How to Make Watermelon Agua Fresca: The Perfect Summer Refreshment

Watermelon Agua Fresca Recipe

Soaring summer temps call for refreshments that will not only quench your thirst but fill your body with much-needed nutrients. This watermelon agua fresca recipe is just the solution for those days.

History of Agua Fresca

Agua fresca is a refreshment originating in Mexico. The name translating from Spanish to English as “fresh water.” According to Fany Gerson’s research found in the 2011 book “Paletas,” agua fresca can be traced back to the Aztecs. They would commonly mix fruit with their water while journeying from their farms to what is now Mexico City (formerly Tenochtitlan).

Agua fresca can now be found in restaurants and on street carts throughout Mexico, Central America, and The Caribbean. You’ll likely find a vendor or two selling agua frescas at your local farmers market in the United States. The lightly flavored, non-alcoholic drinks are usually fruit or flower based and may even include grains and seeds in their concoction.

Agua Fresca Health Benefits

Depending on what ingredients you use, agua fresca can be a nutritious drink. You can drink your way to a healthier heart and body with watermelon agua fresca. Watermelon is a high lycopene food which means it has cardiovascular health benefits. Watermelon also has flavonoids, carotenoids, and triterpenoids which all give it antioxidant and anti-inflammatory health benefits.

For optimum flavor and nutrition, use a ripe watermelon. Ripe watermelons have been shown to have a higher concentration of lycopene when they the flesh has fully turned from white to pink. Plus, a riper watermelon will be sweeter which reduces (or eliminates) the amount of sweetener needed in the agua fresca.

Sourcing Ingredients

You can get creative with your agua fresca ingredients and flavor it with what is in season. Head to the farmers market and see what is ripe and ready for use in agua fresca. Some ingredient suggestions include:

Fruits

  • Watermelon
  • Cantaloupe
  • Honeydew
  • Peach
  • Strawberry
  • Cucumber
  • Kiwi
  • Pineapple
  • Mango

Seeds and Grains

  • Chia Seeds
  • Melon Seeds
  • Barley

Flowers and Herbs

  • Hibiscus
  • Cilantro
  • Basil
  • Mint
  • Rosemary

Agua frescas are perfect non-alcoholic party refreshments for both adults and kids. Grab a drink dispenser and fill it with your favorite agua fresca for guests to sip on. Try garnishing it with herbs to add a touch of flavor. By only making agua fresca with fresh fruits and herbs, you are creating a vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free refreshment.

Watermelon Agua Fresca Recipe
Image of watermelon fresca via Shutterstock

Watermelon Agua Fresca Recipe
Rate this recipe

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Cook Time: 2 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: 6

Serving Size: 6.7 oz

Calories per serving: 44

Fat per serving: 0%

Saturated fat per serving: 0%

Fiber per serving: 0.6g

Sugar per serving: 9.5g

Sodium per serving: 0%

Watermelon Agua Fresca Recipe

Ingredients

  • 4 cups seedless watermelon, cubed
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 2 tablespoons agave or pure maple syrup, optional
  • Mint leaves to garnish

Instructions

  1. Add watermelon and water to a blender. Blend the watermelon and water until completely smooth.
  2. Add sweetener, if desired, and blend again. Transfer to a pitcher. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve, if pulp is undesired.
  3. Stir in mint leaves. Cover the pitcher and place in the refrigerator. Let chill for at least 1 hour, allowing the mint leaves to flavor the agua fresca and chill. Serve immediately or store up to two days.
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More Agua Fresca Recipes

Coconut Mango Agua Fresca RecipeImage via The Bojon Gourmet

Mango Coco Agua Fresca with Ginger and Rum
This coco mango agua fresca will make you feel like you’re on a tropical getaway as you sip it. With electrolyte-filled coconut water and fresh mango, this drink is a healthier boozy treat.

Peach Agua Fresca RecipeImage via Little Spice Jar

Peach Agua Fresca
This peach agua fresca has a kick to it from fresh jalapenos. This recipe is also refined sugar-free, using honey to add a light touch of sweetness to balance out the jalapenos.

Hibiscus Agua FrescaImage via Muy Delicious

Agua Fresca de Jamaica
Jamaica agua fresca gets its name from hibiscus flowers which are also known as flor de Jamaica. This agua fresca recipe uses dried hibiscus flowers to create a light refreshment similar to iced tea.

Melon Agua Fresca RecipeImage via Foodness Gracious

Cantaloupe Melon and Kiwi Fresca
Cantaloupe and kiwi pair perfectly to create this cooling melon agua fresca that’s colorful and thirst quenching. The kiwi adds a slightly tart twist to cantaloupe’s mild, sweet flavor.

Pineapple Agua Fresca Recipe
Image via The Devil Wears Parsley

Spicy Pineapple Agua Fresca
This spicy pineapple agua fresca gets a serious kick from shishito peppers. Juicy pineapple will leave a cooling aftertaste that washes away the fieriness.

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The 6 Healthiest Fruits to Eat During Summer: For a Beautiful Body (Inside and Out!)
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Image of watermelon mint juice via Shutterstock

Karissa Bowers
Karissa Bowers

Karissa Bowers is a fashion and food blogger living a compassionate lifestyle. Karissa is the blogger of Vegan À La Mode where she shares her favorite vegan and gluten-free recipes and also her eco-friendly cruelty-free style. Her love for photographing food and her outfits, drove her to develop a passion for photography. After a few years of honing in on her photography skills, Karissa launched her business, Karissa Bowers Photography, where she shoots weddings and portraits. When she’s not taking photos or in the kitchen, you can find Karissa traveling and trying new vegan restaurants.