Vegan Watermelon, Snap Pea, and Mint Salad


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(Note: this post was originally published on June 30, 2019. It has since been updated with new photos and a few tweaks.)

A Watermelon Salad for Summer

I'm excited to introduce you to one of my favorite seasonal dishes. This colorful salad celebrates all things summer with sweet juicy watermelon, crisp sugar snap peas, and fresh mint.

During the summer, I find I'm always throwing together salads like this that are versatile and quick to prepare. When everyone is out on the deck, the last place I want to be is stuck in the kitchen. This simple watermelon mint salad can be pulled together in just a few minutes, especially if you do some prep in advance.

This is a salad that I never make the same way twice because it's easy adjust based on how you're serving it. Accordingly, you'll find lots of ideas for customization below, as well as a diversity of photos showing different versions. With all the options I present here, I hope you'll enjoy this watermelon salad again and again all summer long.

A beautiful, colorful vegan watermelon salad with snap peas, mint, and pistachios

Watermelon Mint Salad Variations

This salad is infinitely flexible, which is one of the reasons I find myself making it so frequently during the summer. I consider the watermelon, snap peas, mint, and mustard dressing to be the core elements; after that, switch up the other ingredients as much or as little as you desire.

In terms of other veggies, anything refreshing and juicy is right at home in this salad. I often add cucumber slices, and especially baby cucumbers because they're so pretty. I also sometimes add summer berries (see the photo directly below for a version with cucumbers and pink champagne currants from my mom's garden). Want to make it heartier? Toss in a couple cups of cooked farro and it can even work as a light summer dinner.

A Vegan Watermelon Salad

Although many recipes pair watermelon and feta, this salad is a different, a bit lighter, and plant-based. The seductive mustard white balsamic vinaigrette adds just the right amount of savory decadence to this vegan watermelon salad, so the feta isn't really necessary. Although that said, you can of course add feta (or vegan feta, or cubes of raw marinated tofu) if you desire. I also sometimes add avocado, which provides that same richness.

Healthy vegan watermelon salad, shown on a platter with summer flowers

Watermelon Salad Serving Suggestions

As you can see from the diversity of photos throughout this post, there are a lot of ways to present this watermelon mint salad. I usually just put it on a big platter, garnished with some pistachios and a few extra mint leaves. I sometimes cut the watermelon into cute shapes using mini cookie cutters, as shown in some of the photos here. I've also been known to stuff it inside a hollowed out whole watermelon (see the photo below, from a friend's baby shower), which is totally fun for a special event.

This salad also packs great for a picnic. Because all of the ingredients are pretty robust, it's definitely a salad that travels well. As an added benefit, this vegan watermelon salad isn't as perishable as its dairy-filled cousin, so it's fine to sit out or travel for a couple hours.

Make-Ahead Tips

This salad is a great make-ahead option, which is another reason we love it. If you'll be eating in a couple hours, you can make the entire thing and just keep it cool. If you want to prep it a day ahead of time it works great; I suggest keeping the dressing separate from the watermelon/veggies and tossing it in when you're ready to serve, since otherwise the watermelon starts to get soggy. In either case, add the mint and pistachios just before serving so they keep their freshness and crunch.

Watermelon mint salad, stuffed inside of a whole watermelon

Ingredients and Substitutions

Here's what you'll need for this watermelon mint salad, as well as some thoughts, tips, and possible substitutions. If you make any substitutions, I'd love to hear about it in the comments section below.

  • White balsamic vinegar. I don't suggest using dark balsamic since your salad will turn brown. If you can't find white balsamic, champagne vinegar would work well too, although you may want to add a bit more maple syrup to the dressing to compensate.
  • Coarse-grained mustard. Homemade is the best! This will give your dressing lots of body to help it stick to the juicy watermelon, plus it provides some delicate pungency to counteract the sweet fruit.
  • Maple syrup. Feel free to omit this if you're trying to avoid added sugar, but I like how it balances the mustard and makes the watermelon taste even more delicious.
  • Poppy seeds. Optional but fun if you like them in dressings. They give this salad great visual appeal.
  • Salt
  • Watermelon
  • Sugar snap peas
  • Baby cucumbers. Optional, but a tasty and hydrating addition.
  • Mint. This is the star of the show, so make sure you get mint that's really fresh and fragrant.
  • Pistachios. I adore pistachios on this vegan watermelon salad since they provide some great richness and crunch. Slivered almonds would work well too. Whatever nuts you use, add them just before serving so they don't get soggy.

Close-up of a healthy watermelon mint salad with snap peas and pistachios

Closing Thoughts

This watermelon salad is my greatest summer love. If you've come to our house to hang out and grill on our deck, you've likely had this salad in one of its many variations. I just can't get enough of it.

Although the flavors are simple, something magical and unexpected happens when they come together. It's the perfect balance between sweet and salty, juicy and crispy, fresh and decadent. This watermelon mint salad is such a great example of how a few simple ingredients, when they're at the peak of their season, can create something really special.

A colorful vegan watermelon mint salad with sugar snap peas

Share It!

It makes me so happy to hear from you and see your creations! Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think about this recipe. If you post a photo on Instagram, hashtag #TheRogueBrusselSprout and tag me (@TheRogueBrusselSprout) in the post text so that I'm sure to see it.

Suggested Pairings

Ginnie The Pooh Cocktail

Green Goddess Hummus

Grilled Corn, Strawberry, and Avocado Salad

Summer Picnic Chick Pea Salad

No Bake Whole Food Birthday Cake Bars

Vegan Watermelon, Snap Pea, and Mint Salad

This light and hydrating watermelon salad is bursting with the season's best fruit, crisp sugar snap peas, fragrant mint, crunchy pistachios, and a seductive mustard and white balsamic dressing. It's a great side dish for all your summer meals and especially for a party or BBQ.



For the Dressing

  • 3 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp coarse-grained mustard
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tsp poppy seeds, optional
  • 0.5 tsp flaky sea salt, or to taste

For the Salad

  • 4 c cubed watermelon
  • 2 c chopped sugar snap peas
  • 2 c baby cucumber slices, optional
  • ~15-20 fresh mint leaves
  • 0.25 c roasted salted pistachios


  1. Mix the dressing ingredients in the bottom of a large mixing bowl.
  2. Cut the watermelon into cubes, the snap peas into halves or thirds, and the baby cucumbers (if using) into slices.
  3. Toss the watermelon and veggies in the dressing, then let the salad sit in the fridge for at least 15 minutes and up to several hours.
  4. Just before serving, cut the mint leaves into very thin ribbons. Add the mint to the salad and toss again.
  5. Transfer the salad to a serving bowl and garnish with roasted salted pistachios.

Leave a Comment

Please Share Your Thoughts!

Did you make this recipe? Did you make substitutions? How did you serve it? Any helpful tips? Please share your thoughts, since these insights are really useful to both me and to other readers.

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May 18, 2023
I’m always looking for ways to enjoy the mint in our garden. Thanks!
May 14, 2022
Saw this on your IG stories today. Wow this is so fresh! Love this for summer parties.
Kathy H.
July 10, 2019
I made this for a family picnic and it was a big hit! I left off the feta for a vegan version and added avocado right before serving. It was such a good combo. No one even missed the feta.
July 31, 2021
This is an awesome summer salad and is great for potluck parties!