This stunning Summer Melon Salad is pretty to look at yet takes minimal time and effort to prepare. Use a melon baller to scoop the melon, then drizzle with a simple honey lime and fresh mint dressing. It makes a wonderfully fresh, juicy, and delicious appetizer or dessert and is perfect for a leisurely summer brunch.
Gosh, I love fruit salads. In the summer, I can never get enough fresh fruit and often serve it in a salad for lunch on hot days. Fresh peaches and seasonal fruit pair well with burrata in this Grilled Peach Burrata Salad. Speaking of burrata, this fresh mozzarella is also stunning with cantaloupe in this Spicy Sweet Cantaloupe Salad. For more fruit salad recipes, simply type ‘salad’ into the recipe index.
Summer Melon Salad
It is said that we ‘eat with our eyes’ and I wholeheartedly agree. Even before ‘Instagram-worthy’ food sharing on social media and obsessive food photo taking, an attractive dish was a popular dish.
As a recipe developer, I carefully consider what goes into making a dish delicious…and photogenic! I use a few tricks to help dishes look more appealing if they also add to the overall flavour. This Summer Melon Salad recipe is a good example of simple tweaks that can elevate a basic watermelon salad to another level.
Cutting a watermelon (or any melon) into attractive equal-sized pieces can be difficult and time consuming. The solution? Use a melon baller (Amazon affiliate link) or cookie scoop to create uniform bite sized balls of melon with little time or effort. In fact, you could use several scoop sizes to create even more visual interest.
While creating this healthy salad, I employed the KISS method. I’m keeping it simple (silly!) with only 6 ingredients, including three different melons. The ‘salad dressing’ is a simple lime and honey syrup and the final touch is a garnish of fresh mint leaves. Who knew such a stunning salad was achievable in under 20 minutes?!
Ingredients for Melon Salad
This Melon Salad recipe calls for three varieties of melon: watermelon, honeydew, and cantaloupe. Of course, you can use one, a combination of any two, or all three for an equally delicious salad. Could it be any simpler?
- Honeydew Melon
- Fresh Mint Leaves
For this salad recipe, a small round Watermelon is the best option (unless you want to double the recipe). Use the tips and tricks outlined below to successfully select a tasty watermelon every time. These tips also work for Honeydew Melons and Cantaloupe.
Feel free to substitute another melon for any (or all three) of the featured melons. Instead of the classic orange cantaloupe, try Crenshaw Melon or an orange Honeydew melon (yes, they exist!). Even a tiny little cucamelon would add a fun hit of green to this melon salad.
Or, instead of a classic green Honeydew melon, try a Mellowsweet, Kandy Dewlicious, Galia, Juan Canary, Kandy Lemondrop, or Santa Claus melon. A yellow watermelon makes an interesting substitute for the classic red watermelon.
Another fruit you will need for this recipe are limes. It takes roughly 2 limes to make 1/4 cup of fresh lime juice depending on how big/juicy the limes are. Feel free to zest the limes and add zest to the salad dressing. Pro tip: Microwave limes on high for 30 seconds then roll them on the counter before juicing. This will help to extract as much of the fresh lime juice as possible.
Lastly, use the freshest mint leaves possible for this salad and be generous. There aren’t many ingredients in this recipe so using fresh ingredients really amps up the flavour profile.
How to Choose a Watermelon
Here are a few extra tips and tricks you can use when picking out a watermelon in the garden, farmer’s market, or grocery store. In general, the same tips apply to selecting other melons, including Honeydew and Cantaloupe.
- Buy melon in season and it will be easier to select a tasty one.
- Lift the melon and compare it to others. If it is heavy for its size that means it is juicy and full.
- The stem end should be dry and brown or yellow. This signifies the melon was picked at peak ripeness.
- Look for a creamy yellow to almost orange or brown area (also called the field spot) on one side of the melon. This is where the melon was resting on the ground. A darker colour means it rested there longer.
- Knock on it. If it sounds hollow and deep, then it is good. Do not choose it if it has a higher hollow sound.
- Choose dull melons with a distinctive deep dark green and light-yellow colour pattern. Shiny melons or those with a light colour pattern have not had time to ripen.
- Check the overall size and rind condition. Rounder melons tend to be tastier, but not always. Make sure there are no cracks or bruises. Grey or tan coloured irregularities with a web-like pattern are the exception. These are pollination scars, and a high number of scars means the bees did their job well!
How to Make a Stunning Summer Melon Salad
Prepare the Fruit
Let’s begin by preparing the fruit. Cut the watermelon in half and use the melon baller to scoop balls from the watermelon flesh. Place the watermelon balls on a serving plate. Next, cut the honeydew melon in half and use a spoon to remove the seeds.
Use a melon baller (of another size if you have one) to scoop balls from the honeydew flesh. Scatter the honeydew balls on top of the plated watermelon balls. Repeat step 2 for the cantaloupe.
When you have finished scooping the melon balls toss them together on the serving plate so
the colors are mixed.
Make the Dressing
This salad dressing is so simple, it’s more of a honey simple syrup than a dressing because it doesn’t contain any olive oil. It adds a touch of sweetness and zesty tang to the finished salad. For a little extra ‘tang’ feel free to zest the lime before juicing and add the zest to the dressing.
To make the salad dressing, pour the fresh lime juice, honey and mint into a small bowl and whisk with a fork until fully combined. Pour the lime dressing over the melon balls and decorate with a couple of extra sprigs of mint.
Serve and enjoy!
Store any leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Melon Salad will keep really well and the citrus from the lime will keep the salad tasting fresh.
Melon Salad Variations
This is one of those healthy recipes. It is naturally gluten free and suitable for a vegan diet. However, if you feel like bulking it up a little bit more, feel free to add bocconcini, fresh burrata, or crumbled feta cheese, like I did in this Watermelon Mint Feta Salad with Arugula.
Hi! I’m Bernice Hill and I’ve been the sole recipe developer, photographer, and writer at Dish ‘n’ the Kitchen for the past eleven years. It is my pleasure to share easy to follow recipes that are delicious, nutritious, and approachable for the whole family.
If you make this Summer Melon Salad recipe, I’d love to hear about it in the comments section or in the ratings. Be sure to follow me on Facebook and Pinterest for my latest recipes. Also, if you do make this recipe, please share your photos and tag me on Instagram. I hope you like this recipe!
- 1 small Watermelon
- 1 Honeydew Melon
- 1 Cantaloupe
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup honey
- handful fresh Mint Leaves; chopped
- Cut the watermelon in half and use the melon baller to scoop balls from the watermelon flesh.
Scatter the watermelon balls onto a serving plate.
- Cut the honeydew melon in half and use a spoon to remove the seeds. Use a melon baller to
scoop balls from the honeydew flesh. Scatter the balls on top of the watermelon balls on the
serving plate. Repeat step 2 for the cantaloupe.
- When you have finished scooping the melon balls toss them together on the serving plate so
the colors are mixed.
- To make the salad dressing put the lime juice, honey and mint into a small mixing bowl and
whisk with a fork until fully combined.
- Pour the dressing over the melon balls and decorate with a couple of extra sprigs of mint.
- Serve and enjoy!
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 258Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 86mgCarbohydrates: 66gFiber: 5gSugar: 59gProtein: 4g
Nutritional calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is an estimation only. For special diets or medical issues please use your preferred calculator.