Your local lemonade stand's got nothing on this summer cocktail refresher. A glass of tangy, sweet lemonade is an old-fashioned Southern standby, but it could use an update. For an icy, pink-tinted drink that's made for the shade, we experimented here, elevating the summertime favorite by adding a splash of vodka and watermelon juice. This is one boozy beverage you won't want to pass up! Not to mention, it's an interesting yet refreshing way to serve lemonade at your next cookout or potluck. Made with only four ingredients, this recipe is so simple to prepare. It comes together in just 15 minutes, allowing more time for more important things like porch swinging. Because what's better than a warm evening spent sipping a cold glass of lemonade on a porch swing? For starters, combine vodka, watermelon juice, simple syrup, and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker. Then strain the mixture into a glass, and garnish with mint or a lemon wheel for a cool summer sipper. The watermelon acts as a natural sweetener in this recipe to balance the bitter taste of vodka, and helps it to go down easier with less burn. Whereas, the lemon juice gives this infused, thirst-quenching libation a little zing. If you're not the vodka or whiskey-drinking type, feel free to omit it, using sparkling water, club soda, or ginger ale in its place to make an equally fizzy cocktail. You can even make this spiked lemonade ahead of time. We recommend serving in a mason jar on ice to make the perfect grab-and-go cocktail. Pair this refreshing drink with any meal, although we suggest something on the lighter side. For summer get-togethers or parties, adjust the recipe's ingredients to make a full pitcher or large batch. It's like summer in a glass, and good to the very last drop.


Credit: Greg DuPree; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Cat Steele

Recipe Summary test

15 mins
15 mins
Serves 1


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Combine watermelon juice, simple syrup, vodka, and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker. Cover and shake vigorously until chilled, about 15 seconds. Strain into a glass filled with ice. Garnish with mint sprig.