This Shirley Temple drink recipe is perfect for year-round enjoyment. It’s super simple to make, and it’s such a fun party drink for kids and grownups alike. Come find out how to make a Shirley Temple with my easy recipe. 

This drink recipe makes one serving and costs about $1.13 to make. You can easily double, triple, or multiple this recipe as many times as needed for parties.

My family and I enjoy other mocktails year-round: Virgin Pina Coladas, Cranberry Limeade Sparkling Mocktail, and Nonalcoholic Moscow Mule

Simple Shirley Temple Drink

This Virgin Shirley Temple Recipe brings back so many childhood memories!

I remember that I was around 8-years-old the first time I ever had a Shirley Temple Drink. My family and I were at a wedding with an open bar. I remember my sister and I made at least a dozen trips each to the bar because we loved the sweet drink and, of course, the maraschino cherries! 

It’s been quite a few years since my first Shirley Temple drink, and I still find myself ordering them at restaurants and parties. Sure they’re mocktails initially made for kids, but there’s something about the super sweet cherry drink that has kept me coming back for more. Maybe it’s nostalgia, or perhaps it’s the high fructose corn syrup, either way, I love them! 

I love whipping up these little Shirley Temple drink mocktails any time of the year, especially during the summer and holiday season. They’re so pretty, and grownups and kids alike love them! 

What is a Shirley Temple?

When the Shirley Temple drink was first invented sometime during the 1930s was initially served with ginger ale, a splash of grenadine, and garnished with a maraschino cherry. 

Modern Drink:

Today, the Modern Sherry Temple served at most restaurants is often served with lemon-lime soda or lemonade and a splash of grenadine and garnished with a maraschino cherry. Sometimes a splash of orange juice is added, too. 

Best Shirley Temple Drink

What’s in a Shirley Temple Mocktail?

  • Ice – $0.00
  • 3 Tablespoons non-alcoholic grenadine – $0.41
  • 8 ounces lemon-lime soda, Sprite or 7-Up – $0.72

NOTE: The recipe prices are used calculating name brand products from Walmart’s website. The actual cost of the recipe will vary depending on your pantry and current grocery prices. 

What can I use instead of grenadine syrup in Shirley Temple?

If you don’t have grenadine syrup on hand or prefer an alternative for your Shirley Temple, there are a few options you can consider.

  1. Pomegranate Juice: Use pure pomegranate juice as a substitute for grenadine syrup. It provides a similar fruity flavor and adds a touch of sweetness to the drink. Adjust the amount to taste, as it may be less sweet than grenadine.
  2. Cherry Juice or Syrup: Cherry juice or syrup can be used as an alternative to grenadine. It adds a fruity and slightly tart flavor to the Shirley Temple. Again, adjust the amount based on your preference for sweetness.
  3. Raspberry Syrup: Raspberry syrup can be a flavorful substitute for grenadine in a Shirley Temple. It provides a sweet and fruity taste similar to grenadine. Adjust the amount according to your desired level of sweetness.
  4. Cranberry Juice: Cranberry juice can add a tart and slightly sweet flavor to your Shirley Temple. While it won’t provide the same cherry-like taste as grenadine, it can be a tasty alternative.
  5. Strawberry Syrup: If you have strawberry syrup available, it can work as a substitute for grenadine. It will impart a sweet and strawberry flavor to the drink, creating a unique twist on the classic Shirley Temple.

Remember, the flavor of your Shirley Temple may vary slightly depending on the substitute you choose. Adjust the amount of the substitute based on your taste preferences and desired level of sweetness.

How to make a Shirley Temple Drink

These drinks are super simple to make, and you can often whip them up in just 1 minute.

Here’s how:

  1. First, fill a tall glass halfway with ice.
  2. Then, pour the grenadine over the ice, followed by the lemon-lime soda.
  3. Finally, garnish with maraschino cherries and serve. 
A Shirley temple being mixed and being poured into a glass.

Shirley Temple Drink Recipe variations

  • Sometimes I like to turn this drink into a punch for the holidays. Here’s how:
    • First, add 2 pounds of ice to a punch bowl. 
    • Then, pour 8-10 ounces of grenadine syrup over the ice, followed by a 2-liter bottle of lemon-lime soda. 
    • Next, add a bunch of maraschino cherries into the punch bowl. 
    • Finally, float some scoops of lemon sherbet scoops in the punch bowl and serve! 

How to serve a Shirley Temple Mocktail

Choose a tall glass or a highball glass to serve your Shirley Temple. You can also use a Collins glass or any other glass you prefer. Make sure the glass is clean and chilled, if desired.

Shirley Temple Drink storage

The Shirley Temple mocktail can be prepared and stored in different ways, depending on your needs and preferences.

  1. Immediate Consumption: The best way to enjoy a Shirley Temple is to prepare and serve it immediately. This ensures the drink is fresh and at its best flavor. Follow the steps outlined earlier, and serve the mocktail right away.
  2. Preparing in Advance: If you need to prepare Shirley Temples in advance for a party or gathering, you can mix the grenadine syrup (or alternative), ginger ale, and lemon-lime soda and store the mixture in a pitcher or airtight container in the refrigerator. Keep the pitcher chilled until ready to serve. Before serving, pour the mixture into individual glasses with ice, add the garnish, and serve immediately.
  3. Leftovers: If you have leftover Shirley Temple mocktails, they can be stored in the refrigerator. However, it’s important to note that the carbonation from the soda will diminish over time, and the drink may lose some of its fizziness. Transfer the remaining drink to an airtight container to store leftovers and refrigerate. Consume within 24 hours for the best taste and quality.

Remember, the taste and carbonation of the Shirley Temple mocktail are best when freshly prepared. While it can be stored, consuming the drink soon after preparation is recommended.

