Melon Berry Salad

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This melon berry salad has a variety of ingredients that blend nicely together. The yellow watermelon and blueberries compliment each other nicely as well as the red seedless cantaloupe. The sweetness of the fruit combines with the honey to give a nice touch to the Watermelon Berry Fruit Salad

All these flavors make this WATERMELON FRUIT SALAD recipe a wonderful addition to any meal or party buffet. Eating watermelon can offer a number of health benefits including helping to lower blood pressure and protecting against cancer. Find out how you can use this sweet fruit to help keep you healthy!

Melon Berry Salad

Total Time:15 MINUTES

Take advantage of all that ripe, delicious summer fruit with a mouthwatering summer fruit salad with your choice of either a creamy yogurt dressing or a honey citrus dressing!

For more ways to use up all the fruit, try my recipes for 

Greens are great, but fruit is better! So says me in the summer anyway. I just can’t resist buying all those juicy, bright melons, the shiny red strawberries, the bursting-with flavor citruses and crunchy grapes, sweet peaches and nectarines…my mouth is watering just typing these words. 

One of my favorite ways to serve up all these fruits together is in this healthy fruit salad recipe with a light, citrusy or yogurt dressing for a little extra somethin’, somethin’ that really just ties all the fruit together. If you don’t like the idea of a light, sweet dressing mixed into your fruit salad, then you can always leave it on the side as a dip! 

Why This Recipe Works?

  • Easy ingredients — Use my fruit suggestions as just that: suggestions. You can use whatever fruits you like, or keep it simple and just use berries or melons or whatever you feel like! 
  • Versatile — Top this fruit salad with cool whip for an additional creamy sweetness, make the fruit salad with yogurt dressing, or make it with the honey citrus dressing, or serve all on the side for people to make their own choices. 
  • Minimal prep work — Just cut some fruit, rinse some berries, pat dry and put them all together. Whip up a dressing of your choice to pour over and mix. That’s it!  
  • Great for all ages — This creamy fruit salad is always a healthy, welcome treat by adults and kids alike at dinner, a cookout, a potluck, or even as a dessert. 

Here’s How You Make It

  1. Cut and prep all your fruit and put it all together in a large bowl and combine. 
  2. Stir together the ingredients for whichever dressing you choose (honey citrus OR creamy yogurt). 
  3. Add whichever dressing you chose over the top of the fruit (see ingredients for each, below) and toss to coat, or put it in a container in the fridge to either toss over the salad when you’re ready to eat or serve it on the side.
  4. You can also cover the dressed fruit salad with a lid or plastic wrap and chill for up to 12 hours to let the flavors combine.

How Do You Keep Fruit Salad From Turning Brown?

The fruits I chose to add to this summer fruit salad do not brown. However, if you choose to use fruits such as apples, bananas, pears, or peaches, they will start to brown as soon as the air hits them. To keep this from happening, toss them in some acidic juice such as lemon, orange, or pineapple before adding to the salad. 

One note on bananas: If you are adding them to your fruit salad, I recommend not cutting and adding them till the last possible minute to keep them as fresh as possible. 

What is The Healthiest Fruit?

All fruits are good for you, in my opinion, but some have more nutrients than others. At the top of the list are olives believe it or not (yes, they are a fruit!). Followed closely by blackberries, oranges, grapes, bananas, papaya, guava, and cherries, to name a few. 

Can I Eat Pineapple and Banana Together?

Listen, you can eat whatever fruits you like together. But, some go better than others together. The reason you don’t want to keep pineapples and bananas together too long is that the acid from pineapple will break down the bananas and make them mushy ahead of time. 

This is why I always wait till the last possible moment to add sliced bananas to any fruit salad. 

Expert Tips

  • This recipe is extremely versatile and both dressings go with any fruit so feel free to swap out or add any fruit you prefer or have on hand! 
  • If you choose to use the yogurt dressing and make it ahead of time, I recommend preparing the dressing and storing it covered in the fridge (a lidded jar works great!), then tossing with the fruit just before serving. 
  • To make your fruit salad uniform, try to cut the melon pieces all about the same size. Or, use a melon baller to make cute little uniform balls of melon. 
  • Add a container of cool whip topping to make your fruit salad extra creamylicious!
  • For some creative ways to serve fruit salad, consider adding it all back into a hollowed-out watermelon “basket,” skewer the fruit for fruit kabobs, add it stylishly to bamboo sticks to create a fruit bouquet, or make a fruit pizza. 

Watermelon Berry Fruit Salad

This Red, White, and Blue Berry Fruit Salad with watermelon stars is perfectly patriotic for the 4th of July and all of the summer holidays. Tossed in a light honey lime dressing, it’s fresh, sweet, healthy, and delicious!

