Why This Recipe Works

  • A quick 10 minute simmer dissolves the sugar and infuses robust floral lavender flavor into the syrup.
  • Offering a range of lavender amount allows you to tailor to your taste the intensity of the final syrup.

Simple syrup tells you everything you need to know right in its name: It’s simple. Just combine equal volumes of sugar and water, mix or heat to dissolve the sugar, and boom, you’re done. Perhaps to some ears “lavender syrup” sounds slightly more complicated, but I assure you it’s not. It is the exact same process as making simple syrup, just with some dried lavender flowers tossed in. It couldn’t be easier.

Since the goal of an infused syrup like this is to transfer the flavor of the lavender into the syrup before straining the flowers out, we need to use heat—simply stirring without heat until the sugar dissolves makes perfect simple syrup, but not one that has picked up enough of the lavender flavor. It only takes about ten minutes of simmering to pull that flavor-transfer off, and then it’s time to strain and store the syrup until ready to use.

And how might you use it? Well, lavender syrup works great in cocktails like this Lavender French 75, and any other cocktail or nonalcoholic drink where you might desire adding a floral twist. The syrup would also be a welcome addition to some desserts—you could use it to moisten cake, candy fruits, drizzle over ice cream, or add a dash to your favorite cookie batter for a subtle lavender essence.

This recipe offers a range of 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of lavender relative to the batch of syrup, with the lower amount producing a more subtle (though still very noticeable) lavender flavor while the 1 teaspoon punches it up to something a little more assertive, but still pleasant. Feel free to go in whichever direction appeals more, though do keep in mind that even a stronger syrup can be diluted with plain simple syrup or other sweeteners to allow for exactly the amount of lavender flavor you want; there’s no need to go all-in if the result is too potpourri-like for your taste.

Lavender Syrup

Quickly infused with the fragrance of lavender, this versatile syrup is perfect for cocktails and desserts.

  • 1 cup (7 ounces; 198g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (237ml) water
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon dried food-grade lavender
  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and water. Add lavender, using 1/2 teaspoon for a more mild lavender flavor or 1 teaspoon for a stronger one. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat as needed to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes.

    Serious Eats / Amanda Suarez

  2. Strain lavender syrup through a fine-mesh strainer set over a small heatproof bowl or container; discard lavender flowers. Let cool, then use as desired.

    Serious Eats / Amanda Suarez

Special Equipment

Small saucepan, fine-mesh strainer

Make-Ahead and Storage

Lavender syrup can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

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