Hibiscus and Summer Fruit Cooler

If you’ve ever had a cup of Celestial Seasoning’s Red Zinger tea, then you’ve already tasted Hibiscus.

For those of you that haven’t tried this cooling herb, it’s slightly sour and a little tart, kind of like cranberry. Although thankfully, not as lip-puckering as cranberries!

According to ancient healing practices, the sour flavor can have a cleansing and cooling effect on the body.

That’s probably why lemonade (which has a sour flavor) has always been a big hit during the hot summer months.

With that being said…

It’s time to move over lemonade, you’ve already had your day in the sun.

It’s Hibiscus time!

Hibiscus sabdariffa is a plant that was native to Asia and is now grown in Africa, Thailand, America, Mexico, the Caribbean and other warm and/or tropical places around the world. It loves full sun and is sensitive to frost.

It has been used for centuries in culinary, medicinal and ornamental use.

Hibiscus has many medicinal properties and health benefits:[1]

  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Naturally diuretic
  • Relieves painful urination
  • Reduces anxiety
  • Lowers blood glucose
  • Rich in vitamin C, calcium, niacin, iron, riboflavin

That means besides being a gorgeous flower with delicious and cooling properties, it’s really good for you, too.

Here’s my recipe. Enjoy!


Hibiscus and Summer Fruit Cooler
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Herbal Remedies
Cuisine: Food is Medicine
Serves: 6-7 servings
  • 5 cups water
  • ¼ cup dried hibiscus flowers
  • Juice of two limes
  • ¼ cup local honey
  • 8-10 fresh basil leaves
  • 1-2 nectarines, pitted and diced
  • 6-7 strawberries, sliced thin
  1. Bring water to a boil
  2. Shut off the heat and add hibiscus
  3. Cover and steep 15-20 minutes
  4. Strain and discard the hibiscus leaves
  5. Add the honey, lime juice and basil and stir
  6. Add the fruit and put into the refrigerator for 45 minutes or ideally overnight
  7. Enjoy over ice!

[1] Rodale’s 21’st Century Herbal, by Michale J. Balick, PhD, 2014, Pgs. 178-179