Watermelon Salsa (Pico de Gallo)

Such a colorful, fun and festive dish, this  Watermelon Salsa (Pico de Gallo) is so good you’ll pass up the burgers and chicken to eat more of it!

Watermelon Salsa is fresh, with a hint of sweet and heat and so beautiful served in a white bowl.

I made this batch of Watermelon Salsa for the first time several years ago and I think I could have eaten the whole thing…and that’s saying a LOT! Not just because of the quantity but because of the memories of days gone by when I would not try anything with ANY pepper; absolutely nothing. I am not lying.

I grew up with an aversion to green bell peppers. For years that aversion to them meant I kept my distance from ALL peppers but a move to Denver 30 years ago saw that gradually change.

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Oh sure, I picked out every Jalapeno I saw in anything (and it seemed they were everywhere) but one day tried this  Chile Relleno Appetizer at a Super Bowl party not knowing that it included poblano and jalapeno peppers and I LOVED it…and that was the start.

Still, that this green pepper hater actually made a batch of something with jalapenos combined with red, yellow and orange bell peppers was a leap of faith. If you told my family they would not have believed you and I was sort of in disbelief myself!

I loved the look of this when I saw it on The Pioneer Woman’s site all those years ago but I cringed a bit at that green bell pepper so I ditched it and added an orange one and a bit of honey and it was PERFECT for me…and everyone else who tried it!!

Watermelon Salsa (Pico de Gallo) Closeup of dish with watermelon, red, orange, and yellow bell peppers, and jalapeno mixed with honey.

You know the type of dish where you take a sample…and then think, I’ll just eat one more chip? Well, OK, maybe just one more. OK two. Maybe I won’t eat it with chips, I’ll just use a spoon…with some chips on the side. I needed an intervention…glad you weren’t there.

This is not something that should ever grace your plate in fall, winter or spring. Don’t let those displays of watermelon fool you…they are so NOT ready if they’re available in May and June. July and August? Absolutely.

Find a good one. A sweet, ripe, seedless good one and you will see why I wanted to seal this with a lock and key and squirrel it away back in the far recesses of the fridge. Oh wait. Maybe I did. Oops…all mine! I was actually not over the moon with the watermelon I bought but when it was all brought together and given a night in the fridge? It sure tasted perfect.

I’m know I’m repeating myself if you’ve read some of the other Watermelon recipes I love to feature every summer, but these tips are too important to now share on all of my posts, you want a REALLY good watermelon right?

I have a meeting here tonight…and yes I will share even if I want to squirrel it all away just for me. This fabulous sweet salsa with just a bit of heat and rich with the taste of peppers, onion, watermelon, cilantro and honey is perfection.

Easy to make too although there is a lot of chopping. Give yourself the time and let it meld overnight too if you can; I think that’s when it’s absolutely perfect!

Watermelon Salsa (Pico de Gallo) on Chips

I never take photos of the process but it’s really easy to cube watermelon. Cut it in half; place the cut side down and then using a sharp knife, start at the top and curve as you slide your knife down. If you missed any of the white flesh, simply trim it off before slicing and then dicing the melon.

Have you ever wondered the difference between a salsa and pico de gallo? Well, Pico de gallo is a type of salsa. It’s a fresh, uncooked mixture of chopped veggies or fruit and when combined together; it’s a chunkier version of salsa, with each ingredient still distinct. Traditional salsa also has more liquid; although this pico de gallo salsa had plenty…the watermelon was juicy!

Don’t go through the rest of summer without trying this; your friends and family will love you, I promise!

More Watermelon!

PIN IT! ‘Watermelon Salsa (Pico de Gallo)’

Watermelon Salsa with Red, Orange, Yellow, and Jalapeno Peppers
Watermelon Salsa in White Serving Bowl
Watermelon Salsa is fresh, with a hint of sweet and heat and so beautiful served in a white bowl.

Watermelon Salsa (Pico de Gallo)

Serve with tortilla chips or do as I did. Serve with a spoon. I could not stop!
Seriously, if feeding a crowd I would consider using the whole watermelon and doubling everything else…you know so others can have some too.
5 from 50 or more votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Fruits
Cuisine American
Servings 8 Servings
Calories 105 kcal


  • ½ small seedless watermelon diced
  • 2 jalapeños seeded and diced
  • ½ red onion diced
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 orange bell pepper diced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper diced
  • 1 bunch cilantro chopped
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon salt; more if necessary to taste


  • Mix everything together in one large bowl; season with salt as needed.
  • Refrigerate for at least one hour.
  • I honestly think it was even better after being in the fridge overnight. What there was left of it.


