Marketing the Lemonade Stand – Part 1: Product


2.5 gallon cooler and fat straws


Summer is here and one of my kids’ favorite activity is to have a lemonade stand.  In the next few posts, I will offer pint-sized business lessons for junior entrepreneurs.  In today’s post I will share our recipe.  If you missed the last post, just scroll down and read about how to plan a winning lemonade stand run by kids.

In the next four posts we will look at the four P’s of marketing: product, place, price and promotion.

Product – The lemonade must be fantastic, SO good that your customers keep coming back for more.  This, of course, requires that you need to be in business for more than one day and offer a consistent quality product and variety.  We adapted the Old Fashioned Lemonade recipe from The Joy of Cooking to fill our 2.5 gallon coolers.

In a medium sauce pan combine the following ingredients and bring them to a rolling boil.  Boil for exactly one minute, remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.

  • 4 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Pour cooled syrup into cooler and add:

  • one large bottle 100% pure lemon juice (32 fl.oz. or 2 dozen freshly squeezed lemons)
  • 1 can of frozen juice concentrate (orange, raspberry, lime, grape, cranberry, peach, or such…that’s how you create the different flavors each day)
  • filtered water to about 1-1/2 inches from the top of the container.

Stir very well.  This is the lemonade mix and it keeps for 5 days in the refrigerator (in case you have leftovers).  Do not add ice to the mix.  The ice goes into the serving cups and they get filled one customer at a time.

To fill a 5-gallon jug, just double the recipe!

The most popular flavors are:

  • orange lemonade,
  • pink raspberry lemonade,
  • orange dreamsicle lemonade (add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
  • lemon-lime lemonade
  • minty lemonade (brew fresh-picked mint leaves and use the brew in place of water)
  • green tea lemonade (use brewed green tea instead of water to fill it up).

One 2.5 gallon container fills 25 16-ounce cups.  One bag of ice from the store will be enough to fill all those cups half-full with ice.

We easily sell 25 lemonades in a 45-minute period.  More on really hot days.  Our record is 125 lemonades in 2 hours.  On those days we have back-up mix in the house and runners to restock the stand with more ice-filled cups and lemonade mix.

Fill each cup to the upper line and insert a straw.  Offer a napkin wrapped around the bottom, if you wish.  Serve with a big smile!

In the next post you will learn about the best places for the lemonade stand.

Make the lemonade recipe for your next BBQ or PTO event, and please share your own flavor variations!


About chefmomrd

Chef, Mom, Registered Dietitian
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