34 Surprising Recipes For Using Up Watermelon

Don't stop at just slicing up summer's best fruit.

watermelon feta salad
Parker feierbach

If you really think about it, why not have summery watermelon at every meal? From dinner and dessert to happy hour cocktails, watermelon is one of our favorite ways to jazz up all our everyday recipes. So don't stop at just cutting and slicing up your watermelon (That is, unless it's destined to become a tequila and lime-infused margarita watermelon).

That being said, summer's best fruit can be tricky to cut up. Lucky for you, we have tips and tricks for how toquickly (and safely!) slice, cube, and cut watermelon in one minute flat. From there, so many options await you. Do you make chocolate-covered watermelon? Freeze some watermelon ice cubes for a watermelon daiquiri, frozen watermelon margarita, or my favorite, just sprinkling the slices with a bit of Tajin (or a mix of chili powder, lime juice, and salt).

Watermelon is often the star of our favorite picnic salads. Watermelon feta salad is always a surefire hit, no matter which way you serve it. We even have watermelon feta salad on skewers we love as a party appetizer). Our watermelon quinoa salad has all the classic flavors you love in a watermelon salad, but with more protein to keep you satisfied.

And did you know that the entirety of a watermelon (including the rind) is edible? While many people toss the rind away, it's actually fantastic pickled. Need proof? Try our pickled watermelon rind recipe and you'll be so happy to have it on hand for making our sweet and sour watermelon rind stir-fry all summer long.

Want more sweet and savory summer fruit inspiration? Check out our best peach recipes, plum recipes, savory pineapple recipes, and sweet pineapple desserts for summer too.

margarita watermelon
Emily Hlavac Green
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Margarita Watermelon

OK, OK, technically this isn't a sippable cocktail—it's even better: We soak watermelon slices with all the ingredients of a margarita (tequila, lime juice, triple sec) for the perfect perfect BBQ drink and snack. Save the leftover liquid from soaking for frozen watermelon margaritas.

Get the Margarita Watermelon recipe.

watermelon agua fresca
Andrea monzo
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Watermelon Agua Fresca

Part watermelon juice, part limeade, and 100% refreshing, watermelon agua fresca just might be the drink of the summer. It's slightly sweet, making it a perfect daytime treat or as a mocktail option at a dinner party. (Of course, you could stir in a shot of tequila or vodka if you want it boozy.)

Get the Watermelon Agua Fresca recipe.

watermelon feta salad
Parker feierbach
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Watermelon Feta Salad

This salad has that sweet and salty balance we crave in a salad. This just might be the perfect summer side dish to go along with grilled chicken, grilled steak, or even a hamburger—beef, chicken, or veggie!

Get the Watermelon Feta Salad recipe.

frozen watermelon margaritas
Parker feierbach
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Frozen Watermelon Margaritas

Newsflash: This might be the most refreshing margarita you'll ever drink. Frozen watermelon cubes make this delightfully slushy, but if you forget to freeze them overnight, don't fret! Two hours in the freezer will do the trick.

Get the Frozen Watermelon Margaritas recipe.

watermelon gazpacho
Andrea monzo
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Watermelon Gazpacho

If summer had a flavor, it might taste a lot like this soup. Though we'll always love a classic, tomato-based gazpacho, the addition of watermelon gives the soup a delicious subtle sweetness we can't get enough of.

Get the Watermelon Gazpacho recipe.

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Spiked Watermelon Lemonade

When the temperature rises, there's something so satisfying about a spiked lemonade. This version is big on watermelon, our favorite thirst-quenching summer fruit. If you're short on lemons, or want to mix it up, lime juice would also be delicious.

Get the Spiked Watermelon Lemonade recipe.

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Watermelon Fruit Roll-Ups

Making fruit leather at home is surprisingly easy. All you need is a blender, a little extra sugar, and a bit of patience—it'll take at least 3 hours (in a very low oven) until it's all dried out and ready to roll. (If you like this recipe, you need to try our rainbow fruit roll-ups, too!)

Get the Watermelon Fruit Roll-Ups recipe.

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Frozen Watermelon Mules

There's really nothing like a crisp and spicy, ginger-lime Moscow mule. What's even more refreshing? The frozen watermelon cubes make this drink super slushy and the copper mugs gives the chilled drink an extra-cool sensation.

Get the Frozen Watermelon Mules recipe.

watermelon salad with feta
Ethan Calabrese
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Watermelon Strawberry Caprese Salad

Step aside, all other fruit salads. The brightness of strawberries mixed with briny feta and sweet watermelon is the trio we've been waiting all summer for.

Get the Watermelon Strawberry Caprese Salad recipe.

watermelon sangria recipe
Ethan Calabrese
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Watermelon Sangria

Sangria can often be overly sweet or an odd mix of too many fruits. Simplify the summery cocktail with some lime zest and juice, which adds some nice punch to keep the drink bright.

Get the Watermelon Sangria recipe.

pickled watermelon rind
June xie
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Pickled Watermelon Rind

Just like pickled carrots or pickled red onions, pickled watermelon rind is a delicious, crunchy addition to top salads, fried rice, a sandwich, or be enjoyed on its own. This recipe has a sweet soy pickling liquid, but don't let this stop you from experimenting with other brines—you can use any pickle brine recipe on this overlooked part of the watermelon

Get the Pickled Watermelon Rind recipe.

watermelon caprese vertical
John Komar
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Watermelon Caprese

This light, refreshing summer salad takes all the best flavors of the season and puts it all in caprese salad form. You might be skeptical of eating cheese and watermelon, but we eat it with feta, mozzarella, and halloumi all summer long.

