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Natural Hydration Drink Recipe for Kids


If you feel like water may just not be quite enough for your child, but don’t want them drinking artificial sweeteners and other additives, try making your own hydration drink!

all natural hydration drink in a glass with lime slices

When it comes to kids and hydration, there are literally hundreds of choices out there for you to sift through.  What should you be giving your kids when they play sports, or are out playing all day?  For some reason the neon colored sports drinks have somehow made it into the ‘healthy’ category because we see healthy looking athletes drinking them and doing amazing things.

Are Sports Drinks Better Than Water?

The truth is, the average young athlete can and should get all the necessary nutrients and hydration by eating healthy foods and drinking plenty of water before, during, and after exercise.  Kids should take water breaks during sports games, and even when playing outside for long periods of time.

There are times when a hydration drink with electrolytes and carbs may benefit your child.  If your child participates in prolonged strenuous activities such as long distance running, or high intensity activities like soccer or basketball, you may want to consider something more than water.

What Do Sports Drinks Contain?

They contain electrolytes like sodium and potassium which the body loses through sweat.  These are needed to keep fluid levels balanced for muscles to work properly. However, sports drinks are not necessary for the casual athlete and should not be consumed on a regular basis. Typical sports drinks often contain artificial sweeteners, and other ingredients that you may not want your child consuming. These are becoming increasingly popular with middle- and high-school students who are looking for a competitive edge. Some of these drinks are labeled unsuitable for children. Some are specifically marketed to kids claiming they boost energy and athletic performance.

Should Kids Drink Sports Drinks?

Most energy drinks deliver a large dose of sugar and caffeine, both of which can have significant negative impact on kids including weight gain, ability to concentrate, headaches, nervousness, and difficulty sleeping. Energy drinks pose a real health risk for kids and teens and should be avoided.

Kids who participate in sports should learn that they can improve their game through hard work and practice — values that will serve them well both on and off the field. These come in a variety of flavors and different vitamin and mineral supplementation. They also may contain artificial sweeteners and herbal ingredients that have not been studied in kids. Vitamin waters may look like a quick way to fill any nutrition gaps in your child’s diet, but these nutrients can come from a healthy meal or snack. The best place for kids to get daily nutrients is from balanced meals. If you’re concerned that your child isn’t getting enough, talk to your doctor, who may recommend a daily multivitamin formulated for kids.

How To Make An All-Natural Sports Drink

For those of you who feel like water may just not be quite enough for your child, but don’t want them drinking artificial sweeteners and other additives, try making your own hydration drink!

There are a few nutrients that you want to include when trying to replenish your stores after strenuous prolonged exercise.  

  • Carbohydrate for energy
  • Electrolytes: potassium, sodium, and magnesium

Coconut water is a great natural source of electrolytes.  It is low in calories making it a great natural hydration drink on its own.  Coconut water does have a very distinct and unique flavor which some kids might not like.   I personally love the flavor, and drink it straight from the bottle.  For our hydration drink we added 100% juice to enhance the flavor and also add some carbs for energy.

This Natural Hydration Drink Recipe is as simple as pouring your ingredients in a blender, and blending for a minute! This recipe makes about 1 quart of hydration drink.  If you feel like it needs a little sweetness, raw honey is a great choice for this drink.  Honey is comprised of mainly glucose and fructose, and studies have shown it to be a great carbohydrate source for performance athletes.

I WOULD LOVE YOUR FEEDBACK!  If you make this Natural Hydration Drink for Kids recipe, will you leave a comment and star rating below? Your feedback is super helpful for SHK parents and other readers who are thinking about making the recipeThank you!

all natural hydration drink in a glass with lime slices
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3.7 from 47 votes

Natural Hydration Drink for Kids

If you feel like water may just not be quite enough for your child, but don't want them drinking artificial sweeteners and other additives, try making your own hydration drink!
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time0 minutes
Total Time5 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Calories: 86kcal


  • 3 cups coconut water
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 1 cup ice
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon honey



  • Put all ingredients in a high powered blender, and blend for 1 minute.
  • Pour into containers and enjoy immediately or store in the fridge for later. Will stay good in the fridge for 1 week.
  • Optional:  add a squeeze of lime and fresh orange!


Calories: 86kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 2g | Sodium: 265mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 15g
Keyword : Natural Hydration Drink for Kids



Natalie Monson

I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.

Learn More about Natalie
3.71 from 47 votes (45 ratings without comment)

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I would personally skip the fruit juice and the coconut water if I were you. Just do a citrus blend (like the juice of 2 or 3 oranges, a lemon and a lime. Add enough water to make 4 cups total with the citrus juice, 1/8 tsp sea salt (or pink Himalayan salt for more minerals), and honey to taste (like 2 tsp or more). The combination of potassium from the citrus, the salt, the honey, will make a great electrolyte even without coconut water. 🙂

Us too, and I haven’t gotten a response about subbing for coconut oil or coconut sugar in other recipes posted here. Any tips?

I froze them in popsicle moulds and they were fine.

I also tried the smoothie version. ( i.e., in the blender.)

Both were great!

The problem with this is the 100% juice. This isn’t needed. Fruit juice is 100% fructose. Fruit should be ingested with the fibre not as juice. Fructose is a danger to the liver as it overloads it. There are many studies that support this. Check it out.

Instead of buying the juice at the store I make my juice at home. I already have a juicer that I use for everything!!! I even make my children’s gummies with it.

The fact is true about juice, but this is only 25% fruit juice, so it’s not really all that bad. You could even dilute a little more.

