The 7 Best Watermelon Cocktails for Summer’s End

Two thirst-quenching glasses of watermelon cocktails on a wooden table.

There aren’t many ingredients that signify the dog days of summer more than watermelon. The gigantic fruit offers refreshment in whatever form it takes, whether it’s pressed as juice or served as a prosciutto-wrapped cube. Watermelon’s best use, however, is arguably in the cocktail.

What does watermelon bring to the bar table? For one, a truly one-of-a-kind flavor. It also affords tremendous color, a real bonus when it comes to cocktail making. And the fruit is downright mouthwatering, making its appeal during the heat of late summer even greater. Here are the seven best watermelon cocktails to ride out the remnants of summer with.

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Spicy Cucumber Watermelon Margarita

A glass of Spicy Cucumber Watermelon Margarita on a wooden table.

(By Hermanito, Los Angeles)

A little spicy, a little sweet, and every kind of refreshing, this tasty take on a margarita will have you feeling heavenly.

Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces watermelon juice
  • 1.5 ounces jalapeno and cucumber-infused mezcal
  • .75 ounce fresh lime juice
  • .5 ounce agave

Method:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin with ice.
  2. Shake and strain over ice in rocks glass and garnish with tajin rim and watermelon slice.

Read more: Best Easy Cocktail Recipes

Watermelon Cooler

A glass of watermelon cooler with herb on a table.

(By D’ussé)

If you’re not mixing with Cognac, get to work. It’s an age-old and nimble sipper that does particularly well with both watermelon and herbs like basil.

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 parts D’ussé VSOP Cognac
  • 3 parts fresh watermelon juice
  • .75 part simple syrup
  • ½ lime
  • 3 basil leaves 

Method:

  1. Muddle basil and simple syrup in a shaker.
  2. Add all other ingredients into shaker with ice.
  3. Shake and strain into an ice-filled glass.

Read more: A Guide to Cognac

Watermelon Frozé

A glass of Watermelon Frozé on a white table.

(By The Waterfront, California)

A frozé, this frozen cocktail is built for a shady spot on the deck in late August. Floral, juicy, and a bit tropical, you’ll want to mix up a larger batch just to be safe (the recipe below makes two servings).

Ingredients:

  • 3 ounces Rosé wine
  • 3 ounces Lillet Rose
  • 1.5 ounces Martini Fiero
  • 4 ounces fresh watermelon juice
  • 2.5 ounces lavender syrup
  • 2 ounces water
  • 2 ounces coconut water
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice

Method:

  1. Combine all ingredients into an empty 750-ml bottle and place in the freezer, agitating occasionally (2-3 hours for ideal texture).
  2. Combine all ingredients except water and place in ice cube trays overnight.
  3. Remove cubes and put into blender and add water. Blend until desired texture is reached and serve.

Read More: Best Frozen Drinks to Make

Frozen Berry Margarita

A glass of Frozen Berry Margarita beside a bowl of berries on a circular tray.

(By Cointreau)

Marrying tequila, Cointreau, and berry goodness, this drink is so addictive you may need help prying yourself away from its fetching ways.

Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces blanco tequila
  • 1 ounce Cointreau 
  • .75 ounce fresh lime juice 
  • .25 ounce simple syrup 
  • ½ cup frozen berries  
  • 5 ice cubes

Method: 

  1. Add all ingredients to a high-powered blender and blend to combine.
  2. Pour into Margarita glass.
  3. Garnish with blackberries and/or lime wheel.

Summer Sangria

A glass of Summer Sangria in between a plate of watermelon slices and a bottle of 1800 Silver Tequila on a marble table.

(By Ford Media Lab)

Ah, sangria, the crushable wine cocktail that immediately reminds you of vacations and zero agenda. Here, it’s given the watermelon and tequila treatment.

Ingredients:

  • 3 ounces rosé
  • 1 ounce 1800 Silver Tequila
  • .25 ounce fresh lime juice
  • .5 ounce simple syrup
  • 3 cubes watermelon

Method:

  1. Muddle watermelon, shake, and strain over ice cubes in a stemless wine glass.
  2. Top with rosé and stir gently to combine.
  3. Garnish with cucumber-wrapped inner glass and watermelon slice.

Watermelon, Sugar, Rye

A glass of Watermelon, Sugar, Rye beside a bottle of Redemption High Rye Bourbon.

(By Redemption)

Bourbon and watermelon adore each other’s company, just ask this dazzling cocktail.

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 parts Redemption High Rye Bourbon
  • 1.5  parts salted watermelon-honey syrup*
  • .5 part lemon juice
  • 2 parts tonic water
  • mint

Method:

  1. Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a Collins glass.
  2. Top with tonic water and garnish with a watermelon radish slice and a mint bushel.

*Watermelon-Honey Syrup: Blend 1 cup Watermelon purée with 1 cup honey simple syrup. Add 2 teaspoons Malden salt and stir to dissolve. Cool in the refrigerator. Keeps for 1 month.

Watermelon and Rosemary Gimlet

A slice of watermelon and a glass of Watermelon and Rosemary Gimlet cocktail surrounded by a bottle of Damrak Gin and oranges on a wooden table.

(By Damrak Gin)

A gimlet outfitted for the laziest days of summer, this drink delivers. It’s summery in nature, with a kiss of coming autumn on behalf of some rustic rosemary.

Ingredients:

  • 1.75 ounces Damrak Gin
  • 1 cup watermelon cubes
  • .5 ounce rosemary syrup
  • .75 ounce lime juice

Method:

  1. Muddle watermelon in shaker, add all ingredients, and shake and fine strain into a coupe glass.
  2. Garnish with rosemary sprig.

Read more: Best Spirits for Gimlets

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