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Here’s a new and different (and easy!) summer treat for you – Pickled Watermelon. Not just the rinds, but the whole slice – it’s a mouthwatering, refreshing combination of sweet and salty crunchiness. Totally addictive!
These are some of the prettiest pickles ever. Red, white and green slices of watermelon float in brine with feathery green dill, chunks of celery, and garlic cloves. Imagine how pretty an icy cold bowl of pickled watermelon will look on the table on a warm summer afternoon!
Now, taste it! Your first taste will be an epiphany. This pickled watermelon is going to totally recalibrate how you think of watermelon, and your watermelon flavor memory banks. As you bite into a wedge, there’s a flood of new textures and savory flavors. The outside is velvety smooth, the inside crunchy. It’s sweet and salty, and layered with tastes of celery, dill, garlic, and spices. I’m going to bet you will come out the other side of the tasting experience as totally smitten with pickled watermelon as I was. And did I mention it is easy to make and healthy, too?
If you ever got a watermelon and it turned out to be tasteless and underripe, now you have a perfect recipe to use it up! Once you pickle it, the “blah” watermelon is going to turn into awesome! And for the future, to improve your watermelon picking skills see my guide on how to pick a good watermelon :) You might also like my step-by-step picture guide on how to cut a watermelon.
Pickled watermelon is low in calories. It’s got healthy amounts of vitamins A , B6, and C, potassium, magnesium, and other important nutrients, including lycopene, a powerful antioxidant. The rind contains a lot of citrulline, a compound known to improve circulation and benefit the heart.
Pickled watermelon has a Russian heritage (check out my other Russian recipes – I have a bunch!). I think Pickled Watermelon is one of their best contributions to the world of pickled foods :) Bet you’ll agree!
Watermelons are such a huge part of summer, and so plentiful, but having them just plain or in a fruit salad can get boring after a while. This is a wonderful, and quick and easy, way to spice things up (pun intended)! You refrigerator does most of the work! A bowl of icy-cold Pickled Watermelon is a great addition to any barbeque. It’s a great refreshing appetizer, and compliments cured meats and grilled sausages, as well as almost any rich and hearty food. Bring this to a party, and I guarantee folks will be asking for the recipe, or where you got them!
Make these about 5 days before you want to serve them. Pickled watermelon will keep for an additional 10 days in the fridge – if you can go that long without eating all of them or sharing them with friends!
If you are looking for more recipes to use up the rest of that watermelon, check these out:
Watermelon Gazpacho – a no-cook watermelon vegetable soup made in a blender! So refreshing, this is a perfect summer soup!
Watermelon Feta Salad – another epic combination of sweet and savory! So easy to make!
Watermelon Popsicles – homemade popsicles are so much better than store-bought! Perfect healthy delicious treat!
Can’t get enough of the pickled stuff? Check out these recipes:
Garlic Dill Pickles – these are the crunchiest, most garlicky little pickled cucumbers!
Pickled Zucchini – this is a perfect way to use up zucchini bumper crop!
Pickled Carrots – crunch of the carrot and pickled taste – a true winner!
- 2 lbs seedless watermelon (about half of a small watermelon)
- ¼ cup salt
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 tbsp pickling spices
- ½ tsp pepper
- ¼ cup white vinegar
- 8 cups water
- 8 cloves garlic, chopped
- 5 ribs celery, chopped
- 1 bunch dill
- Cut the watermelon into wedges.
- Put salt, sugar, pickling spices, pepper, vinegar, water, garlic, celery and dill in a large bowl and stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved.
- Add the watermelon wedges to the water mixture, making sure the watermelon is submerged.
- Cover the bowl with lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate for 5 days.
- Once the pickled watermelon is ready, it will keep in a refrigerator for another 10 days.