Have you ever tried watermelon ice lollies? Depending on where in the world you hail from, you may know this frozen treat as watermelon popsicles or ice pops instead. Whatever you call them, this easy snack only requires 3 simple ingredients and has no added sugar. Blending whole pineapple, watermelon, and mango retains the fiber, creating a low-calorie treat you'll feel good about feeding your family.
I'm all about simple snack recipes that are low in calories and high in flavor. Most people associate snacking with kids, but I like to enjoy healthy treats too.
I remember when I was in the process of losing weight, I would often buy a particular brand of "diet" ice cream bar. It was only 100 calories, and I was happy to be getting a good caloric deal. It got bonus points for being a chocolate ice cream bar.
Yes, the low-calorie ice cream bars were ultra-processed foods. However, they contained some protein, and I found them an adequately filling snack for the calories. But…
When you know better, you do better. This pop recipe is better.
Compared to the diet ice cream bars, these pops:
- Have less than ⅓ of the calories per bar
- Made from whole foods (not ultra-processed food)
- Contain no added sugar and no non-nutritive sweeteners
- Have all of the fiber, essential nutrients, and phytochemicals contained in whole fruits
Though these pops are a great choice if you have a weight loss goal, they're also a healthy snack for the entire family. I'm updating this post from 2019 to encourage you to break out the food processor and give them a whirl!
Why You Should Make Watermelon Ice Lollies
These pops align with healthy weight loss for many of the same reasons they fit well with healthy eating in general. Plus, health aside, there are additional reasons you may want to add these watermelon ice lollies to your culinary repertoire. Let's cover the benefits of making watermelon ice lollies!
No Added Sugar
Most store-bought popsicles are loaded with added sugar. These mango, pineapple and watermelon ice lollies satisfy your sweet tooth with whole fruits instead.
Made with Whole Fruits, Not Juice
Speaking of whole fruits, the store-bought ice pops that are not made with added sugar are typically made with juice. We're using only whole fruits here to keep the heart-healthy fiber that gets stripped out of juice. Using whole fruits rather than juice may help this to feel like a more satisfying snack due to fiber content.
Vegan, Low-Calorie, and Gluten-Free
These all-fruit popsicles are only 34 calories each and fit an array of special diets. Whether you are trying to support a weight loss goal or just increase your fruit intake, this one's for you!
Only 3 Ingredients
You don't need to create a mile-long grocery list to make this frozen dessert. Just pick up 3 simple ingredients, and you are good to go. You could even use precut fresh fruit if you want to skip the chopping.
I know you are probably looking at these pretty striped popsicles and thinking they must be too much work. Luckily, you do not have to freeze the layers individually when you use thick fruit purees like we're doing here. You can layer the stripes of fruit puree at room temperature.
Appealing to Picky Eaters
If you have a picky eater in your household who isn't eating enough fruit, try these watermelon popsicles. There's just something more appealing about fruit served in ice lolly form versus served whole. 100% fruit popsicles are my secret weapon for increasing fruit intake in those who are resistant.
These watermelon ice lollies are sweet and refreshing. You may not want to stop at one pop, and luckily, you don't have to! They are a great afterschool snack for kids.
Watermelon Ice Lollies Ingredients
You do not need much to make this homemade popsicle recipe:
- Fresh seedless watermelon
- Peeled and chopped mango
- Peeled, cored, and chopped fresh pineapple
Since all of the sweetness in this recipe comes from the fruit, you'll want to get your hands on the ripest fruit possible. An added benefit is that ripe fruit is far easier to blend.
Have you ever tried to puree an unripe mango in a food processor? I have, and it is no fun. You have to stop the processor approximately one million times to scrape down the hard fruit bits sticking to the sides.
Ripe fruit will break down much easier for you. We need to get each of these fruits blended into a (mostly) smooth puree, so this is a good thing.
In addition to the food ingredients, you'll also need to have these pieces of kitchen equipment for watermelon ice lollies:
- Food processor
- Ice lolly moulds (AKA popsicle molds)
If you need ice pop molds, the ones that I use can be purchased on Amazon. I highly recommend silicone popsicle moulds.
