Stories / Recipes

Pickled Watermelon is the Ultimate Summer Snack

Frank Guerriero

August 28, 2019


Photo: Keirnan Monaghan and Theo Vamvounakis

Summertime is pickle time. Pickles on a burger, pickles in a salad—we in the #WasteNot camp just can’t get enough of their salty, acidic crunch. So it’s only fitting that we apply one of our favorite eco-friendly preservation techniques to the crown jewel of peak summer produce: watermelon. This recipe, courtesy of Chefs Boot Camp alum Kenny Gilbert, quickly transforms the oft-discarded rinds into a versatile, perfectly seasonal pickle.

Beyond being lip-smacking delicious, these pickles couldn’t be easier to make. The rinds pair well with a brine on the sweeter side, so Gilbert starts by whisking together apple cider vinegar, salt, crushed red pepper flakes, and a bit of sugar. Then, he divides the mixture and reserved rinds into ziplock bags and pops them in the fridge overnight. Add the pickles to your favorite summertime dish for some salty–sweet complexity or keep them in the fridge for exceedingly seasonal snacking. Get the recipe.

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The James Beard Foundation's new cookbook, Waste Not: How to Get the Most from Your Food, offers up a host of delicious solutions to the pressing problem of food waste. Featuring 100 recipes from alumni of our Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and ChangeWaste Not will teach you how to turn every root, bone, rind, and stem into an irresistible dish.

Waste Not: How to Get the Most from Your Food, published by Rizzoli,​ is on sale now.​ Order your copy today!

Frank Guerriero is the media assistant at the Beard Foundation. Find him on Instagram.