Simple Syrup Recipe // Stovetop or Microwave

Side view of bottle of prepared simple syrup.

This Simple Syrup recipe is perfect in your cocktails, for decorating cakes, and for sweetening coffee. Learn how to make it with sugar, honey, or brown sugar. With stovetop and microwave instructions. 

Simple syrup is often called for in cocktail recipes like Espresso Martinis, French 75 Cocktails, Bees Knees and Margaritas. And to be honest, in the past, when I would see that ingredient mentioned, I’d pass by the recipe just because I didn’t want to go through the process of making simple syrup. 

But, once I learned how quick & easy it was to make simple syrup at home, that thinking passed, and I embraced the process. Learning that I could make flavored simple syrups, spicy simple syrup for Spicy Margaritas, simple syrup with honey (used in Bees Knees Cocktails), and that I could even make it in the microwave. Keep reading to find out how easy it actually is! 

What is Simple Syrup Made of? 

  • Standard simple syrup is made with equal parts white sugar to water. However, once you’ve mastered the basic recipe, feel free to experiment with other sweeteners like honey or brown sugar, keeping the ratio the same. 

Simple Syrup Ratio 

  • Traditional simple syrup is made from one part sugar to one part water (1:1). However, you can play around with this ratio, making a richer syrup by using more sugar, and vice versa. 

Bowl of sugar next to measuring cup filled with water.

How do you Make Simple Syrup from Scratch? 

  • Combine equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan. 
  • Heat over medium heat until sugar dissolves and syrup becomes clear. 
  • Let cool then store in a covered glass container in the refrigerator. 

Does Simple Syrup Need to be Refrigerated? 

  • It’s best to keep simple syrup stored in the refrigerator for extended periods of time. 

How Long Does Homemade Simple Syrup Last? 

  • Standard simple syrup will last up to 4 weeks in the refrigerator. Honey and flavored simple syrups should be used within two weeks.

Can You Freeze Simple Syrup? 

  • You can freeze simple syrup, though it may not turn solid in the freezer. I like to store mine in a mason jar. However, be sure to leave about an inch of space in the jar to allow for expansion. 

How to Make Simple Syrup Recipe in the Microwave: 

  • Add sugar and water to a large pyrex measuring cup of other heat proof container. 
  • Heat on HIGH for 3-4 minutes until the syrup just begins to boil. 
  • Carefully remove from microwave and stir. 
  • Let cool then store in a covered glass container in the refrigerator. 

Simple Syrup Substitute

  • Even though it’s super easy to make simple syrup at home, if you still would like to forego the process, you can substitute simple syrup with maple syrup or agave syrup. 

Container of simple syrup next to jigger for cocktails

How to Make Flavored Simple Syrup: 

  • Honey Simple Syrup – Use equal parts honey and water. Delicious in this Bees Knees Cocktail
  • Brown Sugar Simple Syrup – Use equal parts brown sugar and water. Delicious in this Espresso Martini
  • Vanilla Simple Syrup – Add 1 split vanilla bean to 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water. Bring to simmer and cool. Use it in these Vanilla Bean Fig Cocktails
  • Berry Simple Syrup – Add ½ cup berries to 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water. Bring to simmer and cool. Use it in these Blackberry Tea Cocktails
  • Cinnamon Simple Syrup – Add 2 cinnamon sticks to 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water. Bring to simmer and cool. It’s delicious used to sweeten your morning coffee. 
  • Spicy Simple Syrup – Add 1 habanero (spicier) or jalapeno (milder) to 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water. Bring to simmer and cool. Use it in these Spicy Grapefruit Margaritas

How to Use Simple Syrup: 

  • In cocktails. 
  • To sweeten coffee, lemonade or iced tea. 
  • Drizzled over a fruit salad. 
  • As a topping for pancakes or waffles (berry and cinnamon simple syrup are delicious for this). 
  • To moisten cakes. Drizzle a bit of simple syrup over your cake layers. 
Side view of bottle of prepared simple syrup.

Simple Syrup Recipe 

This Simple Syrup recipe is perfect in your cocktails, for decorating cakes, and for sweetening coffee. Learn how to make it with sugar, honey, or brown sugar. With stovetop and microwave instructions.
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Cooling Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 1 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white sugar (or honey or brown sugar)
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

  • Combine sugar and water in a saucepan.
    Sugar and water in small pan before heating
  • Heat over medium heat until sugar dissolves and syrup becomes clear.
  • Let cool then store in a covered glass container in the refrigerator.
    Side view of bottle of prepared simple syrup.
Did you make this recipe?Mention @platingsandpairings or tag #platingsandpairings!

Equipment

Saucepan
Glass Bottle

Nutrition

Calories: 65kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Sodium: 1mg | Sugar: 17g

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