Kosher Blog

Berry Sorbet


Here’s a dessert that I made a while ago but never got around to posting. It was my first successful sorbet, and I think I’ll stick with the formula, although I’m looking forward to switching from frozen berries to fresh when the local crop is ripe.

I looked at quite a few berry sorbet recipes before making this, and it turns out that they’re all pretty similar. In addition to berries, the ingredients usually include water, sugar syrup, lemon juice, and a small amount of alcohol (usually vodka) to keep the sorbet from becoming too icy. I liked the recipes in The Healthy Hedonist becuase they call for maple syrup rather than sugar syrup and juice instead of water. (The juice is apple-raspberry, because they wouldn’t be Myra Kornfield recipes if they didn’t call for at least one ingredient that you can’t get in an ordinary supermarket.) The sorbet in the picture above was based on the Healthy Hedonist recipes and was made with a combination of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries. I recently tried the same formula with only raspberries, and it was equally delicious. The maple syrup adds depth of flavor without being immediately recognizable.

Here’s the recipe:

Berry Sorbet
makes about 1 quart

1 pound (about 4 cups) strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries, or a combination
3/4 cup apple juice
3/4 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
pinch of salt
grated zest of 1 lemon
1 tablesppon vodka

Blend the berries with the apple juice in a blender or food processor. Strain the mixture through a fine-meshed strainer into a bowl, to remove the seeds.* Stir in the maple syrup, lemon juice, salt, lemon zest, and vodka. Freeze according to your ice cream maker’s instructions. Let the sorbet sit in the freezer for a few hours before serving.

Variations I’d like to try:
* Lime instead of lemon
* Freshly squeezed orange juice and orange zest instead of apple juice
* 1/4 cup wine instead of vodka (I guess I’d reduce the amount of juice)

* You can get away with skipping this step if you’re using strawberries or blueberries, but I seriously regret not buying a fine-meshed strainer before trying the recipe with raspberries. A regular strainer lined with cheesecloth will not do the trick.


Is there such a thing as a sorbet recipe that doesn’t need an ice cream maker? I never thought we’d use one enough to justify the precious freezer space it demands, so we returned ours shortly after our wedding…

I’ve had a lot of success making sorbet without an ice cream maker…. After you make your mix, put it in a shallow pan in the freezer. When it is just frozen, break it up into chunks, and put them in the food processor. The smooth consistency will remain even when you pack it into quart containers.

And here’s a quick and easy sorbet recipe, that will taste as if you’ve worked hard at it….

Freeze a can of peaches in light syrup. Pour boiling water over the can to loosen the sides, then open the top and the bottom so the frozen cylinder will slide out. Cut the “fruit-cube” into chunks, food process. You can really use any canned fruit, but I find peaches give the best results.

Frozen fruit is better than fresh for these recipes, I’ve found.

thank you for posting this! i’ve been looking for parve recipes to use in my ice cream maker-wedding present, now that the weather is warming up.
i have the healthy hedonist too! i love it but have all the same comments/complaints that you do.
the trader joe’s frozen fruit would be perfect for this.

DeisCane: I’ve read that fresh fruit is preferable only when it’s very fresh and very sweet. I’ll let you know whether that’s true.

Rachel B.: The Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Ice Cream Book says that you can make sorbet by pouring any fruit juice into the machine, if you’re ever looking for something really easy. I’ve also been experimenting with coconut milk, trying to make something like parve ice cream. I’ll let you know if and when I’m successful.


Yeah, that’s pretty much the case, but frankly, I’d rather eat the fruit raw if it’s that fresh and that sweet!

DeisCane, elf: There’s actually room for both practices in the world of seasonal eating. When local fruit is in season, it tastes great, it’s really cheap, and there’s plenty of it. Use the opportunity to gorge yourself on sweet fruit, and then plan for the off-season by making preserves, sorbets, or just freezing the berries.


My mother when we were growing up used to make sorbet for dessert on a regular basis, and one of the easiest tricks she found was Ceres juices in Tetrapaks. Ceres is kosher, and she could make a killer lychee sorbet which was sweet enough she didn’t add any extra sugar to it. I still do it myself now, and it works as a parve dessert.

There’s a farmer’s market in my neighborhood on Mondays in the summer. My plan is to buy lots of berries, use some to make sorbet for Shabbat, and eat the rest during the week.

I love the Ceres idea.

Indeed Yummy… here in Garden City we have Raspberry days and I am always looking for ideas to fix Raspberry Sorbet… thanks for the post…

We’d like to invite you to participate in our July berry recipe contest. All competitors will be placed on our blogroll, and the winner will receive a fun prize! Please email me,, if you’re interested. Feel free to check out our blog for more details. (Click on my name in the message to visit our blog. :)

Thank you for this recipe! It sounded better than most of the other Sorbet recipes I found online and when I made some, i was definately not disappointed.

I made two batches, one of strawberry, following the exact recipe and one of Blueberry. For the blueberry, I substituted 1/2c of strawberry White Zinfandel and reduced the apple juice to 1/2c. Then just splashed in a little lemon juice. At first, the wine taste was a little overpowering but once it was churned and frozen it sweetened up and you couldn’t taste the wine.

On another note, i would suggest straining blueberry puree beforehand. The skins like to stick to teeth.

What I love about the recipe is that it can be made quickly, without having to wait for the simple syrup to cool, like other recipes. The batch I made tasted too strongly of maple syrup, so I think next time I would back that down to 1/4 maple syrup, and add some honey to taste.

Add your comment
always hidden