Watermelon bacon salad

Did you just do a double take on that title? Because I did and I’m the one who made the darn thing.

Watermelon + bacon. Yes, I’m serious.

I feel like I owe some sort of apology for the influx of strawberries and basil recently but then I realize that’s what’s in season, that’s what I’m craving, and so hopefully you are too. If not, sorry, I’m not sorry. Come back in October maybe?

So there’s this half a watermelon in my fridge that’s really the size of a normal watermelon. I don’t even want to know what steroids were pumped through this thing because seriously, it’s ginormous. I love watermelon, but I never buy it. It’s heavy, it takes up an impractical amount of space in my dumbass side by side fridge which I loathe with all my being and cutting through the rind nearly gives me a heart attack as I fear the knife is going to slip and something important is going to be chopped off a la Game of Thrones. I’ve developed a new fear of shiny, metal, pointy things since watching that show, my chef’s knife included.

12 pounds is a lot of melon. I’ve come to this number by the way, solely by doing tricep extensions with it and figuring it’s right around my “easy set” weight for that exercise. That was a sight in the kitchen. Anyway, it’s a lot and something needed to be done.

I’ve done the watermelon, mint and feta thing before. It’s delicious, but I didn’t have feta. I did (and still do) have an overflowing produce drawer between my mother telling me to buy 15 things for father’s day and then not using any of them and the weekly CSA haul, however. So, a cob of corn, some peppery arugula and strawberries made their way into the bowl with a good dose of basil. I mixed it up with some simple oil and vinegar dressing, tasted it and determined it needed salt.

Sans feta, bacon stepped in.

He’s such a good sport, stepping up to the plate (ha) like that, isn’t he?

What resulted was a totally refreshing and summery salad with a fun kick of salt and crunch. If you’re sick of stuff like that, you be crazy.

4.7 from 3 reviews
Watermelon Bacon Salad
Prep time
Total time
A refreshing, summery salad with a salty, crunchy kick.
Author: Gina Matsoukas
Recipe type: salad
Serves: 4
  • 4 cups of watermelon, cubed
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1 ear of corn, kernels sliced off
  • ½ cup baby arugula
  • ¼ cup basil, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 2 pieces bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled
  1. Combine everything except bacon in a large bowl and toss to combine.
  2. Plate and top with a portion of the bacon.
If making ahead of time, reserve bacon for right before serving. Don’t mix in with the salad ahead of time otherwise it will become soggy.


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  1. 1

    This is clearly right up my alley, love fruit and bacon pairings. And the vision of you tricep extending a watermelon is all too much hha.

  2. 2

    I’m so intrigued I’m gonna make it. Anything is better with bacon!

  3. 3
    Ashley - baker by nature says:

    Bacon and watermelon… You are full of beautiful ideas!!! I never buy watermelon either (no chance I’m lugging an extra 13 pounds home from the store), but somehow between parents and BBQ’s, we always end up having some in the fridge.

  4. 4

    Oh I bet the sweet and salty in this is SO good! Love this idea!

  5. 5

    Whata wonderful recipe! I stopped buy those huge watermelons,t o big for just the two of us to eat, however I have forze watermelon and use it for smoothies. I love your bacon and watermelon salad. It sounds intresting and good! My HUsband LOVEs bacon and I bet I could get hime to eat his fruits and veggies if I put bacon it it! I have all the ingredients, so I am going to give this a try tonight!!

  6. 6

    Sweet and salty hmmm… Looks interesting thats for sure! :)

  7. 7

    Watermelon and feta (or halloumi, another great combo) work so well together that I can imagine this sweet/salty watermlon bacon thing is amazing!

  8. 8

    I recently discovered that I actually like watermelon, but oddly, I only like it as a savory item. I made a watermelon, cucumber, pistachio and feta salad last week. But this one’s got bacon in it, so sign me up!

  9. 9

    I’ve been eating my weight in watermelon this past month. As soon as TJ’s starts selling them, I basically eat one a week until the end of the season. It somehow never gets old. Cutting them seriously stresses me out though. I always end up getting the knife stuck in the middle and then praying I don’t lose a finger (or an entire hand) trying to get it out.

    I’ve yet to watch Game of Thrones but my husband is obsessed. I’m thinking I’ll stick to The Bachelorette.

