Watermelon is so refreshing when it’s hot, but making margaritas out of it (enough for a crowd!) changes the drink entirely. Watermelon adds fruity sweetness and gives you another excuse for buying an entire watermelon.
Photography Credit: Leela Cyd Ross
When it comes to cocktails, the situation dictates the drink. If you’re having a swanky steak dinner, then that’s a martini sort of meal. Headed to a picnic and Shakespeare in the Park? That begs for the boozy Pomegranate Paloma, swigged from a flask. (Assuming you’re seeing a comedy. If it’s a tragedy, go with something bitter, such as a Dark and Stormy.)
But if the weather is sporting triple digits and I’m floating on a raft in the pool, then it’s time to go for something juicier and far more thirst quenching. Enter the watermelon margarita.
For the most part, this is a classic margarita with a skosh more tequila and a lot of fresh watermelon. The resulting cocktail is fruiter than the original and its strength will sneak up on you, but in this case I’ll call that a good thing.
This is also a margarita that I encourage you to have with salt, even if you normally don’t care for it. It adds a necessary bit of balance to all the sweetness.
MORE SUMMERY COCKTAILS!
Watermelon Pitcher Margaritas Recipe
Buy tequila that has been aged for two months and is marked “100% de agave.” Tequilas that aren’t labeled with this are usually cut with fermented cane juice, resulting in a lower quality tequila.
- Swap out tequila for mezcal, tequila’s smokier, wilder cousin.
- For a frosty, thicker treat, freeze the watermelon before throwing it in the blender and skip the strainer.
- 1 1/2 cups tequila blanco (also called plato or silver tequila)
- 1/2 cup orange liqueur, such as Triple Sec or Cointreau
- 1/2 cup lime juice
- 4 cups chopped seedless watermelon
- Simple syrup or agave nectar, if needed to sweeten
- Kosher or other high quality salt, for garnish
- Lime wedges, for garnish
1 Blend the ingredients: Place tequila, orange liqueur, lime juice, and seedless watermelon in a blender and give ’em a good whirl. (You may have to do it in two batches depending on the size of your blender.)
Note: If you happen have a juicer, simply juice the watermelon and stir it with the other ingredients in a pitcher.
2 Strain out the watermelon solids: Pour the ingredients through a fine mesh strainer into a pitcher, pressing the solids to get as much liquid out as you can.
3 Prep the glasses: Assuming you imbibe with flair, take a small plate or bowl and fill it with the salt. Next, rub the rim of a cocktail or coupe glass (or a canning jar) with a wedge of a wedge of lime. Dip the glass into the salt and give it a small turn or two.
4 Serve and garnish: Pour the cocktail into the prepared glasses and garnish with a lime wedge.
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