The fresh taste of watermelon and mint combine to make the ultimate summer cocktail—the Watermelon Mojito.
After Labor Day you can’t wear white and you can’t eat watermelon.
That first one is a known adage; the second one I added. It’s an added adage! I think it’s true though. Watermelon—so sloppy and juicy and drippy, you have to eat it outside—is the quintessential summer fruit. Eating it beyond the end of August sounds like some sort of faux-pas.
The same goes for cocktails containing watermelon. You can make one during the summer months but once the kids go back to school, that’s it. So, with such a small window of time, don’t you want to make the most of your watermelon-sipping? That’s why we’re focusing on the Watermelon Mojito today—melon cubes blending with mint, rum, and lime juice. It’s what happens when a classic Cuban cocktail is introduced to American backyards and barbecues and 4th of July celebrations. Take one sip and you’ll notice both the exotic flair and summer Americana captured in a highball.
What is the Best Rum to Use?
As I say with any cocktail that boasts a long list of sweet and/or sour flavors, the base spirit (e.g., rum, vodka, gin, whiskey) should be neutral so that those “louder” tastes get the spotlight. With this in mind, you’ll want a light, silver rum. Generally, you want each sip to taste like mint, watermelon, and lime, with an overarching sweetness from the sugar. A darker rum may overpower those flavors. If you want to experiment though, I can recommend using an amber variety, like Mount Gay or Appleton Estate. And yes, given the shade of these rums, your mojito will lose that pastel pink hue.
- 2 oz. white rum
- 1 oz. fresh lime juice
- 1 cups ripe watermelon cubes
- 2 tsp superfine sugar
- fresh mint leaves
- club soda
- ice cubes
- small slice of watermelon and mint sprigs (for garnish)
- Mash up the watermelon, mint leaves, lime juice, and sugar in a shaker. Use the back of a spoon or a muddler if you have one.
- Add the rum into the shaker and mix well.
- Pour the mixture over ice into a glass, filling two-thirds. Top with club soda for a little fizz, and garnish with a sprig of mint or a small slice of watermelon if you like.
Tips & Tricks to Making a Perfect Watermelon Mojito
- If you prefer a sweeter drink, add more sugar. If you like it more tart, add more lime.
- Want a slightly boozier drink? Use sparkling wine instead of club soda.
- If you only have regular granulated sugar, make a simple syrup and use that in your mojito.
- Use fresh lime juice for a healthier, less synthetic drink.
- Opt for a pre-cubed watermelon or seedless watermelon; encountering a seed in a sip is a surefire way of ruining a cocktail.
Other Mojito Variations To Try
Watermelon Mojito Mocktail: A simple alteration… drop the rum. You can replace it with rum-flavored non-alcoholic alternatives or keep it simple with the natural ingredients.
The Original Mojito: The perfect blend of rum, lime, and mint.
Pineapple Arugula Mojito: An exotic fruit and a handful of greens make an appearance in this bright, yellow version of the mojito.
Easy Caipirinha: Not a mojito, but something pretty close, with lime and cachaça, also known as a Brazilian sugarcane liquor