Watermelon lettuce salad is a very easy salad to make that can be made in about 10 minutes. The entire salad is simple and light on the palate. This salad is perfect for those hot summer days. Anyone can make a salad, but lettuce salads are generally easier to make than others. Whether it’s because the ingredients are simple or the salad is more forgiving, I’m not sure. Regardless, this Watermelon & Lettuce Salad is easy to put together and tastes pretty good.
Best Watermelon Salad with Feta Recipe
This Watermelon Salad is a cool and refreshing summer salad recipe passed down to us from one of our family members, Tania, who live in Italy.
This Mediterranean salad is easy to make and delicious to eat and combines sweet fruit and veggies and the salty flavor from the feta cheese. Mix it all together and you have a wonderful Summer meal!
I love watermelon and if you like it too then you will love this salad. It is easy to make, quick to prepare and your family will love it. They will be asking you to make it over and over again.
What is Watermelon Salad?
Watermelon salad is just like it sounds…watermelon with lettuce and other salad toppings. It’s very fresh and also refreshing on a hot summer day. It can be a main dish or served as a side.
It’s especially great to eat when the watermelon is really ripe and sweet. There’s nothing more refreshing than watermelon on a hot day. It’s a healthy salad, full of fresh ingredients and lots of vitamins.
What Ingredients are in Watermelon Feta Salad?
Watermelon – What can be more refreshing in the Summer than watermelon! Any time of the day or night, if you’re hot or thirsty, watermelon hits the spot. It’s so juicy it’s such a hit in this salad.
Lettuce – Like any salad, lettuce is usually the base and then it takes on the flavors of the other ingredients in the salad. Like the watermelon, lettuce is one of the main staples in food for the Summertime. It’s crisp and juicy and you can eat a lot of it without adding too many carbs to your day.
Feta – This is a Greek cheese from sheep’s milk or a combo of sheep and goat’s milk and like most cheeses, Feta is a low carb option for a Low Carb or Keto diet. It’s also a good source of protein and low in fat, with a ton of vitamins. Use chunks or crumbles, whichever is your favorite.
Tomatoes – You can use cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes or any other ones that are small in size. Either leave them whole or cut them in half.
Kalamata Olives – These are a European based olive that goes so well with most salads. Get the pitted ones so you don’t have to fight with the pits.
Basil – An Italian leafy herb with a wonderful smell and taste. You could always replace it with parsley, cilantro, or mint.
Capers – A salty and briny addition to your fruity salad. A good combo…sweet and salty.
Salt and Pepper – Common spices in most recipes.
Seedless Watermelon or with Seeds?
The best type of watermelon to use in watermelon salad is a seedless one.
If you use one with seeds you have to go through the process of taking out the seeds before it goes in the salad which can be very time consuming, or else you will be trying to pick the seeds out of every bite while you are eating the salad which will take the joy out of the experience.
Different Variations of This Recipe
- One thing that I think goes well with this watermelon salad is walnuts, pecans or cashews. Throw a handful or two on top of the salad. It will give you an added crunch and some added protein.
- Roasted Candied Nuts are another alternative and add a little sweetness!
- Or you could take out the watermelon and replace it with strawberries for a little different salad. It’s just as good with the same dressing.
- Another replacement could be to take out the lettuce and try fresh baby spinach instead, or even some arugula mixed in with the lettuce or a combo of all 3 types of greens.
- Cucumbers are also a good addition to the salad, they are low in calories, low in carbs and very crunchy and juicy and refreshing.
- Mint also goes very well with watermelon so if you like mint just add a couple of sprigs of it chopped up. It makes me think of a watermelon mojito!
- Avocado is also a welcome treat to all kinds of salads. It can also be a replacement for the feta if you want to make the salad dairy-free.
How to Pick Out a Good Watermelon?
When you are trying to decide which watermelon to buy to make your watermelon feta salad follow a few quick tips to pick out a good one.
- Pick up the watermelon – It should be heavy and also feel firm. If the outside is soft then put it back down.
- How to tell it is ripe? – If the watermelon has a creamy yellow spot, where the melon was resting on the ground, that means it’s ripe.
- How to know if it’s overripe? – If it has a hollow sound when you tap it that’s good. If it’s overripe or under-ripe the sound will be dull.
When you make the watermelon salad you can choose whichever size and shape that you want to. You can cut it into cubes, or wedges, or use a melon baller to make round balls.
