Sweet Pickled Watermelon Rind

Who’d have thought you could pickle and eat watermelon rind?

Pickled Watermelon Rind

Preparation time: 10-15 minutes plus 6 hours brining, 2 hours marinating and 4 weeks maturing
Cooking time: 45 minutes
Skill level: easy


  • watermelon rind – 900g – roughly 2 small or 1 very large watermelon
  • sea salt – 50g
  • water – 900 ml
  • granulated sugar – 450g
  • white wine vinegar – 300ml
  • 6 whole cloves
  • ginger – small lump
  • 10 juniper berries

Remove the green skin of the watermelon with a potato peeler.

Cut up your melon and remove the flesh (leave a very thin layer of the flesh on the rind).

Cut the rind into strips about 5 cm long and 5 mm thick.

Pickled Watermelon Rind

Dissolve the salt in 600ml of water.

Put the rind into a bowl, pour over the brine, cover and set aside for 6 hours (or overnight).

Drain the rind and rinse under cold water.

Put the rind in a pan, cover with fresh water, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 10 – 15 minutes until just tender. Drain.


Put the sugar, vinegar and 300ml of water in a pan. Tie the spices in muslin and add to the pan.

Heat gently, stirring occasionally until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes.

Turn off the heat, add the rind, cover and leave to stand for 2 hours.

Slowly bring the mixture back to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until the rind has become translucent.

Remove the spice bag.

Place the rind in hot sterilised jars and pour over the syrup.

Tap to remove any air bubbles, cover and seal.

Leave to mature for 4 weeks.


Verdict: Still waiting for the 4 weeks.

Drink: Over a month – frightening.

Entertainment: Possibly the second season of Battlestar Galactica. Is Admiral Barack Adama dead?


  1. My grandmother (born in 1891) made a cake when I was a child that she called ‘black cake.’ I have found a few recipes on the internet for such a cake. The recipe is long gone, and the only ingredient I know that was in her cake was watermelon rind pickles. Have you ever see such a recipe. The cake was dark, but I don’t remember it being chocolate. Maybe it was dark with spices and jam. I enjoyed seeing your post. It reminded me of my grandmother…thanks

  2. Hi Gale

    I didn’t even realise you could pickle a watermelon, so using it as an ingredient in a cake is news to me.

    A quick google revealed this:


    Although I suspect what your grandmother baked was something more like this:


    … but substituting melon for some of the dried fruit.

    Pleased you liked the post.



  3. Battle Star Galactica oh no. What will you eat these pickles with? I think I would love to make some. I’ll leave the battlestar up to my boyfriend lol.

  4. Hi Courtney

    Can’t really say as I have no idea what it might taste like … although possibly with a nice mature Cylon cheddar. That’s a BG reference by the way.



  5. Salty and sweet. Can’t go wrong with that combination ever. I’ve never heard of this until I started doing some research for this post, but it sounds like an interesting idea

  6. It is indeed salty and sweet – and gingery. Unusual and delicious. It would make a good foody present.


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