How To Make A Homemade Shirley Temple

shirley templeWhen I saw this recipe for homemade Shirley Temples I was immediately transported back to growing up in Long Beach, California and going to the bowling alley. (I wish I could remember the name of it!)

One of my favorite things to do was to order a Shirley Temple at the “bar”. Not only were they a sweet, bubbly treat….I felt super cool ordering one!  I couldn’t have been more than 10 or 12 at the time. ;-)

Funny after all these years that memory is so vivid to me!  The ability that tastes, smells, and sounds have to transport us to another place and time is truly remarkable.

It think that’s why I was so drawn to this recipe from Laurie at Simply Scratch and found myself making it before I even realized it. A delicious treat from my youth made all the sweeter by the wonderful memories it evoked for me.

I hope you enjoy it too.

As good as I remembered the bowling alley Shirley Temple’s being….they can’t hold a CANDLE to these made from Homemade Cherry Grenadine!  Mmmm….so delicious!  And SOOOO easy to make!  Plus, it keeps very nicely in the refrigerator so you can make Shirley Temple’s anytime! :-)


shirley temple


Shirley Temple’s with Homemade Cherry Grenadine
Adapted from Simply Scratch

32 ounces (4 cups) cherry juice
2 cups sugar
Lemon and/or Lime sparkling water (you could use 7-up or Sprite too….but it would be much sweeter.)
Citrus slices, for garnish
Maraschino Cherries, for garnish
Little paper pennants, just for fun :-)

shirley temple

Heat the 4 cups of cherry juice over moderate heat until it begins to simmer. Continue simmering until the juice is reduced by half. (This step took about an hour. But basically you just “set it and forget it”). Remove from heat and add two cups of sugar, stir until dissolved and then let cool completely.

Recipe makes about 3 cups of syrup. Leftover syrup can be stored in the fridge up to a month.

shirley temple

To “mix” your Shirley Temple….fill a glass with ice…

shirley temple

and then add 2/3 sparkling water, and 1/3 third grenadine (more or less to taste)…

shirley temple

and garnish with citrus slices and maraschino cherries.

shirley temple pennants
(And, if you like, these cute little pennants that you can make in a couple of minutes using scrapbook paper, double-sided tape, and toothpicks!)


shirley temple

Such a fun, refreshing drink the whole family can enjoy!  Give it a try!


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  1. Debbie Wear says

    I just had to stop and tell you; I look so forward to you everyday! I really do. You’ve taught me some wonderful things, reminded me of many happy memories, saved me some money and given me so many ideas I doubt I’ll ever get around to them all! I just wanted you to know today that I truly appreciate you. I wish you many more good things. -deb

  2. Kathleen says

    Re: LB bowling alleys, you may have gone to Java Lanes on PCH just above the traffic circle or Plaza Lanes in the Plaza shopping center on Spring at Palo Verde. Both are long gone but the Shirley Temple drink lives on.

  3. Gale says

    Wow…what memories this brings back! I’d get them when my parents went to the American Legion ever so often for a drink with family members. They always called them “Kiddy Cocktails”. But I always thought they were saying “kitty” cocktails…lol I never realized they were Shirley Temples til later on…lol Might have to make some of these!

  4. says

    I’m so thrilled that you posted this recipe. It’s funny, a few days ago we got out some of our little glass cowboy boot mugs that we use for the kids for “fancy” occasions. I was telling the kids that when I was little, if you ordered a Shirley Temple or a Roy Rodgers, that they were often served in the little glass boots.
    I wanted to make them a Shirley Temple, but my son is really allergic to red dye no.40 (which is in just about everything red.)
    I was wondering if maybe I could make him some homemade syrup but wasn’t sure how to go about it. I didn’t know if the real cherry juice would actually taste anything like it.
    I can’t wait to try it!

  5. says

    I remember these kiddie cocktails too! We rarely ate out at a restaurant, but now and then we were treated, and we were allowed to order up a Shirley Temple (for the girls) and my brother ordered a Roy Rogers. Remember that one? Coke and cherry juice, I believe.

    This recipe looks really tasty. Thanks for the memories.

  6. says

    I had forgotten all about Shirley Temples! When I was a kid my dad and sometimes my uncle would take me and my sister with them to place where they would have a beer and they would order us a Shirley Temple. I had forgotten all about it! Thanks for the memory…and the recipe:0)

  7. Melissa Smith says

    awww wow! shirley temples!! I remember them too as a child. Being born in Long Beach and raised in Garden Grove aka the O.C. my dad would take me out to “Black Angus” to eat and just as you said I’d get to order a “shirley temple” from the bar and I felt soo cool!! Haha!! only I always had mine with whipped cream and then a cherry on top! yumm… you brought back a sweet memory today! Thanks!

  8. Stacey says

    LOL….I loved this! I’m 42 and still try to order these when I got out….needless to say, most who I go out with don’t think it’s as funny as I do to order one. Especially my dad. :o) I just REALLY like them better than drinking alcohol sometimes.


  1. [...] Homemade Shirley Temple…courtesy of Pinterest…of course. Finally made it yesterday. I’m sold. The recipe has you make your own grenadine by mixing tart cherry juice (the no sugar added kind) and sugar and then boiling it down into a thin syrup. I halved the sugar because we all know my body and sugar aren’t friends. And honestly, next time I’ll just boil the cherry juice down and not add any sugar at all. I think even tart, no sugar added cherry juice is sweet enough on its own. But that mix of the grenadine, lime sparkling water and lime slices. Perfect. The lime sparkling water puts it over the top. [...]

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