I think the best thing to do is to cut the ends off and then cut the watermelon into slices. Then I cut the rinds off. Once that is done, proceed by cutting it into bite-size pieces, about 1-inch each.
It’s best if you can cut the watermelon into similar size pieces. If you have trouble cutting it you can always use a melon baller which will make the pieces uniform in size and shape, plus it looks attractive
How to Make Watermelon Salad
Let’s share with you how we make our watermelon salad. It’s super easy to make and is very refreshing especially for the summertime on those hot nights or at a BBQ.
Making Watermelon Salad
- The first thing to do is to get a bowl to make the salad in.
- Spread the lettuce out in the bottom of the bowl.
- Chop your other ingredients, the tomatoes, and the olives and of course the watermelon.
- Next place those ingredients on top of the lettuce, not in any special order, just get them all in the bowl.
- Now add the capers, chopped basil salt and pepper.
- Don’t forget the feta cheese
Now we can’t have the best salad without dressing. There are many types of low carb salad dressings you can use on a watermelon feta salad, but this is our favorite.
You just need something very light with this salad. I use just 3 ingredients which are
- Lime Juice – ½ cup
- Olive Oil – ½ cup
- Apple Cider Vinegar – 1 Tbsp
- Mix ½ cup Olive Oil, ½ cup Lime Juice, and 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar in a small bowl or in a small jar with a lid.
- Stir well or shake.
Now you can gently toss all of the ingredients together and pour the dressing over the salad either in the big bowl or on individual servings.
Since watermelon is very watery, and can quickly turn your salad bad, the best thing to do if you want to make it ahead of time, is to cut everything and store them in separate containers in the refrigerator. Then when you get ready to serve the salad then put all of the ingredients together and toss with the lime dressing.
Don’t make too much extra because it won’t last more than 2 days in the refrigerator, depending on how ripe the watermelon is when you cut it. So this is a recipe that is always served and eaten the same day or within a day or two of making it.
Watermelon has a strong smell if it goes bad so smell it before eating the leftovers.
When you add the feta to the watermelon salad it can either be in chunks or crumbled, whichever you prefer.
It’s best to use pitted olives so you don’t have to be taking out the pits with every bit. The same is true with watermelon, it helps to buy the seedless type.
What Dressings Can I Use for This Salad?
When eating this salad it just needs a light dressing with a touch of acidity to complement the other flavors in the salad. I think just a splash of dressing is sufficient because the watermelon is so sweet and juicy, that anything more would be too much and overpower everything else in the salad.
Another homemade dressing that’s good for this salad is our Cilantro Lime dressing.
- ⅔ cup Lime Juice
- ¼ cup chopped Cilantro
- 1 cup Olive Oil
- 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
- 2 tsp Powdered Swerve
Blend all 5 ingredients together, by hand in a bowl with a whisk, or put all of the ingredients in a jar and shake well.
Other dressings that are low carb from the grocery store can also be used if you prefer.
If you aren’t eating low carb then a balsamic vinegar dressing is amazing with watermelon salad!
Is Watermelon Salad Good Without Dressing?
Yes for sure this Watermelon Salad is good tasting without any dressing. The sweetness and juiciness of the watermelon are all you need to be delicious.
Add the rest of the ingredients and it’s wonderful, the saltiness from the olives and capers along with the feta cheese is such a good combo.
Watermelon and Feta Salad
Pretty-in-pink melon, all grown up, energizes this spirited salad.
- 2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 3 bunches arugula (about 12 ounces total), thick stems removed
- 1/4 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 1/2-pound piece chilled seedless watermelon, rind removed, cut into small chunks (2 to 3 cups)
- 4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
- Step 1In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar and oil. Season with salt and pepper.
- Step 2In a large bowl, combine arugula and onion; toss with dressing to taste. Gently toss with watermelon and feta, and serve.
Sweet and savory, this Watermelon Salad with Feta and Mint is a light and refreshing side salad that comes together in just minutes. It’s perfect for summer picnics and potlucks, or just grilling out at home.
An Easy & Healthy Summer Salad
With cubes of watermelon and crumbled feta, this watermelon mint salad is sweet, savory and salty, all in one bite. Watermelon and feta may seem like a strange combination – I definitely raised my eyebrow at first – but it works. Perfectly! When I think back to picnics at the beach when we were little, Watermelon and Feta cheese is what my parents would bring with them every time!
