Watermelon recipes are a great way to take advantage of this staple flavor of summer. Check out all the sweet, spicy, and savory ways you can use watermelon!
Why We Love Watermelon
Do we even have to explain? What’s not to love? Watermelon is composed of 92% water. Eating a few slices of watermelon can be equivalent to drinking an extra glass of water. Not a bad idea on a sweltering summer day. It’s not only hydrating but also has plenty of nutrients. According to Healthline, 1-cup (154-gram) of watermelon contains over a half cup (118 ml) of water. It also has some fiber and several essential nutrients, including vitamin C, vitamin A, and magnesium.
But we’ve all experienced a summer day (or a few) when we have too much watermelon in the fridge. In those moments, it’s time to get creative. We’ve got some tasty recipes, so you’ll never run out of ideas!
Watermelon Recipes: Side Dishes
These bright, unexpected flavor combos are unbeatable.
You can’t beat the sweetness of the watermelon paired with the crunch and heat of red onions. Toss together 4 cups diced seedless watermelon, 1 cup diced red onion, 2/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves, 1–2 jalapeno(s), seeded and finely diced, and zest and juice of 1 lime. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips! You can also use this tasty salsa on top of some hearty tacos or nachos!
This soup is originally from Spain, where cold soups are much more common. In a blender, puree one large tomato, 1/2 serrano chile, and 1 cup of cubed watermelon. Pour in 1 tsp red wine vinegar and 1/4 cup olive oil and pulse.
Add 2 tsp minced red onion, half of a cucumber (seeded and minced), and two teaspoons dill. Season with salt and black pepper, then puree until smooth. Pour into chilled bowls and sprinkle with dill, 1/4 cup crumbled feta, and 1 cup of cubed watermelon. Serve chilled.
Watermelon Jalapeño Bruschetta
This isn’t your typical appetizer. It’s tailor-made for warm summer nights on the back patio. Start by preheating the oven to 450 degrees F.
Make thin slices from 1 loaf of crusty Italian bread. Brush with melted butter and bake until golden, about 2-3 min. Combine 8 oz of ricotta, 4 oz feta, 4 (fresh, diced) jalapeños, and 1 tsp salt in a food processor until smooth. Taste and add more salt to taste, if needed. Spread ricotta mixture over toast slices, top with 2 cups of diced watermelon and 2 (chopped) tomatoes heirloom tomatoes. Combine 1/4 cup of Balsamic vinegar and 2 tbsp Worcestershire and drizzle over toast. Top with fresh thyme!
Watermelon, Feta, and Mint
Sweet watermelon, salty feta, and mint are a classic trio you can’t beat, and are definitely one of our favorite watermelon salad recipes. In a large bowl, whisk the 1/3 cup of olive oil, three tablespoons fresh lemon juice, 2 tsp kosher salt, 1 tsp Tabasco, and 1/2 tsp ground pepper. Add 10 cups of cubed watermelon, 2 cups crumbled feta, 1-1/4 cups (pitted, halved) kalamata olives, and one small, sweet onion (diced) and toss gently. Garnish with 1 cup coarsely chopped mint leaves (fresh herbs are always the best) and serve!
Ginger-Lime Melon Salad
In a small saucepan, bring 3 Tbsp sugar and 3 Tbsp water to boiling over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Boil gently, uncovered, for about 3 minutes or until syrupy. Remove from heat; transfer to a small bowl and cool for 10 minutes. Stir in 3/4 tbsp lime zest, 4 tsp lime juice, and 3/4 tbsp fresh grated ginger. Then, in a large bowl, combine 6 cups of cubed watermelon, 8 oz. jicama, peeled and cut into thin sticks (2 cups), one jalapeño chile pepper, seeded, and finely chopped, and 2 tbsp fresh mint. Drizzle with syrup; toss to mix. Top with additional fresh mint.
This dressing is fantastic over a watermelon-feta salad with red onion! Add 1/2 cup cubed watermelon, ¼ cup honey, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, and ½ cup EVOO to a blender. Blend on low speed until well-combined. With the lid of the blender container removed, slowly add olive oil while on low. Return the cover to the blender and increase the speed to medium to blend thoroughly. Remove and pour into a container for serving. Save any leftovers for the next salad!
