As the weather starts turning colder, the flavors of juicy peaches can be enjoyed in this peaches and cream mocktail. Fresh and beautiful, this drink is so easy to make and enjoy.
This is really two recipes in one. Homemade peach nectar is fast to make and freeze for later. Vanilla simple syrup is great to use in all sorts of drinks. Definitely, something to keep on hand.
Peach Nectar Versus Peach Juice
Both juice and nectar are non-carbonated liquids. While juice is only the liquid (and pulp) of the fruit, nectar is peaches, water, sweetener, and some kind of acid that helps keep the drink fresh and bright. Commercially processed peach nectar is an easy substitute when you want to make this peaches and cream mocktail on the fly. You can find these products in either the juice aisle (not refrigerated) of the grocery store or in the ethnic aisle.
Peaches and Cream Mocktails
Choose peaches that are fragrant, yield slightly to the touch, and free from blemishes. For a great tutorial on peeling peaches, check out my post for Fresh Peach Crisp, it is a simple process. You will want to reserve 1-2 peaches for garnishing the drinks. It is convenient to peel all the peaches at one time, but make sure you toss the reserved peach halves with lemon juice in order to keep them from browning.
Vanilla Simple Syrup
I have several other drinks that use flavored simple syrup. The post for Cherry Ginger Fizz, has a primer on the difference between simple syrup and rich syrup. Mint Julip Mocktail, uses a mint simple syrup and Pear Rosemary Sparkler,
uses a rosemary simple syrup.
Peaches and Cream Mocktail uses vanilla simple syrup to impart the creamy side of this mocktail. It is a simple 10-minute recipe that can be stored for up to a month in the pantry. (Stay tuned for a delicious warm winter drink coming this winter that uses vanilla simple syrup.)Print
The flavor of harvest peaches pairs with creamy vanilla in this easy fall mocktail.
- 8 peaches, (about 2 pounds) cut into large chunks
- 4 cups water
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Vanilla Simple Syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-liter club soda
- 2–3 peaches for garnish
- Mint leaves for garnish
To make the peach nectar,
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, fill the pan halfway with water. Cut an x n the bottom of each peach to make the fruit easier to peel after blanching.
- Fill a medium bowl with cold water and fill it with a handful of ice, set aside.
- When the water comes to a boil, place the peaches in the water for a few minutes using a slotted spoon or tongs, and transfer the peaches to the ice water to stop the cooking process.
- After 2-3 minutes peel off the peach skin and cut each peach in half. Reserve 1-2 peaches for garnish by holding them in a container with water and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice to keep them from turning brown. Cut the other peach halves into large chunks.
- In a blender, add the peaches and 2 cups of water and process until smooth.
- Strain the peach liquid through a strainer to remove some of the pulp.
- Rinse out the medium saucepan and return it to the stovetop.
- Add the peach juice, 2 cups water, 3 tablespoons lemon juice, 3/4 cup sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and bring the liquid to a boil to melt the sugar. Let the peach nectar cool and transfer it to an airtight container in the refrigerator.
To make the vanilla simple syrup
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the water, sugar, and vanilla extract. Bring the ingredients to a simmer and cook until the sugar has dissolved, stirring occasionally for about 3-5 minutes. Remove the syrup from the heat and cool to room temperature. Store in an airtight container for up to a month.
To make the Peaches and Cream Mocktail
- In a half-gallon pitcher, combine 1 quart peach nectar with 1/3 cup vanilla syrup and 1-liter club soda.
- Slice 2 of the reserved peaches into small pieces and muddle the fruit at the bottom of the drink. Stir and taste the mocktail. If you want it sweeter, add an additional teaspoon of vanilla simple syrup to taste. Add crushed ice and garnish the glasses with a slice of reserved peach and a mint leaf.
Substitute purchased peach nectar for the homemade version.
You can freeze the homemade peach nectar in zip-close bags or ice cube trays. Use with 3-6 months.