Refresh: Watermelon Agua Fresca
Oh baby it's hot outside!
With this sweltering heat, I'm carrying my S'well water bottle with me every where I go. It's always filled up with cool water -- it's my number one thirst quencher. For a flavour boost I often add citrus or other fruits and herbs too (mint cucumber water is amazing). I also go for bubbly water pretty regularly too.
But sometimes you just want more, you know?
I'm not a juice drinker. And smoothies are super, but not what I crave when I'm thirsty. I want cool, crisp, water-y beverages. So when I saw a post on Instagram for strawberry Agua Fresca I was intrigued. I had never heard of this beverage (where have I been?!). According to the all-knowing, always legit (ahem) Wikipedia, Agua Fresca is Spanish for fresh water.
After a quick online search, I found that this beverage typically contains a blend of fresh fruit, water and sugar. It can also contain grains or flowers. It's not quite juice. It's not a smoothie. It's something in between.
Hmmmm...I needed to try this out.
After a quick peak of a few recipes, I decided to experiment with the big juicy watermelon in my fridge.
Nutritiously Speaking Side Note: watermelon is nutrient-rich, meaning it has a whole lot of nutrients for not a lot of calories -- 2 cups has only about 80 calories. It's about 90% water -- so it's a pretty hydrating fruit. Watermelon is also a heart healthy fruit choice because:
it provides potassium, a mineral that is key for healthy blood pressure
it is rich in lycopene -- an antioxidant that gives watermelon it's pinkish-red hue and is being researched for it's potential role in heart health
it is packed with vitamin C, a vitamin linked with heart health (and healthy skin!)
it contains an amino acid citrulline which helps maintain blood flow in your heart
For my Agua Fresca, I decided not to add any sugar -- I don't love sweeteners in my smoothies and figured I wouldn't need it here either. I was right. The watermelon is sweet enough on it's own. And the lime juice is a great tangy balance to that sweetness.
This drink is PERFECTION. You must try it. You'll be happy you did. It's a cool, frothy, refreshing bit of goodness.
Watermelon Lime Agua Fresca
(makes 3 servings and can be easily doubled)
- 4-5 cups cold watermelon - 1 cup cold water - Juice of 1 lime
Whirl it together in a blender until smooth and frothy. Pour over lots of ice and sip away! .
Canadian Nutrient File v2015
Mozos I et al. Lycopene and vascular health. Front Pharmacol. 2018 May 23;9:521
Bhupathiraju SN et al. Quantity and variety in fruit and vegetable intake and risk of coronary heart disease. Am J Clin Nutr 2013;98:1514-23.