Watermelon Pico de Gallo a la Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond

I think that I previously mentioned that I subscribe the Pioneer Woman’s recipe blog feed.  Well, the other day, she posted this gorgeous looking recipe for a pico de gallo (or salsa depending on your definitions) using watermelon and a bunch of different peppers.

Here is the link:


Taken verbatim from her post, her ingredients were as follows:

  • 1/2 whole Small Seedless Watermelon, Diced
  • 1/2 whole Red Onion, Diced
  • 1 whole Red Bell Pepper, Seeded And Diced
  • 1 whole Green Bell Pepper, Seeded And Finely Diced
  • 1 whole Yellow Bell Pepper, Seeded And Finely Diced
  • 2 whole Jalapeños, Seeded And Finely Diced
  • 1 whole Bunch Cilantro, Chopped
  • 2 whole Juice Of 1 To 2 Limes
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt

After reading the comments, I digested what people thought of how it turned out and had in mind some slight changes.  Also, of course, as I went along I always make some modifications to taste, so here is what I thought…

Gorgeous and colorful for sure, here is my photo:


What I could find was an elongated portion of a watermelon, say about a quarter of a whole large “seedless” watermelon.  Well, my Mexican fiancé ate about half of it with cayenne pepper and lime juice, so what remained was about five slices, which I would say is plenty.  Guess what?  The watermelon will (eventually) make it quite watery.  So too much will most likely lead to a sloppy mess.

Now as for the peppers.  I bought a three-pack of a red, yellow and orange pepper (a “rainbow” pack).  I omitted the green bell and sub’d the orange.  They all have essentially that same sweet pepper taste.  I’m not a huge fan of green bells.  I did use about two jalapeños.  I did use about 1/2 a red onion, as well as a bunch of cilantro. So the basic skeleton was obviously Ree Drummond’s.

As I tasted it, it seemed to lack body and flavor.  For one, it needed a lot more salt than called for.   I also added more lime because it needed more acid to balance all that sweetness from the peppers and melon.  The melon substitutes the place of tomatoes in a normal pico, in the sense of the wateriness, but tomatoes would have added acid, so we need to replace that with more lime.  I think I used about three whole limes juiced.  I added cayenne pepper and about a half teaspoon of cumin.  I left it like that and brought it to a Fourth of July cook-out we were invited to and it was a hit.  We also brought the blue corn tortilla chips as Ree suggested.  But, to me it still needed more acid and more salt.  Our hosts seemed to enjoy it though, so maybe I am a salt lover, who knows….

It makes for a gorgeous dramatic colorful presentation.  So give it a whirl and make it your own.