Melon Ball Salad With Mint


This melon ball salad recipe is tart, fruity, a little sweet and creamy, and, when served with the sherbet, it’s even a tiny bit crunchy. Mint adds a touch of freshness to the creamy cottage cheese topping of this succulent sweet and tangy fruit salad. I don’t really like salads all that much, but this one is worth a try. All of the ingredients are snackable like crackers or popcorn, so it’s easy to make for parties and other special events.

Chilled Melon, Cucumber and Mint Salad

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 20 min
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings


Deselect All

2 medium melons, such as cantaloupe, Galia or honeydew

2 medium hothouse cucumbers, peeled, cut into 1-inch cubes and chilled 

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 

Zest and juice from 1 small lime 

1 tablespoon honey 

6 fresh mint sprigs, stemmed 

Freshly ground black pepper


Special equipment:

 a melon baller

  1. Place the melons on a flat surface and split each one in half. Scoop out and discard the seeds. Use the larger-size scoop on a melon baller to scoop out the flesh. The goal is to tightly pack about 6 generous cups of melon flesh and then hollow the four melon halves out for presentation. Scrape the halves with a spoon to smooth the insides and gather additional flesh (and trap any juices) in a separate bowl until you have 1 heaping cup. Save the melon halves. Refrigerate the melon balls.
  2. Place the melon scraps and juices in a blender and add 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, the lime zest and juice and honey. Puree until smooth and taste for seasoning. Add more honey, if needed. Add a splash of water if more liquid is needed to make a smooth puree. Refrigerate.
  3. In a medium bowl, toss the cucumbers with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and a generous amount of black pepper. Toss the melon balls with the dressing. Sprinkle the cucumbers and mint over the melon and mix a little. Fill the melon halves.

Cook’s Note

This is such a retro vibe to use the ingredient as the vessel to present the dish. It’s like serving ceviche in a coconut shell or making a giant watermelon “basket” from the rind and serving the watermelon inside it. You know what? I love it. You can serve a melon “half” per person or you can arrange these on a platter and allow more people to serve themselves from the melon vessels. Ideally, the melons should be ripe, so buy whatever is good. Sniff the melons to get a sense of what they will taste like. If ripe, you should smell hints of melon and flowers.

Mint And Melon Fruit Salad Recipe
Fruit salads tend to be a summertime thing, and this salad makes use of some of summer’s most bounteous (or at least largest) kinds of produce — three types of melon. Recipe developer Michelle McGlinn calls this salad “Perfectly refreshing for hot summer days,” describing it as “lightly sweet, bright, and very refreshing.” What’s more, the salad is quite portable, too, making it the kind of thing you could easily take on picnics or trips to the beach.

One technique McGlinn feels makes her salad particularly attractive is using a melon baller to shape the melons, but if you do not own one, she does say that “Working the melons into spheres is an optional technique” so you could simply cut the fruit into chunks, instead. If you do chop, rather than ball your melon, be aware that you’ll likely have a lot more salad. As McGlinn admits, when using a melon baller, “a lot of the melon goes unused.” If you do opt for the aesthetic approach, don’t just let the unused melon go to waste. McGlinn recommends cutting the leftover fruit into chunks, saying it makes for “a lot of good, albeit odd-looking, melon.”

Gather the ingredients for this mint and melon fruit salad
To make this fruit salad, you’ll be combining 4 different types of fruit: cantaloupe, honeydew melon, watermelon (seedless, please!), and blueberries. You’ll also need fresh mint, both for flavor and for decorative purposes. And for the salad dressing, you’ll use a simple mixture of maple syrup and lemon juice.

If you’re not a huge maple syrup fan, McGlinn says “You can definitely use honey instead.” She also says that blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, or grapes can be used in place of the blueberries. She does not recommend skipping the extra fruit altogether and going with an all-melon salad, though, as she says it adds “variety and extra sweetness between the layers.”

Make the melon balls
If you opt for balling the melon, McGlinn recommends you employ a different size melon baller or cookie scoop for each melon. The reason for this is because the different-sized balls will add visual appeal to the salad.

