Sensational Sangria

By: Carolyn Malcoun  |  Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Skip the added sugar and use zesty wines, flavorful liquors and tons of fresh fruit to make these crowd-pleasing thirst-quenching sangrias.

While I always have a decent selection of craft beers and a few bottles of wine in my fridge for the times when friends drop by for an impromptu summertime shindig, I’ve decided to make this The Summer of Sangria.

I’ve never been much of a sangria fan. I’ve found most restaurant variations to be sickeningly sweet, so it wasn’t my first choice for summer drinking. What changed my mind? These killer sangria recipes developed in the EatingWell Test Kitchen. They skipped the sugar altogether and used zesty wines, flavorful liquors and tons of fresh fruit to make these sangria recipes a delight to all the senses. Worthy of a summer-long celebration of the original wine cooler? Absolutely. So pull out the ice cubes, stir together your ingredients in a pretty pitcher and enjoy!

Watch: See how to make easy party appetizers

Each recipe serves 6 (about 1 cup each).

 
Watermelon Rosé Sangria

Watermelon Rosé Sangria

Combine & chill:
3/4 cup elderflower liqueur, such as St. Germain
3 cups cubed watermelon
1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint leaves
Before serving, stir in 1 (750-mL) bottle sparkling rosé, chilled

 
Plum & Cider Sangria

Plum & Cider Sangria

Combine & chill:
2 (12-ounce) bottles hard apple cider
3/4 cup Calvados or other apple brandy
1 apple, chopped
1 firm ripe plum, sliced
Before serving, stir in 1-1/2 cups chilled plain seltzer

 

 
Berry Sangria

Berry Sangria

Combine & chill:
1 (750-mL) bottle Vinho Verde
1 cup Sauternes or ice wine
1 cup blueberries
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 star fruit, sliced
Before serving, stir in 1 cup chilled plain seltzer

 

 
Cucumber & Melon White Sangria

Cucumber & Melon White Sangria

Combine & chill:
1 (750-mL) bottle Gewürztraminer, dry Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc
1/2 cup dry vermouth
2 cups diced honeydew melon
1 cup diced cucumber
1/2 cup torn fresh basil leaves
Before serving, stir in 1 cup chilled plain seltzer