Watermelon Basil Margarita

By Marley Goldin
on May 26, 2021
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
This Watermelon Basil Margarita is refreshing and slightly sweet, with fresh basil and citrus to make it taste like summer in a glass!
pink margarita in coupe glass with salted rim surrounded by watermelon

Looking for a fresh new summery take on the margarita? This Watermelon Basil Margarita combines all your favorite summer flavors for the perfectly sweet, totally refreshing sip!

As an environmental scientist, I am always looking for fun ways to integrate seasonal ingredients. And nothing screams summer more than watermelon and basil!

Green tip: Eating seasonally is one of the best (and most delicious) ways to support local and decrease your carbon footprint. Local foods have less associated transportation costs and fuel emissions. Simply put, eating seasonally = less environmental impact. Check when watermelon is in season in your area with this Seasonal Food Guide.

Sweet watermelon and herbaceous basil is an incredible combo on its own, but add a little sweetener and tequila and you’ve got summer in a glass! Here’s everything you’ll need:

Fresh Basil, Salt, Agave, Tequila, Lime, and Watermelon
Ingredients for Watermelon Basil Margarita

Watermelon Basil Margarita Tips and Tricks



Salting Your Rim

This part is optional, but if you want the ultimate margarita experience, it’s highly recommended! It’s simple to do. Just wet the rim of your glass with a lime and then dip it into salt.

You can put the salt on a plate, in a shallow bowl, or easiest of all—use a cocktail rimmer (affiliate link). I used pink Himalayan salt here, and it’s such a great contrast to the sweet margarita.

Adding Salt to the Rim of a Coupe Glass

Muddle Up a Puddle

The best way to infuse all the flavor from the watermelon and basil is to muddle them together for about 30 seconds. You really want most of the juice to be extracted from the watermelon!

Make sure to get that basil muddled, too! Muddling the basil releases flavor from the herbs.

Tested Substitutions

This recipe calls for 2 ounces of tequila blanco. It’s my preference just because it tends to be a tad more citrus-y, which plays well with the fresh lime. That being said, if you prefer reposado, that absolutely plays well with these ingredients, too!

I love using agave in margaritas because it is such a great tequila accompaniment, but you can use any sweetener in place of it here. Use simple syrup, honey, or even molasses in the same amount in its place.

Pouring watermelon margarita into cocktail glass with salted rim

Why You Should Make This Watermelon Basil Margarita



  • It’s summery! Seasonal watermelon and basil make this taste like summer in a glass!
  • It’s refreshing! Fresh fruit and herbs make for a super fresh sip
  • It’s strong. Tequila. ‘nough said.

Loving this Watermelon Basil Margarita and want more Watermelon-infused drinks? Check out this Watermelon Sangria, or this list of 10+ Mixology Cocktails to see all of my must-try alcoholic elixirs!

Watermelon Basil Margarita

5 from 1 vote
Recipe by Marley Goldin Course: CocktailsCuisine: American
Servings

1

cocktail
Prep time

3

minutes
Mixing Time

2

minutes
Total time

5

minutes

This Watermelon Basil Margarita is refreshing and slightly sweet, with fresh basil and citrus to make it taste like summer in a glass!

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon salt for rim (optional)

  • 1/2 cup watermelon, roughly chopped

  • 5 leaves fresh basil

  • 1/2 ounce lime juice (juice of 1/2 lime)

  • 1/2 ounce (1 tablespoon) agave nectar or simple syrup

  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) tequila blanco

Directions

  • Wet the rim of your cocktail glass by rubbing half of a lime on the rim in a circular motion a couple of times around. Add salt to a shallow bowl, plate, or cocktail rimmer (affiliate link) and dip the wet rim into the salt. This step is optional, but highly recommended!
  • Roughly chop a wedge of watermelon until you have about 1/2 cup of watermelon. Add it to a cocktail shaker or mixing glass with the fresh basil. Muddle until most of the juice is released from your watermelon chunks.
  • Add lime juice, sweetener, and tequila and mix. Pour through a strainer into your salt-rimmed glass and enjoy!

Pro Tips

  • Using fresh lime goes a long way in this recipe!
  • I love Blanco Tequila in this recipe, but if you prefer Repasado, that totally works, too!

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