There are few fruits that scream summer the way watermelons do. These juicy melons often appear at barbecues and in frozen drinks, but they’re not often featured in salads, until now.
This watermelon feta salad has ingredients that, at first glance, might not seem like they go together. Watermelon and pistachios? Kale and feta? Trust me when I say that this watermelon salad is about to become a new favorite!
Sweet & Salty: Why It Works
You might already enjoy sweet and salty food combos, like caramel popcorn or chocolate-covered pretzels. But why is it that these two flavors get our taste buds so excited?
Like most awesome duos, when sweet and salty are paired together, they bring out the best in each other. Sweet tastes are actually enhanced by salt; by layering the two flavors in the same bite, you’re getting maximum deliciousness.
The sweet and salty combination also keeps your taste buds guessing. If you only ate sweet foods, eventually you’d get tired of them — same with salty stuff. When you eat them together, though, instead of flavor fatigue, you get a unique combination that your brain just can’t get enough of.
In this watermelon feta salad, we’ll take advantage of contrasting flavors by joining together sweet, ripe watermelon with salty, tangy feta cheese. Topping it all off is a maple sugar and coconut vinegar homemade dressing. Drooling is acceptable.
Watermelon Feta Salad Nutrition Facts
Not only is this watermelon and feta salad really darn tasty, but it’s also good for you. One serving contains approximately:
- 387 calories
- 5.92 grams protein
- 34.93 grams fat
- 15.55 grams carbohydrates
- 10.67 grams sugar
- 2.4 grams fiber
- 98.6 micograms vitamin K (110 percent DV)
- 2359 IUs vitamin A (101 percent DV)
- 4.53 milligrams vitamin E (30 percent DV)
- 0.254 milligrams copper (28 percent DV)
- 140 milligrams phosphorus (20 percent DV)
- 0.315 milligrams manganese (18 percent DV)
- 262 milligrams sodium
This watermelon salad is loaded with good-for-you ingredients. Watermelon is an antioxidant-rich food that helps boost immunity and protect cells from free radicals. It’s also a good option if you have high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease. Because it has a high water content, it keeps skin looking good, while also helping you lose weight, since it’s low in calories, too. And it’s also super refreshing during the hot summer months!
Kale is a powerful leafy green that’s full of vitamins, especially vitamin K and vitamin A. As an anti-inflammatory food, kale helps protect the body from one of the main causes of disease. It’s also a cancer-fighting food and good for your heart, as it’s been proven to lower bad cholesterol levels.
Arugula is another leafy green and makes up the bulk of this salad. The slightly bitter taste is a nice contrast from the sweet watermelon, but this vegetable has more than just good taste going for it. Arugula is excellent for keeping your eyes and heart healthy and aids in digestion by balancing pH levels. And if that’s not enough, it might even be a natural aphrodisiac!
Finally, feta cheese pulls this whole salad together. Choosing goat’s cheese means the cheese is more easily digestible than those made from cow’s milk, so you’re more likely to be able to tolerate it even if you’re usually sensitive to dairy.
It’s time to put this salad together!
How to Make Watermelon Feta Salad
Start by combining the salad dressing ingredients and setting them aside. If you don’t have coconut vinegar, apple cider vinegar can be substituted.
Split the arugula and kale over three to four plates.
Let’s dress up these leafy greens. Add the watermelon, cucumber, tomatoes, goat cheese and pistachios, making sure to combine them well on the plate.
Top each plate with fresh mint and green onion.
Drizzle the dressing over the watermelon feta salad and chow down.
Enjoy this fresh watermelon salad all summer long for lunch or dinner. Make it heartier by pairing it with grilled chicken or fish.
Watermelon Feta Salad Recipe
- 3 cups arugula
- 3 lacinato kale leaves, stems removed, chopped/massaged
- 2 cups watermelon, cubed and seeds removed
- ½ cup cucumber, halved and sliced
- 1 cup mini kumato tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup goat feta
- ¼ cup pistachios, crushed
- 3 sprigs mint, stems removed and chopped
- 1 green onion, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons coconut vinegar
- juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon maple sugar
- ½ cup olive oil
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- Mix together the dressing ingredients and set aside.
- On 3–4 plates, add the arugula and kale.
- Add the watermelon, cucumber, tomatoes, goat feta and pistachios.
- Top with mint and green onion.
- Drizzle on dressing and serve.