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What Is in a Shirley Temple Drink?

We all love mocktails, right? They’re easy to make and the ingredients are usually readily available. The Shirley Temple, in particular, has remained one of the best mocktails for its simplicity and how easy it is to adjust. You can add sugar-free syrup or flavored Italian soda—it’s even easy to make this drink alcoholic by turning it into a Dirty Shirley. In this article, we’ll dive into what is in a Shirley Temple and provide a step-by-step guide on how exactly to make it.

Ingredients in a Shirley Temple

The original Shirley Temple was made from three basic ingredients—grenadine, ginger ale, and lemon-lime soda–and maraschino cherries for garnishing. However, there are many variations, including the party punch Shirley Temple, that cater to large gatherings.

Making a Shirley Temple is almost as easy as gathering the ingredients:

  1. Add ice cubes to a large glass
  2. Add an ounce of homemade grenadine or half an ounce of store-bought grenadine
  3. Add four ounces of ginger ale
  4. Add sparkling water to cut the sweetness, or add lemon-lime soda
  5. Add maraschino cherries to garnish
  6. Stir gently and enjoy

Shirley Temple Garnishes

Maraschino cherries were the garnish of the original Shirley Temple recipe, but you can use other types of cherries if you’d like, or mix it up even more. Lime, lemon, or orange wedges will benefit the flavor of the drink; while fresh mint won’t flavor the drink much, it can change the aesthetics and offer your guests something new.

Tips for the Best Shirley Temple Mocktail

For the best taste, you should consider making grenadine at home. It's easy to make—all you need is pomegranate juice and sugar, and you can add fresh lime juice to cut down the sweetness. Of course, sugar-free cherry syrup from Skinny Mixes is always a great choice if you’d rather not make your own ingredients!

You should also consider using crushed ice instead of whole cubes to improve the aesthetics of the drink, and experiment with garnish combinations, as well.

In Summary

A Shirley Temple is one of the best classic mocktails you can enjoy, especially during the summer months. There are many variations possible, so it’s best to try mixing and matching, tasting as you go, to find what you like most and ensure a balanced flavor.

Ready to learn more about the adult version of this timeless drink? Check out our recent article on what a Dirty Shirley is made of.