Sorrel “Hibiscus sabdariffa” Drink Recipe

Hibiscus sabdariffa aka red sorrel brewing in a glass mug. Not to be confused with Hibiscus sabdariffa. Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is the decorative plant that grows abundantly in the tropics.

The sorrel drink recipe below is super easy to make. If you can boil water and stir a cup you will have no problem at all. In Jamaica, Trinidad and throughout the English speaking Caribbean sorrel is served religiously at Christmastime.  In recent years sorrel has shown up in tea bag form in many grocery stores. Made by steeping sorrel flowers in hot water for several hours, sorrel drink is then sweetened with sugar and flavored with ginger. Rum and aromatic spices such as orange peel or cloves are often added but are not required. 

hibiscus rosa-sinensis

In recent years sorrel has become very popular in and outside the Caribbean. You can  purchase sorrel drink already brewed or buy sorrel flowers dried and packaged in Jamaican restaurants and grocery stores where Caribbean foods are sold. If you cannot find sorrel where you live is your best bet for purchasing the dried petals. The remaining ingredients are all found easily in any local grocery store.

dried sorrel flowers
dried sorrel (sometimes labeled as Jamaican – Hibiscus) can be bought wherever Caribbean or Spanish foods are sold including on


Sorrel “Hibiscus sabdariffa” Drink Recipe

Sorrel and black cake are the quintessential Caribbean holiday dessert combo. There are many versions of this recipe but the process and the main ingredients (_sorrel, rum, sugar, spice_) are the same.

20 minPrep Time

20 minTotal Time

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  • 1 lb. sorrel (fresh or dried)
  • 2 to 4 oz. fresh ginger (grated (1 – 2 tsp ginger powder))
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 8 C water
  • a few allspice berries
  • 1/4 C premium white rum
  • 1 TB orange peel
  • 2 to 3 pieces cloves


Place the sorrel and desired spices in a large heat proof glass container. Add water and ginger to a pot over high heat. Bring to a boil. When water begins to boil; remove from the stove and pour water over the sorrel. Cover and let steep for 6 to 24 hours. After it steeps, strain sorrel into another container. Stir in sugar, wine and rum if desired.Store sorrel in a cool, dark, dry place or in the refrigerator for up to 6 months. Serve cold over ice or at room temperature.


*If using fresh sorrel pick and wash petals thoroughly before using. *Use a large heatproof glass or ceramic container with a lid to steep the sorrel. *If using allspice or cloves add to the water before it boils to release maximum flavor.

Sorrel over ice
Classic sorrel drink over ice. Add or omit rum and other flavors to suit your tastebuds.
In recent years I’ve taken to using flavored syrups instead of sugar to sweeten sorrel juice. Let your tastebuds be the guide to creating up your own flavor combinations.
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2 thoughts on “Sorrel “Hibiscus sabdariffa” Drink Recipe

  1. We should do larger export like years ago when Erica used to buy by the sacs and we should be manufacturing it al over the world

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