Pollinating Your Entire Menu: Watermelon Cucumber Salad with Honey Lime Dressing

Posted by National Honey Board on July 28, 2021

NHB Watermelon Cucumber Salad ALT final rgb lr

Welcome back to another edition of our Pollinating Your Entire Menu, our recipe-centric blog series in partnership with nutrition and fitness expert Mitzi Dulan, RD, CSSD, America’s Nutrition Expert®. Throughout this series, we have shared with you fresh recipes that focus on whole food nutrition and highlight honey bee-pollinated ingredients, showcasing the importance of the busy pollinators that help keep our food world turning. This month we’re fully embracing the heat of the summer season with this delicious Watermelon Cucumber Salad with Honey Lime Dressing that is as nutritious as it is refreshing.

There’s no question that watermelon has a reputation as the unofficial fruit of summer, but in addition to its sweet flavor, watermelons are actually packed with some beneficial characteristics. Since watermelon is 92% water, it serves as a great hydration sidekick – perfect for kiddos who desire more than just water. And according to our friends at watermelon.org, this nutrient-dense fruit is American Heart Association Heart-Checked Certified due to it being fat-, sodium-, and cholesterol-free and containing nutrients that support heart health. You can learn more fun watermelon facts here.

But there is also another power-packed friend in this summer side dish that deserves just as much love. That’s right – we’re talking about the mighty cucumber! Similar to watermelon, cucumbers are high in water content, giving its partner a run for its money at a whopping 96% water! According to HealthLine.com, cucumbers are also low in calories (with 1 11 oz. unpeeled, raw cucumber only having 45 calories) and are a good source of vitamin K, vitamin C, and magnesium. Fun Fact: Its low calorie count and high water content may even aid in weight loss! Research on the antioxidant properties of cucumbers has also shown that they contain flavonoids and tannins, which are two compound groups that are effective at blocking free radicals that can lead to chronic illness. And best of all, cucumber is easy to work into your diet, so you can enjoy its benefits all day long!

We would be remiss to note that both watermelon and cucumber require honey bees for pollination, which is why we love that we get to highlight both the powerful fruits (yes, while commonly labeled and found with vegetables, cucumber is actually a fruit!), and the honey bees who make them possible in this refreshing summer side dish. And without further ado, we introduce our Watermelon Cucumber Salad with Honey Lime Dressing!

Ingredients

For the Dressing:

  • 2 T - extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. - lime zest
  • 2 T - honey
  • 4 T - lime juice

For the Salad:

  • 4 cups - watermelon, cubed
  • 1 - English cucumber, sliced and quartered
  • 1/3 cup - fresh mint, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup - feta, crumbled
  • sea salt to taste (optional)

Directions
In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, zest, honey and lime juice.

Put the cubed watermelon, cucumber and fresh mint into a medium bowl and gently toss.

Drizzle dressing over watermelon and then top with crumbled feta. Add sea salt to taste, if desired.

We know that this recipe will be made on repeat in our hive, and we hope you love it too. Bee sure to join us next month for another tasty honey bee-pollinated recipe!