Summer in the City Sangria

Get excited, people.

Get excited, people.

In celebration of summer, I thought it only appropriate to share a truly fabulous sangria recipe that’s guaranteed to make your day supremely sunny. Even if it’s not. Like here in SF. Yesterday the wind was howling, the sun never broke through the fog, and it was probably just barely above 60 degrees. That’s our summer.

But I digress. We’re talking about sangria. Not just any old sangria, mind you, this is watermelon-strawberry sangria. Made from fresh from juicy watermelon and ripe strawberries. This is the good stuff, people. Guaranteed to brighten even the gloomiest of days.

The recipe is incredibly simple and, as Joy the Baker notes, as long as the concoction stays pink, you can pretty much use any combination of fruits you like. Pink is a requirement here. When I made this with my wonderful family over Father’s Day weekend (thanks for appreciating our pink concoction, Daddy!), we used watermelon, strawberry, orange and lime. So, that’s what I’ve noted in the recipe below.

Take the recipe, though, and make it your own. Craving a little mint? I’m sure that would be lovely. Desiring less citrus? Use regular vodka instead of lemon. The beautiful thing about sangria is that it’s completely customizable…and it gets better with time. Plus, you get to muddle. And that feels great.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s get started.

Sangria prep

All dressed up with nowhere to go…yet.

Step 1 – Do all your dicing and slicing of your fruits du jour. Measure your liquids. This will make everything flow smoothly from here on it. Oh, and turn on some music for good measure. Music turns this process into a party.


Slicing and dicing. Lacy is hopeful for some watermelon to drop down her way.

Step 2 – Make your watermelon-strawberry juice by pureeing a bunch of diced watermelon and a couple handfuls of ripe strawberries. Reserve a few smaller chunks of watermelon + the majority of the strawberries for the sangria pitcher. Strain the puree, pressing down with a spoon to make sure you get all the good stuff – at least 4 cups.


Don’t skip the straining!

Step 3 – Muddle another handful of strawberries in the bottom of a big pitcher. (Seriously, make sure it’s large enough to hold a good 8 cups of liquid and generous amounts of fruit. Otherwise, you’ll have to do what we did and transfer your concoction to two smaller pitchers later on.) Pour all your liquids into the giant pitcher – watermelon-strawberry juice, wine, vodka, Cointreau, orange juice, and lime juice – and stir together.  Then stir in the remaining sliced fruit: strawberries, watermelon, oranges, and lime.  It’s going to look just beautiful.


Two pitchers of sangria ready for chilling.

Step 4 – Chill thoroughly (ideally overnight) before serving.  When you’re really ready to party, pour over ice and soak in the happiness.


Cheers to summer!

Watermelon Strawberry Citrus Sangria 

Recipe adapted from Joy the Baker

makes 1 deliciously large pitcher of sangria

4 cups watermelon juice, from one small watermelon

1 pound fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced

1 bottle dry rosé wine (French-style is best)

1 cup vodka (we used lemon vodka, and that was a great choice!)

1 cup Cointreau (we used Grand Marnier since that’s what we had on hand)

juice of 2 oranges + 1 orange sliced

juice of 1 lime + 1 lime sliced

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