Nutrition Facts
Watermelon Salsa (Pico de Gallo)
Serving Size
1 Serving
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword holiday, mexican, picnic, salsa, watermelon
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    1. I hope you love it like I did…I’m not kidding when I say I hid it from others…well, what little was left when I went to store it. You’ll just need a spoon; you’ll see! 🙂

  1. This is one stunning salsa, Barb! Chips and salsa are a summer staple (well, really a year-round one) in our house. Thanks for sharing!

    1. We love them here year round too Hannah; this one is so seasonal that I’m sure I’ll be done with it as soon as the weather turns and then anxious for more by this time next summer!

    1. You’ll see why I say that; heck I might double it and still stash it for me. (Wicked laughter ensues!).

    1. If I had seen that at that time I would have urged you to make it stat; it’s even better after it’s chilled and melded a bit!

    1. I simply loved it…so fresh and cool and with just a touch of heat…hope you make it and love it just as much as I did!

  2. Oh what a fun contest to judge. I am sure you had a lot of “work” to do while judging :))

    Can’t wait to hear all about it. I would have never thought of making a salsa with watermelon but now that this recipe is here, I think it will go well with some hot off the grill tandoori chicken!

    1. It is so good; you must try it! A nice sweet balance to the heat of the jalapeno; fits one of my perfect profiles for food which I call Sweet Heat. 🙂

  3. While I can’t count myself in the “green pepper haters” club, I will definitely admit that they are not my favorites of the peppers. The colors of the red, yellow and orange peppers in this salsa are so pretty and I can see why you devoured the whole thing.

    1. I think I hate them mostly Dara because they kept me away from other peppers for so long…including other green ones which I love today; poblano, anaheim, jalapeno. This was truly a gorgeous dish and I’m making it again soon since the best watermelon in Colorado are coming to the market now.

    1. This is so different Robin you should try it; sort of sweet, sort of peppery and obviously I thought sort of good! 🙂

    1. I’ll give you mine, how’s that? It was a huge leap of faith that I ever tried jalapeno and poblano but sure glad I did!

    1. They are defining veggies for sure; it’s either love or hate, seldom anything in between. And is it hereditary? None of my siblings or either of my kids like them either!

    1. I had a girls event at my home a couple of years ago and out of nothing but trying to be polite I took a serving of a potato dish that had red and yellow peppers. I was completely shocked that I actually liked it. Now you won’t see me eating a whole one raw or anything so making this salsa was a bit questionable but I seriously loved it. If it had included green peppers, well, it never would have seen the light of day! 🙂

    1. We had so much fun…and those cooking contest are more difficult than I would have imagined; I have renewed respect for people who enter them and come up with a great dish!

    1. Oh yeah…and me too Greg. I have to be careful or I would put some heat into almost anything. I’ll try to keep it out of the strawberry pie I’m making today though; probably best huh?

  4. Wow!! The National Beef Cookoff??? How fabulous and fun! Go, girl!

    I don’t read Ree’s blog but eating this on chips? I think this would be great on grilled fish, no?

  5. I’ve made watermelon salsa before, and it’s most excellent stuff. I’m OK with green peppers so I always use them, but you’re right that the orange, and particularly the red, have different flavor. At this time of the year we have watermelon every day for breakfast, and we go through at least two seedless melons a week. I always cut them up into chunks, then put them in a airtight container in the refrigerator so we can just spoon up whatever we want. So I’m good at peeling watermelons! I usually don’t stress much, though, if I leave a little of the red on the rind – that part tends to be not as sweet as the center (the heart), so I know I’m getting all (well, most) of the good stuff. Fun recipe – thanks.

    1. Seems people are OK with them or fall into my camp…just detest them. There is a club on Facebook; we share our bad experiences! 🙂

  6. What a great sounding recipe. I can only imagine how delicious this is with that sweet melon and those tasty bell peppers (unlike you I love them all). I can’t wait to hear about Nat’l Beef. This one has always eluded me. What a fun contest to judge.

    1. We had so much fun and tried a lot of tasty dishes and boy did I learn a LOT about contesting. It’s not easy so hats off to you my friend for being SO successful!

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