Brazilian Lemonade

Here is something that I don’t understand about this recipe.  It is called Brazilian Lemonade and it is made with limes.  That makes no sense to me.  I even tried to google it and the people that made this recipe didn’t seem to understand it either.  When I found this recipe, I loved how it had simple ingredients.  But my favorite ingredient is sweetened condensed milk.  Remember how I said I could totally drink that stuff?   Well I was partially joking, partially not.   It is just so good!   I would just feel so much better drinking it in a drink than straight from the can. :)

brazillianlemonadefinal3The ingredients are simple.   It takes just a few minutes to blend the ingredients together and you have a perfect, refreshing, summer lemonade….  or limeade.  I hope someday I will find the answer to this! :)

4.5 from 10 reviews
Brazilian Lemonade
Prep time: 
Total time: 
A delicious and refreshing lemonade that is perfect for the summertime!
  • 3 fresh limes, quartered
  • ⅓ cup sweetened condensed milk
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 4 cups cold water
  1. Pulse limes, sweetened condensed milk, sugar, and as much water as you can until everything is combined.
  2. Pour the liquid through a strainer to remove the chunks of limes. Pour the remaining water (do not exceed the 4 cups) through the strainer to remove any sugar or pulp that was left behind.
  3. Stir and serve immediately over crushed ice. Makes a little over 1 quart.
Recipe adapted from Lulu the Baker



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  1. Christina Hecht says

    Hi! Just thought I might clear up some of your confusion about the lime/lemon thing. Not sure it if is exactly the same in Brazil, but my mother is from Mexico and to her what we call limes in english are “limons” and the yellow ones are called “limas.” She always used to say that that lemons weren’t real “lemons” and the green ones were. So this could just be a regional/language difference.

    • Mandy says

      I agree with Christina – I was going to post the exact same thing! To them limes ARE lemons (in a way!) hehehe my hubby is Mexican and I think it’s similar for Brazil. This sounds YUM!

      • Ilse-Benita says

        That’s so funny because my parents from Mexico and call both limes and lemons “limon” except it’s either limon verde or limon amarillo. Which confuses me and my step dad. To us limon is lemon and lima is lime.

        • Ricardo says

          Well all of you are correct, just one thing, here in Mexico we have a lot of diferent kind of “lemons” and what we call “limes” are another kind of citric and are sweet.

      • Ricardo says


        I’m from Brazil and there’s a bit of confusion over here about what is a lime. We usually call limes lemmons and lemmons are called sicilian lemmons. The only fruits I recall being called limes are sweet limes which we call persian limes, but when I looked up the term persian lime on Wikipedia, I realized it’s actually the most common type of lime sold in Brazil which we call tahiti lemmon. Wat a mess!

        About the recipe, I can’t remember ever drinking a “swiss lemonade” (as we call it here) with condensed milk, but I’m willing to give it a try. It’s usually limes, sugar and water (and sometimes Sprite) in a blender.

        I hope I cleared up the confusion, though I believe I made it worse. 😉

    • Désirèe says

      That’s totally it, i’m from Brasil and the first time I saw what you guys call lemon i was like “it’s yellow! Lemons arent yellow!” Hahahahaha

  2. Patsy says

    ITs all the citrus family.. Any thing back years gone by.. MAde from citrus from a drink was called ADE..
    LEmonADE, LIMEADE, CitrusADE, ORangeADE…. It was all citrus..

    As for lemon or lime souring milk? Right away it won’t.. But if you let it sit long it will..

    To make fresh buttermilk for cooking,.. You would have tablespoon of Lemon (or vinegar), .. Add enough milk to make one cup… let sit, about 5 minutes at least, then add to any recipe.
    HEavy cream on hand, an lemon, or vinegar, make real buttermilk… Most don’t have heavy cream on hand now. USe to be a staple in every household.

    • Alyssa says

      Not a stupid question at all because I wondered the same thing. ;). You put the entire lime in including the rinds. When you pour it through the strainer it will remove the excess chunks. :)

  3. Amy Sorbello says

    Limon is how you say lime in Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, and French. Somewhere along the way, be ause it sounds so close to our lemon, the limonade got anglicized to lemonade and that’s how you got lemonade that’s really limeade.

    • Jane L. says

      Actually in portuguese it’s limão not limon . It might sound similar for a foreigner but it is VERY very very very different for a brazilian 😉

  4. says

    Anything with limes/ lemons and I’m there. This reminds me of a lemon or key lime pie that you make with eagle brand milk, lime /lemon juice and whipping cream. I’m sitting here running my pantry items through my head to see if I have the ingredients on hand. Thanks so much for the recipes. I will definitely be making this !

