Since the breakfast bowl, I’ve been obsessed with Cara Cara oranges. They’re extra sweet, tangy and pink! (Well, pinker then normal oranges). But with a 10 orange bag still left, I had to look for other ways to use them. The delicious solution- cocktail syrup.
Quick explanation. Simple syrups are used in drinks instead of granulated sugar because they mix more easily. Most syrups are made with equal parts water and sugar (or sometimes 2:1 sugar to water for “rich syrup” & extended store time), and add the infusion ingredients later. But because orange juice already has high amounts of sugar and is a liquid (duh), using it directly in equal parts cuts straight to the chase.
Cara Cara Cocktail Syrup
equal parts fresh Cara Cara juice & sugar
(~3 oranges = 1/2 cup of juice)
Making simple syrups might be the easiest recipe ever. Start by juicing all your oranges and strain to remove pulp (Cara Cara oranges don’t have seeds! Win.).
Combine your juice and sugar in a saucepan, bring to a boil, stir until the sugar dissolves. Let cool in a glass container. That’s it. Finito. Store in the fridge up to a month.
Tips + Tricks
1 cup juice + 1 cup sugar makes about 16 oz- a perfect gifting size! I reused a glass juice bottle and added my label. Click to download the wrap around & square versions here.
Best juicing practices- Have the oranges at room temperature and roll them against the counter before juicing. This will help the citrus release the juices. Don’t have any juicing tools? Try using the back of a spoon.
There’s a lot of debate on how long simple syrups keep. General rule is one month in the fridge, but some people say theirs have kept for over a year. Just keep an eye on it 😉
I love the tanginess of Cara Cara’s on its own, but if you want a sweeter variation add a splash of vanilla extract.
The original or sweetened version can be further reduced (like how we made the red wine syrup for Valentine’s Day) to make an amazing dessert glaze.
I’m working on 2 cocktail recipes using this syrup, so check back next week to see how to use it!