Best Watermelon Recipes

These watermelon recipes show the best of what this hydrating, refreshing pink fruit can do! Salad, soup, margaritas, and more.

Watermelon recipes

What’s more refreshing than watermelon? This hydrating summer fruit is one of the best parts of summer! Turns out, there are so many creative ways to eat watermelon outside of cutting it into thick slices.

Here are all our best watermelon recipes for using this seasonal melon in creative ways! There’s watermelon salad, featuring the unexpected but perfect pairing of watermelon and salty feta cheese. You can make it into a cooling chilled soup, or even margaritas. Or try an icy watermelon smoothie to help keep even cooler. There are so many ways to eat it…let’s just get to the recipes!

And now…the best watermelon recipes!

How to tell if a watermelon is ripe?

Here are a few tips for picking out a ripe melon for these watermelon recipes. There’s really nothing worse than an unripe, flavorless version of this fruit. Of course, shopping when watermelon is in season is important! Here’s how to get a ruby red, sweet melon:

  • Look for a lighter spot where the watermelon rested in the field. It’s called a field spot. If the field spot is white, it’s unripe: if the spot is yellow, it’s ripe.
  • The melon should feel heavy. The watermelon should feel very heavy, which means there’s a lot of juice inside. This is a little subjective, so the field spot is a little easier of an indicator.
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Watermelon salad

Watermelon Salad

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (11 votes, average: 4.45 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Is there anything more refreshing than a watermelon salad? This one features salty feta, cucumber, fresh basil, and lemon zest.


  • 8 cups cubed ripe seedless watermelon (1 8-pound watermelon)
  • 2 organic mini cucumbers or 1/2 English cucumber (1 cup sliced)
  • 2 ounces feta cheese crumbles
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 4 basil leaves
  • Sea salt, for garnish


  1. Chop the watermelon into cubes. Slice the cucumbers (if using an English cucumber, slice it into half moons). Chop the basil. Zest the lemon.
  2. Arrange the watermelon and cucumbers on a platter. Sprinkle with feta crumbles, lemon zest, and sea salt. Taste and adjust flavors as desired. (If you’d like, you can add freshly ground black pepper or a drizzle of olive oil.) Serve immediately. If making ahead, refrigerate the cubed watermelon separately: it releases a lot of water after it is cut. Then assemble the salad directly before serving.
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Raw
  • Cuisine: Summer

Keywords: Watermelon Recipes

More summer recipe resources

Watermelon recipes are the best of summer eating! Here are some of our other resources for summer eating:

Last updated: July 2020

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

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