The way to scoop the melon balls is to first halve and de-seed the melons. Then, press the melon baller into the flesh around the center of the melon and half-twist it around until you’ve scooped out a sphere. (This may take a little practice if it’s not something you do all the time.) Once you’ve gotten as many scoops as you can out of a layer of melon, cut about an inch off the fruit so you’ll have a fresh surface for scooping. Repeat the process until you’ve scooped as much melon as you can, then move on to the next melon.

Combine the fruit and dressing
Mix all of the melon balls (or chunks) in a large bowl, then add the blueberries. Mix the lemon juice and maple syrup together in a small bowl and drizzle them over the salad. Toss the salad gently to make sure all of the ingredients are well-combined. Allow the dressing to soak into the salad for at least 5 minutes. 

Garnish the salad with mint
Divide your mint leaves into two piles. Chop the mint in one pile fairly finely, then sprinkle it over the salad. Toss the salad once more to distribute the mint throughout. The remaining mint is to be scattered over the top of the salad to make it look extra pretty.

This fruit salad can be used as a side dish or even a dessert, although if you want something a bit sweeter McGlinn suggests “It makes for a great topping on frozen yogurt and semifreddo” and would work well with ice cream or sherbet, too. She also notes that it could be “perfect for eating with breakfast,” perhaps used to top a bowl of yogurt or some cereal or granola.

Melon Salad with Chili and Mint

Summery Melon Salad with fresh cantaloupe and honeydew melon, diced, and tossed with lemon or lime, mint, and serrano chili.

Melon Salad with Chili and Mint

It may seem somewhat counterintuitive, but sweet melons such as cantaloupe, honeydew, or watermelon taste even more special with a little salt to balance their sweetness.

This is why watermelon with feta is such a classic summer salad. We’ve taken this idea a little further by adding a touch of zing from chiles to our melon salad.

Don’t overdo it with the chiles! There should be just enough to make your tongue tingle.

That along with the sweetness from the melons, a little lime or lemon juice, some mint, and a dash of salt, and you have a summer melon symphony.


Melon Salad with Chili and Mint

Melon Salad with Chili and Mint

PREP TIME15 mins


SERVINGS3 to 4 servings

Experiment with different shapes for the diced melon, including using a melon baller if you have one. This melon salad holds up well in the fridge, but the mint should be added at service.

This recipe easily scales up.

Feel free to toss some crumbled salty cotija or feta cheese into the salad!


  • 4 cups diced melon, honeydew, cantaloupe, or ambrosia melon, or a mixture, about 1 large or 2 small melons
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, more or less to taste
  • 1/2 serrano chile, minced (taste the chile first to determine its heat, then add more or less to taste)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons lime juice or lemon juice
  • 10 large fresh spearmint leaves


  1. Toss melon with salt:Put the diced melon into a large bowl. Sprinkle with salt and toss to combine.
  2. Add the lime or lemon juice and minced chili:Toss to combine. Chiles vary in their level of hotness, so start with a small amount (maybe 1 teaspoon minced), and add more to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. When you are ready to serve, slice the mint leaves thin and gently combine with the diced melon:The easiest way to slice the mint is to chiffonade it: stack the mint leaves, roll them into a cigar shape and slice thin.


There’s nothing more refreshing than perfectly ripe, in-season melon. And that fresh flavor gets elevated further when paired with juicy strawberries, sweet melon, and herbs picked straight from the garden. This melon ball salad is fresh, delicious, and fun to make!

close up overhead view of melon ball salad with strawberries and mint in white bowl.


  • Comes together quickly: Once you’re done balling the melons, the rest of the salad comes together in about 5 minutes.
  • Better than a regular fruit salad: Fruit salads can be super boring, but this melon salad keeps it interesting, with pops of herbaceous basil and mint, the acidity of the lime, and the sweetness of the strawberries and melons.
  • Great way to use summer fruits: Melon and cantaloupe are pretty boring on their own, but alongside melon, strawberry, and a great dressing, they turn into stars.


Here are the key ingredients you’ll need to make this melon ball salad with strawberries:

overhead view of ingredients for melon ball salad in bowls.


