Homemade Watermelon Lemonade is the perfect drink for a summery picnic or family day in the sun. With our homemade version this Watermelon Lemonade can be made with vegan sugar, and top allergen friendly components.
- Why We Like This Recipe
- Ingredients for Homemade Watermelon Lemonade
- Instructions/Directions and Tips
- Equipment to Make Homemade Watermelon Lemonade
- Storage and Reheating Instructions
- Top Tip
- What To Serve With
- Other Recipes You May Enjoy
- 📖 Recipe
- Food Safety
- Latest Posts
Why We Like This Recipe
This is our kid's favourite summer refreshing drink. It was so good during a heatwave at quenching one's thirst. The homemade version is my personal favourite for taste. Nothing compares to fresh squeezed fruits. It isn't a recipe when pressed for time.
There are two ways to make this recipe, neither is wrong. This is the homemade watermelon lemonade recipe. This recipe is best for those with many allergies and who need to make sure all the ingredients used are safe and free from allergens. there is a Quick and Easy Watermelon Lemonade recipe we have posted to save time for large gatherings. We do both depending on how much time and how many times I have to make it. Please choose the best method for you depending on how you like to cook and your available time.
Ingredients for Homemade Watermelon Lemonade
Watermelon juice (for our watermelon juice recipe click here)
We make our own out of about ¼ of a large watermelon. The full recipe can be found in the Watermelon Mint Juice recipe.
You will need a way to crush and extract the juice, like a high powered blender and a way to strain out the pulp.
Our preferred method is a coffee filter in a fine mesh sieve and left to filter. It doesn't take very long and while it is filtering, prep other components like juicing the lemons. Do not push the juice through the filters or the juice will end up cloudy, let it drip out.
Save the leftover watermelon pulp once drained for the watermelon simple syrup.
Good quality lemons are a must for making lemonade. Meyer are our favourites and are super sweet. They don't need a ton of sugar but their growing season ends before the watermelon season starts. You can freeze lemon juice, if you are prepared enough while Meyer lemons are still in season. I am not that organised.
Be sure to wash your lemons well and use vinegar to get the wax off if they have waxed skins. Before you cut and juice them, grab all the zest off 3 of the lemons so you can throw 1 tablespoon in the blender with the watermelon and the rest can go in a pot for the lemon simple sugar.
This recipe uses one additional lemon sliced in rounds to put in the watermelon lemonade jug as a garnish.
Watermelon simple syrup / Lemon simple syrup
This is where your personal tastes come into play as well as your diet.
I like my lemonade on the tart side but the kids like it a bit sweeter. We meet in the middle with the sweetness. Using simple syrups in this homemade watermelon Lemonade works really well as they dissolve completely.
You can use any sugar substitute you'd like, though. I would make sure to mix it a bit in advance to let it sit and dissolve any powdered sugary substance you use if that is the route you take. Stevia and monk fruit based sugars tend to pack a punch so really hold back on them and taste as you go to get your desired sweetness.
Flavoured simple syrups are a great choice as they tend to lend a deeper taste. It is possible to use a plain simple syrup if that is what you have.
Quick tip: save the lemon zest from the juiced lemons and the pulp from the watermelon after the juice has filtered out to make these simple syrups.
The colder the better for serving right away.
Garnishes: fresh mint leaves, lemon rounds, and frozen watermelon cubes are perfect to jazz up watermelon lemonade.
Instructions/Directions and Tips
For the homemade version you can make all or some of this recipe as it is written or only do the parts that suit your desire. I like this one as I can control the quality of the fruit being used, organic or not, the amount of sugar or sweetener and add in a few hints of other flavours to deepen the taste.
- Make watermelon mint juice as per our recipe.
- Juice the lemons (save one for slicing and using in the jug)
- Make simple syrups – Lemon, Watermelon.
- Pour all ingredients in a large jug.
- Mix with a large spoon and serve over ice.
- Garnish with lemon slices, thin watermelon wedges, frozen watermelon cubes, or mint.
Hint: Make the juices and syrups ahead of time to allow them to cool to the perfect drinking temperature.
Instead of Watermelon
If watermelon is not your favourite flavour for juices other juices can be made in similar fashions.
Try making it with blueberry or strawberry juice or mango. They can all be cold pressed juice in a juicer or juicing blender. Another method is to use the same one we used in our blueberry coconut vegan ice cream.Follow the instructions steps 1-4 for use with any berry to make juice and chill before adding it to the lemonade. Strawberry is our other favourite besides watermelon.
Instead of Lemons
If lemons are not something you have a lot of or want to use, limes are a great substitute. They may need a bit more sugar as limeade does tend to need a fair bit of sweetening.
Instead of Sugar
If you are looking to use a more natural sugar, maple syrup will work. The amount will vary and be used to suit your taste.
For a sugar substitute like monkfruit sweetener or splenda, for example, use ¼ of the recipe amount. Work up to the full amount by ¼ at a time, tasting after each addition of sugar substitute. The sugar replacements tend to be at least ⅓ sweeter tasting than sugar so much less is needed to sweeten the taste.
Try an herbed or spiced version to bring a bit of extra complimenting flavour to the drink. The herbs/spices can be both placed in the jug to mellow with the juices and added in via the simple syrups. Using an herbed/spiced simple syrup is the best way to add in an amazon undertone to the flavour.
Examples of the best herbs and spices for watermelon lemonade are:
For An Adult Drink
Adding 1-1 ½ ounces of potato vodka or gin to each 8 oz serving of Watermelon lemonade will turn this family favourite into a strictly adult drink. IT is best served over ice when adding in alcohol.
Equipment to Make Homemade Watermelon Lemonade
A juicer or juicing blender is the best way to get the juice out of the watermelon but if you do not have those a bowl and large fork can work. A fine mesh sieve and coffee filters, as well as a bowl for the finished juice.
A lemon juicer is nice to have for this part but not needed. A Zester, knife, and cutting board is needed. A bowl for the juice can be helpful or the juice can go in the jug for the watermelon lemonade.
Bottles for storing the finished syrups, a pot, measuring cups for dry and liquid ingredients and a spoon to stir.
This part of the recipe needs a large jug, liquid measuring cup, a mixing spoon.
Storage and Reheating Instructions
In a sealed jug this homemade watermelon lemonade will keep for 72 hours.
If storing to drink it is not recommended for freezer storage. Though the homemade watermelon lemonade makes fantastic ice lollies that store for up to 2 months when in sealed containers.
No reheating is necessary for this recipe.
For those really hot days, use the homemade watermelon lemonade as the base for an ice lolly. Fill the moulds until almost full, allowing for expansion during freezing. Pop in allergen safe and vegan chocolate chips to look like watermelon seeds.
What To Serve With
Homemade Watermelon Lemonade is perfect for the family picnics. Served with hot dogs, sandwiches, pasta salads and more. This is a time intensive and more labour intensive recipe so if it is for a large group the quick and easy watermelon lemonade may be less work.
Other Recipes You May Enjoy
- Large Jug
- Liquid Measuring Cups
- Stirring Utensil
- 2 c Watermelon juice
- 3 lemons juiced and zested
- 8 c cold water
- 2 oz lemon simple sugar or plain simple sugar
- 1 oz watermelon simple sugar or plain simple sugar or sugar substitute to taste
We sometimes take for granted that we have years (or decades) of cooking experience, that the average visitor may not. Add to, or remove from, the list below with health and safety tips.
- Do not use the same utensils on allergen free food and drink, that previously touched allergens
- Don't leave drinks sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Store drinks properly