Loaded Hibiscus Arnold Palmers



Somewhere down the line I picked up this habit of “loading” my drinks with fruit and herbs. I could probably link this on my mother for exposing me to sangria at such an early age. Or blame it on drinking the same boring glass of soda water for lunch for over a year that I was bound to start throwing extra things into it. Either way – I’m hooked. There is something so elegant and fancy about adding a little bits of color and infusion into your everyday drinks. And it’s a great way to use up fruits and herbs leftover in your fridge – wilted herbs will perk up when placed in water so no need to waste your good ones on this drink!

This Hibiscus Arnold Palmer is summer in a glass. Not only is it full of homemade lemonade and fresh iced tea but it’s also chocked full of lemon slices, blueberries, and mint leaves. Heck, if I would have had cucumber lying around then I could have thrown that in there too!

Do you drink hibiscus tea? 99% of tea that I drink is in the winter and hibiscus is one of the few I reserve for iced tea and summer picnics. If you don’t have much experience with hibiscus tea then I would recommend the Republic of Tea’s Natural Hibiscus – it’s wonderfully delicious and makes a mean iced tea. And no, I’m not endorsed by them (other than that fact that I buy their product) so feel free to give me suggestions if you have a better hibiscus tea to try! There are supposed to be many health benefits links to this tea as well – ranging from lowering blood pressure to being chocked full of antioxidants.

I do hope to make my own hibiscus tea from scratch in the near future for you guys but until the flowers bloom like crazy on my plant – store bought tea will have to suffice. I do, however, make the lemonade from scratch in this recipe to guarantee a fresh and dizzying lemon punch. The following recipe uses agave as the sweetener in the simple syrup but feel free to use equal parts sugar if that is what you have on hand. Also, I keep mine pretty tart so if you like it sweeter then up the agave ratio or add more agave at the end to adjust flavor.




Loaded Hibiscus Arnold Palmer

  • 1 cup lemon juice (from 4 large lemons) + extra sliced lemon for garnish
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar
  • 3 1/3 cups filtered water
  • 4 cups prepared hibiscus tea, cooled
  • handful of mint leaves, for garnish
  • 1/2 cup blueberries, for garnish


In a small saucepan, combine 1/3 cup water with 1/3 cup agave syrup. Bring to a boil, stir until combined, and let simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a pitcher.

Juice the 4 lemons and transfer juice to the pitcher. Add the extra 3 cups of water to dilute the lemonade. Pour in the prepared hibiscus tea and garnish with lemon slices, blueberries, and mint leaves.

Serve over ice at your next cookout or picnic adventure.





Shelly is the creator of Vegetarian Ventures. She is also the Creative Director of Driftless Magazine and likes to wear wolf shirts, drink peppermint tea, and dance to Stevie Nicks.



  1. Reply


    June 2, 2013


    • Reply


      June 2, 2013

      Yay! Is your blog name a play on the 90s band ‘violent femmes?’ I hope so because I LOOOOVE them! If not, I still love the name : ]

  2. Reply


    June 2, 2013

    Oh man, YES! It’s like you read my mind! I love lemon and hibiscus together, and it’s one of the drinks I’m planning on working into a trio of summer beverages guest post this week. I also buy the REpublic of Tea stuff. It’s a little pricey, but I love that it comes in a tin instead of a box. 🙂

    • Reply


      June 2, 2013

      Ah ha! Great minds thing alike! : ]

      It is pricey but I rationalize it by knowing it’s the same price I pay for my organic, locally roasted coffee beans and those most certainly don’t last as long. I also love the packaging – it’s probably what drew me to it in the first place.

      Can’t wait to see what you’ve come up with for your trio of summer drinks!

  3. Reply


    June 2, 2013

    This looks like the perfect summer porch-drink. Yeah, thats a category of drinks I just invented, and this tops the list.

    • Reply


      June 2, 2013

      Thanks, Sarah! Porch-drinking just so happens to be one of my favorite past times so I’m honored to have a drink at the top of the list!!

  4. Reply

    sarah Rebis

    June 14, 2013

    Use ABSOLUT vodka’s new Hibiscus flavor!

    • Reply


      June 16, 2013

      Oh my – I had no idea that hibiscus flavored vodka existed! That sounds wonderful and perfect for this drink!