Get your blender on: Cool drinks for a hot summer

As the weather heats up, it’s time to take your blender off of the kitchen counter and move it on to the patio.

“There’s a distinctive sound that means summer to me, and it’s not the kids splashing in the pool or my son mowing the lawn,” says South Elgin resident Mary O’Connor. “It’s the sound my blender makes when I making up some daiquiris for me and my friends.”

O’Connor, like many Chicagoland residents, is ready to put winter far behind her and to fully embrace the warmer weather.

“It’s not enough for it just to get warm,” she says. “I want it to get hot. That’s my favorite time – the really hot days of summer.”

O’Connor says she and her friends combat the heat with some standard blended drinks, and that she’s always looking to expand her drink options.

Breville 2 speed blender

“Don’t get me wrong, I can drink strawberry daiquiris all summer, but it’s nice to mix it up,” she says. “I see so many clever drinks at bars, hotel bars especially, and I always think, ‘why don’t I make something like that at home?’”

Not to mention the seemingly increasing unsaid competitions over drinks at houses throughout her subdivision.

“Oh yeah, people are always rolling out new drinks,” she says. “I’m not that clever. I could use some help.”

Help is available. Mixologist Natalie Bovis-Nelsen, the author of "Preggatinis: Mixology for the Mom-to-Be" and the brains behind, which has drink recipes and cocktail advice, offers the following tips:

1. Find a balance between sweet and tart when making summer drinks.

2. Don’t skimp on ingredients. Use the good stuff, like fresh limes and lemons instead of juice or syrup.

3. Consider herbs like mint, basil, rosemary or thyme as a drink ingredient.

To help you get started, we’ve included four blender drink recipes that are sure to keep you and your guests cool, calm and copasetic.

Ninja Professional Blender


Watermelon Cooler

Serves: 1 / Preparation time: 5 minutes

Total time: 5 minutes

You can make your own lemonade ice cubes or use regular ice cubes.

6 leaves mint

1/2 ounce lemon juice