Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯)

5 ingredients + no soaking 1 min prep to make this traditional Chinese Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯)! Healthy, budget-friendly & natural drink that soothes your throat, quenches your thirst, and relieves heat. Perfect delicious drink for the hot summer!

5 ingredients + no soaking 1 min prep to make this traditional Chinese Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯)! Healthy, budget-friendly & natural drink that soothes your throat, quenches your thirst, and relieves the heat. Perfect delicious drink for the hot summer! 😀

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We LOVE Sour Plum Drink! It’s our must-have drink whenever we have hot pot.

Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 酸梅湯) is a traditional Chinese drink made from smoked Chinese plums (Wumei 烏梅). This drink first existed over 1000 years ago!

However, the current Sour Plum Drink recipe used by the mass was developed in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). At the time, the drink was only served in the Imperial courts. Thanks to a businessman, this drink got to the commons and became one of the most popular summer drinks among the Chinese communities. 😀

5 ingredients + no soaking 1 min prep to make this traditional Chinese Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯)! Healthy, budget-friendly & natural drink that soothes your throat, quenches your thirst, and relieves heat. Perfect delicious drink for the hot summer!

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Sour Plum Drink is packed with intensely sweet & sour flavors, plus a tint of salty & smoky aftertastes. Besides the ability to sooth your throat, quench your thirst, and relief the heat, the drink also provides some health benefits such as improving appetite & digestion and possibly inhibiting the buildup of lactic acid in the body.

Normally, it takes 2+ hours to make a pot of Sour Plum Drink on the stove top including soaking. Now, you can cut short half the cooking time using a pressure cooker!

Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯) Ingredients - Wumei 烏梅 (Dried smoked plums), Shanzha 山楂 (Chinese dried hawthorn), Gancao 甘草 (Chinese dried liquorice)

Ingredients for Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 酸梅湯)

We bought the ingredients in our local Traditional Chinese Medicine & Herbs Store. So, try to find one near you or try Chinatown. The owner advised us to use this formula of ingredients to make roughly 1 liter of Sour Plum Drink.

Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯) Recipe - Chinese brown sugar in pieces

Tools for Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 酸梅湯)

Tips for Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 酸梅湯)

1. Extra Cold Sour Plum Drinks: we love freezing some of our Sour Plum Juice into cube forms with our silicone mold and serve the juice with them (see video). This way, you won’t dilute the taste with ice while enjoying an ice-cold plum juice! 😉

Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯) Recipe - Freezing the juice with silicone mold to make Sour Plum Ice
2. Sour Plum Drink Slushie:
 another way we love to enjoy this drink is to crush the above frozen Sour Plum Drink Ice to make slushies. What a perfect drink to cure your thirst and heat! 😀

3. Don’t Over-Drink: Yes! It tastes really good and you might not be able to stop yourself from drinking one cup after another. 😛 Since the sourness from the Wumei 烏梅 (Dried smoked plums) is quite strong, be mindful of how many cups you drink.

Watch How To Make This Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 酸梅湯) Video:

Can’t see the cooking video? Watch it here.

Now it’s YOUR turn to take out your pressure cooker and make some Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 酸梅湯)!

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5.0 from 3 reviews
Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯)
 
