Grilled Watermelon and Arugula Salad screams summer! Loaded with fresh cherry tomatoes, shallots, radishes, basil, mint and feta, then coated in a tangy white balsamic vinaigrette.
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Why grill watermelon?
If you haven't considered grilling watermelon or citrus before, now you should. The grill adds char and smokiness that concentrates the fruits' sugars and results in unparalleled depth of flavor. You could skip this step but it literally takes minutes and raises this seasonal salad to a whole new level.
While the grill heats up simply brush some olive oil on the watermelon and sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Dip the cut side of the lemons or limes (you could use either in the dressing) in a little granulated sugar, and you're ready to go.
It takes just 2-3 minutes for each side to get those charred grill marks with slightly caramelized edges. If you're like me, you may need to throw a couple extra slices on the grill so there's enough left for the salad.😉
Once the watermelon is cool enough to handle, cut into chunks and add it to the rest of the line-up. The sweet, smoky flavor of the watermelon and citrus pairs perfectly with the peppery bite of the arugula, tang of the radishes and bright flavors of the tomatoes, basil, and mint.
The simple white balsamic dressing adds some acidity while letting summer's bounty shine. You can serve as a side dish or as an app. Pour your favorite rosé and enjoy! Cheers to summer, friends!!
More Delicious Sides to Try!
Grilled Watermelon and Arugula Salad
- 6 slices seedless watermelon , cut 1-inch thick, about 3 lbs
- 3 tablespoons olive oil , divided
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to sprinkle on watermelon
- 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar , may substitute white wine vinegar
- 1 lemon or lime , grilled
- 1 teaspoon honey
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 cup heirloom cherry tomatoes , halved, about 6 ounces
- 1 cup baby arugula , packed
- ¾ cup shallots , thinly sliced
- ½ cup radishes , thinly sliced
- ½ cup feta cheese , crumbled
- ¼ cup fresh mint , thinly sliced
- ¼ cup fresh basil , thinly sliced
- Preheat grill over medium-high heat.
- Brush watermelon wedges on both sides with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Sprinkle both sides with sea salt and ground pepper.
- Grill watermelon and lemon or lime halves 2-3 minutes per side until slightly softened and caramelized. When cool enough to handle, cut watermelon into 1-inch pieces. You’ll have about 4 cups.
- In a large bowl, combine vinegar, grilled lemon or lime juice, honey, salt, and pepper. Slowly whisk in remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Add remaining ingredients and watermelon. Gently toss to coat. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Cover and chill.) Serve chilled or at room temperature.
*Recipe generously adapted from Cooking Light, August 2017