  10. 10

    Oh man, I MUST try this. I am freakin’ OBSESSED with watermelon (if you noticed based on my instagram pics lately!). This looks unreal, I love the salty/sweet combo!!

    PS I always cut up the entire watermelon when I buy it, I cut it into chunks and then store it in a big flat tupperware in the fridge .I hate storing it whole, it takes up way too much space, plus if its cut-up I’ll eat it instantly!

    • 11
      Running to the Kitchen says:

      Now that it’s down to a decent size that’s exactly what I did. If I tried to do it before, I would’ve used up all my tupperware!

  11. 12

    Who would have thought to add those togeher bacon and watermellon?! So creative! Looks gorg too

  12. 13

    Glad you’re getting creative with the CSA stuff. The #1 reason I stopped our CSA was I don’t need 12 lbs of things..all at once. I need it spaced out, but not…at once. That feast or famine and all that food that needed to be used, asap, was stressing me out. And then other times, I wouldn’t have enough or what I really wanted. Your produce sounds amazing!

  13. 14

    Wow, bacon?! Sounds like a great, interesting summer salad! I have been avoiding watermelon because of the lack of space, but i might have to get one soon.

  14. 15

    I have the same darn problem with watermelon in my fridge. I have the stupid side by side as well. Who decided this was a good idea? NOTHING fits. I know I’m being a little dramatic, but I have never had one before and I’ve never had to rearrange my fridge every single time I open it before either. UGH. I have a ginormous watermelon that barely fits and so I am forced to eat it right away instead. I’m kind of OK with that but I would like it to last long enough for me to make this salad. :)

    • 16
      Running to the Kitchen says:

      Ugh, side by sides have followed me my whole adult life. And the damn problem is that they’re always brand new so it’s not like I’m going to get rid of it! They really should stop making them though. I swear no matter what, next house will NOT have a side by side!

  15. 18

    I will be making this this week. I have all said ingredients and have been staring at that watermelon for days wondering what to do with it. I think half will go in this wonderful salad, and half will be juiced. And any “salad” with bacon in it, is a winner in my book (and dear hubby’s). So thanks for the wonderful recipe!

  16. 20

    I’m not kidding when I say I just drooled when I got to this post. Watermelon and bacon are two of my very favorite things in life (aside from hubs, baby and wine that is). That with strawberries in a salad? You have GOT to be kidding me…I’m in love.

  17. 21

    Oh wow, what a flavor combo! I’ve GOT to try this!

  18. 22

    Watermelon = Watermelon Mojitos lovie!!

    • 23
      Running to the Kitchen says:

      omg. duh! I made a watermelon strawberry slushy drink this afternoon with it. Next time…rum!

  19. 24

    LOL I totally did a double take on this title. I saw it in my reader and actually gave a nasty face. But then I clicked over and saw the picture and you know, IT AIN’T LOOK TOO BAD. I love watermelon in the summertime, and heck, if I had 12 pounds of watermelon, I’d make this with some bacon too!! Why not? Healthy and bad-ish at the same time ;)

  20. 26

    I definitely get caught up in the excitement of summer watermelons and buy giant ones…forgetting my husband doesn’t even like watermelon and there’s no one to eat it but me. Except…I kind of think I could trick him into eating (and liking) this because there’s bacon involved. Totally needed this!

  21. 27

    I have to try this flavor combination!!

  22. 28

    I’m on a huge bacon kick right now. I think I ate more bacon in my 4 days in Chicago than I have in the past year. So this recipe couldn’t have come at a better time!

  23. 29

    bacon makes me very happy so I’m totally willing to give this salad a try ;)

  24. 30

    It’s one of those dishes that make rise your eyebrow but then you find yourself obsessing about it until you make it. Cheers to watermelon and bacon combo!

  25. 31

    Gosh, you are on fire with these amazing food combos that I would never think of. I have never thought of pairing watermelon with bacon but now that you mention it, I wish I was filling my face with it right now :) Thanks for sharing another great recipe!

  26. 32

    This looks great! Something sweet and something savory – an unbeatable combination.

  27. 33

    what an interesting combo! i usually don’t like bacon, but i would try this

  28. 34

    I made this last night, used balsamic instead of red wine vinegar, was amazing.

  29. 35
    Makayla says:

    I made this for the fourth tomorrow. It’s really good!!


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