Celery Soda

By • March 11, 2012 • 58 Comments

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Author Notes: This recipe is inspired by a great soda company from Seattle called Dry Soda. They make not overly sweet sodas with interesting flavors like lavender, juniper, and rhubarb. I decided to see how celery soda might work, and was pleasantly surprised by the result. I've added a bit of lemon, black pepper, and cardamon to enhance and complement the fresh, herbaceous flavor of the celery. This is a grown-up soda that would be perfectly refreshing on a sultry summer day.hardlikearmour

Food52 Review: Hardlikearmour has created a very cool way to use celery. This is different than every other soda. It's not overly sweet, rather it's a little spicy with a strong undercurrent of celery. It packs jsut the right amount of spice to be interesting, but still refreshing and light. I liked mine in a dilution of 6:1, but feel free to play with it to find what you like the best. Stephanie Bourgeois

Makes about 2 cups of syrup

  • 7 - 8 large stalks celery (about 3/4 lb) (plus inner stalks for garnish)
  • large lemon
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper corns
  • 8 green cardamom pods
  • 1 1/4 cups water (12 oz)
  • 1 cup sugar (7 oz)
  • seltzer water (about 2 quarts for the entire batch of syrup)
  1. Clean then thinly slice the celery. It should measure about 3 cups when firmly packed into a liquid measuring cup. Set aside.
  2. Remove the zest in strips from half of the lemon. Lightly crush the pepper corns and cardamom pods. Set aside.
  3. Bring water and sugar to a boil in a medium sauce pan. Once it reaches a boil, add the sliced celery and return it to a boil for about 1 minute. Stir once or twice in the process. Remove from the heat.
  4. Add the lemon zest, pepper, and cardamom to the celery mixture. Stir to combine, then cover the pan and allow to cool to room temperature.
  5. Strain the celery syrup through a fine mesh strainer into a jar or other suitable storage container. Press the celery to extract as much syrup as possible. Feel free to nibble on some of the candied celery - it's surprisingly tasty! (and if you think of any good uses for it, pass them on! I send most of it to the compost heap.)
  6. Juice the lemon, and add 3 tablespoons of the juice to the syrup. Stir to combine. Store covered in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  7. Mix syrup with seltzer water. A 1 to 4 dilution is a good starting point; adjust to your taste. Serve over ice with a tender inner celery stalk as garnish if desired.
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6 months ago kitchenbliss

This was amazing! I'll definitely be making again.
I added apple cider vinegar to the leftover celery to make an excellent relish. Next time I will remove the peppercorns first, as the relish became too spicy after a few days in the fridge.

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7 months ago sco

I halved the sugar, lessened the cardamom (because I only had ground), added a pinch of ground ginger and got pretty close to Dr. Brown's, who use HFCS in their soda.

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7 months ago Raquel Evans

I thought the candied celery tasted a lot like sweet relish. Perhaps it could be chopped finely and used on hot dogs, hamburgers, or other foods that go well with relish.

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9 months ago speech529

I think the leftover celery would be excellent on any type of green salad as well as chicken or tuna salad. Chop some as a garnish for deviled eggs.

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about 1 year ago Jack Wheat

For leftover candied celery -- would it work to caramelizevit and use in soups, casseroles or sauces for meats?

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over 1 year ago jcc

I made this soda yesterday. Love it! I used the spiced candied celery to top a salad made with mozerella, cherry tomato, and fresh basil, then drizzled the leftover lemon juice on top. No additional dressing necessary.

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over 1 year ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Very clever!

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almost 2 years ago mbr101

I just found this... would love to have a class of rIght nOw. Think I'll surprise my hubby w/it this weekend :) He's not mUch on experimenting but I'll try almost anything once... providing it's not meat :P

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almost 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I love experimenting, and am lucky my husband is quite open to it! Hope you and yours enjoy!

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over 2 years ago Caroline Cooks

I made this over the weekend and I enjoy it after work as an alcohol free refreshment. Lovely .

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thank you for letting me know! I'm glad you enjoy it!

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over 2 years ago cambridgecook

Can't believe New Yorkers haven't mentioned Dr. Brown's Cel-Ray soda, the classic pairing for corned beef or pastrami on rye. Try this recipe with a sandwich. Bet it's great. Gin optional.