Unlike when you use hard plastic molds, popsicles release easily from soft silicone molds. You do not need to run the mold under warm water to get the pops out. If you have kids, they should be able to get their own popsicles out of this mold without needing help.
How to Make Watermelon Popsicles
The first step in making watermelon ice lollies is washing and cutting your fresh fruit. Peel and chop one mango, 2 cups of watermelon, and 1.5 cups of pineapple. Gather your popsicle molds, a spatula, and a food processor, and you are ready to begin.
Puree your mango first. Mango tends to be the toughest of these fruits to puree. You may need to stop the food processor and scrape down the sides a few times to get a thick mango puree.
Your fruit purees do not have to be perfectly smooth, but there should be no large chunks. You want the purees to fill the pop molds in such a way that no air bubble pockets form.
I used a spoon to distribute the mango puree evenly between my popsicle molds. Then I rinse out the food processor (no thorough cleaning necessary) and blend the watermelon chunks.
Fresh watermelon breaks down quickly into an almost liquid in the food processor. I used a spouted measuring cup to evenly distribute the watermelon puree between the ice pop molds.
Finally, blend the fresh pineapple chunks into a creamy, frothy puree. Finish filling the popsicle molds with the pineapple puree.
If you find that you do not have enough pineapple puree to finish filling all of your pop moulds, no worries. Just consolidate your partially filled molds with mango watermelon popsicles into one or more fully-filled molds. You'll have extra watermelon mango popsicles in addition to the striped watermelon ice lollies.
I get a different number of popsicles each time I make this recipe. If you watch the recipe video closely, you may notice I shifted from making 14 pops to 12 because I ran out of pureed pineapple. Shhhh…
Expert Tips from a Dietitian
This is a level 1 recipe (may help support fat loss). This recipe yield 11-14 popsicles. The exact number of popsicles you get will depend on several factors:
- The volume your popsicle molds hold
- The size that you dice your fruit pieces
- How large the mango you use is
The nutrition information for this recipe will change depending on the number of popsicles you make. However, since this is such a low-calorie recipe, it will not change by too much.
If you have trouble with blood sugar spikes when eating "naked carbs," add some plain Greek yogurt to this recipe for more of a macro mix. Alternatively, you can use lower-carb berries in place of the fruits used here.
Adding whole milk Greek yogurt or canned coconut milk to the fruit purees will also result in a higher-energy recipe. This addition will make the texture of your popsicles creamier and less icy.
Don't be afraid to alter recipes in ways that best meet your needs. If you make a fabulous modification to a recipe that I've posted, I would love to hear about it!
What are some other recipes using watermelon and mango?
If you try this recipe and have leftover watermelon or mango, there are a lot of other recipes you could make. Here are a few more whole food snacks using watermelon or mangoes:
As with all of the recipes here, none of the above snacks contain added sugar. I think you'll find that the ripe fruits do a wonderful job satisfying your sweet tooth.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which name is more commonly used: popsicle, ice lolly, or ice pop?
The name that is more commonly used depends on where in the world you are! In the United States and Canada, I hear "popsicle" used most often, and "ice pop" used occasionally. In the United Kingdom and some other parts of the world, "ice lollies" is commonly used.
To add to the confusion, there are also treats called "freezie pops" or "freezies." Where I live, these refer to a frozen treat served in a long, thin plastic tube. This name is generally not used interchangeably here with "popsicle," which refers to a frozen treat on a stick.
What are the healthiest ice lollies?
For those who are enjoying good health, the healthiest ice lollies will be the ones that fit their dietary needs and preferences. In general, I would choose frozen pops that use whole food ingredients and that contain no added sugar. These watermelon ice lollies with pineapple and mango fit the bill.
Popsicles with blended yogurt, milk, seed, or nut butter would also be good choices. The ingredients that make a healthy smoothie are the same sort of ingredients that would make a healthy ice lolly.
That said, sometimes people who are very ill eat popsicles to help maintain hydration and get some calories in while they feel nauseous. In those cases, the ice lollies that can be kept down may be the "healthiest" option at the moment.
