This sweet and salty, 4-ingredient Watermelon Feta Salad is a surprising favorite at any summer BBQ or potluck. Easy to make and great for groups!
My daughter is the biggest watermelon fan in our house and could easily go through a melon a week if I let her. Don’t get me wrong; I love watermelon, too, but after a few weeks of gorging myself on plain melon, I need to shake it up a bit.
That’s why I love this Watermelon Feta Salad. It’s just different enough to wake up my tastebuds but not so different that I forget I’m eating one of our favorite spoils of summer.
What is a Watermelon Feta Salad?
Any salty-sweet lovers out there? Then this Watermelon Feta Salad is for you!
The combination of four flavor-packed ingredients gives this summer side dish an incredible taste: juicy watermelon, salty feta cheese, tangy rice vinegar and fresh mint leaves.
Now for those of you who consider salting their watermelon sacrilege, hear me out. Most people associate watermelon with sweet not savory foods, but this surprising dish is the best of both worlds.
The feta actually makes the melon taste sweeter (but not too sweet thanks to the rice vinegar) while the fresh mint ensures every bite is lively. Trust me on this one!
How to pick a ripe watermelon for your watermelon salad
With only four ingredients in this Watermelon Feta Salad recipe (not counting salt and pepper), you need to be sure you choose a ripe, juicy watermelon.
Although it’s easy to make a beeline for the first fresh watermelon you see at the grocery store, try to resist. The best watermelons are those that are grown in season, so that means July for us northerners and a few weeks earlier for warmer climates.
My first choice for picking a ripe watermelon is to buy direct from the farmer at the farmer’s market. I always ask for a ripe melon and they never steer me wrong.
If I can’t make it to the farmer’s market, there are a few rules I follow when choosing a ripe melon:
- The watermelon should feel heavy for its size. A heavy melon is a juicy melon.
- Look at the underbelly of the melon where it has been sitting in the field. What color is it? You’re looking for a creamy yellow color. Any other color (green or white) means it’s not fully ripened yet.
- Give the melon a good thump. If it has a full, hollow sound, you’re in for some sweet, juicy melon. If you hear a dull thud, the melon will not likely be as ripe.
Which feta cheese is better: block feta or pre-crumbled feta?
Although it’s tempting to reach for the pre-crumbled feta cheese at the store, try to resist. We know; sometimes it’s just more convenient to grab the container that’s already crumbed.
But feta in block form that has been packed in brine is always more flavorful and more moist than any dry crumbles from the deli. Plus it’s usually around the same price and you always get more cheese in block form than you do in the pre-crumbled container.
Can I make this Watermelon Feta Salad in advance?
Looking for more melon inspiration? We’ve got loads of great ways to use one of summer’s best fruits with these tried and true watermelon recipes:
Need more summer side dish recipes?
- 7 cups of cubed watermelon, chilled and well drained
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves, coarsely chopped
- Kosher or sea salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- Gently toss melon with rice vinegar, feta cheese and mint. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve immediately.
This salad is best served right away. The vinegar starts to break down the watermelon if made too far in advance.
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Amount Per Serving:Calories: 107 Total Fat: 4g Saturated Fat: 3g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 17mg Sodium: 273mg Carbohydrates: 15g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 12g Protein: 4g
This Watermelon Feta Salad is the quintessential summer recipe for your backyard BBQ. With only 4 ingredients, this side dish comes together quickly and is the perfect combination of salty and sweet!