There's lots of reasons to drink fresh juice, from the flavor (of course) and the blast of vitamins easily absorbed by the body, to the more esoteric concepts of detoxifying and cleansing. Since there is no fresher juice than the kind you make yourself, why not experiment with ripe, readily available fruits and vegetables, balancing sweet and tart produce in complementary combinations? Here are five recipes to get you started.

Cantaloupe Agua Fresca

Photo: msheldrake/Shutterstock

Cantaloupe Agua Fresca
Agua fresca means "fresh water" in Spanish. Consisting of fresh fruit, citrus and water, it's the perfect name for a refreshing drink made for hot, muggy weather.

Prep time: 10 minutes  

Total time: 15 minutes, plus refrigeration  

Yield: 4-6 glasses

Ingredients

  • 1 3-pound cantaloupe, cut into sections
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1 1/2 cups filtered water
  • 1 tablespoon organic sugar
  • 1 lime wheel, optional garnish
Directions
  1. Rinse produce. Cut cantaloupe to size, juice and pour liquid contents into small pitcher, straining through sieve if needed to remove pulp.
  2. Combine with remaining ingredients. Stir and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 one hour. Serve over ice.

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Carrot Orange Wake Up Juice

Photo: Multiart/Shutterstock

Carrot Orange Wake Up
A perfect pairing of tart, tangy and sweet that's easy on the eyes and the mood.

Prep time: 10 minutes  

Total time: 15 minutes 

Yield: 4 glasses

Ingredients

  • 1 pound organic carrots
  • 6 Valencia oranges, peeled
  • 1 1-inch nub fresh ginger, peeled
  • 4 ounces light coconut milk
  • 1 orange wheel, optional garnish
Directions
  1. Rinse produce. Cut to size and juice. Pour liquid contents into small pitcher, straining through sieve if needed to remove pulp.
  2. Add coconut milk and stir.

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Watermelon Agua Fresca
Watermelom Agua Fresca
Watermelon is yet another popular variation of agua fresca. Think of it as fruit salad without the bowl or heavy syrup.

Prep time: 10 minutes  

Total time: 15 minutes, plus refrigeration  

Yield: 4-6 glasses

Ingredients

  • 3 cups seedless watermelon, cut into sections
  • 1/2 English cucumber, cut into spears
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1 tablespoon organic sugar
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1 teaspoon citrus seasoning (optional)
  • Handful mint, torn
  • 1 cucumber wheel, optional garnish
Directions
  1. Rinse produce. Cut to size and juice. Pour liquid contents into pitcher, straining through sieve if needed to remove pulp.
  2. Combine with remaining ingredients. Stir and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour. Serve over ice.

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Pineapple and Citrus juice
Photo: Svetlana Lukienko/Shutterstock
Pineapple and Citrus
A sweet and tart combo that never fails to put smiles on people's faces.

Prep time: 10 minutes  

Total time: 15 minutes 

Yield: 4 glasses

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pineapple
  • 3 tangerines, peeled
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1 cup filtered water
Directions
  1. Rinse produce, cut to size and juice. Pour liquid contents into small pitcher, straining through sieve if needed to remove pulp. Add lime and water.
  2. Stir and serve over ice.

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Jicama pear

Photo: holbox, Larina Natalia/Shutterstock

Jicama Pear Juice
Jicama resembles a potato and tastes like a cross between kiwi and celery. It's especially good when paired with fresh carrots and ripe pear.

Yield: 2 glasses

Ingredients

  • 2 cups jicama, peeled and cut to size
  • 2 organic carrots, rinsed
  • 1 ripe Bosc pear, rinsed
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 1 sprig mint, optional garnish
Directions
  1. Rinse produce. Cut jicama in half and remove skin with paring knife.
  2. Juice with carrots, pear and lemon. Pour liquid contents into small pitcher, straining through sieve if needed to remove pulp.

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Watermelon photo: sarsmis/Shutterstock