I’ve been curious about home soda makers for a while now, because the being able to make carbonated drinks at home instead of purchasing them at a store seemed very appealing. Making sodas at home saves a lot of plastic bottles from the recycling heap and can reduce your soda costs significantly. But what I REALLY wanted to know is if you could make drinks that people would actually enjoy drinking, and if I would find it useful and valuable enough to devote precious countertop real estate to.
So naturally, curiosity got the best of me and I purchased a SodaStream Genesis from Amazon.
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The essential function of a home soda maker is simple: the machine uses a CO2 cartridge to carbonate water. The upside of their simplicity is that most machines don’t need to be plugged in or powered in any way, because the CO2 cartridge is what’s doing the work (a definite bonus if you’re short on electrical outlets in your kitchen).
Another upside to such a simple process is that it allows you to create something totally unique and catered to your tastes. Aside from the multitude of flavorings that soda maker brands have available for purchase, there are also plenty of brands that make flavored drink syrups (like Torani and DaVinci).
And a quick Google search will turn up hundreds of recipes for flavor syrups and purees you can make at home that are perfect for drink-mixing (I thought this Blackberry Syrup with Rosemary and Vanilla recipe and this Ginger Syrup recipe sounded delicious!).
Besides being able to control what flavors you put in, you’re also able to control how much goes in. So if you’re trying to cut back on sugar, but still want to enjoy a flavored, fizzy drink, you can add just a touch of your flavor of choice. Drinking your recommended amount of fluids every day just got a lot more interesting!
But the most exciting thing I discovered about having a soda maker in my home was how many OTHER ways I could use soda water, beyond making sodas.
Soda water (or seltzer water) is a fabulous tool to have in your cleaning arsenal. It is slightly more acidic than plain tap water, which helps dissolve and lift stains and messes.
Use soda water and a microfiber cloth to clean and shine the stainless steel and porcelain surfaces in your home.
Use it to dissolve coffee stains. Fill up your mug or cup with soda water, let it sit for a few hours, then wipe the stains away.
Dab it on accidental stains on clothing or tablecloths. It will help the stain to lift when you wash it later on.
Using soda water in place of regular water when baking will result in lighter and fluffier cakes, pancakes, and waffles.
Soaking your jewelry in soda water will gently dissolve any grimy residue and restore its sparkle.
You can clean dentures and retainers in a pinch by soaking them in soda water.
When you add all of these great uses for soda water on top of the ability to make customized, tasty soda drinks at home, I have to say I’m pretty pleased with my decision to buy a soda maker! :-)