I understand what you are saying about 100% juice BUT are you talking about what one can buy in the store vs. making your own juice freom fresh fruit is okay or what? Thx!

“One 11-ounce container has 60 calories and if you drink several in one day, the calories can add up quickly,”

As Summer wraps up in Australia, I have been making many hydration drinks for my 3 kids.
All coconut water based, often with lime and vanilla extract, mint and whizz thru some fresh pineapple, or frozen berries ( sometimes straining), even adding my homemade ginger beer.
If needing to make it go further, I add plain Soda Stream water………. I call it Fruit Tingle.
Everyone loves it, I fill the take away version mason jars with lids for after school sport, or a jug for at home.

Keep up your great work, it’s very helpful for new ideas thank you!

I completely agree. If you want to make it natural use the actual fruit and blend the actual fruit not just the juice. The healthiest thing you can do is juice. I know a lot of people that juice all their food and it has cured their cancer!

maybe I am being old fashioned but unless your child is dehydrated, why can’t they drink water?

Wonderful! We don’t often drink juice, but the one place it’s hard to say no to are in the middle of a hot summer day when they’ve been playing sports and are so hot and thirsty. Bookmarking this for later!

I would use electrolyte tablets or powder. The idea of this recipe is believe is to have an alternative hydration drink to recover the kids for a long hot day of sports or playing. Coconut water is high in electrolytes and potassium, among other dehydration fighters. I would substitute the regular table salt for Himalayan salt, is low in sodium and contains lots of minerals that are important for recovery, the taste is way nicer than reg salt, and the benefits are actually there. There are water based fruits that can be blended whole like watermelon, mangoes, pineapples, and not a fruit but you can use cucumbers. I hope I was helpful.

Drinking water is essential for living. We can find so many water bottles outside that are bpa unfree, which directly harms our health. Drinking water in bpa free bottle is necessary. aquaskin.com.au i found aquaskin bottles very effective.

I think I would love to try this recipe?? & What it has in it… What it has to offer!!!!!! 🙂

My kids will drink this after a game along with water to replace some of the electrolytes they have lost. We play with a traveling basketball team and they can play 3 games a day with little downtime.

Water is great. And everyone should drink the recommended amount daily. However, after being outside in the HOT sun for an extended period of time OR after intense strenuous exercise, you need to replace electrolytes. If you merely replace water and not electrolytes you are still dehydrated.

I think this is great. My son loves Gatorade but I hate it. I think some fresh squeezed oranges would work great in this! Thx for the recipe.

Ok, so don’t make it. There’s no need for your comment, if u don’t like or agree with someone, just keep scrolling. No one is asking u to read this blog post or telling u to make this and give it to your kids.

My daughter drinks water on a daily basis and asks for it more then juice or anything else. She loves to play outside and will until its dark. Sadly one day I wasn’t really paying attention to her being more thirsty than normal. The next morning she had vomited so much I ended up taking her to prompt care. They said she was so dehydrated that they almost admitted her. They fave her two things of apple juice and said if she didn’t keep that in then they would have admitted her for iv fluid. So while she doesn’t always sweat outside i still make her drink watered down Powerade for the simple electrolyte. Replacement. So while water is great if they are active in sports or outside alot.. It simpmy isn’t enough. 🙂

Buy natural no sugar added juices, make your own or blend fruit to add the pulp. This recipe was just a suggestion and a way to get away from the products on the shelf that contain wat too much sugar.

You can use Electrolyte water. Like SmartWater, or Neo. They sell it any any grocery store or gas station for $1-$2.

I appreciate this recipe & I am so very glad that I found this site. However I also appreciate the comment about the juice. I think it is perfectly okay for others to express their opinions even if they differ. I happen to agree that the juice is not a good choice. That being said, I am thankful for the post and tend to use it make a modified version for my kids.

What can you exchange the coconut water with?? I know lots of people who don’t like coconut water (don’t like coconut taste)??

Thanks ?

Coconut water is very high in potassium and small amounts of sodium, magnesium, calcium and phosphorus and there isn’t necessarily a substitute. Orange juice and bananas are also high in potassium, so they would be good choices for a nutrition after periods of strenuous exercise.

What type of coconut water do you use? From a young coconut, regular coconut, store bought in box or can? Which store bought seems better…least chemicals bpa etc.? Thanks!

Is there a coconut free option? What would you replace coconut water with for a child with nut allergies? His allergies include coconuts.

Coconut water is very high in potassium and small amounts of sodium, magnesium, calcium and phosphorus and there isn’t necessarily a substitute. Orange juice and bananas are also high in potassium, so they would be good choices for a nutrition after periods of strenuous exercise.

This is why we created Wubba Water. There is no need for all the sugar. It can actually contribute to dehydration due to inflammation. Wubba Water is an organic rehydration drink for kids (adults too) with 1 1/2 grams of organic sugar/serving. Take a look at http://www.wubbawater.com.

Hello, I tried these energy drinks recipe and it works just awesome. It is far better than all those chemical flavored energy drinks in the market. Thanks for sharing.

This looks delicious.
Do you also have any drink recipes for very young toddlers? My 12 month old is just weaned from breast milk and does not like plain water or cow milk. So… am having constipation issues, due to decreased fluid intake. Any ideas? Thanks!

Hi Liz, this is a great question for your pediatrician. But I’ll also share that for a weaned baby at this age, I would avoid drinks besides milk and water. You can try to make water more interesting with fun cups! That worked for one of mine. You can also serve foods that have a high fluid content, like smoothies (that include milk or water) and prepared oats (which have both water AND fiber to help constipation.) I hope this helps!