We occasionally link to goods offered by vendors to help the reader find relevant products. Some of these may be affiliate based, meaning we earn small commissions (at no additional cost to you) if items are purchased. Here is more about what we do.
There’s always extra watermelon in the refrigerator during the summer. Always.
And when you happen to be of a legal drinking age – wahoo, adulting! – you can take advantage of your own sweet surplus by making a quick and easy sparkling watermelon cocktail.
Preparing this crafty beverage is a strategic choice to make when you realize your friends left the rest of the cubed watermelon from a recent summer get-together in your refrigerator.
Or when you couldn’t resist buying the biggest melon at the store – come on, honey, it was on SALE!
Or when it’s sweltering outside, with temperatures dangerously flirting with triple digits, and you are desperate for a refreshing libation to beat this beast of a heat.
Clearly, you have many reasonable excuses to imbibe.
When the watermelon is fresh and juicy and the prosecco is cold and bubbly, any excuse you can think of is good enough for me!
Simple and delightful, this cocktail won’t be too much of a strain to make when you’re planning a casual Memorial Day barbecue party or chilling out on a hot summer day, but it still honors a made-from-scratch mission.
Pro tip: the texture of this homemade juice will infinitely improve once you strain it to remove any solids. Let’s not be bothered by any excess pulpy nonsense as we’re sipping while relaxing!
After you place a little ice in the base of your glass, all you have left to do is pour in the juice and top it all off with some chilled prosecco.
And maybe garnish the glass with a watermelon wedge or cubes on a cocktail pick for just a little decorative flair, but only if you really want to take the time to apply a finishing touch.
There’s no infusing, no smoking, no shaking, no muddling, no expressing – your bartending requirements are now at an end.
Just hand it to your thirsty companions before serving yourself, sip, and enjoy…
And start planning to make your next batch very soon – once you are gifted with yet another pile of watermelon!Print
Light and bubbly, our sparkling watermelon cocktail is an easy, made-from-scratch beverage to sip on all summer long.
- 2 cups cubed watermelon, chilled (about 12 ounces)
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice, chilled
- 1 tablespoon simple syrup or light agave nectar
- 1 bottle sweet prosecco (750 mL), chilled
- Ice cubes, for serving
- Small watermelon cubes or wedges, for garnish (optional)
- Place the cubed watermelon, lemon juice, and simple syrup or agave nectar into a blender. Process at a high speed until completely smooth, about 10 seconds.
- Strain through a fine-mesh strainer into a large pitcher, using a spoon to lightly press down on any solids. This will yield about 1 cup of liquid. Dispose of the solids.
- Fill 4 glasses with ice. Pour the watermelon juice into each glass over the ice, divided evenly. Slowly pour the prosecco over the watermelon juice to top off each glass.
- Garnish each rim with a watermelon wedge, if using. Serve immediately.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Category: Alcoholic Beverages
- Method: No-Cook
- Cuisine: Beverages
Keywords: prosecco, watermelon, cocktail, sparkling
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 – Prep
Before beginning, have your ice ready to go in the freezer, enough to fill 4 glasses. And make sure your fruit and prosecco are thoroughly chilled – no one wants a room temperature beverage on a hot day!
Choose and set out your preferred drinkware.
This is a casual summer drink meant for quick and easy sipping – you shouldn’t have to worry about fiddling with stemware here.
Any stemless glass between 10 and 12 ounces will do just fine, such as a stemless wine glass, a simple water glass or highball, or a short tumbler. If you’re serving this at an outdoor party and want to minimize cleanup, you can use recyclable plastic cups.
Measure 2 cups of watermelon chunks – they may be a little bulky to place in a measuring cup, so expect the pieces to go slightly beyond the cup’s rim!
Remember, we’re not baking here! We’re just making a delicious drink – you don’t need an exact amount for this recipe. Roughly 2 cups, or about 12 ounces of watermelon chunks, will be fine.
If you are cutting the chunks yourself and need some guidance on what size fruit to purchase, you’ll need about half of a 4-pound small seedless watermelon.