Then again, when you consider many people add salt to their watermelon, I suppose watermelon and salty feta aren’t too far of a stretch. Add in some fresh mint leaves and you have the trifecta of bold, mouthwatering flavors.
One thing I love about this Watermelon Feta and Mint Salad is that nearly all of the ingredients are fresh. With the exception of the feta, you could head to your local farmer’s market and buy everything needed for this recipe, fresh out of the garden. Cooking with local, seasonal ingredients is very rewarding to me and I love that I’m able to do so with this salad.
While you can turn this watermelon salad into a meal, I most often serve it as a side dish. It’s perfect for potlucks and picnics, as it adds a pop of color to any table, and is a nice alternative to heavier mayo-based salads, or pasta salads. But, we love it so much in my family that it’s just become a summer staple, especially on nights where we have the grill fired up!
What You’ll Need
This feta and watermelon salad is made with just a handful of fresh ingredients. As I mentioned, most can be purchased fresh at the farmer’s market or you may even have some ingredients growing in your own garden!
For the Salad
- Mixed salad greens – You can buy a prepared package or make your own mix with your favorite greens.
- Watermelon – You’ll want to remove the seeds (or use seedless watermelon) and cut it into 1-inch cubes.
- Blueberries – Fresh blueberries are best.
- Red onion – Avoid using yellow onion, it doesn’t pair as well with the other ingredients.
- Crumbled feta – Feta adds the salty, savory side to this recipe.
- Black pepper – Freshly cracked black pepper for a bit of flavor and garnish.
- Mint leaves – Fresh mint leaves are added as a garnish to top the salad.
For the Vinaigrette
- Extra virgin olive oil – Use a high-quality oil, as it’s the base of the vinaigrette.
- Lime juice – Use fresh lime juice, not the kind from a bottle. You can also switch it up and use lemon juice.
- Minced mint – Mint provides a light, refreshing flavor to the salad and compliments the watermelon nicely.
- Garlic – Adds another layer of flavor to the dish.
- Salt and pepper – To taste.
How to Make Watermelon Feta Salad
This easy watermelon mint salad comes together in just a few minutes, with minimal prep. All you need is about 20 minutes to prepare and assemble the ingredients.
- Combine salad ingredients. In a large bowl, toss together the greens, watermelon, blueberries, and onions.
- Prepare the vinaigrette. In a separate bowl, whisk together all the vinaigrette ingredients.
- Garnish and serve. When you’re ready to serve, add the vinaigrette to the salad. Then garnish with the feta, cracked black pepper, and mint leaves. Enjoy!
Tips for Success
Is your mouth already drooling about making this watermelon salad? I don’t blame you! Keep these tips in mind to help you make the best salad.
- Make the vinaigrette ahead of time. The vinaigrette can be made ahead of time and I often recommend making it at least a few hours in advance, for the best flavor.
- Add the vinaigrette only to the salad you’re serving. If you’re going to be enjoying the entire salad, go ahead and toss it with the vinaigrette, but otherwise, I recommend drizzling the vinaigrette directly into the individual bowls of salads.
- Use chilled fruit. I find this salad is most refreshing when the watermelon and blueberries are chilled. If they’re not chilled before making the salad, you can always put the salad in the fridge for a an hour or two before serving.
- Switch up the herbs. While I love the light and refreshing flavor of mint, you can swap it out for other fresh herbs. Basil is another great option.
- Use balsamic vinegar in a pinch. If you don’t have the time or the ingredients for the homemade vinaigrette, or you just want a different flavor, balsamic vinegar or glaze will work in a pinch.
This watermelon and mint salad is great for summer BBQs and potlucks, as it’s usually a healthy option to some of the heavier salads. I’ll also make this for a dinner at home, usually when I’m grilling and don’t want to turn the oven on inside. It goes great with any grilled protein, for a light and filling meal.
It pairs particularly well with:
- Grilled chicken, like these grilled chicken thighs and honey mustard chicken.
- The perfectly grilled steak.
- Seafood, like these easy shrimp skewers.
- Grilled pizza! (Or even regular pizza!)
How to Store Leftovers
- Due to the high water content of the watermelon, this watermelon feta salad is best enjoyed the same day it’s made.
- If you do have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the fridge. Keep the vinaigrette separate.
- If you need to prepare your watermelon salad more than a few hours in advance, you can prepare each ingredient individually and store them in the fridge, then quickly toss them together right before serving.