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A tossed watermelon and feta salad in a bowl.

Watermelon, Feta & Mint Salad

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5 from 1 review


Watermelon and feta is a classic combination. This version is inspired by a salad my friend Jill brought to a recent gathering. I’ve folded in some arugula but the salad is delicious without it. 


This is a salad that should be assembled at the last minute and served immediately — when it sits for too long, the herbs and arugula tire. You can, however, prep things ahead of time: cube the watermelon, pick the herbs, slice the feta. While this salad is best served immediately, I do enjoy leftovers the next day … the salad just doesn’t look as pretty, and the herbs lose their vibrancy. 

Balsamic: You can buy aged balsamic vinegar that’s syrupy or you can simmer balsamic vinegar until it’s reduced by half its volume. Simply simmer  1/4 cup vinegar in a small saucepan until it is thick and syrupy. Keep a close watch the entire time, and transfer the balsamic to a small bowl as soon as it starts to thicken because it will continue to reduce as it sits. This will give you 1 to 2 tablespoons of syrupy balsamic vinegar.

Feta: I love the Maplebrook Farms Feta from Vermont, but when I can’t get that, I buy any feta in brine. I prefer slicing it into thin slabs, but crumble it if you wish. 


  • 1 watermelon, no larger than 9 lbs., or 3 quarts cubed watermelon
  • flaky sea salt or kosher salt
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons aged balsamic, see notes above
  • 1/4 cup packed mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup packed basil leaves
  • 7 to 8 ounces feta, see notes above
  • 4 ounces arugula
  • freshly cracked black pepper


  1. Peel and cube the watermelon: Slice off each end of the watermelon, then stand it upright. Run a knife down the sides to remove the rind. Slice the flesh into 3/4-inch (roughly) slabs, then stack the slabs and slice into 3/4-inch strips and then 3/4-inch cubes. Transfer 3 quarts of the cubes to a large bowl. Store the remaining watermelon in the fridge.
  2. Place the cubes in a large bowl. Season with a large pinch of sea salt. Add 2 tablespoons each olive oil and aged balsamic vinegar. Toss gently to combine. Let stand for 5 minutes. The watermelon will begin releasing juices. You may find you have enough dressing with the 2 tablespoons each olive oil and balsamic. Taste a cube. If it needs more salt, olive oil, or balsamic add to taste. 
  3. Gather your herbs. Slice the feta. Add to the bowl and toss to combine.  Finally, fold in the arugula. Crack pepper over the top if you wish. Serve immediately.  
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Toss
  • Cuisine: American