Homemade Soda with Black Pepper & Thyme

This drink lands somewhere between a mocktail and a homemade soda. It’s very versatile, crisp, lightly sweetened and refreshing.

A Super Simple Mocktail/Homemade Soda with big flavor // www.WithTheGrains.com

Just The Drink: Homemade Soda with Black Pepper & Thyme

This drink recipe is barely a recipe, but it does require the preparation of the Thyme & Black Pepper Infused Honey Simple Syrup. Then, it’s as simple as combining the syrup with some bubbly water, stirring and enjoying. I recommend pairing the syrup with Whole Foods’ ginger-flavored water, but you can experiment and report back.

Homemade Soda with Black Pepper & Thyme // www.WithTheGrains.com

The Personal:

I’m not one who likes to overdo it when it comes to drinking. I don’t like feeling out of control or ill, or spend a day recovering. Being too tipsy always makes me think of the Pixies lyrics:

With your feet on the air and your head on the ground
Try this trick and spin it, yeah
Your head will collapse
But there’s nothing in it
And you’ll ask yourself
…. Where is my mind?
Way out in the water
See it swimmin’

I crave far too much control to enjoy watching my mind swimming far off in the distance. I don’t say that to judge anyone who does enjoy that feeling. Drinking is complicated and personal, and while I try to stay mindful of why I am drinking, it can easily become another mindless routine. For that reason, I made this homemade soda for myself to explore some of my favorite flavors, to shake up my go-to habits and simply to avoid dehydration because dang, did it get hot this week!

Homemade Soda with Black Pepper & Thyme // www.WithTheGrains.com

A More Inclusive Bar Offering: Cocktails & Mocktails

This mocktail/homemade soda features the same honey simple syrup as the Sgt. Pepper’s Old Fashioned. If you are hosting people (someday), you can offer a bar that accommodates drinkers and non-drinkers alike without making it too obvious or uncomfortable. Just offer labels with suggested ratios, and leave it be. 

Homemade Soda with Black Pepper & Thyme // www.WithTheGrains.com

Speaking of alcohol being complicated, have you listened to Alanis Morissette’s new single, The Reasons I Drink? I can’t stop playing it lately. I can’t stop playing her whole repertoire lately. She really has songs to cover a range of emotional bases.

Perfect for Summer Sipping // www.WithTheGrains.com

Don’t Forget: Let’s Toast Our Homemade Soda Digitally

I also made this drink for anyone wanting to attend my digital happy hour with The Salon, this Friday. I love the idea of drinking the same beverage to feel more connected, but I didn’t want to pressure anyone by only offering a cocktail recipe.

The Salon Slow Down
Friday, May 29 | 4:30 – 5 pm EST
RSVP here

The #SalonSlowDown is a way to close out the week with “a leading womxn from the world of culinary, drinks, a creative or just a down right fun-loving gal!” I’m pretty honored to kick it off.

Homemade Soda with Black Pepper & Thyme // www.WithTheGrains.com

Julep’s Corner:

Here’s a picture of Julep hiding from fireworks, which is to say, we all have our different coping mechanisms, especially during this global pandemic, so remember to be gentle with yourself and others.

Julep's Coping Mechanism // www.WithTheGrains.com

Honey Thyme Mocktail

Course: Drinks
Yield: 1 drink


  • 1-2 Tablespoons thyme & black pepper infused honey syrup see note for recipe link
  • 12 oz 365 Brand Ginger sparkling water


  • For the mocktail/homemade soda, pour 1-2 Tablespoons of honey thyme syrup into a glass, over ice. Top with sparkling water, stir, and enjoy!


Use this recipe for the Honey Simple Syrup. 

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