Honeydew, Lime & Tequila Sorbet

Honeydew, Lime & Tequila Sorbet
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This light, refreshing summertime treat takes just minutes to prepare. If you don’t have an ice cream maker, simply finish it in your freezer. Frozen treats are a hot weather favorite, and they're even more alluring when made from fresh, local fruit. The main ingredient in this clean-flavored sorbet is a ripe honeydew melon. Choose one that smells sweet and fruity for the best flavor. The recipe calls for sugar and tequila to keep the mixture soft and scoopable – and to round out the flavor.


  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 small ripe honeydew melon, 3-3½ lbs.
  • 2 small limes, zest and juice
  • ¼ cup tequila


  1. Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a low boil. Simmer for 5-8 minutes until the sugar is well dissolved, then set the saucepan in a shallow pan of ice water to cool.
  2. Halve the honeydew and scoop out its seeds and pulp, then cut it into wedges. Peel the wedges with a peeler or sharp knife and dice them coarsely into pieces roughly ½" across.
  3. Puree the melon in a food processor or in batches in a blender. Add the syrup and the remaining ingredients. Pour the puree into an airtight container and refrigerate it for at least 1 hour, ideally for 2 hours or more.
  4. When it’s cold, transfer the mixture to the bowl of an ice cream maker and process it according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  5. Serve in small scoops as a palate cleanser between courses of a larger meal, or in larger scoops as a light dessert.


If you don't have an ice cream maker, freeze the sorbet in its airtight container. Open it every hour or so and stir, scraping the frozen outer edges into the middle. It's ready to serve when it's completely frozen. Let it sit at room temperature for a few moments or pulse it in a food processor to soften it if it’s too stiff to scoop easily.

Don't use your good reposado tequila for this recipe. The coarser flavor of basic bar-brand tequila works best in sorbet because it's assertive enough to hold its own against the lime and melon.

The base recipe can be varied depending on the melons you have at your disposal. If you prefer to use watermelon or cantaloupe, follow the same steps but replace the tequila with vodka for a more neutral flavor.

For an "express" version of this sorbet, prepare the syrup ahead of time and freeze the diced melon. Place the melon pieces in your food processor along with the lime and tequila, then process until the melon breaks up. Add simple syrup in a thin stream until the melon breaks down to the texture of soft-serve ice cream. Serve immediately (it's a great party trick) or package and freeze it for later.

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