Out of Grenadine? Try These 8 Delicious Substitutes in Your Cocktails!

The brilliant grenadine syrup imparts a blood-red color to your drinks. Grenadine is quite appealing and has the ability to mesmerize your guests. It is essentially used while serving cocktails to your guests or friends.

If you can’t find grenadine in your nearby grocery store or ran out of it in the middle of your party, we’ve listed a few popular substitutes here.

What are the best grenadine substitutes? The best substitute for grenadine includes homemade grenadine, a Combination of pomegranate juice with simple syrup, maraschino juice, raspberry syrup, unsweetened pomegranate juice, pomegranate molasses, cranberry juice cocktail, and Creme de cassis.

Let’s first find out more about grenadine, its history, its flavor, and its use.

About Grenadine

The word Grenadine comes from the French name of the pomegranate fruit which is ‘Grenade’. Pomegranate juice is used to prepare this tart syrup. The syrup is bright red in color and is often mistaken as cherry juice. It came into light in 1930 when a recipe book of 100 recipes listed grenadine as a vibrant ingredient in some cocktail recipes. Before that, the roots go back to 1895 when pomegranate-derived juice was used for the first time.

Grenadine syrup is characterized by tartness in flavor while being sweet at the same time. Commercially available grenadine syrup is a thickened mixture of pomegranate juice, lemon/orange juice, and sugar.

You can use grenadine to flavor bakery sweets, desserts, slushies, and various cocktails. Here are some grenadine recipes worth trying.

  • Singapore Sling
  • Cover Club
  • Pineapple Vodka
  • Sea Breeze
  • Tequila Sunrise
  • Hurricane
  • Zombie
  • Shirley Temple

8 Best Substitutes for Grenadine

Sr. No.Grenadine substituteIngredients
1Homemade grenadinePomegranate juice, granulated sugar, lemon/orange juice
2Combo of Pome and simple syrupPomegranate juice and Simple syrup
3Maraschino juiceCitric acid, sodium benzoate, sugar, water, artificial red color
4Raspberry syrupRaspberries, potassium sorbate, sugar, water
5Unsweetened pome juicePomegranate juice concentrate, filtered water, natural flavor
6Pomegranate molassesPomegranate juice, granulated sugar, lemon/orange juice
7Cranberry Juice CocktailCranberry juice, high-fructose corn syrup or sugar, citron vodka, orange liquor
8Crème de cassisBlackcurrants, golden caster sugar, fruity red wine, brandy

1.    Homemade Grenadine

Making Grenadine at home using pomegranate is very easy and simple. The main ingredient will be pomegranate. If you wanna get the exact same vibrant color, you need to use fresh pomegranate. Otherwise, if bottled pomegranate is used, the color won’t be that much bright and eye-catching. All ingredients used for making homemade grenadine are as follows.

  • Freshly squeezed juice of pomegranate – 2/3 cups
  • Granulated sugar – 1-2 cups
  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice- 1 tbsp


Take 2 medium pomegranates and cut them open to remove the seeds. Put all the seeds in a blender or food processor to squeeze all the juice from the seeds. If not available, you can simply put the seeds in a tall glass and use a muddler to press the seeds. Press till all the juice has been squeezed.

Pass it from the strainer to separate the juice from the seed leftover. Measure the quantity of pomegranate juice by using a measuring cup. Use more pomegranates to collect at least 2 to 3 cups.

Take a saucepan and put sugar and juice in it. Heat the pan over medium heat and dissolve the sugar while stirring continuously. After one to two minutes when the sugar is completely dissolved, reduce the flame. 

Cover the saucepan with a lid. Allow the mixture to simmer for 15-20 minutes till it reduces to half of its initial volume. Pour lemon juice into the mixture before cooling. Don’t worry if the mixture is still thinner, it’ll thicken as it cools. A brilliant hot pink substitute is ready to use.

Transfer it into an airtight container. This homemade syrup can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 20 days. If you want to store the syrup for a long, you can add 1 tbsp of brandy or vodka to the container. It will fortify the syrup and help in longer storage.

2.    Combination of pomegranate syrup and simple syrup

This combination goes so well that it’s the second closest substitute to the real thing. Pomegranate juice when combined with simple syrup in specific parts, will produce a sweet, bright red syrup very likely to match the exact same color as grenadine. Mix these two ingredients and get ready-t0-use grenadine substitute.

  • Pomegranate juice – 1 part
  • Simple Syrup – 2 parts

3.    Maraschino juice

Maraschino juice

Many people confuse grenadine syrup with cherry juice when it’s actually pomegranate juice. There comes an idea that the signature color can be achieved using cherry juice. This juice can be collected from the cocktail cherry jar or can be purchased from grocery stores.

