This Watermelon Mojito is high on my list of perfect summer cocktails. Made with fresh watermelon juice, this twist on the classic Cuban rum cocktail is refreshing, beautiful, and easy to make at home.
Summer = watermelon. Yes? So much yes. It’s so sweet, fruity, and refreshing and so it seems only right to include it in an equally refreshing summer cocktail.
Watermelon mojitos are my favorite new twist on a classic. Watermelon is a natural match for mint and lime juice, and couldn’t be more seasonal.
Say hello to your new favorite poolside (inflatable in our case!) cocktail. I guarantee you’ll be sipping this baby all summer long!
What is a Mojito?
A mojito is a traditional Cuban white rum cocktail. Made with rum, mint, lime juice, sugar, and soda water, it’s a refreshing combination of sweet and citrus with an herby mint aroma. If you’re immediately turned off by the idea of rum, the mojito is a great place to start exploring – the accompanying flavors and aroma are both a match and mask for it’s distinctive flavor.
How to Make Watermelon Juice
This cocktail recipe calls for fresh watermelon juice, and it’s really simple to make at home using a blender. I encourage you to strain the juice through a fine mesh sieve to remove any bitter bites from the blended up seeds. I don’t normally encourage extra dishes, so when I do, you know it’s a worthy step.
- Slice the watermelon in half and divide into cubes. There are a million ways to skin a watermelon, but the most straightforward method can be found here. Protect your fingers, and be sure to use a sharp chef’s knife.
- Pile the cubes into a blender and blend on high for 30 seconds, or until the watermelon is completely liquified. There is no need to add any other liquid, since watermelon is more than 90% water.
- Pour the watermelon puree into a fine mesh strainer set over a bowl to collect the juice. Stir up the pulp occasionally to release the juices, then discard the residual pulp.
- Half a personal sized watermelon (6-ish pounds) will produce 3-4 cups of watermelon juice, depending on size.
- Watermelon juice will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days. I like to store it in a lidded pint-sized glass mason jar. Give it a stir or a shake before using after storing.
How to Make Watermelon Mojitos
These refreshing watermelon mojitos are a vibrant and delicious twist on the classic white rum cocktail. Since watermelon juice lasts for a few days, you can make them individually, or use it in one go and make pitcher-style mojitos to serve a crowd.
Place whole mint leaves, fresh squeezed lime juice, and sugar in a tall collins glass. Use a muddler to gently mash the mint leaves into the liquid and dissolve the sugar into the lime juice. It’s important that you bruise the leaves, not tear them, for best flavor and aroma. See the photo above – the mint leaves remain whole with small, dark spots where the mint essence has been released into the liquid.
If you don’t have a muddler, the handle end of a thick wooden spoon is a perfectly acceptable substitute.
- Pour in the rum, then add enough ice to fill the glass.
- Add half a cup of watermelon juice, then give the drink a good stir with a bar spoon (a butter knife or even a straw works here if you don’t have a bar spoon).
- Top off the rest of the glass with club soda.
- Garnish with mint leaves and watermelon wedges. To keep the watermelon wedge above the rim, skewer it with a toothpick through the middle.
What’s the Best Rum for a Mojito?
Mojitos are made with white rum which is more subtle than dark rum, so it won’t overpower the other ingredients. My top picks are Bacardi Silver or Havana Club Anejo Blaco, but if you have a favorite brand, feel free to use that.
Can You Make a Mojito Without Mint?
Mint is an essential ingredient for a mojito, adding both flavor and aroma. I don’t recommend substituting with another herb.
How Much Alcohol is in a Mojito?
One drink contains 1 ½ ounces of white rum. Most rum is 40% AVV (alcohol by volume), so one drink is roughly the equivalent to a 12-oz bottle of beer or standard (5-oz) glass of wine. If you have a low tolerance for alcohol, feel free to reduce the rum to 1 ounce or even ¾ an ounce.
Tips For Making the Perfect Watermelon Mojito
- Hand-crafted cocktails are only as good as their ingredients. Opt for a sweet, ripe, juicy melon, fresh squeezed lime juice, and quality rum (as your budget permits).
- Strain the pulp from the watermelon to remove any bitterness from the blended seeds.
- Don’t tear the mint leaves when you muddle them. This can release bitterness into the drink.
- Always use fresh lime juice, not the bottled juice. It’s so much more flavorful and zingy.
- Add the club soda just before serving so it doesn’t lose it’s fizz.
- You can make the watermelon juice up to 3 days ahead of time and keep it covered in the fridge. Give it a stir before using it.
- Want to prepare these for a crowd? It’s so easy to scale this recipe up! To make pitcher watermelon mojitos, combine 1 cup loosely packed mint leaves, ½ c lime juice and ½ c white sugar in a pitcher. Muddle until the sugar dissolves and the mint leaves are bruised but still intact. Add 1.5 cups white rum and 4 cups watermelon juice. Stir, then chill at least 4 hours. Pour the mojitos over tall collins glasses filled with ice, top with club soda, and garnish.
More Summer Cocktail Recipes
- Bramble Cocktail
- Fresh Grapefruit Paloma
- Cherry Gin Rickey
- Blueberry Mint Julep
- Strawberry Basil Margarita
Did you make these Watermelon Mojitos? I’d love to know how they turned out! Leave a comment and a rating below.
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- Fine mesh sieve
- Collins glass
- 1 personal sized seedless watermelon
- 2 tbsp whole mint leaves, 10-12 medium sized leaves
- 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 tbsp white sugar
- 1½ oz white rum
- club soda
- 1 mint sprig, to garnish
- 1 watermelon wedge, to garnish
- Slice the watermelon in half. Remove the skin and pith from one half of the watermelon, then dice into cubes. Place the cubes into a blender and blend on high for 30 seconds, or until the cubes are completely liquified. Set a fine mesh strainer over a bowl, then pour the puree through the strainer. Discard the residual pulp. Divide the remaining watermelon into slices, then divide the slices into wedges.
- Combine the mint, lime juice, and sugar in a tall collins glass. Use a muddler to gently mash the mint leaves and dissolve the sugar into the lime juice. Take care not to tear the mint leaves! Muddling releases flavor and aroma, but tearing can result in a more bitter flavor.
- Pour in the rum, then add enough ice to fill the glass. Pour 4 oz (half a cup) of watermelon juice over the ice, then mix with a bar spoon.
- Top with club soda and garnish with mint leaves and watermelon wedges.
- If you don’t have a muddler, use the handle-end of a wood spoon.
- If you don’t have a bar spoon, use a butter knife or straw.
- To keep the watermelon wedge above the rim of the glass, skewer it through the center using a toothpick. It makes for a really pretty presentation.
- You can make the watermelon juice up to 4 days ahead of time and keep it covered in the fridge. Give it a stir before using it.