Watermelon Berry Fruit Salad for Fourth of July and More

In the summer, I don’t think there is much better than digging into a big bowl of fresh fruit salad. When berries and melons are in their peak season, they are sweet, juicy, and absolutely delicious. And if you choose the right fruits, you have the perfect colors for our favorite summertime holidays.

But do you really need a recipe for fruit salad?

Sure, you could just cut up a bunch of fruit and toss it in a bowl. But the addition of a simple honey lime dressing really makes the flavors pop.

And while you can enjoy it anytime, the strawberries and blueberries with the addition of watermelon stars make it an especially fun fruit salad for the Fourth of July, Labor Day, and Memorial Day, as well as birthday parties or baby showers!

What Makes This the Best Fruit Salad

Using Fresh Fruit

If you are making this watermelon berry fruit salad for the 4th of July or pretty much anytime during the summer, you know that the melons and berries are going to be in season. And using fresh fruit that isn’t bruised or getting mushy will ensure that you have the best results.

Also, especially in the case of the berries, you’ll want to make sure you hold off on washing them until right before you plan to assemble the salad, as that can make them start to get soft or moldy faster.

And if the berries aren’t perfect, you can always add in other fruits that are at their prime. Earlier in the spring and summer you can get some gorgeous raspberries and blackberries. Later in the summer, stone fruits like cherries and peaches are perfection. And apples, bananas, and mangoes are available pretty much any time of the year!

Delicious Fruit Salad Dressing

The flavors in the simple honey lime dressing enhances the fruit. Honey adds a little extra burst of sweetness. Lime juice gives it that citrusy zing. And just a bit of mint adds an extra element of freshness.

And if your strawberries, blueberries, and watermelon aren’t super juicy, this will add more moisture.

Keep it From Turning Brown

While the fruits in this recipe don’t tend to discolor, if you decide to add others like apples or bananas to the mix, the honey and lime will help keep them from turning brown.

Watermelon Stars

While this doesn’t change the flavor of the fruit salad, taking a few minutes to cut the watermelon into stars definitely makes it more fun and festive! It’s a simple step that impresses kids and adults. And you could really use any shape.

Ingredients to Make Honey Lime Dressing for Fruit Salad

Just three simple ingredients come together to add a sweet, refreshing flavor to your berry fruit salad.

  • Honey: If you want to make it vegan, you can substitute agave nectar or maple syrup.
  • Lime: You’ll just need the juice (trust me, you want fresh, not the bottled stuff), but you can zest it before you squeeze out the juice if you want to use the zest as a garnish.
  • Fresh mint: The flavor is strong. Start with a little and you can always add more.

 Want a brighter citrus flavor?

Try using lemon or orange juice instead! 🍋🍊

Fruits for Fruit Salad

To keep it simple for a red, white, and blue berry fruit salad, you really only need a few different fruits.

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Watermelon

Or any other fruit that is in season!

How to Make Fresh Fruit Salad

Make the Dressing: Stir together the honey, juice of the lime, and fresh mint, then set it aside.

Prepare the Berries: The strawberries and blueberries should be washed and dried well. Remove the stems and hulls from the strawberries and chop into smaller pieces. Combine the berries in a bowl.

Make the Watermelon Stars: Slice the watermelon into rounds about an inch thick. Lay each slice flat and use a star cookie cutter to cut out as many stars as you can fit. Add them to the bowl.

 What should I do with the leftover pieces of watermelon?

You can cut the bits of watermelon that are left as the outlines where you cut the star out away from the rind and place it into the bowl of fruit as well, save it to eat on its own, or even freeze it to make a watermelon slush!

Toss it All Together: Pour the Honey Lime Dressing over the watermelon and berries, then gently toss it all together with a spatula. Garnish with some of the lime zest or additional mint, if you like.

Can You Make Fruit Salad in Advance?

Fruit salad is best eaten right away, especially when you are adding a dressing. Cut fruit tends to give off juice after it is washed or cut, so adding extra liquid just causes more moisture to collect. Then the fruit sits in it and can get mushy.

If you must do any preparation in advance, I recommend washing, drying, and cutting the fruit, and keeping them in separate containers. Then toss them together with the dressing before serving.

How to Store Fruit Salad

This is best eaten right away but if you have extra it will keep in the fridge covered for 2-3 days. You might want to check it each day and pour off the collected liquid.

WATERMELON FRUIT SALAD

WATERMELON FRUIT SALAD WILL BE YOUR FAVORITE SALAD OF SUMMER!

Watermelon Fruit Salad with Creamy Citrus Glaze will be your go-to spring/summer potluck side that will be gone in minutes!  Its so cool and refreshing with the BEST GLAZE and perfect combo of beloved melons, strawberries, bananas, apples and grapes!

