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Simple Syrup Recipe – Make Your Own Shave Ice Flavors

Take Your Shave Ice Business Up a Notch by Making and Flavoring Your Own Simple Syrup

Shave ice is a treat that appeals to kids of all ages (even the “overgrown” variety!) which is probably why you got into the business to begin with! Of course the big appeal of shave ice is its amazing flavor, which is a great way to stay hydrated and please the taste buds.

But if you want to make your shaved ice business really stand out among a crowded field of competitive treats, learning to make your own simple syrup to which you can add any flavorful ingredient you want, may just be the ticket to rising above the ordinary and making yours the “in demand” stand in your area!

Making your own simple syrup couldn’t be any simpler to do! All you need is a bag of sugar, some water, and a little bit of time, most of which is spent waiting for the syrup to cool. Once it’s cooled, you’re ready for the creative part — adding the flavors that are going to attract customers and cause a “word of mouth” stampede leading straight to your shave ice business!

But first things first. Here’s the basic simple syrup recipe


  • equal parts sugar and water (Really! That’s why it’s called “simple” syrup!)


  • Heat until the sugar dissolves into the water.
  • Cool and voila! — You’ve just made a batch of simple syrup!

The Fun Part: Adding Flavor

The time to add flavoring is while the syrup is still hot so that whatever you’re adding infuses its flavor as the syrup cools.

  • Make some kid-friendly flavors like cola, root beer, orange, pineapple, lemon, lime, raspberry and cherry.
  • For adults looking for traditional, yet grown-up flavor, try coffee, mint, green tea, or vanilla.
  • For the “foodie” looking for something refreshingly different, try some of the following alone or in combination …
    • lavender (for the sophisticated palate)
    • raspberry lemonade (refreshing!)
    • blackberry-lavender (fruity with flowery undertones)
    • peach-lemon verbena (fruit/herb combo)
    • chocolate-coffee (mocha; use a mixture of strong coffee with cocoa powder)
    • coconut-lime (infuse your simple syrup with lime and drizzle with cream of coconut)

The possibilities are endless and limited only by your imagination and creativity! For the best results, use fresh fruit as opposed to frozen, and the freshest ingredients you can get your hands on.


Adding Your Flavored Simple Syrup to Shaved Ice

The easiest way to ensure that the syrup permeates the ice is to use a straw to poke a few “holes” in the ice before dousing it with syrup. This results in an evenly infused shaved ice treat, which your customers, of course, will love!


Using Simple Syrup at Home

Shaved ice and cocktails are natural partners, and there are so many refreshing ones to make during the summertime. Try a peach-lemon verbena syrup in an “old-fashioned” or lemon-lavender-thyme simple syrup mixed with vodka for a new twist on a “hard” lemonade.  During the fall and winter, add “warming ingredients” like cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, and fennel to vodka for a festive holiday treat!

You can also use flavored simple syrups in sauces and glazes. (Think simple syrup made with light brown sugar and infused with cloves as a special glaze for an Easter ham.)

Once you start making your own simple syrup, you’ll come up with spontaneous ideas for your own unique flavors to use both in your business and at home. Who knows, maybe you’ll even concoct a new “specialty of the house” that’ll make your shaved ice business the talk of the town, and when you consider how well word-of-mouth works to draw new customers, you’ll be so glad you started making your own simple syrup instead of relying commercial flavorings!