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Cool FYI! Thanks, cambridgecook. I just looked up the Cel-Ray soda - sounds pretty delicious!

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over 2 years ago SMSF

...an acquired taste, Dr. Brown's Cel-Ray! : )

Me

over 2 years ago wssmom

Brilliant CP (even without the gin LOL)

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, wssmom! I was pretty thrilled to see it with the lovely new photo.

Fb

over 2 years ago BlueKaleRoad

The celery syrup is cooling as I write and I've already nibbled on some of the candied celery slices...a nice little appetizer! I'm looking forward to serving it to our guests tomorrow evening.

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Yay! Let me know how it goes over.

Fb

over 2 years ago BlueKaleRoad

Celery soda was a hit with our guests! I will be making it again soon. Thanks again for a terrific recipe. Have a great weekend!

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I'm thrilled to hear that! You made my day.

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over 2 years ago Ms. T

Mmmm...love this idea for a hot summer day. Congrats on the CP!

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks! I think it's perfect for summer.

Smokin_tokyo

almost 3 years ago BoulderGalinTokyo

Unbelievable! I just read about celery soda in GUILT by John Lescroart. Sounded good, but never having tried it I had no idea what it tastes like. I googled and Alton Brown has a recipe but its made from celery seeds, and I didn't think that sounded very FRESH. Within 24 hours, I find your tantalizing recipe. Thank you so much!!!!! Fresh celery and pepper, !!!!

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Funny! I haven't read that book, and probably should've researched celery soda, but didn't. I'm glad I went with celery stalks instead of seeds. It has plenty of celery flavor without being overpowering IMO.

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almost 3 years ago PistachioDoughnut

I would like to try this! I am so thirsty...right now...

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

LOL! I'm about to make myself a glass in your honor.

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almost 3 years ago PistachioDoughnut

Not fair...

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almost 3 years ago EmilyC

This is brilliant! I would LOVE to have one of these right now!

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, EmilyC! I'd love to serve you one!

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almost 3 years ago Midge

Super refreshing! Love the gin idea.

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thank you, Midge! So far I've only tried it NA, but will remedy that soon.

Fb

almost 3 years ago BlueKaleRoad

This is inspired! I can't wait to try it. I'm a fan of Dry Sodas, too - love their flavors. I am dreaming of a sultry summer day...

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I'm dreaming of summer, too! It's chilly and rainy here.

Me

almost 3 years ago wssmom

Definitely, especially with Hendricks!!!

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Or Aviation ;-)

Buddhacat

almost 3 years ago SKK

Sounds divine! With our without vodka! This is on my list.

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, SKK! Do let me know if you try it.

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almost 3 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

ooh, i like this HLA! and drbabs, i like your way of thinking!

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, em!

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almost 3 years ago LE BEC FIN

cardamom. sigh. big smiley face!I am going to make this ,with cucumber. FanTAStic, so thank you!
p.s. what made you think to use black peppercorns?

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

When I was trying to figure it out I made a bunch of different spiced simple syrups, then mixed them together with the celery in different ways. The cardamom & black pepper was my favorite. Once I had that figured out I worked the ratios out and made a test batch as written in the recipe to make sure it worked out as expected.

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

PS. Dry Soda does have a cucumber version that is quite nice!

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almost 3 years ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Yum! Poolside!!

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Perfect!

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almost 3 years ago gingerroot

Lovely! As soon as it warms up around here (lol - crazy weather!) I'm giving this a try.

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, gr! I hope your weather gets better soon.

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almost 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Yummmm.... I'll take two, please.

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I'd gladly serve you two!

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almost 3 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I'll take mine with gin please.

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Then it will definitely be an adult-only beverage! Cheers!

Sausage2

almost 3 years ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Oh. Yes. Me too, please!

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I only have Aviation, but if you and drbabs want to come over I'd gladly mix up a pitcher of gin and celery sodas!

Sausage2

almost 3 years ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Works for me!!! As soon as I get a plane ticket... :)

Me

almost 3 years ago wssmom

I volunteer to bring extra Hendricks ....

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Love it, how refreshing this must be. I'm already thinking syrups for summer drinks.

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almost 3 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Yes, me too!

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almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, ladies!