea will turn light purple which will make your lemonade look amazing.
Alternatively, you can have fun preparing colour-changing lemonade in each serving glass, as we did.
To do so, divide the lemon juice among serving glasses, add ice cubes to taste and a few lemon slices if you like (1).
Then, slowly pour in the butterfly pea tea so you'll have a blue top layer and a purple bottom layer. (2)
You can also invert the order and pour in the cold blue tea first and then the lemon juice.
Serve this magic lemonade icing-cold and sip it with joy!
You can halve the amount of water and top up the lemonade with sparkling water for a fizzy finish.
Got some blue pea tea left? Then, use it up to make a colourful blue bubble tea!