When I was pregnant, I managed not to get dehydrated during the hot months because one of my weird cravings was sparkling water. A very convenient, no-guilt craving, if you ask me. And actually, I think I may have single-handedly kept San Pellegrino and Charmin in business during those nine months!
While buying pomegranate juice for my usual soda concoction, I spotted the Whole Foods’ line of Italian sodas. Blood Orange Italian Soda? Yes!
Finally a reason to buy the cool-looking citrus that I’ve never known what to do with! As it turns out, blood oranges are even better for you than regular oranges – all the more reason to buy some and include them in your diet. Kale blood orange salad, anyone?
Everyone knows oranges contain Vitamin C – that’s why they’re the fruit of choice when you’re feeling sick or need an immunity boost. Blood oranges, however, come with the added benefit of anthocyanins, the pigments responsible for the beautiful red color of this type of citrus, as well as that of various berries.
Their stunning color only develops when the temperatures are low during the night, which is common during fall and winter in the Mediterranean. Anthocyanins are believed to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, fighting free radicals that age the skin.
Besides, blood oranges have all the health benefits of regular oranges: vitamin A, which helps maintain skin’s health; vitamin C, the one responsible for a good immune system; nail-strengthening calcium; folate and magnesium; and smaller but still valuable amounts of iron, selenium, and manganese.
Compared to common oranges, blood oranges also have less sugar (7g/100g vs 9g/100g), which makes them a healthier alternative when you need to cut down your sugar intake.
Blood Orange Italian Soda
Most blood oranges worldwide come from Italy, specifically from Sicily. If you’d rather buy local produce, however, you can also get Texas and California grown blood oranges. Still, we’re calling this one Italian soda rather than Texan soda. It just makes more sense that way, doesn’t it?
To give this drink a little sweetness, I’ve tried both simple syrup and agave nectar. The real sugar version is my favorite – the sweet tooth strikes again. Agave will also do the trick, though, especially if you’re already used to its taste.
And if you can’t find blood oranges, try pomegranate juice, muddled raspberries or even plain oranges.
Blood Orange Italian Soda
- 1/4 cup juice (1-2 large blood oranges)
- 12 oz (1 1/2 cups) sparkling water
- 1-2 tbsp simple syrup
- Combine 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water in a small sauce pan. Heat on low until sugar is dissolved. Juice your oranges and strain if you don’t like a bit of pulp. Pour juice in cup and add mineral water. Be warned, you might get some frothing. Add simple syrup as desired.
Photos by Ana-Maria Stanciu70
soda maker says
Looks so deliciously refreshing!
Sounds great! I love vanilla italian sodas, so I usually bust out the Torani syrup and cream for that, but I’ll have to try the blood orange. I am also addicted to sparkling water. We were going through so much (it’s the only water I’ll drink now) that we decided to invest in a Soda Stream. If you’ve never heard of it, you’ve got to check it out! Our friend had one and showed us and we got one the very next week. It’s a machine that holds a carbonator and you basically make your own sparkling water from any plain water. You can add your own syrups, or juices, or they have syrups to make traditional sodas (cola, lemon-lime, etc). I don’t care for their syrups and tend to stick with fruit juices, but at $15 for a replacement carbonator that lasts me about a month (I make at least one 1L bottle a day) it’s much cheaper than buying bottled sparkling water. Plus, the bubbles last longer than San Pellegrino. For us, it was worth the up-front money since it’s all I drink nowadays. Apparently, they’re quite trendy nowadays so you can find them all over. Anyways, just thought I’d share that tip!
Tara@Tales of a Trop says
Looks yummy and refreshing. I love to sew and always have people asking me to learn, so I am doing a series on my blog. So far, I’ve done 3 lessons. Hope you’ll join me.
This sounds delicious and loos so cool!
This looks delicious! I’d love to have you come and share this at my first link party/give-away going on now through Saturday!
I’ve never had Italian Soda… I should make some for my grand-father I bet he would love it :)
When you say ”simple syrup”… what is it?
Thank you so very much for sharing this at The DIY Dreamer… From Dream To Reality!!
Wow, sounds delicious! I’m on the lookout for great non-alcoholic drink ideas for a party coming up, so I’m definitely pinning this. And the color is gorgeous too! Thanks for the inspiration!
I like the looks and sound of this……I’m a lemonade addict and strawberry limeade too.
I love weird drinks.
I drink so much sparkling water too! The Whole Foods brand is pretty cheap though, so I don’t feel too bad about it. :) I just love Italian soda because it’s a little less cloyingly sweet than the regular kind. And blood orange? OH YES! I hope you submitted this photo to FoodGawker!
San Pellegrino is THE BEST. That italian soda sounds AMAZING. Did you know traditional italian sodas you put cream in them? I worked in an Italian cafe and was always waiting for the drink to curdle every time I made one
sherri lynn @ life o says
This looks delicious! I love the vibrant red of the oranges! It’s been super hot here lately so this would be so refreshing!
Seriously Sassy Mama says
Tonia @TheGunnySack says
So sorry you were sick!!! Your recipe sound delightful! I was addicted to Orangina during my first pregnancy!
Oh, this looks great! What a fun little recipe! Thanks for sharing!
Hope you don’t get any more sickness at your place, I am so sorry you all got hit with that.