HOW TO MAKE WATERMELON FRUIT SALAD

This Watermelon Fruit Salad is perfect for all your spring/summer potlucks and barbecues (as well as Easter!) ! Its wonderfully simple yet refreshingly delicious packed with an incredible harmony of melons and fruit and the Creamy Citrus Glaze makes it taste extra gourmet AKA you will have everyone begging for the recipe.

I especially love this Watermelon Salad for gatherings because it’s as easy as chopping fruit and whisking a few ingredients together and almost all of it (save the bananas and apples) can be done AHEAD OF TIME!

WHAT FRUITS GO WITH WATERMELON? 

Our Watermelon Salad includes a summery ensemble of watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, strawberries, red grapes, green grapes, apples and bananas.

I find this particular cast of characters delightfully balanced and refreshing, but feel free to mix it up however you please with other fruit such as pineapple, oranges, pears, blueberries, etc..  You’ll just want to add more or less of the Citrus Glaze depending on how much fruit you end up with.

HOW TO PICK A GOOD WATERMELON 

The best Watermelon Salad stars with ripe, sweet melons.  If our melons aren’t ripe they will be severely lacking in flavor, texture and sweetness.  Here is how to pick ripe melons for the best fruit salad:

For Watermelon:

  • A watermelon that is ripe should feel heavy for its size.
  • If you give the watermelon a good tap, you should hear a deep, hollow sound.
  • Most watermelons have a discolored spot that isn’t green from where it was laying on the ground while growing.  The more yellow it is, the more ripe it is.
  • Another ripeness test for watermelons can be done just by looking at them; a dull appearance as opposed to shiny one means they are more ripe.

For cantaloupe:

  • A cantaloupe that is ripe feels heavy for its size.
  • It will have a slight give on the end when pressed where the stem once was.
  • Will have a subtle fruity fragrance (yes, you should hold it up to your nose in the store and smell it).
  • Look for a cantaloupe that has pronounced veiny ridges and isn’t green.
  • If the melon smell is strong, if there are soft or mushy spots, then the melon is most likely overripe.

For Honeydew:

  • A honeydew that is ripe feels heavy for its size.
  • It has a slight give on the end when pressed where the stem once was, and has a subtle fruity fragrance.
  • Another ripeness test for honeydew melons can be done just by looking at them; a dull appearance as opposed to shiny one means they are more ripe.
  • If the melon smell is strong, if there are soft or mushy spots, then the melon is most likely overripe.

HOW TO CUT YOUR MELONS

This Watermelon Salad is made with watermelon, honey dew and cantaloupe, so it is important to know how to cut melons!

  • Since melons are on the ground as they grow, it is possible they have been exposed to more than just sun and water. Before you do any cutting, be sure to wash the outside of your melons to avoid possibly getting sick from E. coli contamination.  Once they have been washed and dried, you are ready to begin.
  • There are several different methods you can use to cut your melon but this is how I like to do it: Start by cutting the melon in half.  For cantaloupe and honeydew melons, grab a large spoon and scoop the seeds out of the center.
  • Next, cut each half into wedges about an inch wide. With your knife, make several vertical cuts from the fleshy part of the wedge (top) down to the rind, (without cutting through it).
  • Run your knife along the bottom of the wedge where the rind is and follow the crescent moon shape until the vertically cut pieces of fruit are separated from the rind. Be careful to avoid the bitter, lighter colored flesh of the melon that meets up with the rind.  You will end up with several cubes.  Continue in this fashion until the entire melon is finished.

HOW TO STORE YOUR MELONS

  • We want RIPE melons for this Watermelon Salad for optimal sweetness and flavor.  If melons are not fully ripe, leave them out at room temperature until they are ready before refrigerating.
  • All cut melons should be placed in an airtight container and stored in the refrigerator.
  • If it is a melon half, keep the seeds inside for maximum freshness and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Melons can permeate other food in your fridge so be sure they are covered well.

BEST BANANAS TO USE IN FRUIT SALAD

I LOVE the sweetness bananas add to this Watermelon Salad.  You can leave them out if you prefer, but my vote is ALWAYS for bananas!

  • Use bananas that are ripe so they are sweet but take care they are not bordering over-ripe or else they will become mushy in the salad.
  • Another tip to avoid mushy bananas is to slice them on the thicker side.  This prevents them from falling apart when tossed or becoming mushy.

WATERMELON FRUIT SALAD DRESSING

This Creamy Citrus Glaze is to live for and makes already tantalizing Watermelon Fruit Salad 10X better!

This Fruit Salad Dressing is a quick whisking of orange juice concentrate, lemon juice, vanilla pudding mix, powdered sugar and sour cream for a balanced sweet and tangy Glaze that compliments and heightens all the natural fruit flavors without overwhelming them.  It just adds that little extra “oomph” that earns you compliments on this Watermelon Salad wherever you take it.

