Cantaloupe and Honeydew Recipes That Showcase the Best of These Sweet Summer Melons


Nothing says peak summer like a ripe, juicy melon. Pick up a cantaloupe or honeydew (or both!) at the market then enjoy its refreshing sweetness in these drinks, salads, desserts, and more.

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three melon cooler cocktails
Linda Xiao

If summer had a mascot, juicy melon would be it. And though watermelon often steals the show, we can't forget about cantaloupe and honeydew. Known for their mildly sweet flavor and slight musky notes, both fruits are wonderfully versatile and delicious. These traits make them a welcome ingredient in a range of dishes, from fresh fruit salads to boozy sangria and refreshing mocktails, such as the Cantaloupe-Basil-Grapefruit Cooler and Honeydew-Lemon-Tarragon Cooler you see right here.

Cantaloupe and honeydew are summer produce, which means their flavor, texture, and nutrition are at their peak during the warmer months. They're also more affordable in the summer, giving you the perfect excuse to add these melons to your cart and cantaloupe and honeydew recipes to your must-make recipe list. You can even stock up and freeze cubed melon, which is a great way to ensure you'll always be ready to make a melon smoothie or cocktail when the craving hits.

Both melons also have a high water content, making them ideal for boosting hydration amid the summer heat. Who can say no to a juicy wedge of fresh melon on a scorching hot day? But cantaloupe and honeydew aren't limited to crescents or cubes, of course. Blend melon into a cold cucumber soup or chill drinks with frozen melon balls instead of ice cubes. You can even grill melon wedges until they're perfectly charred and smoky. Grilling fruit, including melons, brings out a depth and flavor that's hard to resist.

If you're new to using whole cantaloupe and honeydew, you'll be glad to know that choosing ripe melons at the grocery store is easy. The key is to look for heavy, firm fruits with a mild and sweet aroma near the stem. If part of the rind is mushy or soft, leave the melon behind. While you're at it, grab a melon baller if you don't already have one on hand.

Whether you're looking for a cooling drink or fresh side salad, these cantaloupe and honeydew recipes have you covered.

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Peach Salad with Melon and Lillet

peach salad with melon and lillet
Paola + Murray

Cantaloupe, watermelon, and juicy peaches make up this photogenic fruit salad. Drizzle with fresh lime juice and Lillet, then sprinkle with salt to amplify the fruits' sweetness.

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Boozy Melon

boozy melon fruit in glass bowls
Bryan Gardner

Melon cubes are soaked in a boozy syrup, then served with fresh herbs, sea salt, and lime juice. Enjoy atop fruit sorbet or on its own for a no-fuss summer dessert.

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Melon Milk Pops

melon milk pops
Marcus Nilsson

For a cooling treat that will delight kids and adults alike, make these colorful tri-melon ice pops. Blend melon and condensed milk, as the recipe suggests, or use coconut milk for a vegan version.

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Blistered Shishito-Pepper Salad with Chive Vinaigrette

blistered shishito-pepper salad
Lennart Weibull

Between the smoky shishito peppers and chive vinaigrette, this recipe brings out the best of melon's savory side. Add tomatoes, cucumbers, and fresh mint leaves for an enticing yet flavorful contrast.

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Melon and Cucumber Salad

Melon and Cucumber Salad

Equal parts healthy and simple, this 20-minute salad pairs well with grilled dishes. For an extra kick, sprinkle with red pepper flakes or chili powder.

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Refreshing Melon-Sorbet Float

Aaron Dyer

Capture the essence of summer with this bubbly fruity float. Freeze balls of honeydew until firm, then serve with seltzer and scoops of lemon or coconut sorbet (or both).

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Mango, Papaya, and Melon Salad

mango papaya and melon salad topped with sea salt
Chris Simpson

Honeydew melon, mango, papaya, and cucumber come together in this vibrant tropical salad. A turmeric-chile sea salt blend rounds out the dish, enhancing the fruits' natural flavors.

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Boozy White Sangria

white sangria glasses
Sidney Bensimon

Macerate honeydew melon, kiwi, and pineapple for this make-ahead white sangria. When it's time to drink, add white wine and seltzer, then garnish with frozen fruit. Cheers!

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Green Fruit Salad with Lime and Honey

green fruit salad with lime and honey
Pippa Drummond

Go green with this crispy salad made of honeydew, apple, cucumber, and grapes. Let the fruits mingle with a lime juice and honey dressing, then dig in.

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Grilled Prosciutto-Wrapped Melon

Marcus Nilsson

The salty edginess of prosciutto pairs beautifully with the mild sweetness of melon. Enjoy these skewers as an appetizer or add them to a homemade charcuterie board.

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Avocado and Honeydew Melon

Bryan Gardner

Avocado and honeydew might seem like an unlikely pair, but the contrast in textures is lovely. All you need to do is halve an avocado, add a spoonful of melon cubes, and garnish with sea salt and mint leaves.

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White Sangria with Tequila

white sangria
Bryan Gardner

Steeping tequila with honeydew, cucumber, and elderflower liqueur is an easy way to make a cooling big-batch drink. What's more, prep takes just 10 minutes.

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Cantaloupe, Tarragon, and Vodka Sherbet

Naho Kubota

The combo of cantaloupe and tarragon offers an elegant, herb-infused take on the usual sherbet. For an alcohol-free version, simply skip the vodka.

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Frozen Melon-Margarita Pops

Hans Gissinger

No popsicle mold? No problem. Soak wedges of cantaloupe and watermelon into a tequila-lime mixture, insert popsicle sticks, then freeze for zingy summer treat.

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Cucumber-Honeydew Cooler

Cucumber-Honeydew Cooler

Cool down—and drink up—with this refreshing beverage. Simply puree both cucumber and honeydew melon in a blender, then strain and shake with ice. Add sake or vodka to make it boozy.

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Melon, Mint, and Cucumber Smoothie

Con Poulos

Blend honeydew, cucumber, and fresh mint from the garden for an instant summer smoothie. You can also enjoy it as a smoothie bowl topped with melon balls and coconut flakes.

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Creamy Melon Granita

Creamy Melon Granita
Aaron Dyer

Perfectly icy and sweet, this milky melon granita will hit the spot on a hot summer day. To make it dairy-free, use coconut condensed milk.

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