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Watermelon Blueberry Salad: BBQ Side dish

Summer means all the fresh fruit you can get! This refreshing watermelon blueberry salad is great for a cookout side dish! It works especially well for a red white and blue fruit salad for an easy 4th of July recipe or your Memorial Day menu.

appetizer plate of watermelon salad with a balsamic drizzle on it

With all of the summer grilling coming up this recipe Watermelon Blueberry salad is made for any BBQ.  A cookout side idea everyone will enjoy with the refreshing watermelon, sweet blueberries, tangy feta all drizzled with a sweet balsamic dressing.

When it’s hot and you’re entertaining, this watermelon fruit salad is an easy way to serve something healthy, not spend hours in the kitchen and yet still have a great-tasting option.

This easy recipe will be a great choice for Memorial Day or the 4th of July since it’s red white and blue and it’s super-patriotic. It works for a side dish, an appetizer or a light dessert after eating your bbq ribs!

Watermelon is always everyone’s favorite fruit in the summer. As a kid, I loved having slices of it at the pool.  As a grown-up, I love eating it too and this recipe is a more grown-up way to serve it.  

The tangy feta cheese bits go well with the juicy fresh sweet watermelon.  By adding in some blueberries it adds a slightly different texture and another level of flavor.

feta cheese atop watermelon chunks in a bowl

All of these fresh ingredients are mixed together and then topped with a small drizzle of balsamic vinegar and honey.  

Be sure and check out our list of the 101+ recipes for all of your BBQ Side dish needs for summer entertaining!

Making the best Cookout Side with Watermelon

How to pick the perfect watermelon

I’ve tried 20 different ways for selecting a perfect watermelon and find this way works the best the most often.

Pick up the watermelon and touch the area where the melon was attached to the stem.  It should be firm to the touch and not mushy feeling.  

Look at the entire watermelon to make sure there aren’t any soft spots. Smell the melon to make sure it is fresh smelling.  

I know it sounds crazy, but if there is no strong scent put it down.  If there is no scent, the melon was picked too early.

If you get home and the watermelon is too mushy (it happens) don’t worry you can use it in a Watermelon Margarita or toss it in a blender with some ice and yogurt and make a watermelon smoothie.

appetizer plate with watermelon and blueberries with a fork thru it
Appetizer Watermelon Blueberry Salad drizzled with a Balsamic Glaze

How to cut a watermelon

  • Cut the watermelon in half and lay the red watermelon side flat on the cutting board.
  • Take the knife and cut away the entire rind.
  • Cut the watermelon into long slices, then cut the long slices into chunks.

If you are looking how to cut watermelon on its own to serve at a party Hip Foodie Mom taught me how and its the most genius way for cutting watermelon for easy serving!

Questions you might have making this fruit salad with watermelon

Don’t like feta?  Any creamy crumbly cheese will work well in the recipe. I’ve even used a blue cheese when that’s all I had in the kitchen.

I’d like to say you could make this the night before to take some of the pressure off when you are entertaining, but honestly, this salad is better if made on the same day.  You can make it in the morning you will serve it though.

If you have leftovers keep it in a sealed container in the fridge. I ususally serve the balsamic glaze on the side if I have a lot of fruit salad. This helps keep the watermelon from getting mushy.

The watermelon salad will keep but the texture changes a lot the longer it sits after cutting. It’s so good we rarely have any left and if we do we eat it for breakfast the next morning so its at its best texture.

The fact that this Refreshing watermelon salad is made with blueberries makes it a great Patriotic Offering for Memorial Day or 4th of July BBQs but blackberries would also be a good substitution.

You can serve this as a summer salad side dish or as an appetizer as I have it pictured in the first shot in this post! It can also be a light dessert after a heavy meal!

Don’t like balsamic vinegar? You can make a honey lime vinegarette, use a dab of maple syrup or forgo the dressing all together.

The freshness of just sliced basil not only adds color but a burst of flavor but if you don’t have basil you could use cilantro or mint.

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feta, watermelon, blueberry and basil salad in a blue bowl
Yield: 12 as a side dish

Refreshing Watermelon Salad

turquoise bowl with watermelon chunks and blueberries in it

Refreshing Watermelon Salad, the perfect BBQ side dish. Ready in 15 minutes with bursts of citrus with tart feta cheese drizzles with a sticky honey balsamic glaze.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 whole watermelon
  • 1 clamshell blueberries, rinsed well
  • 3 ounces crumbled feta
  • 6 leaves basil, minced
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Instructions

  1. Cut Watermelon into bite sized pieces. Stir blueberries and watermelon together in a bowl.
  2. In a small sauce pan mix balsamic vinegar and honey and heat to bubbling( about 2 minutes).  Do not step away.  Watch it until reduces by 1/2.  Set aside to cool.   
  3. When ready to serve add cheese and basil to watermelon and berries and mix well.  Serve the balsamic glaze on the side for your guests to spoon over the top.

Notes

All recipe calorie information was calculated on what I purchased to make this recipe in My Fitness Pal. When you make the recipe, the calorie content could vary depending on what specific ingredients/brands you actually use. Please take that into consideration if you are following a strict diet.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

12 as a side dish

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 79Carbohydrates: 15gFiber: 1gSugar: 12gProtein: 2g
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Michaela Kenkel

Tuesday 5th of June 2018

I always salt my watermelon, so I know I would love that addition of the feta! It's a very Patriotic salad, I am pinning this one for our picnic on the 4th of July!

Debra C.

Monday 4th of June 2018

Love all your tips and tricks to make this bright fresh salad even better! I've never smelled a watermelon before, but that totally makes sense. Now I'm ready to pick out a flavorful one. This salad looks so bright and fresh, can't wait to give this recipe a try!

Angela

Monday 4th of June 2018

What a fantastic combo of flavors. That sweetness from the melon and honey, that tang of feta and love the addition of blueberries! Great one to snack on all summer long

Ashlyn

Sunday 3rd of June 2018

What a perfectly delicious way to enjoy watermelon in the summertime! The feta and basil are so yummy In this!

Michele

Monday 4th of June 2018

Summertime fruit is so amazing isnt it! Glad you enjoyed it! ~m

Sandra Shaffer

Sunday 3rd of June 2018

Your honey balsamic glaze is fantastic, especially with the salty feta! Great recipe to serve with a classic hamburger. Simple to make for those last minute get togethers!

Michele

Monday 4th of June 2018

Yes! And the fact you can make it ahead makes it stress free entertaining which is always a WIN in my book! ~m

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