Natural Homemade Paleo Sports Drink Recipe from Katie of Wellness Mama!

*Thank you to Katie of  Wellness Mama for another great post!  Remember you can also find Katie here at her own amazing blog.  Now read and enjoy!

For a Paleo athlete (or any athlete) drinks like Gatorade, Powerade, etc are not a good option. Sure, they restore glycogen, but most are high carb or filled with questionable chemicals, or both!

Most of the time, plain water is all we need for good hydration, but those who compete in endurance sports or high intensity competitions (or have labors as long as mine!) occasionally need an electrolyte boost.

Even at these times, there are better options than conventional sports drinks. Gatorade, for instance, contains: Water, sucrose syrup, glucose-fructose syrup, citric acid, natural grape flavor with other natural flavors, salt, sodium citrate, monopotassium phosphate, red 40, Blue 1. (This is from a picture of the grape flavored Gatorade label.

If you ever compete in high intensity or endurance activities that sometimes require an some additional electrolytes, but want to avoid things like “sucrose syrup,” a homemade sports drink is easier, cheaper, and much, much, healthier.

This is also a good alternative to give your kids occasionally, as it has a lot of natural vitamins and minerals.

Natural Sports Drink Ingredients:

  • One Quart (32 ounces) of  liquid: herbal tea, coconut water or plain water. (I use nutrient dense Red Raspberry Leaf Tea brewed with Stevia for the natural vitamin boost)
  • 1/8-1/4 teaspoon of Himalayan sea salt (regular salt will work, but doesn’t have the added trace minerals)
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp calcium magnesium powder or crushed tablets
  • 1/4 cup of juice (lemon, lime, grape, apple, etc)- optional
  • 1 tsp sweetener (honey, stevia, etc) – optional – I brew stevia leaf into the tea so that no additional sweetener is needed.

How To Make Natural Sports Drink:

  1. Brew tea or slightly warm base liquid.
  2. Add sea salt and calcium magnesium powder and shake or stir to dissolve.
  3. Add juice and sweetener, if using.
  4. Cool and store in fridge until ready to use.

Note: The easiest way I’ve found to make this is in a quart size canning jar. Just add warm tea or liquid, pour in salt and cal/mag powder, put the lid on and shake well.

Other Natural Sports Drink Alternatives:

What’s your favorite natural sports drink? Or do you just stick to water? Weigh in below!


  1. Jennifer says

    Not really a sports drink but very refreshing…In a tall glass filled with ice squeeze 1/4 of a lemon or lime, 2 tsp of raw, organic apple cider vinegar and stevia to taste (optional) add water or sparkling water, stir and enjoy!

  2. says

    This came at the PERFECT time. I have dragon boat races this weekend in 90+ weather, and I live in Oregon so this is hot for me…and I was asking around for a paleo electrolyte drink. THANK YOU!

  3. Brandee Kandle says

    Great recipe, thank you! I am a homebirth midwife assistant and we often suggest people buy Recharge, a natural version of gatorade, by Knudsen’s. But I know that many mom’s would prefer to make their own! I’ll be passing this blog post on.

      • Caitlin says

        Hi Katie –
        I’m a doula too. Just helped a lady a few days ago while she labored. She had a similar homemade drink that she called ‘labor-aide’. Have you heard of it? Baking soda was an ingredient.
        Your recipe sounds great! Can’t wait to try it.

  4. says

    I’ve just started running half marathons and have had pretty good luck with coconut water mixed with unsweetened cheery juice. I should probably add some salt to it, but it seems to work just fine for the 9 or 10 mile runs. I also like it afterwards for recovery, especially if you blend in a frozen banana and blueberries in with coconut water (or coconut milk!) for a yummy smoothie.

  5. Lisa says

    Gatorade kills the thyroid b/c of the bromated coloring. Bromides, fluorides, and chlorides all compete with iodine, blocking iodine from reaching the thyroid.

  6. Giuseppe says

    Nice, thanks, really needed an after run drink.
    Only a doubt. Aren’t suggested sweeteners (honey, stevia, etc.) really Paleo? I mean, don’t they rise your insulin blood level, introducing raw glucose and breaking, then, the ketones mechanism of feeding our cells, brain etc.?

    • Sarah says

      With such a small amount of honey/stevia and used immediately after a workout, I personally wouldn’t worry about it but if you want to avoid it altogether, I’m sure Katie would suggest simply leaving it out.

  7. dennis says

    Make sure to get the raw honey from your local farm stand and not the garbage they sell at the grocery store.

  8. chris mcnally says

    this is a great recipe for bike riders as well. Glad to find a good recipe with calcium in it.

  9. Beatrice says

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    I’d figured I’d ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest authoring a blog
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    the same topics as yours and I think we could greatly benefit from each other.
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  10. Mary O'Loughlin says

    My daughter has P.O.T.S.(Postular Orthhostatic Tachyardia Syndrome) and
    her specialist tells her to drink Gatorade because she needs the higher potassium and sodium content. I refuseto buy Gatorade when she asks me to pick some up at the store. How high is the sodium and potasium con tent?

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