Watermelon Slushie – These frosty watermelon slushies are made from whole-food ingredients and taste AMAZING. So refreshing on a hot day! (Paleo, Vegan)
We’re mostly water drinkers at my house. My kids will have the occasional glass of almond milk or orange juice here and there, but for the most part, we’re a water-drinking family.
Except when it’s a bazillion degrees in summer.
For some reason (okay, I know the reason–It’s HOT!), summer seems like the perfect time to try something cool and refreshing. Last year, it was 8 flavors of naturally sweetened lemonade. This year, we’re all about these watermelon slushies.
Frosty, delightful watermelon slushies are a refreshing, hydrating drink that’s perfect on a hot day. (Seriously. Few things taste better poolside!) Plus, I love that this sweet drink uses whole-food ingredients and skips the dyes without sacrificing any of that gorgeous, summer-ripe watermelon flavor.
Here’s all you need to make these bright, beautiful watermelon slushie recipe…
HERE’S WHAT GOES INTO MY WATERMELON SLUSHIE:
- FROZEN WATERMELON. For frothy, frozen, slushy goodness, I use frozen watermelon instead of fresh. (This is a great way to use watermelon that’s not perfect, or that’s a tad on the mealy side.) See the FAQ for how I freeze watermelon for slushies!
- FRESH LIME JUICE. To brighten up the flavor, I add a splash of fresh lime juice. It won’t taste super limey, but it’ll add so much brightness to the watermelon slushie. If you want even more lime flavor, you can also add some lime zest!
- A FEW MINT LEAVES. If you like (and I usually do), you can add a fresh mint leaf or two. It won’t make your watermelon slushie minty (or toothpaste-y!), but it’ll add a lovely, fresh depth to the flavor that I LOVE. If you’re not a mint fan or don’t have it on hand, feel free to skip it!
- WATER OR SPARKLING WATER. To help the frozen watermelon blend into a beautiful watermelon slushie, you’ll need some water or sparkling water. Sparkling water can be a fun change of pace if you have it!
- PURE MAPLE SYRUP, AGAVE, OR SUGAR (IF NEEDED). Depending on how sweet your watermelon is, you may or may not need a tiny bit of sweetener. I recommend blending up the slushy almost all the way, then taste-testing. If it tastes a little flat or dull, I recommend just a tiny bit of pure maple syrup, agave, or sugar.
TIPS FOR CHOOSING A GOOD WATERMELON.
I’ve heard LOTS of tips over the years, but the ones that work best for me are:
- KNOCK ON THE WATERMELON. A more hollow sound often means it’s juicier)
- A YELLOW SUNSPOT. The sunspot is the place where the watermelon has been sitting on the ground. Yellow (instead of white or green) typically means the watermelon is more ripe.
- FEEL HOW HEAVY IT IS. A ripe watermelon will feel heavy for its size (heavier often means juicier).
MIX IT UP! TRY ONE OF THESE TASTY VARIATIONS.
I’ve written my base watermelon slushrecipe below (it’s the one I use most often), but you know I can’t resist playing with my recipes. Here are a few other delicious variations to try…
- FRESH BASIL. One tasty swap is to use basil instead of mint here. (It might sound strange, but I had basil in lemonade a few years ago, and I’ve loved it in fruity drinks ever since!)
- BLUEBERRIES, RASPBERRIES, OR STRAWBERRIES. To add to the flavor and color, you can add 1 cup of blueberries, raspberries, or strawberries in your watermelon slushie. Frozen berries will help keep that frosty texture, but you can also use fresh if you like!
- LEMON JUICE. Another option is to swap the lime juice for lemon juice. This totally channels watermelon lemonade vibes and it’s delicious!
FAQ + TIPS & TRICKS FOR THE BEST WATERMELON SLUSHIE:
HOW TO FREEZE WATERMELON. To freeze watermelon for watermelon slushies, I dice it up (smaller dices are better for blending), measure it out, and then spread the cubes out onto a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat (so they don’t’ stick to the metal pan and don’t freeze together in one giant clump). After 1-2 hours, you can transfer the frozen watermelon chunks to a bag to continue freezing if you like. I recommend at least 4-5 hours (overnight is better!) for the best frosty finish.
LET THE WATERMELON SOFTEN SLIGHTLY BEFORE BLENDING. To make things easier on your blender, I recommend letting the frozen watermelon soften slightly before blending. 5-10 minutes usually does the trick! (I add + measure all the other ingredients while it softens)
FORGOT TO FREEZE YOUR WATERMELON? TRY THIS! If you forgot to freeze your watermelon or don’t have time or freezer space (been there!), you can add 1-2 cups of ice cubes to your blender along with fresh watermelon to help it get frosty. It won’t be exactly the same, but it’ll help!
HOW TO CUT A WATERMELON. This is my favorite method for cutting a watermelon. It’s the easiest way I’ve ever tried! (The tutorial shows wedges, sticks, and cubes. Use the cubes option for this recipe!)