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A&W Root Beer Copycat Recipe
A&W Root Beer
By Todd Wilbur

Recipe Type: Drink
Calories: 170
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Recipe Rating: 4.8 (5 reviews)

In 1919, when Roy Allen and Frank Wright started selling their new root beer beverage to a thirsty America, national Prohibition was taking its grip on the country. Their timing couldn't have been better. No longer able to legally drink real beer, thirsty patriots had to settle for this sweet, foamy concoction derived from roots, herbs, and berries. Roy and Frank had thirteen years of Prohibition to make their mark and their fortune from this refreshing drink. By 1933, when Prohibition came to a screeching halt, Roy and Frank had 171 stands in various shapes and sizes, each with the familiar A&W logo on them, all across the country. These drive-up stands with their tray boys and tray girls bringing cold drinks out to the cars were an inspiration for many other roadside stands and diners, and the prelude to the popular fast food drive-thrus of today. You can still get a foamy mug of A&W root beer at outlets across the country, or just enjoy some from a 12-ounce can.

But if it's some home cloning you'd like to get into, check out this improved version of A&W Root Beer that was first printed in More Top Secret Recipes. The beauty is you won't have to worry about collecting roots, herbs, and berries like the pros do. Instead you just need to get some root beer extract, manufactured by McCormick, that you'll find near the vanilla in your local supermarket. Make up some root beer syrup, let it cool off in the fridge, and you can whip up 10 servings by combining the syrup with soda water whenever you're ready to drink.

Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits and Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
1 cup very hot water
1 cup corn syrup
1 teaspoon McCormick root beer concentrate
10 cups cold soda water

1. Dissolve the sugar in the hot water in a small pitcher.

2. Add the corn syrup and root beer concentrate and stir well. Cover and chill syrup until cold.

3. When the syrup is cold, pour 1/4 cup syrup into 1 cup of cold soda water. Sitr gently, add ice, and serve.

Makes 10 10-ounce servings

missing the vanilla
Submitted on: 08/26/16
Tastes great, but is missing the vanilla adder.
A&W Rootbeer
Diane Vezina  
Submitted on: 06/16/16
Excellent and no high fructose corn syrup or chemicals...Thank you!!!!!
best yet
Submitted on: 10/07/13
Much better then store bought-en root beer extract. No preservatives. Thanks for sharing. I now just need to freeze my mugs.
Riley Howe  
Submitted on: 07/04/12
mmmmmm tastes like the root beer that i love and remember buying
A & W Root Beer
Thomas Vander Schans  
Submitted on: 04/08/11
Tastes very similar to the A&W Root Beer that I remember buying at an A & W Root Beer Stand as a child. Very nostalgic. Oh yea!