Virgin Shirley Temple Drink FAQs

Is Shirley Temple Sprite or ginger ale?

Originally it was made with ginger ale. The modern Shirley Temple drink is made with lemon-lime soda like Sprite and 7up and grenadine syrup.

Why do they call it a Shirley Temple?

This drink is named for the child actress of the 1930’s, Shirley Temple. Rumor has it that she was out to dinner one evening and with her parents and other adults. The bartender made her this non-alcoholic drink to have a fancy drink along with the other adults at the table.

Are Shirley Temples alcoholic?

No, grenadine is a non-alcoholic syrup made from pomegranate juice.

What does grenadine taste like?

Grenadine is sweet, tart, and fruity and made from pomegranate juice, which tastes like pomegranates.

Why is it called grenadine?

It is called grenadine because pomegranate in French is grenade.

What is the difference between a Shirley Temple and a kitty cocktail?

A Shirley Temple and a kitty cocktail (also known as a kiddie cocktail or mocktail) are similar in that they are both non-alcoholic beverages typically enjoyed by children or those who prefer alcohol-free options. However, there are some slight differences between the two:
1. Ingredients: The main difference lies in the specific ingredients used. A Shirley Temple is traditionally made with ginger ale, lemon-lime soda (such as Sprite or 7-Up), and grenadine syrup (which provides a sweet cherry flavor). On the other hand, a kitty cocktail typically consists of a fruit-flavored soda (such as fruit punch or fruit soda), sometimes mixed with a splash of soda water or lemon-lime soda, and garnished with a cherry.
2. Flavor Profile: Due to the different ingredients used, the flavor profiles of the two drinks vary. A Shirley Temple has a distinct cherry flavor from the grenadine syrup, which adds sweetness and a touch of tartness. On the other hand, a kitty cocktail can have a broader range of flavors depending on the fruit soda used, with a fruitier and potentially sweeter taste.
3. Garnish: Both drinks often feature a maraschino cherry as a garnish. However, the presentation and additional garnishes may vary. A Shirley Temple may include a slice of orange or lemon, while a kitty cocktail might include additional fruit garnishes, such as a slice of orange or a cocktail umbrella.
4. Popularity: The Shirley Temple is a well-known and classic mocktail enjoyed for decades, named after the famous child actress. On the other hand, the kitty cocktail is a more generic term used to describe non-alcoholic drinks for children or those who prefer non-alcoholic options. It is less widely recognized or associated with a specific recipe.

Cook’s Tools and Ingredients:

  • tall glasses 
  • grenadine syrup
  • maraschino cherries 

More Drink Recipes:

More from Food Folks and Fun

Best Shirley Temple Drink
4.74 from 23 votes

Shirley Temple Drink Recipe

Recipe Cost $ $1.13
Serving Cost $ $1.13
Prep Time 1 minute
Total Time 1 minute
1 person
This Shirley Temple drink recipe is perfect for year-round enjoyment. It’s super simple to make and it’s such a fun party drink for kids and grownups alike. Come find out how to make a Shirley Temple with my easy recipe.

Equipment

  • glass
  • liquid measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons

Ingredients
 
 

  • Ice
  • 3 Tablespoons non-alcoholic grenadine
  • 7-8 ounces lemon-lime soda Sprite or 7-Up
  • Maraschino cherries for garnish optional

Instructions

  • Fill a tall glass halfway with ice. Pour the grenadine over the ice followed by the lemon-lime soda.
  • Garnish with marching cherries and serve.

Video

Notes

For parties I like making a large batch of this drink and then serve it in a punch bowl. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 250kcal | Carbohydrates: 62g | Sodium: 36mg | Sugar: 50g

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19 Comments

  1. Tayler Ross says:

    I was just looking for a fun and festive drink for the kids on New Year, and this is just perfect!

  2. Renee Goerger says:

    I remember drinking Shirley Temples when I was a kid and thinking I was a big deal! LOL Thanks for the memories, and thanks for the recipe!

  3. It’s been so long since I had a Shirley Temple! I felt so mature sipping it as a kid! haha. Such a fun drink for the holidays!

  4. Jacque Hastert says:

    A great drink to serve the kiddos during the holidays.

  5. Veena Azmanov says:

    I am feeling refreshed looking at this colorful and beautiful looking drink. Cant resist to grab this just now.

  6. Such a happy looking drink. My kids love them!

  7. We recently went on a cruise, and my daughters were introduced to Shirley Temple drinks. They loved them and asked for one each night. I’ve been wanting to make some at home for them as a special treat so thanks for the recipe.

  8. I love this yummy drink! One of my favorites!

  9. DesiPopSoda says:

    Your Shirley Temple drink recipe is perfect for festival drink. It’s looking very colorful and beautiful and super drinks. Thanks for sharing this great drink recipe.

  10. Crystal Crone says:

    My family loved this for our get together this weekend. Will definitely be using this again.

    1. So glad! It’s especially fun during the holidays!

  11. kushigalu says:

    What a beautiful fun and festive drink this is. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Shirley Temples are such a classic! This recipe is so easy to whip together! Love it!

  13. My family loved this mocktail!

  14. I love Shirley Temple’s with gingerale, the old fashioned way! So fun to make a childhood favorite every now and then!

  15. This is just what I was looking for. I’m having a little get-together this weekend with my friends. I’m going to serve my guest this. Looks elegant and refreshing.

  16. I have Always Loved this drink. I just bought the stuff to make my own here at home. But sometimes when I go out and have had a rough day I will order one but have them add Vodka to it…. I think it’s called a Dirty Shirley Temple but No Orange Juice.

  17. Love the Shirley temples can you make m one they are good 100%