  5. Sarah says

    I went to a Brazilian Restaurant and the waiter explained that in Brazil Limes are just green lemons and they are used interchangeably, it still should be called Limeaid though. Looks delicious.

  6. Meagan says

    Probably a very stupid question… but should the rind be on the lime when you put them in the blender? I’d love to try this, but don’t want to mess it up. Thanks!!

    • Alyssa says

      Not a stupid question at all because I wondered the same thing! 😉 and yes you put the entire lime in there including the rinds. :)

  7. Chrissie says

    In Brazil we practically only use limes and use condensed milk for lots of dessert recipies and joices, so that is probably the reason for the name :)

      • Jane L. says

        I think that this lemonade is what we call “limonada suiça” em some states in Brazil (some use carbonated water in the recipe, some use only milk or condensed milk and so on…). I am used to the version with carbonated water and lemon peel but I saw it in many (and weird) variations with the same name

  8. Mariana says

    Hi, Im from Brazil and the whole confusion about the lime/lemon can be very simple to understand. In Brazil, we distinguish the lemons by their color (yes, the green, the yellow, the orange, they are all lemons!) so we refer to it like this: green lemons, yellow lemons, orange lemons (they do exist!).
    Hope I clarified your doubts.


    • Jane L. says

      I never heard the term yellow lemon in my life! I am used to (Sicilian lemon). I think that the only lemon with a color in its name is the limão rosa (that is actualy orange and in most states its called limão-cravo). The trhuth is that we (brazilians) have lots of problems with lemons =P

  9. Samra says

    I know in Brazil they speak Portuguese, but when I lived in Mexico the word for lime was “limon.” The yellow lemons we use in America don’t seem to exist south of the Rio Grande. So I’m guessing Brazilian Lemonade is really “limonada” or the Portuguese equivalent of it. All the time I lived in Mexicon, and on my travels in Guatemala, Venezuela and Ecuador, I never saw a yellow lemon, just green “limons.”

  10. Shei Leão says

    I’m Brazilian and a botanist,. What most Brazilians think is a lemon is actually a green lime, and what we call a lime (“lima”) is actually an orange. The yellow-football-shaped lemon is called “limão siciliano”, and it’s very expensive here. This particular recipe, although it’s genuinely a Brazilian invention, can be found in any restaurant menu under the name “Swiss Lemonade – limonada suiça”. As for the recipe, I prefer to keep the rind for the zesty flavor, but to remove the pith (the white part underneath) since it adds a bitter aftertaste..

  11. says

    In addition to the name confusion between lemons and limes, I’ve also heard that yellow lemons aren’t as commonly available in Brazil as they are, say, in the US (most are imported and more expensive in Brazil). The reason for this is that the lemons that do grow in the equatorial climate there tend to have sort of a dry pulp. Limes are way more ubiquitous (and they are juicier!), so they are best for refreshing summer beverages such as this.

  12. Emilia says

    Brazilian lemonade with sweetened condensed milk AND sugar? As a Brazilian, I have NEVER heard of that. From my personal experience, when you put sweetened condensed milk and lemon/lime juice in the blender, you’ll get a thickened cream. So I wonder if you really did try this concoction…

    • Alyssa says

      In the instructions you also add water so that it doesn’t taste thick and creamy. It is the perfect blend and our family loved it!

      • Emilia says

        Living and learning, Alyssa! But sugar added to sweetened condensed milk… I’m surprised it was not horribly sweet!

  13. Emilia says

    Stephanie, lemons (lima, pronounced leemah in Brazil) are readily available in any market, from North to South. (I sometimes read the most incredible, far-fetched things about Brazil, ha, ha, ha!)

  14. Denise says

    I just saw this recipe on pinterest and it stuck out to me because I happen to live in Brazil!
    I can imagine the reason that it’s called brazilian and it uses limes because limes are common here and it’s very difficult to find lemons.
    Hope that helps!!
    great recipe and I have had this lemonade in a few different restaurants here in Brazil :)

  15. Cris Lyle says

    If you want the real swiss brazilian lemonade, don’t add sugar. The condensed milk is the ingredient to get the sweetness.
    We also make this as a cocktail by adding vodka.

