Strawberry-Basil Shrub Cocktail

A shrub is a fruit syrup made with vinegar, and it's been used for centuries to preserve seasonal fruit. You can make a refreshing cocktail with it, as we do here, or try a splash in a glass of seltzer to make your own craft soda.

Strawberry-Basil Shrub Cocktail
Photo: Ryan Liebe
Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
8 days
2 cups shrub



  • 2 cups strawberries, hulled and halved

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 cup rosé vinegar or 1/2 cup each red-wine and white-wine vinegar

  • 1 large sprig fresh basil

Cocktail for 1

  • 2 ounces gin

  • 1 ounce elderflower liqueur, such as St. Germain

  • 3 dashes orange bitters, such as Angostura

  • Club soda or seltzer water

  • 1 sprig fresh basil for garnish


  1. To prepare shrub: Pour boiling water over a quart jar and lid to sterilize. Let stand for 10 minutes, then empty and let cool.

  2. Add strawberries and sugar to the jar; use a wooden spoon to mash the berries until chunky. Cover and let stand at room temperature for 24 hours.

  3. Add vinegar and basil sprig. Cover and gently shake until the sugar has dissolved. Refrigerate for 1 week.

  4. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve, pressing on the solids with a wooden spoon to extract the liquid. Wash and resterilize the jar and lid. Return the shrub to the jar.

  5. To prepare cocktail: Fill a highball glass with ice. Add gin, liqueur, bitters and 1 oz. shrub; stir to combine. Top with a splash of club soda (or seltzer). Garnish with basil, if desired.

To make ahead

Refrigerate shrub (Steps 1-4) for up to 6 months.


Quart jar with lid

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

198 Calories
17g Carbs
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 16
Serving Size 1 cocktail
Calories 198
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 17g 6%
Total Sugars 16g
Sodium 9mg 0%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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