The 20 Most Refreshing Summer Drinks

From classic cocktails to lemonades with a twist, these refreshing beverages will keep you cool all summer long.

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Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

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Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

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Pitchers Aplenty

This summer, skip the store-bought margarita mixes and gallons of sugary lemonade. Instead, brew your own iced teas –– customizing flavors to your liking with fresh herbs and simple syrups –– and make the most of ample in-season produce with these refreshing, cooling drinks.

White Sangria

Chuck's sparkling wine sangria spans the sweet-tangy spectrum with its base of white Port and orange liqueur. Add summer fruits like raspberries and peaches, and then for the final, surprising touch, line the rims of your glasses with a powder of ground orange and lemon zest. 

Get the Recipe: White Sangria

Watermelon-Jalapeno Lemonade

Though watermelon sweetens the lot in this atypical lemonade, blended jalapeno slices ensure this drink has plenty of bite.

Get the Recipe: Watermelon Jalapeno Lemonade

Cucumber-Jalapeno Margarita

Michael Symon infuses this margarita with a halved jalapeno pepper and thin slices of cucumbers –– the longer it sits, the more its spicy notes and refreshing, savory flavor intensify.

Get the Recipe: Cucumber Jalapeno Margarita

Muddled Lemonberryade

To get the most flavor out of the berries and mint, Michael Chiarello employs a common bartending technique called muddling. It helps release the juices of fresh fruits and herbs so they can easily be absorbed by the alcohol — or, in this case, the lemon juice and club soda.

Get the Recipe: Muddled Lemonberryade

Blueberry-Ginger Mojito Pitchers

Homemade ginger syrup adds spicy bite to Chuck's bubbly mojito pitchers, which are overflowing with muddled blueberries.

Get the Recipe: Blueberry Ginger Mojito Pitchers

Homemade Peach Iced Tea

Chuck creates a cross between simple syrup and fruit puree by simmering and then blending a mixture of sugar, water, peaches and a vanilla bean. He serves this with a chilled brew for the ultimate summer tea.

Get the Recipe: Homemade Peach Iced Tea

Watermelon Martinis

In an effort to make his martinis thoroughly slushy (without watering them down), Bobby Flay employs the genius technique of freezing a puree of watermelon and simple syrup in ice cube trays. He then blends the cubes with the lemon juice, vodka and melon liqueur to form drinks that are as chilling as they are pure of flavor.

Get the Recipe: Watermelon Martinis

Tequila Lemonade

Chuck uses sweet-tart Meyer lemons for his lemonade base, then spikes the drinks with tequila for a more-adult version of everyone’s favorite childhood beverage.

Get the Recipe: Tequila Lemonade

Mojitos for a Crowd

Don't want to play bartender all night long? Mix up this party-sized batch to keep guests' glasses full all night.

Get the Recipe: Mojitos

Frozen Mango Margarita

Margaritas can be super-sweet, but Ellie's lighter version swaps most of the sugar for ripe frozen mango. Don't worry, she doesn't skimp on the most important part: good-quality silver tequila.

Get the Recipe: Frozen Mango Margarita

Italian Lemonade

Give this summertime classic some elegant Sicilian flair by infusing it with the flavors of another seasonal favorite: fresh basil.

Get the Recipe: Italian Lemonade

Blackberry-Bourbon Iced Tea

Mash blackberries into iced tea to add sweet-tart flavor and a pretty purple hue. Float bourbon on top of the chilled tea just before serving.

Get the Recipe: Blackberry-Bourbon Iced Tea

Sinless Sangria

Kelsey's virgin sangria starts with a sparkling grape juice base, plus cranberry, lime and orange juices for sweet tang and color. She then mixes in strawberries, citrus and mint, but you can feel free to use any fruit and fresh herbs you have on hand.

Get the Recipe: Sinless Sangria

Classic Horchata

It's easy to see why rice-based horchata is a favorite summer drink in Spain and Latin America: It's creamy and refreshing without being too heavy for hot days.

Get the Recipe: Horchata

Tyler's Orange Cream Mimosas

Tyler spiffs up the always-refreshing brunch classic by tossing in a scoop of homemade orange cream sorbet. This sweet and creamy beverage is the ultimate crowd pleaser.

Get the Recipe: Orange Cream Mimosa

Raspberry Limeade with Lavender and Mint

If you're skipping the alcohol, you can do no better than Kelsey's raspberry limeade, sweetened with sugar and infused with bubbly seltzer water.

Get the Recipe: Raspberry Limeade with Lavender and Mint

Limoncello Spritzer

Debi and Gabriele take the classic summer drink and make it their own with fresh raspberries and Prosecco.

Get the Recipe: Limoncello Spritzer

Blackberry-Cucumber-Ginger Spritzer

This fruity, alcohol-free spritzer is just as complex and fun to drink as its boozier counterparts, thanks to a combination of ginger-infused herbal tea, elderflower syrup and tangy blackberry sipping vinegar.

Get the Recipe: Blackberry, Cucumber, Ginger Spritzer

Mint Julep Slushy

This frozen take on the classic julep packs a powerful punch. Mix a bottle of rum with mint and a little sugar, then freeze until slushy.

Get the Recipe: Mint Julep

Elderflower Sparkler

Counter hot afternoons with Kelsey's cool pink-grapefruit, sparkling water and elderflower-syrup sparkler.

Get the Recipe: Elderflower Sparkler

Next Up

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Summer Fest: Fresh Corn Muffins

Week five of our season-long garden party Summer Fest 2011 welcomes food and garden bloggers to feature garden-to-table recipes and tips. We’ll help you to enjoy all that this season has to offer. So far, we’ve delved into eggplant, peaches, cucumbers and cherries. Now we're on to a new crop: corn. Yes, I turned on my oven. It was worth it though to work sweet summer corn into a classic corn muffin recipe. These savory corn muffins are a great accompaniment to any summer dish but since I prefer to snack all day, I made them miniature. You can pick up corn right now from your local farmers' market, but there should also be plenty in stock at the supermarket.