Here we season quick-cooking scallops with inspiration from Caribbean pepper pot recipes. To get a nice sear on the scallops without any sticking, be sure to thoroughly pat your scallops dry and preheat the skillet until it’s nice and hot. The spicy scallops are cooled by the sweet, minty watermelon salsa. Ask for “dry” sea scallops at the fish counter. Other scallops have been treated with a sodium solution that prevents them from browning nicely and can make the texture of the meat less pleasant.

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Credit: Caitlin Bensel

Recipe Summary test

15 mins
20 mins
Serves 4 (serving size: 4 to 5 scallops, 1/2 cup quinoa, and 1/2 cup salsa)


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Combine mustard, coriander, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a bowl. Pat scallops dry with a paper towel; sprinkle with spice mixture.

  • Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Add 2 teaspoons olive oil to skillet; swirl to coat. Add scallops; cook to desired degree of doneness, 1 to 2 minutes per side.

  • Toss together watermelon, onion, 2 tablespoons mint, 1 tablespoon lime juice, 2 teaspoons olive oil, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt in a bowl. Combine quinoa, pine nuts, scallions, remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil, remaining 2 tablespoons mint, and remaining 1 tablespoon lime juice. Serve scallops over quinoa mixture; top with salsa.

Nutrition Facts

330 calories; fat 12g; protein 23g; carbohydrates 33g; fiber 4g; sugars 6g; sodium 358mg.