Grilled Watermelon Caprese Salad
- 1 grill
- 2 large, round watermelon slices each cut into 4 triangles
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes quartered
- 4 oz fresh mozzarella cut in half or sliced
- 1 packed cup fresh basil (one bunch)
- balsamic glaze for drizzling
- Preheat your grill to medium. Brush both sides of each watermelon quarter with olive oil. Season all sides with Kosher salt and black pepper. Add a drizzle of honey over each quarter and place them on the grill. Grilling each side for about 2 minutes. Remove and drizzle a bit more honey if desired.
- Assemble the salads by placing 2 watermelon quarters on each plate. Cover with tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil leaves. Add some salt and pepper on top, then drizzle with balsamic glaze. Serve!
Watermelon Recipes: Dessert
At the end of a hot day, treat yourself to one of these perfectly sweet watermelon recipes!
Watermelon Strawberry Sorbet
Slice and freeze your ripe watermelon on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze overnight or for at least 4-6 hours or until firm like ice. To a high-speed blender (or food processor) add 2 cups of cubed frozen watermelon, 1 cup of sliced frozen strawberries, and 1 cup of sliced, frozen banana. Top with 1/4 cup of coconut milk or dairy-free milk of your choice. Blend on low, then on high, scraping the sides as needed. If it has trouble blending, gradually add more dairy-free milk or coconut water a little at a time. Taste and adjust flavor as needed.
Transfer to a serving bowl and enjoy immediately, plain or topped with sliced fruit of choice. Or, transfer to a parchment-lined loaf pan, cover with more parchment paper, and freeze until firm, then scoop and serve in a bowl or on a cone. Store in the freezer in an airtight container.
Make sure you have popsicle molds ready! This recipe makes enough for 6 standard popsicles. In a blender, blend 4 cups of diced watermelon, 1 cup of strawberries, 1 tbsp fresh lime juice, and 2 tbsp honey until smooth and fully incorporated, scraping the sides of the blender as needed. Evenly pour the mixture into the popsicle molds and assemble, leaving ⅓ inch of a gap at the top to allow for expansion. Freeze for at least 4-6 hours or ideally overnight. To release, run each popsicle under warm water for a few seconds to loosen it up, and then pull until released.
Watermelon Granola Trifle
Layer chunks of seedless watermelon with mango, pineapple, or strawberry chunks, vanilla greek yogurt, and almond granola. For the topping, sprinkle with unsweetened shredded coconut, candied citrus peel, and optionally a dash of brown sugar, honey, or cinnamon. This is so healthy; it’s a perfect breakfast or snack any time of the day!
Watermelon Recipes: Drinks
Watermelon already has so much water that a refreshing drink is not too far off.
Just three ingredients? Say no more. Originally from Sicily, light, elegant and refreshing, granita is a simple shaved ice dessert perfect for cooling off on a hot summer’s day. Scoop 1/2 the fruit out of a medium, seedless watermelon. Puree the watermelon in a blender until it reaches a thin, even consistency. You should have about 6 cups of watermelon juice.
If you have seeds in your watermelon, strain them out with a mesh colander. Stir in 1 Tbsp lime juice and 1/4 cup of sugar. Pour into a large baking dish and freeze for about 2 hours. Remove and scrape at frozen sides and top. Return to freezer. Repeat this process of freezing and scraping every few hours until the mixture is completely frozen and scraped. Serve in fancy dessert dishes for the full experience.
We think all pink lemonade should be watermelon lemonade, but we may be biased. This delicious beverage is definitely our favorite of all the watermelon juice recipes out there. Add 6 cups of cubed, seedless, chilled watermelon to a blender and pulse until well pureed (there should be about 4 cups). Pour through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. In a large pitcher, whisk together 4 cups of cold water, 3/4 cups of fresh lemon juice, and 2/3 cups of granulated sugar until sugar has dissolved. Stir in pureed watermelon. Stir in ice and fresh mint, then enjoy!
Spiked Watermelon Slushie
This sweet libation is for adults only! Freeze 6 cups cubed mini seedless watermelon (about one 3 ½ pound watermelon) on a parchment-lined baking sheet until frozen, at least 2 hours. Combine watermelon, 6 oz of vodka, 3 oz lime juice, and 2 oz of simple syrup in a high-speed blender. Blend until smooth and serve in chilled glasses.
Watermelon: The Unbeatable Flavor of Summer
Whether you sip on a slushie by the pool or dunk your tortilla chips in a sweet and spicy salsa, nothing compares to that sweet watermelon flavor. Share this article with someone you know who needs some ideas or share photos of your watermelon recipes on social media and tag @getfamilyapp!