This Basil and Cucumber Smash recipe creates a light and fragrant cocktail, muddled with basil leaves, cucumber, and ice, then finished off with gin and a splash of club soda. It’s a refreshing drink you’ll want to drink all through summer!
Basil and cucumber pair great with the earthy floral notes in gin, making for a refreshing and unique cocktail.
For those looking for a reason to celebrate, next on the calendar is Flag Day–I have had a mad crush on a boy born on Flag Day–and if that isn’t reason enough, June 14, also happens to be National Gin Day!
In celebration of all things June, fashionable straw designer Straw Envy offers this refreshing recipe to sip with style this holiday.
Gin or Vodka?
You can celebrate again on October 4th, for National Vodka Day by reaching for the vodka instead of the gin.
it’s totally your preference.
Drink this Cucumber and Basil Smash every day in between National Gin Day and National Vodka Day.
Cucumber and basil are a winning combination.
What is a Smash?
A “smash” is a category of cocktails somewhat similar to a julep.
The most common Smash may be the Whiskey Smash which is basically whiskey, mint and sugar.
Smash however has come to include citrus, most commonly lemon juice.
Think of a Smash as a boozy lemonade.
The “smash” part gets its name from when you muddle the fruit or herbs.
Consider also muddling seasonal berries for a flavorful variation.
How to Muddle:
Muddling is a technique used in drinks to gently mash herbs or fruit to release their juices.
Think of Muddling, as an art.
The art of crushing fruit, sugar, and herbs to pull out flavors and help them bind with alcohol.
It’s a technique that’s sure to make you a sought after hostess and one of the skills needed in the art of mixology.
Muddling is used in many popular cocktails, like the Mojito and this one.
You don’t need much skill, but it’s important to note, you don’t want to muddle your herbs to the pulp.
Place the mint leaves at the bottom of a cocktail shaker or sturdy glass..
Using a wooden cocktail muddler or unfinished wooden spoon, gently mash, by pressing down on the “muddled” and twisting, the herb 3 to 4 times to release the juices.
Basil Cucumber Smash Recipe
Herb-Infused Cucumber Smash
Prep Time: 10 minutes
- 4 cucumber slices
- 4 basil leaves
- 1 Tablespoon of simple syrup
- 1 ½ ounces gin of your choice
- Freshly squeezed lime juice (to taste)
- 1 cup crushed ice
- ¾ cup club soda
- Roll two basil leaves together and slice them into smaller pieces.
- In a sturdy glass, combine the simple syrup and 1 ½ ounces of gin.
- Add two cucumber slices and two sliced basil leaves to the glass, then gently muddle them 5-10 times to release their flavors.
- Add lime juice to taste, starting with about a teaspoon and adjusting according to your preference.
- Fill the glass with 1 cup of crushed ice, allowing it to chill the mixture.
- Slowly pour ¾ cup of club soda into the glass, stirring gently to combine all the ingredients.
- Take the last cucumber slice and make a small cut halfway through the middle. Slide it onto the rim of the glass along with a fresh basil leaf for a delightful garnish.
- For added elegance, serve your Herb-Infused Cucumber Smash with a straw. Alternatively, consider garnishing with orange slices for a burst of color and flavor.
- Brunch Delight: Pair this refreshing Cucumber Smash with a light quiche or a fresh fruit salad to start your day on a high note.
- Garden Gathering: Serve this herbaceous cocktail at a summer garden party alongside finger sandwiches and vegetable platters for a refreshing and sophisticated twist.
- Seafood Extravaganza: Complement a seafood feast with the Herb-Infused Cucumber Smash to cleanse the palate and enhance the flavors of your favorite seafood dishes.
- Mocktail Version: Create a non-alcoholic version of this beverage by omitting the gin and increasing the amount of club soda. It will be just as refreshing and suitable for guests of all ages.
Enjoy the Herb-Infused Cucumber Smash as a wonderful blend of cooling cucumber, aromatic basil, and zesty lime, perfect for any occasion!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Basil Cucumber Smash:
1. Can I use a different herb instead of basil? Absolutely! While basil provides a lovely herbal flavor, you can experiment with other herbs like mint, thyme, or even cilantro to create your unique twist on the Cucumber Smash.
2. Can I make this cocktail ahead of time for a party? While it’s best to enjoy the Cucumber Smash fresh to experience its vibrant flavors, you can prepare the muddled cucumber, basil, and simple syrup in advance. Store the mixture in the refrigerator, and when it’s time to serve, add the gin, lime juice, ice, and club soda to complete the cocktail.
3. How can I make a larger batch for a crowd? To make a pitcher of Herb-Infused Cucumber Smash, multiply the ingredients by the number of servings you need, excluding the ice and club soda. Prepare the cucumber and basil mixture in a large pitcher and keep it chilled. When serving, pour the mixture into individual glasses filled with ice, then top each glass with club soda.
4. Is there a non-alcoholic version of this cocktail? Absolutely! To make a non-alcoholic version, simply omit the gin and increase the amount of club soda. Adjust the sweetness by adding more simple syrup if desired. It will be just as refreshing and suitable for guests of all ages.
5. Can I use a cocktail shaker to mix the ingredients? While you can use a cocktail shaker for a more vigorous mix, it’s recommended to muddle the cucumber and basil gently to extract their flavors without overpowering the cocktail with excess bitterness. Shaking the ingredients may also make the drink too frothy.
6. What is the best type of gin to use for this recipe? The choice of gin depends on your personal preference. Use a gin with a flavor profile that you enjoy. Whether it’s a classic London Dry gin or a more floral and fruity gin, it will bring its unique characteristics to the cocktail.
7. Can I substitute the simple syrup with another sweetener? Yes, you can substitute simple syrup with honey, agave syrup, or maple syrup. Keep in mind that each sweetener may impart slightly different flavors, so adjust the quantity to taste.
8. How long can I store the muddled cucumber and basil mixture in the refrigerator? The muddled mixture can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. However, for the freshest taste, it’s best to use it within a few hours of preparation.
9. What can I use as an alternative garnish? Get creative with garnishes! Instead of an orange slice, try using a lemon twist, a cucumber wheel, or a sprig of basil. Edible flowers like nasturtiums or pansies also add a delightful touch.
10. Is this cocktail suitable for vegetarians and vegans? Yes, the Herb-Infused Cucumber Smash is suitable for vegetarians and vegans as it contains no animal products or by-products. Just ensure the gin you use is vegan-friendly if that’s a concern.
Enjoy making and savoring your Herb-Infused Cucumber Smash, and feel free to experiment and customize it to your taste preferences!
- 3 cucumber slices
- 3 basil leaves
- ½ tbsp of simple syrup
- 1 ounce gin of your choice
- lime juice (to taste)
- ½ cup crushed ice
- ½ cup club soda
- Roll two basil leaves together, slicing them into smaller pieces.
- Add simple syrup to a glass, along with 1 ounce of gin.
- Add two cucumber slices and two sliced basil leaves, muddle 5-10 times.
- Add lime juice to taste (about a teaspoon).
- Add ½ cup crushed ice and ½ cup club soda.
- Make a cut halfway through your last cucumber slice, placing it in the rim of the glass along with a basil leaf for garnish.
- Dress up your drink with a straw or garnish with orange slices and enjoy it!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 1 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 119Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 7mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 1gSugar: 8gProtein: 1g
The Nutritional Information may not be accurate.