  16. Patricia says

    Hello!! I am from the Dominican Republic, and we also use the term “lemon” (in Spanish, “limón”) for either one. Basically, in most Latin American countries, lemon is the green fruit, and lime the yellow one. There many varieties of lemons, and they are told apart by texture, flavor or color. According to an article I once read (and

  17. Patricia says

    Sorry!! I posted the previous comment by mistake, and cut it short. Lol. Hello!! I am from the Dominican Republic, and we also use the term “lemon” (in Spanish, “limón”) for either one. Basically, in most Latin American countries, lemon is the green fruit, and lime the yellow one. There many varieties of lemons, and they are told apart by texture, flavor or color, but the are lemons. According to an article I once read (and that I cannot find), lemon was the word used for the green fruit, since the origin of the Spanish language. Which makes me think it would be the case for Portuguese, since they are both of Latin origin.

    In the Dominican Republic we prepare a similar drink, as it is common in Latin American countries to make milk based juices. We make one called “Morir Soñando”, which would literally translate to “To Die Dreaming” and it consists of: previously sweetened all natural orange/lime/lemon juice, evaporated milk, and loys of ice. Some people incorporate oatmeal to make it thicker and richer. It is delicious!!! Hope you try it and enjoy it!!! :)

  18. Tamara says

    In brasil, we consider lemons and limes to be the same thing. There is no difference to us hence a lemonade made using limes. :)

  19. Andrea says

    In fact, this lemonade photo is lemonade Switzerland, lemon is beaten in a blender with bark, sugar and ice,
    Brazilian traditional lemonade is squeezed lemon juice and add water, sugar and and ice.

    Greeting from Brazil !!!


  20. donna says

    to answer your question..
    the reason this recipe calls for limes instead of lemons and is still considerd lemonade..
    i am married to a brazilian and lived in brazil for awhile. they actually do not have the same lemons that we have here in the states in most regions of brazil, and they are extremely hard to find in the regions that do have them. so they make lemon recipes most of the time with limes because in portuguese the word for lime is limao which means lemon in their language. so to them limes are lemons; they know no difference. and actually, if you want to make TRUE brazilian lemonade, omit the sweetened condensed milk – even though brazilians LOVE it and use it on many desserts and things, they actually do not use it in true homemade lemonade. they squeeze the juice of many fresh limaos and add about 1/2 cup acucar (sugar) for each squeezed lime. mix with water and chill in the fridge. it is that simple! and it is SO delicious! it is even better the next day! :) i hope this eliminated your confusion on the lemon versus lime!

  21. Danielle says

    Brazilian here… in Brazil, both types are called “LEMONS” one we call a green lemon, the other a yellow lemon… so hence “Brazilian Lemonade” Delish, isn’t it? (it’s like a key lime pie in a CUP!)

  22. Grace says

    I am a Brazilian and lime are the only thing
    We use there! It’s called limão in Portuguese
    It’s refreshing and most of us just get froma tree in our backyards!
    We don’t have easy access to yellow lemons ! Lol

  23. daniela says

    I really don’t understand this lemonade. It’s not something we drink here in Brazil! I don’t know how the brazilian name is in that.
    Even though, I must say that here, your lime is called limão, and limonada is lemonade. Maybe that’s why it’s made with limes but it’s called lemonade.
    Your lemon is our limão siciliano.

  24. Marianne says

    I went to Tucanos (Brazilian Grill) and I loved their Lemonades. They have a bunch of different flavors and the top two favorites were Strawberry and Mango. Do I just use another fruit instead of the limes? Of do I do a 50/50 between the two? Thanks for your post!

  25. Coty Elvir says

    This lemonade looks delicious! I use to make lemon pie, almost the same way. I am from Honduras, and let me tell you about limes and lemons. We have two very common species of lemons… the “limón indio” which has a yellow rind (your lemon), and “limón Persa” which has a green rind, (your lime). It took me a while to learn the difference when I was exposed to the American culture, because we called both of them “lemon”, so, it does not matter if it is made with lemons or limes, it will always be a “lemonade” for us. And, we also have a not very common specie, the “lima” which is… sweet!! All of them belong to the Citrus family. Hope this explanation helps to answer your question. Thanks for sharing your recipe!. If you want to make lemon pie, get cookies, like Maria cookies and set a layer of them on an oven dish. Refrigerate. Then, place in a blender, 1 can of evaporated milk, and 1 can of condensed milk. While they are blending, pour slowly 1/4 cup lemon juice just until the moment the liquids get thick. Then stop the blender rapidly. You have to get a delicious smooth and creamy mixture that you pour over the layer of cookies. To decorate use lemon rinds. Refrigerate and then enjoy!


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