Who can go to the beach or sit out by the pool in the heat of summer without a nice cold, tasty drink?
Two of my favorite summer drinks, orange and watermelon juice, are incredibly easy to make and they always hit the spot on a hot sunny day. And kids love them too!
Orange and Watermelon Juice is Made From the “Whole” Fruit
If you follow Clean Cuisine regularly you are probably familiar with our recommendation to avoid juice and instead stick to blended “whole” fruits and vegetables in the form of smoothies, such as the collection of green smoothies or “no-milk shake” recipes we recommend in our Clean Cuisine book. But not to worry, my favorite orange and watermelon juice drinks are both made from the “whole” fruit, so they are blended rather than juiced. By the way, blending is so much easier and “cleaner” than juicing.
You don’t need a fancy juice machine or super charged blender to make my orange and watermelon juice either, any decent blender will do. Here is all you need to do…
How to make Orange and Watermelon Juice:
If making orange juice, simply peel one or two oranges and cut the orange pieces into bite-sized chunks. Place the orange pieces in a blender and process until smooth. Pour the orange juice into serving glasses and place in the freezer for at least 10 minutes before serving (the colder the better!) Alternatively, you could add one or two ice cubes to the blender along with the orange segments and have instant cold orange juice. Note: adding ice will dilute the orange flavor and make it less sweet.
If making watermelon juice, cut the watermelon away from the rind and place the watermelon chunks in a blender. Process until smooth. Pour the watermelon juice into serving glasses and place in the freezer for at least 10 minutes before serving (just like with the orange juice, the colder the better!) You can also add a bit of ice to the blender with the watermelon chunks if you want instant cold watermelon juice. If I am making the watermelon juice for adult guests I often add a bit of fresh mint to the watermelon chunks before blending. Kids never seem to like the addition of mint though, so I would omit the mint for the kids.
A Few Fun Things to Do with Orange and Watermelon Juice:
Of course you can drink your orange and watermelon juice straight-up and it is absolutely delicious. But if you happen to have a house full of kids and you are looking for something healthy and fun to give them for a snack you can easily freeze orange and watermelon juice into popsicles. No matter what their age, popsicles always make a big splash with kids!
And if you are going to make popsicles, then you will definitely want to pick up the magic Zoku Popsicle maker. With a Zoku popsicle maker your frozen treats will be ready in as little as 7 minutes, which is just about the maximum time limit kids seem to have when it comes to waiting for their popsicles to freeze!
If you are entertaining adult guests, you can always add a splash of vodka and a squirt of lemon to the orange and watermelon juice. Adults always seem to like this little addition (wink.)
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A Quick Word on Juicing Verse Blending….
Blended “whole” fruits and vegetables (such as my orange and watermelon drinks above) contain all of the good stuff from the fruit or vegetable, including the fiber (which has potent anti-inflammatory benefits!) as well as ALL of the antioxidants and phytonutrients. Anyway your pour it, juicing is processed and is not a “whole” food. Juice simply does not provide all of the nutrition you get from eating the whole fruit or vegetable.
Plus “whole” fruit and vegetable smoothies are digested much slower and therefore do not disrupt blood sugar levels. In fact, my husband even tells his diabetic and obese patients that as long as they are drinking “whole” fruit in the form of a blended smoothie that they don’t have to worry about the sugar content. I could go into a lot of detail here on this, but the short of it is that the sugar in fruit is NOT harmful and will NOT cause weight gain as long as it is consumed as part of the “whole” fruit.
Andy’s obese and diabetic patients are always in total disbelief when he tells them that they can eat as much “whole” fruit (or blended fruits in the form of smoothies) as they like because just about every single one of them has been told at some point to limit their consumption of fruit or worse, avoid it altogether. And yet the effects of “whole” fruit consumption have actually been shown to be inversely associated with BMI and body weight. In other words, people who eat more fruit weigh less. (1) If you are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy body weight you should absolutely make “whole” fruit a regular part of your diet.
1. K.E. Schroder, “Effects of Fruit Consumption on Body Mass Index and Weight Loss in a Sample of Overweight and Obese Dieters Enrolled in a Weight-Loss Intervention Trial,” Nutrition 26, no. 7-8 (2010):727-34.