Watermelon Basil Margarita


One of the hats I wear in our house is that of bartender. I have been blessed with a husband who likes to cook, and luckily, I am perfectly happy with a shaker in my hand (as you may have guessed from this post). A perfectly chosen cocktail can play such a key role in setting the scene. It's fun to sip on the most appropriate libation to match whatever fabulous frock you're wearing at whatever exciting soiree you're attending/hosting. So, I'll be sharing some of my concoctions here. First up, a refreshing summer crowd pleaser, the Watermelon Basil Margarita which I adapted from Martha Stewart's recipe. It's meant to be made in big batches and perfect for 4th of July festivities.


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

1. Place 24 watermelon cubes on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Cover, and freeze at least 1 hour (up to 2 days).

2. Puree remaining watermelon and the sugar in a blender until smooth. Pass through a sieve lined with cheesecloth into a bowl. You should have 3 cups. Note: I skipped the cheesecloth which left just a bit of watermelon texture to the cocktail. Use the cheesecloth if you want it smoother.

Place tequila and basil in a glass pitcher, and crush with a wooden spoon. Stir in watermelon juice and 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.

Grab some friends. Sit on some grass. Watch some fireworks. Sip.