Prep
Cook
Total
 
5 ingredients + no soaking 1 min prep to make this traditional Chinese Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang)! Healthy, budget-friendly & natural drink that soothes throat, quenches thirst, and relieves heat. Perfect delicious drink for the hot summer!
Author:
Recipe type: Drink, Super Easy
Cuisine: Chinese
Serving: 2 - 4
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Rinse the Ingredients: Rinse Wumei, Shanzha, and Gancao under cold running tap water to remove residue or dust.
  2. Pressure Cook the Sour Plum Drink: Place all ingredients (except Chinese brown sugar in pieces) into the pressure cooker. Close lid and pressure cook at High Pressure for 30 minutes. Turn off the heat and do a 10 minutes Quick Release. Release the remaining pressure and open the lid carefully.
  3. Filter & Sweeten: Use a strainer to filter all the ingredients. Bring the Sour Plum Drink back to a boil over medium heat. Stir and gradually put in 90 grams – 125 grams of Chinese brown sugar in pieces until desired sweetness.
  4. Chill in Fridge: Pour the sour plum drink into a glass container, set aside and let it completely cool off. Then, chill in the fridge. You can store it in fridge for up to 3 days.
  5. Optional - Freeze in Fridge: Pour half of the sour plum drink into a silicone mold or an ice cube tray. Set aside and let it completely cool off. Then, freeze it in the freezer. Pour the remaining plum juice into a glass container. Set aside and let it completely cool off. Then, store it in the fridge.
5 ingredients + no soaking 1 min prep to make this traditional Chinese Sour Plum Drink (Suanmeitang 冰鎮酸梅湯)! Healthy & budget-friendly drink that soothes your throat, quenches your thirst, and relieves heat. Perfect delicious drink for the hot summer!
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  1. Hi,
    Thanks for sharing this recipe. If I use 5 times of all the ingredients, will the cooking time stay the same? Can I use the natural release instead of quick release?

    Thanks!

    1. Hi Tan,

      Thank you for your question 🙂

      The cooking time will stay the same and you can use natural release. Make sure not to overfill the inner pot!

      Please take care & have fun cooking
      Jacky

    1. Hi Anne,

      thank you for your question.

      It means wait 10 minutes (after pressure cooking) before turning the venting knob to the venting position.

      Please take care & have fun cooking
      Jacky

  2. I made this and the color of the drink came out like a blackish green. It tastes fine but I’m wondering why the color does not match?

    1. Hi Jennie!

      So happy to hear from you again. Hope you are enjoying the summer weather.

      Not sure why it looks blackish green. Can you take a picture of the ingredients for me.

      Thank you
      Jacky

  3. Hello Amy & Jacky, Thank you so much for what appears to be simple,
    and good meals. Although I am not Chines, my two granddaughters are, and they like a lot of the Chines dishes. I would like to make the Sour Plum drink, but I am a diabetic, and I’m not familiar with the sugar you use in this drink. Is there another sugar that could be used if the sugar you suggest is not appropriate for diabetics. Thank you for your postings on pressure cooking meals, and deserts.

    1. Hi Georgina,

      thank you so much for your kind words 🙂

      I would recommend substituting the sugar listed with the sugar substitute you use. Make sure to taste and adjust accordingly.

      take care & have fun cooking
      Jacky

  4. Hi. Great review. Thanks for that. I just bought a Mayer pressure cooker and I tried your recipe, the sour plum drink is awesome and it tastes better those outside ones. Thank you.

  5. Hi, I just came back from China and I had this amazing drink at a restaurant, not just once but twice!! Though I would love to one day make my own using your recipe, as a noncook, my host I was with was able to help me find a package version where I can just add water, however, the directions do not make much sense to me. It doesn’t tell me how much water to add. I have this exact brand (see below). Have you seen this brand? If so, could you tell me what is the water-crystal ratio? If not, what would you recommend me to do? Thanks a bunch in advance!

    1. It seems the link may not work, but this might be better. It says “add six to eight water” but I am not sure what that means. Again, thank you!

    2. Hi Zhixi,

      Thank you for your question.

      Pretty sure it means 1:6-8 ingredients to water ratio.

      So if you take out 250g from the package, you will mix it with 1500 – 2000ml water

      Take care & have fun cooking
      Jacky

  6. Those ingredients are from China, and frankly speaking, I don’t dare to use Chinese stuff. Do you have any alternative sources? Eg. Hong Kong, Taiwan

    1. Hi Thao,

      Thanks for your question. We bought all the ingredients for this Sour Plum Drink Recipe from a trusted local Traditional Chinese Medicine & Herbs Store. So, I would encourage you to do the same if possible.
      Hope you can find the ingredients! 🙂

      ~Amy

    1. Hi deenmui, thank you for your question.

      Yes you can double the ingredients to make 2L. The cooking time will stay the same 🙂

      – Amy

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