CAN I MAKE FRUIT SALAD AHEAD OF TIME?

Yes! You can prep the Watermelon Salad up to two days in advance but not fully assemble by chopping the fruit and preparing the dressing but keeping separate (tips below).

HOW TO PREPARE WATERMELON SALAD AHEAD OF TIME:

  • This Watermelon Salad can be made a day or two in advance with a few alterations. Cut all the fruits except for the apples and bananas and place them into a bowl (this will help them from browning).
  • You will want to chop your bananas and apples as close to serving as possible to prevent browning or toss them in pineapple, apple, orange or lemon juice.
  • Prepare your Citrus Glaze but do not pour over the melon salad. Melons release a lot of juice after they are cut so you are going to want to refrigerate your chopped fruit separately from your Citrus Glaze.
  • Right before serving, drain off any excess melon fruit juices, cut up the bananas, apples and add them to the bowl. Pour the Citrus Glaze over the fruit mixing gently.

HOW MANY PEOPLE DOES WATERMELON SALAD SERVE?

  • This Watermelon Salad makes approximately 18 cups of fruit. If you guesstimate one cup of fruit per person, that is 18 servings.  I could easily eat 3 cups, however, so you will have to consider how much – more or less  – you think people will eat considering what else is being served with the fruit salad.
  • If one recipe of Watermelon Salad is going to be too much, you can easily halve the recipe or make the full recipe and see my fruit salad leftover section.

HOW LONG DOES FRUIT SALAD KEEP?

This Watermelon Salad keeps for about 3 days in the refrigerator.  Keep in mind, the longer it sits, the more juices will be released from the melons, so serve with slotted spoon or drain of excess juice before serving.

All of the fruit stores well except for the bananas.  The bananas will get mushy and turn brown.  I recommend removing the bananas before storing then adding fresh bananas when ready to serve.

TIPS FOR WATERMELON FRUIT SALAD LEFTOVERS

  • Eat Watermelon Salad for breakfast by adding granola or additional yogurt – SO good!
  • If you can’t use all the fruit in time, freeze it in portioned sandwich bags for smoothies.
  • Make a smoothie by adding fruit, vanilla yogurt, ice/or frozen banana, orange juice and sugar to taste.
  • Make a slushy by combing leftover fruit salad and ice to your blender.  Add additional sugar or honey as needed.
  • Make Popsicle by pureeing the watermelon fruit salad with additional honey or sugar to taste.  Pour puree into Popsicle molds

HEALTH BENEFITS OF WATERMELON

1. It Can Lead To Healthy Weight Management

Watermelon may help support healthy weight management when it’s consumed in place of a processed sweet snack. A 2019 study in the journal Nutrients looked at satiety and weight changes after a four-week intervention in overweight and obese adults.

During the study, one group was asked to consume two cups of fresh watermelon daily, while a second group ate low-fat cookies that had the same number of calories as the watermelon. Participants were allowed to consume their respective snacks any time of day, during one or multiple sittings, or either alone or in combination with other foods.

Researchers found that watermelon promoted greater satiety than the cookies and that satiety (diminished hunger, greater fullness, and a reduced desire to eat) lasted up to 90 minutes after eating. Additionally, the watermelon eaters lost weight, reduced their waist-to-hip ratios and blood pressure levels, and improved their antioxidant status and blood lipids.

2. Watermelon Offers Digestive Support

While watermelon isn’t very high in fiber, the fiber it does contain supports a healthy gut function. The fruit also contains fluid and prebiotics, a type of fiber that stimulates the growth and/or activity of beneficial bacteria in the large intestine, according to a 2016 study in Current Opinion in Gastroenterology. Prebiotics are tied to healthy immune function, anti-inflammation, and positive mood. Prebiotics also boost mineral absorption, improve blood glucose and insulin levels, and may protect against colon cancer.

3. It Helps Defend Against Disease

Watermelon is one of the best sources of lycopene, according to a 2014 study in Experimental and Clinical Sciences. Lycopene is an antioxidant known to combat oxidative stress, which occurs when there is an imbalance between the production of cell-damaging free radicals and the body’s ability to counter their harmful effects. The protection lycopene provides reduces the risk of chronic diseases, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, as well as neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. For the most lycopene, opt for traditional pink flesh watermelon, which contains more antioxidants than yellow and orange varieties.

4. It May Protect Your Skin

If you’re a watermelon lover who takes full advantage of enjoying the fruit while it’s in season, it may offer some skin protection. Watermelon’s vitamins A and C support healthy skin, and the fruit’s lycopene content may protect against sun damage, although the effects are not immediate. One 2021 study in the Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that the ingestion of tomato paste, which provided 16 mg lycopene, reduced sun damage to skin. According to the USDA, a cup and a half of watermelon contains about 9 to 13 milligrams of lycopene.

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