The other half can be wrapped tightly and stored in the refrigerator for another use – or you can use it to cut some pretty wedges for an optional garnish.
While a crisp, light-bodied prosecco is our preferred choice in this recipe, you can play around with more sweet sparkling wines as well.
For a subtle taste of the tropics, and for an ideal pairing with watermelon, try Backside Barrel’s Sparkling Moscato, available from Wine Insiders. This Australian-produced wine presents flavors of lychee, passionfruit, and acacia flowers.
Squeeze the fresh lemon juice, and measure out the simple syrup. You can learn how to easily make simple syrup in our guide to building your at-home cocktail routine!
If you don’t have time to make simple syrup, use an equal amount of light agave nectar.
Step 2 – Puree the Watermelon, Lemon Juice, and Sweetener
Place the watermelon chunks, lemon juice, and simple syrup or agave nectar into a blender. This small quantity of ingredients will also be able to fit in a tinier appliance, such as the Nutribullet Pro 900.
Process the ingredients at a high speed until a completely smooth mixture forms. This will only take about 10 seconds – you’ll soon see how the fruit very quickly becomes juice!
Step 3 – Strain
Transfer the mixture to a fine-mesh strainer placed/held over a large pitcher. Strain the juice from the solids, lightly pressing the mixture down with a spoon to release more liquid.
Watermelons are generally quite pulpy – not the most pleasing texture or look for a drink! Straining helps to create a smoother juice with minimal pulp. Note that the finer the strainer, the less pulp you will have in your juice. A high-speed blender will also eliminate any pulpiness.
After straining, there should be roughly 1 cup of juice.
You can dispose of the solids, but you might want to consider saving them as a flavor-packed ingredient to add to your smoothies.
You can make this juice ahead of time – once strained, it will keep in your fridge in an airtight container for up to 2 days. There may be some separation during storage, so vigorously whisk the liquid before continuing to the next step.
Step 4 – Build the Cocktail
Place a few cubes of ice in each glass, at least enough to reach halfway up the glass.
Pour and divide the juice among the four glasses – this will be about 1/4 cup of juice per glass.
Carefully open the bottle of prosecco, and slowly pour it over the juice in one glass until the liquid reaches close to the rim. Repeat with the remaining glasses.
Try not to pour the wine too quickly, as you’ll get more foam than liquid!
You may not use all of the prosecco – cover the opening with an airtight wine stopper, and place the bottle in your fridge to save any leftovers.
But you may need it sooner than you think, as you can continue to top off the glasses with more wine as you drink – the juice will be slightly more diluted, but no one will complain about that!
Step 5 – Garnish and Serve
Garnish the rim of each drink with a watermelon wedge, if using. For other garnish ideas, consider using edible flowers or lemon wedges or rounds.
Serve immediately while the drink is very cold and the wine is still bright and effervescent!
Seasonal Summertime Sips
Sweet, juicy watermelon – the best ingredient we can all appreciate during the warmest months of the year!
When the grocery stores have bins upon bins filled with these vibrant, rotund fruits, and there are refrigerated shelves stacked high with freshly cut cubes and pieces, there’s no resisting their appeal – you must buy them!
After multiple rounds of adding them in colorful fruit salads, using them for infused waters, freezing them for homemade ice pops the whole family will be able to enjoy, it’s finally time for the adults to move onto something more age-appropriate for those who wish to partake…
Let’s say cheers to our sparkling watermelon cocktails!
How do you like to use up this particular summertime fruit? Do you have a sparkling wine in mind for this beverage, other than prosecco? Leave a comment below with your ideas.
We’re not stopping at just watermelon when we’re mixing up craft cocktails at home this summer. Check out some of our other favorite alcoholic beverages that we love making to cool off:
Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on May 17, 2015 by Marla Tetsuka. Last updated on August 1, 2023.
About Nikki Cervone
Nikki Cervone is an ACS Certified Cheese Professional and cheesemonger living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she's not nibbling on her favorite cheeses or testing a batch of cupcakes, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga, wine, hiking, singing in the shower, and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.