Melon Ball Cocktail Recipe

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Melon Ball Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Melon Ball cocktail is a fruity and refreshing drink that gained popularity in the 1970s and 1980s. It is believed to have originated in California, where it was a popular choice at poolside parties and beach gatherings. The cocktail is named after the melon baller tool, which is used to create small, round scoops of melon that resemble the shape of the drink's main ingredient, Midori melon liqueur.

How Melon Ball Tastes?

The Melon Ball cocktail is a sweet, fruity, and refreshing drink with a vibrant green color. The combination of Midori melon liqueur, vodka, and pineapple juice creates a well-balanced flavor profile that is neither too strong nor too light. The sweetness of the Midori is balanced by the tartness of the pineapple juice, while the vodka adds a subtle kick.

Interesting facts about Melon Ball

  • The Melon Ball cocktail is often served in a highball glass or a martini glass, depending on the presentation style.
  • Midori, the main ingredient in a Melon Ball, is a bright green, melon-flavored liqueur that was first produced in Japan in 1964.
  • The Melon Ball can be easily transformed into a non-alcoholic mocktail by substituting the vodka and Midori with melon syrup and lemon-lime soda.


A few good options for Melon Ball are:

  • Grey Goose
  • Belvedere
  • Khor
  • Smirnoff

Learn everything on which Vodka to choose

Midori Melon Liqueur

Midori is a sweet, bright green liqueur with a refreshing melon flavor that gives this cocktail its signature taste and color. Not using it would strip the drink of its melon essence. Feeling adventurous? Try substituting with another fruit-flavored liqueur for a different twist!

Mary Mitkina


Vodka is the alcohol base of the cocktail that provides a neutral spirit background, letting the other flavors shine. Too much vodka could overpower the melon flavor, too little and the drink may be overly sweet. Looking for a twist? Opt for a citrus-infused vodka to add an extra zesty kick.

Alex Green

Pineapple Juice

It adds tropical sweetness and acidity, balancing the cocktail. If you omit this, you'd lose the tropical complexity. Want a change? Swap it with orange juice for a more citrusy note.

Emma Rose


Essential for chilling and diluting the cocktail just enough to make it smooth and refreshing. No ice equals a warm and less enjoyable cocktail experience. Craving something slushy? Blend the ice with the ingredients for a frozen Melon Ball.

Mary Mitkina

Maraschino Cherry

This classic cocktail garnish adds a touch of sweetness and an extra pop of color. Leave it out, and you miss that cherry on top, literally. Want to mix it up? A sprig of mint could add a fresh aromatic touch without the extra sweetness.

Alex Green

Garnish: Melon Ball

Completes the theme and adds a fruity nibble. Without it, the presentation lacks whimsy. In the mood for something different? Garnish with a slice of starfruit for an exotic look and a subtly different flavor profile.

Emma Rose

Recipe. How to make Melon Ball Drink

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Add 1 oz of Midori melon liqueur, 1 oz of vodka, and 2 oz of pineapple juice to the shaker.
  3. Shake well until the ingredients are well combined and chilled.
  4. Strain the mixture into a highball glass filled with fresh ice.
  5. Garnish with a melon ball and a maraschino cherry on a cocktail pick.

Pro Tips

  • Chill your glass before serving to keep the cocktail cold for longer.
  • Use fresh pineapple juice for a more vibrant and refreshing flavor.
  • For a non-alcoholic version, replace the vodka and Midori with melon syrup and lemon-lime soda.

Perfect Pairings


  • Sushi: The clean and subtle flavors of sushi complement the fruity and slightly sweet Melon Ball cocktail.
  • Cucumber Sandwiches: Refreshing cucumber matches well with the melon and pineapple in the drink.
  • Prosciutto-wrapped Melon: Enhances the melon flavor in the cocktail while offering a nice savory bite.


  • Coconut Pudding: Its tropical taste pairs nicely with the tropical notes of the cocktail.
  • Fruit Tarts: Tartness from the fruit contrasts well with the sweet Melon Ball.

Non-Alcoholic Drinks

  • Sparkling Water with Lime: A palate cleanser between sips of the cocktail to enhance the drink's flavors.

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What you could change in Melon Ball

  • Midori melon liqueur: Can be replaced with any other melon-flavored liqueur or melon syrup for a non-alcoholic version.
  • Vodka: Can be substituted with white rum for a different flavor profile.
  • Pineapple juice: Can be replaced with orange juice or a mix of both for a more tropical flavor.

Explore all drinks starting with M here

And of course - twists🍹

Melon Ball Mojito Twist

  • Ingredients: Midori, White Rum, Lime Juice, Simple Syrup, Mint Leaves, Soda Water
  • Recipe: Muddle mint with simple syrup and lime juice, fill glass with ice, add Midori and rum, top with soda. Garnish with mint and a melon ball.
  • Taste: This twist turns the Melon Ball into a refreshing mojito variant with a minty zing and less sweetness.

Spicy Melon Ball

  • Ingredients: Midori, Chili-infused Vodka, Pineapple Juice
  • Recipe: Follow the original recipe but replace vodka with chili-infused vodka for a spicy kick.
  • Taste: A bold juxtaposition of sweet melon and fiery spice that tantalizes the taste buds.

Berry Melon Ball

  • Ingredients: Midori, Raspberry Vodka, Cranberry Juice
  • Recipe: Shake Midori and raspberry vodka with cranberry juice, serve over ice. Garnish with fresh berries.
  • Taste: Combines berry tartness with melon sweetness for a fruity cocktail adventure.

In case you forgot basics how to make Melon Ball

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Melon Ball

What is a good pairing for the Melon Ball cocktail?

Since the Melon Ball has a sweet and fruity flavor, it pairs well with salty or spicy appetizers like nachos or chicken wings. It also goes well with light desserts such as cheesecake or vanilla ice cream.

Can I use other fruits for garnish instead of a melon ball?

Yes, you can. It is possible to use other fruits like pineapple or cherry for garnish, depending on your personal preference and the ingredients you have at hand.

What occasions are suitable for serving the Melon Ball cocktail?

Given its refreshing and sweet taste, the Melon Ball cocktail is perfect for summer parties, beach gatherings and festive celebrations. Additionally, it can be a unique and flavorful addition to cocktail hours.

How can I adjust the sweetness of this cocktail?

You can adjust the sweetness of this cocktail by adding less Midori melon liqueur or by adding more pineapple juice. Additionally, you can add a sugar rim to the glass for extra sweetness.

What are some variations of the Melon Ball cocktail?

Some variations of the Melon Ball cocktail use other types of fruit juices, such as orange or cranberry juice. Others substitute vodka with other spirits like gin or rum for a different flavor profile.

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