Get the Watermelon Caprese recipe.

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Chocolate Covered Watermelon

By mixing coconut oil into melted chocolate, you're basically making a magic shell with the perfect crackly texture for your watermelon. It's not a totally necessary step, but it does help the chocolate harden—meaning the dipped watermelon is ready to eat pretty much immediately.

Get the Chocolate Covered Watermelon recipe.

watermelon daiquiri group
Ethan Calabrese
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Watermelon Daiquiri

This stupid-easy recipe requires zero ice. Frozen watermelon cubes do the job on their own. Double down on the watermelon by swapping in watermelon rum!

Get the Watermelon Daiquiri recipe.

sweet and sour watermelon rind stir fry
June xie
15 of 34
Sweet & Sour Watermelon Rind Stir-Fry

Did you know that the entirety of a watermelon (including the rind) is edible? While many people toss the rind away, it's fantastic pickled. Combined with a sweet & sour brine, the punchy stir-fry addition of pickled watermelon rind elevates any stir-fry.

Get the Sweet & Sour Watermelon Rind Stir-Fry recipe.

watermelon slushies beauty single
Jonathan Boulton
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Boozy Watermelon Slushie

This is one of our most most creamiest, most refreshing rum cocktails ever, thanks to lime juice and coconut milk. The best part? Halved mini watermelons are the perfect serving size for this amazing cocktail!

Get the Boozy Watermelon Slushie recipe.

prosciutto wrapped watermelon
Lindsay Funston
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Prosciutto-Wrapped Watermelon

Frankly, we're obsessed with this watermelon's not-so-sweet side. Why should cantaloupe have the monopoly on prosciutto?

Get the Prosciutto-Wrapped Watermelon recipe.

boozy kebabs verticle
Chelsea Lupkin
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Boozy Melon Bites

Have your booze and eat it too, with these vodka-infused bites. Don't have a melon baller? No worries, these will look just as cute cubed up on a skewer.

Get the Boozy Melon Bites recipe.

mojito watermelon pops
Chelsea lupkin
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Mojito Watermelon Pops

If you're in a rush, you can skip freezing the watermelon. But whatever you do, don't skip through the 1 hour soaking time — you want that booze, don't you!?

Get the Mojito Watermelon Pops recipe.

watermelon pina coladas
Erika LaPresto
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Watermelon Piña Coladas

Mix up this riff on your favorite tropical piña colada. We combined the classic mix of pineapple and white rum with watermelon to really bring the tropics home. Pro tip: Blend up frozen watermelon instead of ice to get an even smoother cocktail.

Get the Watermelon Piña Coladas recipe.

watermelon salsa
Chelsea Lupkin
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Watermelon Salsa

This recipe only uses half a watermelon, which means you get to use the other half to make boozy watermelon slushies, or just enjoy by the slice.

Get the Watermelon Salsa recipe.

delish watermelon sorbet
Ethan Calabrese
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Watermelon Sorbet

The high water content of watermelon creates the perfect granita-like texture. This sorbet is lighter than ice cream, but no less delicious.

Get the Watermelon Sorbet recipe.

savory watermelon pizza delish
Lindsay Funston
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Watermelon Pizza

This is essentially a deconstructed watermelon and feta salad. Slice the biggest round of watermelon you can, top with crumbled feta, red onion slices, torn basil, and balsamic. Slice into pizza-like triangles, and then Instagram a picture.

Get the Watermelon Pizza recipe.

spicy watermelon
Lindsay Funston
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Spicy Watermelon

Sweet watermelon mellows the heat of red pepper flakes for winner of easiest, most ingenious summer side dish ever. Drizzle watermelon slices with olive oil, sprinkle with red pepper flakes, and top with crumbled feta.

Get the Spicy Watermelon recipe.

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Watermelon Lime Pops

The only true way to get through the dog days of summer is with watermelon. And with just four ingredients in total, these refreshing popsicles will keep you cool all season long.

Get the Watermelon Lime Pops recipe.

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Watermelon Feta Skewers

Watermelon + feta is one of our favorite combinations of all time — especially during summer time. Skewer them with some crunchy cucumber and drizzle balsamic glaze on top and you've got an easy, healthy summer appetizer everyone will love. P.S. You can skip the skewers and just toss everything in a bowl, like we did in our watermelon feta salad.

Get the Watermelon Feta Skewers recipe.

watermelon ice cream verticle
John Komar
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Watermelon Ice Cream

Sweet, creamy, and doesn't require a fancy ice cream maker? Sign us up for this light ice cream that is like the perfect mix between a snow cone and ice cream.

Get the Watermelon Ice Cream recipe.

watermelon jug
Andrew Barell
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Watermelon Jug

Prepare yourself for all the applause when you inevitably turn a whole watermelon into a giant big batch summer cocktail. You can thank us later.

Get the Watermelon Jug recipe.

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Grilled Watermelon

Like with grilled peaches and grilled pineapple, grilling watermelon not only changes the texture of the fruit, it lends a smoky flavor and brings out its natural sweetness. We love this simple preparation, but the watermelon would also be super-delicious cubed and added to a watermelon feta salad.

Get the Grilled Watermelon recipe.

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Watermelon Fries

If you've ever had watermelon salsa (or any fruit salsa, really), you know that watermelon + spice is a surprisingly delicious combination. We add just a a little kick to complement the sweetness of the watermelon, but if you're a fan of spicy foods, feel free to go crazy with the chili powder.

Get the Watermelon Fries recipe.

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