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Watermelon Granita may be the easiest recipe ever! Kids of any age can make and enjoy this refreshing summer treat that has just 3 ingredients and doesn't require any fancy equipment.
Let the good times roll! When watermelon season rolls around, the weekends are lazy and relaxed. And, backyard cooking is in full swing.
You'll often find this recipe for watermelon flavored Italian Ice on the menu, along with our favorite cookout recipes.
As a matter of full disclosure, the pictures below are for a half batch of this recipe. We go big when we buy watermelon so we can eat it in slices, make Watermelon Salad or finely dice some pieces to put in a Fancy Salad with Fennel.
The basic recipe has just 3 ingredients and the PERFECT recipe for any age to enjoy making. It doesn't require an ice cream maker. Just a blender, a fork, and a little patience while it freezes.
1 - Purchase the perfect watermelon and cut it into cubes.
Confession: I used to buy watermelon already cut in half and sometimes even cubed. As much as I LOVE watermelon, I wanted to see what it looked like on the inside before committing. Not earth-friendly or frugal.
Fifteen Spatulas does a good job of explaining How to Pick a Superstar Watermelon and touches on cutting watermelon into cubes.
2 - Add cubes along with some sugar and lime juice to a blender and puree until smooth.
Use as much or as little sugar as you would like. I settled on an amount that is pretty sweet and still retains the natural watermelon taste, which is already quite sweet! I've seen honey used instead. Start with about 2 Tablespoons and then adjust to taste.
3 - Pour the puree into a shallow baking dish so that it is a thin layer that will freeze quickly.
The mixture pictured is about ¾ inch thick.
4 - After about two hours, rake the mixture with a fork and then put it back in the freezer for at least another hour.
You can play around with the timing a bit.
That is, freeze one hour, then for two or rake every hour. But, "three" seems to be the magic number.
While you're waiting, kick back and enjoy the scenery. An owl appeared out of nowhere one evening while I was waiting for some watermelon granita to freeze. Really!
5 - Rake again just before serving!
That's a little bit of lime zest sprinkled on top of the watermelon granita.
How long does Watermelon Granita last in the freezer?
Store Watermelon Granita in a covered container in the freezer. If consistently stored in 0° Fahrenheit freezer, it will be safe to eat forever (according to the USDA Freezing and Food Saftey Guidelines). For quality purposes, it's usually best to enjoy within 2-3 months of freezing.
It's the perfect make-ahead dessert. Fluff with a fork just before serving.
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- 4 cups watermelon seedless, cubed
- ¼ cup sugar more or less to taste
- 1 Tablespoon lime juice
- Puree all of the ingredients in a blender.
- Pour pureed mixture into a shallow baking dish.
- Place baking dish in the freezer for 2 hours.
- Rake partially frozen watermelon with a fork.
- Return baking dish to the freezer for another hour.
- Rake watermelon mixture with a fork.
- Serve immediately or return to the freezer until ready to serve.
- Rake with a fork just before serving.
This recipe was originally published on July 30, 2013 and was updated to include nutritional information and more helpful tips.