  • Fresh herbs: This melon salad will taste best with fresh mint and basil, so don’t skip them! If you don’t have fresh, leave them out altogether – this salad is not a great use for dried herbs.
  • Fresh fruit: Just like the herbs, this melon ball salad will taste best with fresh, in-season fruit, so ideally make this during the summer, when watermelons, honeydew, and cantaloupe will all be at their peak freshness and flavor.
  • Melon prep: Balling the melons is pretty fun, but if you’re pressed on time, you can opt to slice the melons into smaller cubes instead. The salad will still taste great!
  • Agave: agave is a neutral sweetener that really helps tie this melon salad together. If you don’t have any, you can sub with another liquid sweetener like honey.


(1) To make the dressing, whisk together ¼ cup lime juice, 1 teaspoon agave, ⅛ to ¼ teaspoon salt. Then add in 3 tablespoon chopped mint and 1 ½ tablespoon chopped basil and stir gently. Set aside while prepping the rest of the ingredients so the mint and basil have a chance to flavor the dressing.

close up overhead view of lime mint dressing in white bowl.

(2) For the salad, use a melon baller to carve balls out of watermelon, honeydew, and cantaloupe melon. You should keep scooping until you have 3 cups of watermelon balls, 2 cups of cantaloupe balls, and 2 cups of honeydew balls. Don’t discard scraps – either eat them on their own, or add them to a smoothie or juice!

on the left: melon baller with honeydew. on the right: four bowls filled with watermelon, canteloupe, honeydew and strawberries.

(3) Slice the strawberries lengthwise into thin round circles. Add the strawberries and balled fruit to a mixing bowl and pour the dressing over the top. Gently stir to coat fruit, and then transfer to a serving bowl or platter. Store in the refrigerator until ready to eat. Enjoy!

before and after stirring together ingredients for melon salad with strawberries and mint.


  • Melon baller is optional: If you’re pressed on time, just cut the melons into cubes instead of balling them.
  • Storage: Store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve. It keeps well for up to 3 days, but this strawberry melon salad tastes best when eaten the same day it’s made. It also tends to get soggier the longer it sits.

What is a melon baller?

A melon baller, also called a Parisienne scoop, is a small spoon-like utensil that’s used to cut ball-shaped pieces of melon. Essentially, you insert the tool into the melon, twirl it in a full circle, and you get a perfect little sphere of melon! You can find them at any kitchen supplies stores.

How do I tell if a watermelon is ripe?

A ripe watermelon will have a large yellow spot and will feel heavy and sturdy. Knock on the watermelon – if it sounds nice and hollow, it’s likely at peak ripeness. If it sounds dull (or feels soft), pass.

How do I tell if a cantaloupe is ripe?

If it’s green, it’s not ripe. It will be firm to the touch but not completely hard, and it should smell sweet. If it smells bad, don’t buy it.

How can I tell if honeydew is ripe?

The skin will be more yellow than green, and if you press on the bottom, it will feel slightly soft.


This melon salad is simple and refreshing! Cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon toss with a little honey, lime juice and fresh mint leaves. Perfect for lazy hot summer days; poolside, picnics, breakfast, brunch — you name it!

prep time:15 MINS

total time:15 MINS


  • 1/2 large cantaloupe
  • 1/2 large honeydew melon
  • 1/2 large personal size seedless watermelon
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • fresh mint


  • OXO Good Grips Melon Baller


  • Use a melon baller to scoop round spheres out of each melon and place them into a large bowl.
  • In a small bowl, combine 1 tablespoon honey with the juice of 1/2 a lime. Whisk to combine and pour over the melon. Gently toss together before serving with torn fresh mint leaves.
  • *If making in advance; chill melon then toss with honey lime syrup and garnish with fresh mint right before serving

calories: 186kcal, carbohydrates: 47g, protein: 3g, fat: 1g, saturated fat: 1g, polyunsaturated fat: 1g, monounsaturated fat: 1g, sodium: 34mg, potassium: 852mg, fiber: 3g, sugar: 40g, vitamin a: 4484IU, vitamin c: 76mg, calcium: 40mg, iron: 1mg

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