This sweet maraschino juice is refreshingly sweet originally used to make a very cherry cocktail, a cherry martini, a tart cherry fizz, etc. The flavor is mild but the color is perfect. Although you won’t get the same grenadine flavor it will still give the refreshing sweetness and bring the same bright red color.

Cherry juice is a healthy alternative as it provides multiple health benefits. It fights inflammation and is thus helpful in making home remedies for patients with inflammation issues like lupus arthritis or arthralgia. It is also considered to boost natural immunity, thus helpful in fighting infections.

4.    Raspberry syrup

Raspberry syrup

Another beautiful syrup that can replace grenadine syrup is Raspberry syrup. This sweet cocktail syrup bears some taste of berries but it’s totally fine for some people. It is available in the liquor store or else can be prepared at home using fresh raspberries.

This sweet syrup is a bit tangy in flavor making it a perfect alternative. It imparts a very beautiful splash of color in the cocktail you put it in. Use in the same quantity as the recipe states for grenadine syrup. You can prepare this versatile syrup to use in a raspberry lemonade fizz, a raspberry mojito, or any other cocktail of raspberry.

5.    Unsweetened pomegranate juice

If you’re diabetic and still wanna enjoy grenadine syrup, unsweetened pomegranate juice will be your best bet. Pomegranate juice is sweet and tangy in nature. Unsweetened pomegranate juice will allow you to enjoy the same tangy flavor but without being too sweet.

Grenadine syrup is sweetened by adding sugar but some people can’t bear this sweetness and become sick. Increased sugar level brings serious health issues with it, especially when a diabetic person uses this sweet grenadine syrup even once at a cocktail party.

This juice has a fresh and naturally savory taste of pomegranate with no added sugar. This alternative won’t work the same as grenadine syrup for most of you. It’s just a special pick for sugar-sensitive people.

6.    Pomegranate Molasses

Pomegranate molasses is formed by the reduction of liquid to create a sticky consistency. It will then become rich in tangy flavor. When added to your cocktail, it’ll add deep red color and a fruity tartness.

The pomegranate juice when mixed with simple syrup becomes sweet in taste. If only the fruit juice is turned to molasses, then some of you won’t like that less sweetness in your cocktail.

To make pomegranate molasses, use juice, and sugar in equal quantities. Boil until it turns into a syrupy consistency. Molasses has a stronger flavor and is thicker in consistency than Grenadine. Use half in quantity as used for grenadine. But once you use it in a cocktail or dessert, it behaves the same. It is also commercially available in specialty stores in middle eastern countries.

7.    Cranberry Juice Cocktail

A Cranberry juice cocktail is a mix of fresh cranberry juice with these ingredients: ascorbic acid, water, corn syrup, or sugar. All these ingredients are used to make a concentrate that is available commercially in superstores. This product is a delicious blend of sweet and tart flavors. It provides an excellent red color similar to that of grenadine syrup.

The flavor of the cranberry juice cocktail is a bit different from pomegranate juice due to the difference in the fruit. The tartness is more than the grenadine, so use half the amount and perform a taste test before adding more. It works well in orange cakes, pumpkin bread, apple pies, and cocktails.

8.    Creme de cassis

Creme de Cassis homemade liqueur served with grapes, nuts and chocolate.

Creme de cassis is not the best substitute for grenadine, but you can use it if not a single substitute recommended above is available. It is a dark liqueur with mild sweetness. The flavor profile matches the taste of blackcurrants.

If you want your result to be close to grenadine then make a few adjustments. Like you have to add some extra sugar to bring the sweetness to the level of grenadine. The grenadine is a viscous syrup but crème de cassis is a liqueur. So, the amount of alcohol will be increased in your cocktail. Use half the amount as much as grenadine. Do not use it if you’re not an alcoholic.


All these alternatives are non-alcoholic except the last one. All can be used as viable substitutes for preparing delicious cocktails or mocktails. You need to keep at least one of these at your disposal before hosting a cocktail party.


8 Best Grenadine Substitute

Seasonal and Savory
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 4


  • Homemade Grenadine
  • Combination ofpomegranate syrup and simple syrup
  • Maraschino juice
  • Raspberry syrup
  • Unsweetenedpomegranate juice
  • Pomegranate Molasses
  • Cranberry JuiceCocktail
  • Crème de cassis


  • From the list of substitutes above, pick your favorite to use in its place.
  • Use your imagination and be creative with these substitute recipes!

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