Drinks: How to Stay Cool in Summer Heat | Cooling Drinks with Juices and Herbs

Our Summers are hot and dry. Today, as I write it is over 40 C for the third day in a row, and the forecast is for 44C. That is around 111F.

But is so quiet in the mornings. There is something about hot weather that subdues noise. Have you noticed? The morning is so peaceful – but still full of joy and expectation for the day.

In those peaceful couple of early morning hours, my thoughts turn to what to drink during the day. Is there ice in the freezer? Spring water available? What flavour of drink for today?

In the evenings, it can be so still, with nere a breath of wind, lit only by the moon. Looking for coolness, we sit outside, but it is only the cooling drinks which bring relief.

Here are some of the beautiful things that are cooling in Summer. Some are simple, some are sweet, some salty and some spicy. Enjoy. You can browse our other Drinks here.

You might also like to try Watermelon Juice with Mint and Ginger, Balinese Ginger and Lemongrass Tea (which can be iced) and a Strawberry Frappe.

Have a look at our Summer Cooler Suggestions – or browse all of our coolers here. Are you looking for Tea recipes? Try here. Or Juice suggestions? Look here. Or simply explore our Early Summer recipes here.

An Important Read

Simple Lemon, Lime and Mint Water

Fill a large jug with water. Add two large branches of mint, 2 slices of lemon (no need to peel) and/or lime.

If you have a gorgeous unblemished red chilli, add that as well. It gives the water a lift but does not make it chilli hot.

If you have any around, add a little lemongrass, lemon verbena or kaffir lime leaves. You can pop in a whole frozen lime too!

Chill and drink in the hot afternoon. You can also make it with hot water – have a delightful tea, and then chill the rest for the afternoon.

Lemon, Lime, Mint Cooler

Watermelon Juice

When watermelons are cheap, use your juicer to juice them with some mint. Add some ginger too if you like. Serve over ice.

Watermelon Juice

Other juices

Any summer fruit combination through the juicer is wonderful. Herbs that can accompany the fruit are parsley, mint, lemon verbena, kaffir lime leaves, basil. Ginger. Slowly with the herb quantities at first until you are used to the combinations.

Peel oranges and lemons before juicing. Everything else goes in skin and all.

Fruit Juice

One of the surprising of all juices is zucchini juice, either on its own or with other fruits. Cucumber is a great addition too.

Zucchini and Fruit Juice

Iced tea

Make any herbal tea, make it quite strong, pour it over ice in a large jug and put into the fridge to chill. Serve with mint in the glass.

Mint and Lemon Verbena Tea

  • Green Gourmet Giraffe has a great Green Tea Cooler. I like to add other cooling elements too – mint, strawberry or cucumber juice, ginger.

Green Tea, Apple and Strawberry Juice, and Ginger Cooler


Ginger Cooler

Ginger is so very healthy for you. Cook Almost Anything wonderfully posted a ginger and barley cooler.

To make a hot day drink, simply seep a lot of ginger and some lemon grass in boiling water, add sugar, black rock or sea salt (a pinch), water or sparkling mineral water, jaggery or sugar and the juice of 0.5 – 1 lemon or lime. Chill and sip in the heat.

The black rock salt really does make a difference, but is not strictly necessary. If you have some sea salt add a pinch of that. Salt will help to replace your electrolytes that you lose in hot weather.

You can add to this any fresh tasting herb – mint, lemon verbena, kaffir, basil, even a pinch of fresh parsley will be nice. A fresh unblemished chilli as above.

Or for a twist, add cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, even cumin. Star anise, fennel, liquorish root.

A pinch of ground black pepper.

Or just keep it very simple. Ginger. Salt. Jaggery. Lemon.

Ginger Cooler


Quince Cordial

Back last autumn when the quinces scented my house most wondrously, I made some quince syrup. Now it has come into its own – with tonic water or soda water and a slice of lemon or lime. Luxurious. Pink. Delicious.

Summer Cafes

Salt Lassi

Here in Australia everyone knows the Mango lassi, but salt lassi is so unknown. I love it, and it has grown on me over the years so that I don’t often drink mango lassi any more. I love my salt lassi. This is how you make it.

Take some yoghurt. If yoghurt in your region is thin, let it sit in some muslin for 30 minutes to drain off some moisture. If yoghurt in your region is sour, you might like to add a tspn of sugar to this recipe.

To the yoghurt, add a few mint leaves that have been chopped, and blend them together. Add 0.5 tspn of cumin seeds that have been dry roasted in a frying pan. Add salt, 2 pinches black pepper, 0.25 cup mild and mix. Add ice cubes and serve cold.

Browse other Lassi recipes here.

Jeera Lassi | Cumin Yoghurt Drink | Vegetarian | A Life Time of Cooking

Jal Jeera

Take some mint leaves and grind them to a paste.

To 4 cups water, add the mint leaves, a pinch salt, 1 tspn dry roasted cumin powder, 1 tspn garam masala, pinch black salt, pinch red chilli powder, 1 tspn amchoor powder, 1 tspn or more jaggery or brown sugar, and the juice of 1/2 lemon. Stir well. Add ice cubes and serve cold.

Jal Jeera

Some optional additions to Jal Jeera are green chillies, fresh ginger, coriander leaves (cilantro) added to the mint when making a paste, curry leaves, replace the water with watermelon juice.


browse some more Drink recipes

Browse all of our coolers here. Are you looking for Tea recipes? Try here. Or Juice suggestions? Look here. Or simply explore our Early Summer recipes here. You can browse all of our Drinks recipes here and here, or try any of these:

This is cross posted with our sister site, A Life Time of Cooking; it appears here as part of the How To series.











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