Can you lose weight eating ice lollies? Do ice lollies make you gain weight?
Yes, you can lose weight eating ice lollies, and no, ice lollies do not necessarily make you gain weight. However, if you have a fat loss goal, the ice lollies that are mostly added sugar and flavoring can be considered empty calories. It would be better to choose more nutrient-dense foods, helping to keep you full while maintaining a calorie deficit.
These watermelon ice lollies are only 34 calories each and made entirely of whole fruits. Since they are frozen, they tend to be eaten slower and more mindfully. As mentioned above, I think this watermelon ice lolly recipe is a good snack choice while on a weight loss journey.
If you find that you tend to overeat fresh fruit, try the frozen fruit in these pops. Blending fruits can make it easier to over-consume them (think of how easy it is to gulp down a smoothie). However, it generally takes much longer to eat a frozen popsicle than to eat fresh fruit.
How long is watermelon good after it is cut?
If you purchased a whole watermelon for this recipe, you will definitely have leftovers! Fresh watermelon that has been cut is best eaten within 1-3 days. Wrap the cut watermelon in plastic wrap and keep it in the refrigerator.
Uncut fresh watermelon can last for 2-3 weeks if stored at a cool temperature away from fruits that produce ethylene gas. Thus, you should not cut a whole watermelon until you are ready to use it. Cutting watermelon drastically reduces its shelf life.
Can I use other fruit to make homemade popsicles?
If you don't like watermelon (or pineapple or mango), you can absolutely substitute with other types of fruit! Try other types of melon, kiwi, or perhaps some berries. Also, substituting unsweetened frozen mango and pineapple for fresh fruit is fine in this recipe (and may be more cost-effective).
Another thing you could try is making homemade ice lollies using a single fruit. I've tried popsicles with pineapple only and popsicles with watermelon only. Either would be a delicious alternative to this recipe.
Other Recipes You May Enjoy
Are you looking for more recipes for ice lollies using whole food ingredients with no added sugar? If so, you're going to want to check these out:
- Cherry Mango Popsicles
- Homemade Popsicles with Watermelon, Lime, and Mint
- What to do with Leftover Coffee: 15-Calorie Coffee Popsicles
- Peanut Butter Banana Chocolate Smoothie Pops
- Mango Popsicles with Coconut and Curry
Don't forget to subscribe to our Weekly Newsletter to be kept up-to-date on all of the latest and greatest recipes!
And now for the disclaimer…
All recipes on this website may or may not be appropriate for you, depending on your medical needs and personal preferences. Consult with a registered dietitian or your physician if you need help determining the dietary pattern that may be best for you.
The nutrition information is an estimate provided as a courtesy. It will differ depending on the specific brands and ingredients that you use. Calorie information on food labels may be wildly inaccurate, so please don't sweat the numbers too much.
For more information on how the three recipe levels may help with a weight management goal, refer to my overnight oats with yogurt post. Let's get cooking!
Watermelon Ice Lollies with Mango and Pineapple
- 1 mango, peeled and diced
- 2 cups seedless watermelon, peeled and diced
- 1½ cups pineapple, peeled and diced
- Blend the mango in a food processor until a smooth or mostly smooth puree is created. Stop the processor and scrape down the sides with a spatula if needed.
- Distribute the mango evenly between fourteen ¼-cup pop molds using a spoon.
- Rinse the food processor (no need for a thorough wash) and puree the diced watermelon.
- Pour the watermelon puree into a spouted container and distribute it evenly between the pop molds. These fruit purees are thick enough where you do not need to freeze each layer individually to get the striped effect.
- Rinse the food processor again and puree the diced pineapple.
- Finish filling the pop molds with the pineapple puree. If you do not have enough pineapple to fill 14 molds, consolidate the partially filled molds with the mango and watermelon. I ended up with 11 watermelon mango pineapple popsicles and one mango watermelon popsicle.
- Put the tops/sticks on the molds and freeze for several hours (or overnight). Delicious and ready for you whenever you want a cold treat!
- The volume your popsicle molds hold
- The size that you dice your fruit pieces
- How large the mango you use is