watermelon-basil margaritas

by Amy on 7 June 2011

readers, i’d like you to meet my new favorite summer cocktail. summer cocktail, meet my readers. now that introductions are out of the way, let’s talk about this drink! it is simply amazing + couldn’t be more summery, between the ripe, sweet watermelon + the locally grown (our own yard, in fact) basil. you might wonder, do watermelon, basil, tequila, + triple sec really work well together? well, the answer is YES.

in addition to being a glass of summery deliciousness, this recipe also gets bonus points for being gorgeous, quick + easy to make. you can easily double or triple the recipe for a big party – i could definitely see this being the signature cocktail at our next group cookout! in short, i highly recommend that you drop what you’re doing, + go get the ingredients to make this amazing watermelon-basil margarita. we all know that tuesdays are made infinitely better with the addition of a delicious cocktail!

watermelon-basil margaritas with frozen watermelon cubes

makes about 6 cocktails, adapted from martha stewart


7 1/2 pounds seedless watermelon, rind removed, fruit cut into 1-inch cubes
4 teaspoons superfine sugar
6 ounces silver tequila
24 basil leaves plus sprigs for garnish
3 ounces triple sec
6 cups small ice cubes


place 24 watermelon cubes on a baking sheet lined with parchment. cover, + freeze at least 1 hour (up to 2 days).

puree remaining watermelon + the sugar in a blender until smooth. pass through a sieve lined with cheesecloth into a bowl. (you should have 3 cups.)

place tequila + basil in a glass pitcher, + crush with a wooden spoon. stir in watermelon juice + triple sec.

place watermelon cubes in glasses. using a cocktail shaker, mix 3/4 cup margarita with 1 cup ice. strain into a glass. repeat. serve garnished with basil.

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 tracey June 7, 2011 at 10:41 am

this is such an awesome summer pairing,basil is my hands down favorite herb ever,so many varities and flavors,we have made an alcochol free version for the kiddos,and served it with pickled watermelon rind,and hand rolled prosciutto straws,delicious.this says “it’s patio time”

2 amy June 7, 2011 at 11:04 am

i couldn’t agree more – these are like summer in a glass! the non-alcoholic version with the pickled watermelon rind + proscuitto straws sounds insanely good, too. i like!

3 The Waspy Redhead June 7, 2011 at 11:05 am

My kingdom for one of these right this very moment. Ok, that would be inappropriate as its 11am and I’m at work. But I will be giving this a shot soon – I have everything but the basil.

4 amy June 7, 2011 at 11:06 am

some would say that 11 AM at work isn’t a good time for a margarita. but some would argue that it would make the workday a lot more entertaining! =D

5 Vivek June 7, 2011 at 11:07 am

Can’t wait to buy some watermelon and make this! Our basil has yet to come out, but sure it will soon!

6 amy June 7, 2011 at 11:09 am

our basil has really started growing like crazy over the past week or two, so yours can’t be far behind. cheers!

7 natalie (the sweets life) June 7, 2011 at 11:14 am

you basically combined a few of my all-time favorite things in this drink. sending this link to my hubby so he can make me these ASAP! :)

8 amy June 7, 2011 at 11:16 am

woohoo, can’t wait to hear what you think! we had them last night with dinner + we both *loved* ’em. hopefully you + your husband do, too. =)

9 Amber @ Caleigh's Kitchen June 7, 2011 at 11:19 am

Holy moly. THANK YOU! Watermelon is my fav summer treat, and we have fresh basil growing out of our ears in our garden. I will be trying this this weekend…or maybe tonight! :-)

10 amy June 7, 2011 at 11:31 am

fabulous! can’t wait to hear what you think of it. i’m always looking for ways to use up our basil from the garden, too, which is how i stumbled across this wonderful recipe!

11 Heather June 7, 2011 at 12:24 pm

Ok, I am making these this weekend! yummmm!

12 amy June 7, 2011 at 12:51 pm

well that’s a nice coincidence, because i was planning on making your summery orzo salad this weekend! =)

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