Smoked Watermelon (9 Simple Steps for a EPIC Vegetable Centerpiece)

Fresh watermelon may be an unlikely alternative to the traditional smoked ham. But smoked on the pellet grill, you’ll be hard-pressed to spot the difference.

Read on for an awesome recipe that will astound all your friends!

Is Smoked Watermelon a Good Alternative to Ham?

Watermelon is a great alternative for ham. You can a similar texture and the watermelon picks up the smoky flavors really well. If your looking to turn something different or catering for some vegetarians, this is the perfect recipe to try.

Plus, its super simple to make there are a couple of steps you’ll need to do to transform the watermelon into a watermelon roast.

What You Need for Smoked Watermelon

Large Seedless Watermelon

Olive Oil or Canola Oil

Kosher Salt

Coconut Sugar

Chili Powder

Smoked Paprika

Fresh Ground Pepper

Garlic Powder

Onion Powder

Ground Cloves

Rosemary

So How Do I Turn Watermelon Into A Roast?

There are a couple of steps you’ll need to do to transform the watermelon into a watermelon roast. First, select a melon that’s full of moisture. The weight should be heavy and solid feeling.

Second, carve the watermelon. Thirdly, brine the entire watermelon for a couple of days, skin removed.

And lastly, it’s all in the seasoning and smoking.

How to Prepare the Watermelon For Smoking

Slice both ends from the watermelon. Turn to one flat end, and slice off the rind. Try to keep as much flesh as possible.

It should resemble an oval shape, with flat ends and no white rind visible.

How to Brine a Watermelon Before Smoking

First we need to make the simple but flavorful brine mixture. Blend cold water, kosher salt, black pepper, and preferred herbs and spices.

You’ll need a large tub, or cooler box, big enough to fit the skinned melon. Submerge in the bath of brine and refrigerate for a couple of days. Once completed, remove and place on a cutting board. The brine mixture should balance the sweetness of the watermelon.

How to Season The Watermelon

After brining the watermelon you want to  cut 1-inch deep diagonal slits in opposite directions to form a cross-hatch pattern. Then we will season the watermelon. Combine garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, chilli powder, coconut sugar, salt, pepper and cloves in a bowl and whisk together well and then coat the watermelon, ensure you get it the cuts.

Then put the olive oil, rosemary and garlic cloves in the alumiumn pan and place the watermelon in the middle of the pan.

Position cross-hatch side up, and let sit for an hour. This will allow the flavors of the aromatic spices to absorb into the fruit.

How to Smoke a Watermelon.

Preheat the grill to medium-high heat – around 250°F and load with your woodchips. Cover the melon with aluminum foil on the roasting pan.

Smoke for two hours, baste the watermelon every 30 minutes with the pan juices. remove the foil and smoke a further 2 hour. Then turn your smoke up to 400°F (if it can go that high, if not you can either broil it or place in a large cast iron pan.

Broil, grill smoke or roast the watermelon until it has gone a deep brown on the outside, basting with pan juices every 20 minutes, this will take 30 minutes. Allow the watermelon ham to cool slightly, about 15 minutes, before slicing.

What to Serve It With Smoked Watermelon

This watermelon does come out savory so you can serve it as a part of the main meal.

We have served it up with my smoked tri tip recipe as well as cold smoked salmon.

Smoked Watermelon

Charlie
This creative cooking technique will turn your favorite summer fruit into a savory dish.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Course Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8 serves
Calories 89 kcal

Equipment

  • Grill

Ingredients
  

  • 1 large seedless watermelon
  • 2 tbsp olive oil or canola oil
  • ½ cup kosher salt 120 g
  • 3 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 ½ tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp ground cloves

Instructions
 

  • Slice both ends from the watermelon. Turn to one flat end, and slice off the rind. Try to keep as much flesh as possible.
    It should resemble an oval shape, with flat ends and no white rind visible.
  •  Blend cold water, kosher salt, black pepper, and preferred herbs and spices.
    You’ll need a large tub, or cooler box, big enough to fit the skinned melon. Submerge in the bath of brine and refrigerate for a couple of days. Once completed, remove and place on a cutting board. The brine mixture should balance the sweetness of the watermelon.
  • After brining the watermelon you want to  cut 1-inch deep diagonal slits in opposite directions to form a cross-hatch pattern.
    Then we will season the watermelon. Combine garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, chilli powder, coconut sugar, salt, pepper and cloves in a bowl and whisk together well and then coat the watermelon, ensure you get it the cuts.
    Then put the olive oil, rosemary and garlic cloves in the alumiumn pan and place the watermelon in the middle of the pan.
    Position cross-hatch side up, and let sit for an hour. This will allow the flavors of the aromatic spices to absorb into the fruit.
  • Preheat the grill to medium-high heat – around 250°F and load with your woodchips.
  • Smoke for two hours, baste the watermelon every 30 minutes with the pan juices. remove the foil and smoke a further 2 hour.
    Then turn your smoke up to 400°F (if it can go that high, if not you can either broil it or place in a large cast iron pan.
  • Broil, grill smoke or roast the watermelon until it has gone a deep brown on the outside, basting with pan juices every 20 minutes, this will take 30 minutes.
  • Allow the watermelon ham to cool slightly, about 15 minutes, before slicing.
Keyword Smoked, smoked watermelon

This creative cooking technique will turn your favorite summer fruit into a savory dish.

It will be fit for any vegan table. Adding the flavor of smoking to anything makes it better!

It’s a delicious recipe worth trying!

Smoke On!

Charlie

Hi, I’m Charlie, I have been meat-smoking and grilling for the past 15 years. I have an array of different smokers, thermometers, and have a love for finding the right wood and charcoal combo My favourite recipes are my EXTRA CRISPY smoked pork belly, juicy pulled pork, smoked brisket, duck poppers, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill).

I loves sharing his tips with beginners, helping them navigate the world of smoking. I find it’s not just about cooking; it’s a quest for that perfect smoky flavor.

You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling recipes with you!

You can read more about me on our About Us page.

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