Spicy Watermelon and Pickled Red Onion Salad

Spicy Watermelon and Pickled red onion Salad

A good watermelon salad always makes me think of the Fourth of July. In the past, I’ve always made Ina Garten’s Watermelon and Feta Salad. It’s one of my absolute favorite Ina recipes… which is saying a lot coming from me. With that favorite in mind, I created my Spicy Watermelon and Pickled Red Onion Salad.

I was also recently eating at one of my favorite Mexican restaurants in town, Jose, and they had a watermelon salad with a ton of pickled stuff on top. So I kinda put the two of these watermelon salads together for an epic, refreshing, and delicious watermelon salad. It goes fantastically with any grilled BBQ and it’s one I know you will just adore! 

If you like this Spicy Watermelon and Pickled Red Onion Salad, try my Summer Kale and Watermelon Salad, Ina’s Arugula, Watermelon and Feta Salad and my Minty Watermelon Margarita Poptails for more summer watermelon recipes. 

spicy watermelon and pickled red onion salad
5 from 2 votes


For the Pickled Onions:

  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 medium white onion, very thinly sliced (about 1 cup)

For the Dressing:

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • small pinch of black pepper

For the Salad:

  • 1 cup baby arugula
  • 4 cups watermelon, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/2 large jalapeno, very thinly sliced


Make the Pickled Onions:

  • In a small jar or bowl, combine the apple cider vinegar, water and kosher salt. Whisk until the salt has dissolved. Add the onions to the liquid and push until they are completely submerged. Cover and set aside to allow to quick pickle, at least 30 minutes. (you can make these in advance and they keep for about 2 weeks).

Make the Dressing:

  • In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients. Stir until well combined. Set aside until ready to serve.

Make the salad:

  • Place the arugula on a platter. Spread the watermelon in an even layer over the arugula. Using a fork, remove the onions from the pickling liquid and layer evenly over the watermelon. Top with thinly sliced jalapeno and drizzle with dressing. Serve and enjoy!


  • Reply
    July 16, 2022 at 3:09 am

    5 stars
    So pretty and yummy!

  • Reply
    Madison Janssen
    June 26, 2022 at 12:18 pm

    5 stars
    So yummy! Brought this to a friends and everyone loved it!

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