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Watermelon, Arugula and Feta Salad

Watermelon salad
Lauren Salkeld

Chef notes

There are several activities that are a must on every summer checklist: a trip to the beach, a weekend cookout that starts at noon and lingers well into the evening, and picking out the perfect ripe watermelon at the market. Nothing beats the summer heat quite like biting into a juicy, ruby red slice of watermelon, but the hydrating fruit is sometimes even better in other forms — like blitzed into a margarita, frozen into popsicles or tossed into this vibrant arugula salad.

Cubes of the cooling melon mingle with peppery arugula and tangy feta in this simple, refreshing dish. Minced shallots, freshly squeezed lemon juice, honey and olive oil combine to form a zippy dressing that highlights the sweetness of the watermelon, while subduing arugula’s natural bite. And because no salad is complete without some crunch, a handful of toasted almonds are sprinkled on at the very end.

This effortless summer salad works for warm weather gatherings of all kinds. It’s elegant enough to serve as a dinner party appetizer, but not so fussy that it feels out of place as a BBQ or picnic side dish. On days when it’s simply too hot to turn on the stove, enjoy a bowl as a light lunch or pair it with some bread and charcuterie as a no-cook meal that everyone will be excited to dig into.

Get Ingredients: If you don’t have everything you need on hand, you can easily purchase all of the ingredients (just click the orange button below that says ‘Get Ingredients’). You can pick and choose exactly what ingredients you need based on what’s in your pantry and they’ll be on your doorstep before you know it. 

Technique Tip: Look for watermelons that feel heavy for their size and have a creamy yellow field spot — those have spent more time ripening on the vine and hold a lot of juice.

Swap Option: If you’re not a fan of arugula, feel free to use other greens such as baby spinach or a spring mix. You can also add fresh summer herbs such as basil or mint, both of which pair beautifully with watermelon.



  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 6 cups baby arugula
  • 3 cups diced seedless watermelon (from a 2 1/2 pound piece, rind discarded)
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese
  • 1/3 cup chopped, toasted almonds
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In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, honey and shallot. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add more lemon juice or honey to make the vinaigrette more tart or sweet if you prefer. 

In a large serving bowl, combine the arugula and watermelon. Add the vinaigrette and toss to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Sprinkle the salad with the feta and almonds. Serve immediately.