Screw Gatorade, Make Your Own Sports Drink

16 August 2006 By Tyler Cooper 38 Comments 52,607 Views

GatoradeMost of you probably already know the importance of drinking a sports drink after a long ride. It is very important to restore those electrolytes and carbohydrates that your body desires after a good workout. The only problem is, if you enjoy a long daily ride, name brand sports drinks can get rather expensive. Here is a list of sports drink recipes you can make on your own.

Recipe 1

  • 1 can orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • water

Recipe 2

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon lite salt
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • water

Recipe 3

  • 10 tbs. sugar (5/8 cups or 120 grams)
  • .75 tsp Morton Lite salt (4.2 grams)
  • 1 package of Coolaid mix for flavor
  • Water to make 2 liters

As you can see, making your own version of Gatorade is pretty easy. The ingredients are mostly items that you already have around the house, making these recipes a very cheap alternative to expensive sports drinks.


  • Jason said:

    Sweet recipes. I had the stuff to make the second one and it actually tasted a ton better than I thought it would.

  • mikko said:

    Yep, Recipe 2 is great. I made it with organic honey, lemon juice, filtered water and sea salt. Works a treat!

  • John Watkins said:

    Yeah, they look great but they lack a very important ingredient, Potassium. I wonder how hard it is to get food grade Potassium Chloride? I gues I need to do more research.

  • John Watkins said:

    Found it.
    To get Potassium ad 1/8 tsp KCl (sold as Nu-Salt.) Perhaps “lite salt” is the same? If so, sorry.


    NO .
    YOU NEED two pinches of lettuce, 3 tea spoons of WHEATABIX , 4 SAUSEGES , and one bubble bee in short pants !!!!!
    YUM , thats FOOOOOL FUEL!!

  • tjet said:

    Thanks Watkins for that research

  • Bear Claws said:

    Re: Make your own drinks. Orange juice is naturally high is potassium. Recipe #1 has plenty of potassium in it.

  • Bear Claws said:

    Re: Post recovery drinks
    One of the follow-up stories on the 2008 Olympics was on the post recovery drinks Phelps, the 11 gold metal winner, uses after his swims and workouts. He has a unique blend of carbohydrate, protein, and fat made for him. NBC said this unique combination is closely matched with “prepared 1% chocolate milk”. I looked up the contents on a government nutritional web site. 1% chocolate milk contains sodium and potassium equal to that of the majority of sports drinks.

  • Bear Claws said:

    Re: Orange Juice
    Prepared orange juice contains no less than 400 mg. potassium per 8 onces. It contains very little sodium (5 mg).

  • Tyler Cooper (author) said:

    Bear Claws, we all thank you for the great tips!

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  • halofanjg said:

    omg! 10tbs of sugar! ur gana be like AHHH!!!!! runing around the field freaking out!

  • Farski said:

    @Bear Claws: It’s becoming more and more commonly known around running/biking/swimming circles that chocolate milk is easily one of the best post-workout drinks there is. It seems to me that a lot of people _know_ it, but still opt for brand name protein shakes and enhanced waters. Seems kind of silly.

    @halofanjg: a lot of research has been done in the last couple years to disprove the sugar-high. If parents just got on board and stopped telling their kids “not to much candy you’ll run around freaking out,” the kids wouldn’t even have an excuse to go wild. It’s really just a matter of people do what their told not to do.

  • Pebbles Jr. said:

    Most excellent, thanks for the tips I’ve used similar recipes before and these seem to be better, keep on rollin’ anyhow.

  • EdwardATeller said:

    Are the first two recipes for two liters as well?

  • LOSER said:

    to make an awsome sports drink heres wat u do: start with OJ, and then add a pinch of salt, baking soda, and sugar, then if its to sweet dilute the mixture a bit, you caoul also add mashed bananas

  • Sandy B said:

    Very helpful info. Thank you. I go through a lot of Gatorade and it’s equivalent. This will ease my pocketbook.

    Sandy B.

  • ricardo said:

    i’ll definitely try this

  • Rusty said:

    Awesome recipes! I think I’ll stick to chocolate milk though.

  • ogy said:

    how much is 1 can orange juice? 250 ml or?

  • Myra said:

    Honey & lemon juice both contain potassium. :)

  • Adam said:

    How much is 1 can of orange juice?

  • Luke said:

    Salt added should be raw mineral, table salt is devoid of the nutrience that make it worthwhile

  • Todd said:

    Just one piece of advice, from someone with a great deal of knowledge in this area. If your looking to produce a glucose-electrolyte solution (sports drink) to use during exercise, don’t use fruit juices as your base. They contain fructose, which the body doesn’t use as well as other combinations (found in sports drinks), or table sugar. There is also some evidence suggesting that juice interferes with fluid absorption during exercise. It’s better to stick to fruit juice based beverages an hour after exercise. A very helpful book for both athletes and strength trainers is Power Eating by Dr. Susan Kleiner, third Edition.

  • Gary Howell said:

    For #1, is a can of orange juice the concentrate? Or like a 12 or 16 oz. serving size?

  • josh said:

    dont freak out about sugar, thats why this drink is to be drunk only when sweating calories

  • Steve said:

    I’ve been basically using the same idea as recpipe #3, but with liquid sucrose as a sweetener. It tastes almost exactly like Powerade Zero!

    However, I buy the store’s generic Kool-Aid since the name brand stuff is now made in Mexico.

    To the above responses: Yes, Morton Lite salt is a 50-50 mixture of sodium and potassium chloride, providing the same electrolytes as Gatorade.

    Nu-Salt is a mixture of potassium salts and some other ingredients. I’ve never tried it, but it should work fine as I don’t know of anyone lacking sodium in their daily diet. ;)

  • Steve said:

    *meant to say liquid SUCRALOSE (the no calorie stuff)

  • Michelle Rodulfo said:

    Making your own sport drink is a great way to save money. I tried recipe number 1 but made it with fresh organic oranges, orginic lemons and limes and pure filtered water. Absolutely delicious. And you’re absolutely right – screw Gatorade!

  • ACJR said:

    Waiting to find out what 1 can orange juice means in ounces or milligrams. Is it real 100% juice or soda-based?

  • gibby said:

    how much water do you use?

  • milkzor said:

    Good show.
    All you choco milk fans are kinda missing the point. Its about getting away from expensive drinks that are full of food dyes, antibiotics, HFCS, hormones and the other truckloads of trash that are detrimental to you overall/complete health (gatorade, powerade, chocolate milk etc.)

    High five on the recipes!

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  • adam said:

    It sounds like a good ole lemonade with a pinch of salt in it or some of that salt lite might work. I think im going to try it out tomorrow.

  • Kit Carson said:

    As to answer a statement made by Steve: I been consistantly diagnoised with having an extremely low blood sodium level of 120-126, possibly because I drink over a gallon of water a day, use an indwelling catheter, and was raise in a household where sodium was deadly, along with seveal different medications. The meds and catherter are the result of being paralyzed from the upper chest down, T-3/T-4, and my diet of 1 gallon+ of water a day seems to flush my system which is great for preventing UTI’s, no so great for what makes the human body tic. So, I’m hoping that the low calorie home mixes will help replace the levels of sodium I’m loosing. I will update later next month., I don’t know what my levels would be if I exercised even once a day, lol.
    Kit C.

  • lando said:

    How much is 1 can of OJ and how much Water to add???? Also Formula #1 has no sugar??? Please explain.

  • Jedd said:

    If u want potassium just put some banana in it or a potassium supplement in it

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