Superfood: Watermelon

Sweet and juicy, watermelon can do more than just refresh you on a hot summer day. This versatile fruit will help you get a dose of vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber.

  • Nutrition Benefits of Watermelon
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross; Cooking Light

    Nutrition Benefits of Watermelon

    Watermelon contains about 92 percent water, making it a good thirst quencher and diuretic. It also consists of about twelve percent fiber and is an excellent source of vitamin C and a very good source of vitamin A because of its beta carotene. High intakes of vitamin C and beta-carotene have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease, improve asthma conditions, reduce the risk of colon cancer, and alleviate some of the symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Watermelon is also a very concentrated source of the carotenoid lycopene, which has antioxidant and cancer-preventing properties.

  • Basil-Infused Watermelon Lemonade
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Becky Luigart-Stayner

    Basil-Infused Watermelon Lemonade

    Summer's favorite beverage meets one of summer's best fruits and gets an added burst of flavor from fresh basil. Because watermelon is naturally sweet, not much sugar is needed to make this lemonade.

  • Sesame-Chile Chicken with Gingered Watermelon Salsa
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Randy Mayor

    Sesame-Chile Chicken with Watermelon Salsa

    Combine diced watermelon with other vitamin C-containing ingredients such as bell pepper and lime juice to make a sweet and tangy salsa for the spicy grilled chicken. To make preparation of the salsa easy, buy a container of cubed watermelon in the produce section of the grocery store and cut the chunks up into smaller pieces.

  • Watermelon Gazpacho
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Photo: Karry Hosford

    Watermelon Gazpacho

    Tomatoes are usually the main ingredient in this Spanish-style chilled soup, but this version features fresh seeded watermelon. Watermelon, like tomato, is a great source of the antioxidant lycopene.

  • Watermelon Salad
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Photo: Douglas Mirriam

    Watermelon Salad

    Instead of offering watermelon wedges at your next cookout, branch out with this sweet and savory watermelon salad featuring cubed watermelon, red onion, kalamata olives, mint, and feta cheese. Even with all the added flavorful ingredients, it still weighs in at only 46 calories per 1/2-cup serving.

  • Flank Steak with Grilled Mango and Watermelon Chutney
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D.

    Flank Steak with Grilled Mango and Watermelon Chutney

    Pair watermelon and mango with lean flank steak for a high-protein main dish that's packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Like watermelon, mangoes are full of powerful antioxidants that can help fight heart disease and some forms of cancer.

  • Watermelon and Blackberries with Lemon Syrup
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Photo: Oxmoor House

    Watermelon And Blackberries With Lemon Syrup

    Good health doesn't get any simpler than this four-ingredient melon and berry salad dessert.

  • Cucumber, Asian Pear, and Watermelon Salad with Ricotta Salata
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross

    Cucumber, Asian Pear, and Watermelon Salad with Ricotta Salata

    Ricotta salata is a crumbly, salty cheese that provides a nice counterpoint to the sweetness of the watermelon and grapes. If you can't find it, you can use feta, which is more pungent but just as tasty.

    Both cucumbers and watermelon have high water content, so eating this salad is a great way to stay hydrated.

    Water tally: 5.3 ounces.

  • Spring Greens with Strawberries and Honey-Watermelon Dressing
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Photo: Oxmoor House

    Spring Greens With Strawberries And Honey-Watermelon Dressing

    In this recipe, the watermelon is blended with honey, vinegar, and olive oil to make a sweet dressing for the greens and fruit. In addition to all the nutrient benefits from the watermelon, the salad greens, strawberries, and almonds also offer plenty of disease-fighting power.

  • Watermelon-Cantaloupe Sorbet
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D.

    Watermelon-Cantaloupe Sorbet

    Double the flavor as well as the nutrients with this two-melon sorbet. Both melons are sources of vitamin A, vitamin C, and fiber.

     

     

  • Minted Watermelon Granita
    By: Anne Cain, M.S., R.D., Photo: Oxmoor House

    Minted Watermelon Granita

    Cool down with this refreshing frozen treat that has only 98 calories and 0.7 grams of fat per serving.

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