Watermelon Salad is fresh and flavor packed. Cucumbers, red onions, crumbled feta, candied pecans and watermelon pair perfectly for the ultimate side salad.
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Watermelon Salad Recipe
This recipe is inspired by the Summer Menu at Earth to Table Bread Bar. I first had this salad in the summer of 2022 at Bread Bar! They are known for their farm to table menu that changes seasonally. Everything on the menu is absolutely delicious.
When it comes to side salads they can often get boring and are often overlooked at the dinner table. However, this salad is so flavorful and packed with a variety of different ingredients that are far from boring!
What is Watermelon Salad?
This watermelon salad has a spring mix base and a honey Dijon vinaigrette. I love the colorful blend of spring mix lettuce. The toppings pair so perfectly together – cubed watermelon, pickled red onions, candied pecans, cucumbers and crumbled feta cheese.
What to Serve with Watermelon Salad
- Chicken Romano
- Roast Beef Sliders
- Olive Garden Chicken Scampi
- Butternut Squash Soup
- Stuffed Peppers
- Jalapeno Popper Chicken Taquitos
What is in Watermelon Salad?
- Spring Mix – for this salad I like to use spring mix lettuce. The mix of colors and flavors are perfect for this salad. You can also use arugula, green leaf lettuce, romaine, or any combination of your favorite lettuce.
- Watermelon – one of my favorite fruits! Cubed watermelon is the star of the show in this salad. The bright red color and sweet flavor is perfect for a fresh side salad.
- Cucumber – Persian cucumbers or baby cucumbers are less seedy and are great for salads as they are so small you can just cut them into circles and serve them in the salad. With English cucumbers I usually cut them into half moon shapes, which still looks great, but I just love the way that Persian cucumbers look in this salad.
- Red Onion & Red Wine Vinegar – raw red onions are essential for me in a salad or on a burger! For this salad I like to lightly pickle the red onions. You can do this by soaking sliced red onions in warm water and red wine vinegar. Leave the onions to soak while you prepare the remaining toppings and then add them to the salad.
- Candied Pecans – adds a nice sweet and nutty crunch to the salad. You can omit these for a nut free recipe.
- Honey Dijon Vinaigrette
- White Wine Vinegar – since this vinegar is wine based it is sweeter than regular white vinegar. You can sub for white balsamic vinegar, red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar. I would not recommend using regular white vinegar for the dressing.
- Honey – adds a hint of sweetness to the dressing.
- Dijon Mustard – adds a great flavor and also thickens the dressing.
- Olive Oil – use a light olive oil, or your neutral oil of choice.
- Salt, Pepper
How to Make Watermelon Salad
Full Printable Recipe at Bottom of Page
Optional: Quick pickled red onions. Use a kettle to boil 1/2 cup of water. Thinly slice the red onions and add them to a heat safe bowl. Pour the water over the onions and add the red wine vinegar. Set aside until ready to serve. Just before serving, drain the onions.
1 In a small bowl or glass jar add all of the honey Dijon vinaigrette ingredients. Whisk together or shake the jar until evenly combined. Season to taste to personal preference with additional honey for sweetness, vinegar for acidity, or olive oil to reduce the acidity.
2 In a large bowl toss the spring mix with the dressing until evenly coated.
3 Spread the dressed lettuce out over a serving platter.
4 Scatter the cubed watermelon, sliced cucumbers, sliced red onions, crumbled feta and candied pecans over the lettuce.
5 Serve immediately and enjoy!
Tips for the Best Watermelon Salad
- Lettuce – for this salad I like to dress the lettuce and then layer the toppings on top. This keeps each of the topping ingredients from getting overly soggy from the dressing. You can use spring mix, arugula, romaine, green leaf or any lettuce you prefer.
- Dressing – I like to make a homemade honey Dijon vinaigrette for this salad. You can use a store bought balsamic vinaigrette or Italian style dressing if you prefer.
FAQs Watermelon Salad
Store leftover undressed salad in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 1-2 days.
To make the salad ahead, prep all of the ingredients up to 2 days in advance. Store the lettuce, toppings and dressing in 3 separate air tight containers in the fridge. Just before serving, toss the lettuce with the dressing and plate the salad on a serving platter or in a bowl.
Yes! This is a healthy salad with fresh fruits, vegetable and a light homemade salad dressing.
This recipe is vegetarian.
For a vegan recipe swap the honey for agave and use a vegan feta cheese substitute.
This recipe is gluten free.
For a dairy free recipe use a dairy free or vegan feta cheese substitute or omit the cheese.
Looking for More Salad Recipes?
- Grilled Peach Salad
- Dill Pickle Chopped Salad
- Italian Pasta Salad
- BLT Pasta Salad
- Strawberry Panzanella Salad
Quick Pickled Red Onions
- 1/2 cup water, boiling
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- 6 cups spring mix, or arugula, or green leaf lettuce, or lettuce of choice
- 1/2 watermelon, peeled and cut into bite sized cubes
- 2 Persian cucumbers, or baby cucumbers, or English cucumber, thinly sliced
- ½ cup feta, crumbled, or goat cheese
- ½ cup candied pecans, or pecans, walnuts, or nut of choice
- Optional: Quick pickled red onions. Use a kettle to boil 1/2 cup of water. Thinly slice the red onions and add them to a heat safe bowl. Pour the water over the onions and add the red wine vinegar. Set aside until ready to serve. Just before serving, drain the onions. You can also serve the onions on the salad raw and unpickled.
- In a small bowl or glass jar add all of the honey Dijon vinaigrette ingredients. Whisk together or shake the jar until evenly combined. Season to taste to personal preference with additional honey for sweetness, vinegar for acidity, or olive oil to reduce the acidity.
- In a large bowl toss the spring mix with the dressing until evenly coated.
- Spread the dressed lettuce out over a serving platter.
- Scatter the cubed watermelon, sliced cucumbers, sliced red onions, crumbled feta and candied pecans over the lettuce.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!