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My favorite summertime fruit is watermelon and with the recent heat wave, I have plenty in my fridge. Between breakfast, lunch and dinner, I think I have eaten the equivalent of one and a half large watermelons by myself. The heat may be at a low now, but the watermelon piled in my fridge is still at an all-time high. My taste buds have bored of eating diced watermelon so I thought I would challenge myself to come up with some more creative ways to eat watermelon.

As it goes with summer eating, I would rather drink my meals than eat them during hot weather. I thought a smoothie featuring watermelon would be perfect.

Creamy Watermelon Smoothie

3 1/2 cups seeded watermelon

1/4 of an avocado or banana

2 Tablespoons honey (or to taste)

2 Tablespoons Chia seeds

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Add all ingredients in the blender until smooth, pour in a chilled glass and enjoy.

The benefit of this recipe is that it is high in protein and low in sugar. The cinnamon provides a high number of antioxidants, while the chia seeds provide fiber and energy. The best part is that it is light, refreshing and tastes great. It helps get my mornings off to a great start.

Lunch however is a different story; I still had a large amount of watermelon to eat so what better lunch than a salad – a watermelon salad?

Grilled Watermelon & Goat Cheese Salad

1/4 of a seeded watermelon, cut into wedges

3 cups arugula and spinach

1 1/2 cup goat cheese

1/4 cup toasted walnuts

1/2 cup fresh or canned organic corn

2 Tablespoons olive oil

Lime Juice to taste

Cracked pepper to taste

To achieve the grill marks on the watermelon, I heated my grill pan on my stove until it was really hot. Grill each watermelon wedge for 5 minutes on each side and then crisscross to create the diamond pattern. As the watermelon was grilling, I toasted my walnuts.

Once the watermelon and the walnuts were cooled, I assembled my salad.

All the ingredients came together very well. I found that watermelon takes on a very different flavor after being grilled. For me the flavor was almost like a smoky sweet flavor. It’s something I would definitely do again. It paired nicely with the woody and nutty flavor from the walnuts, and the creaminess of the goat cheese didn’t overpower the sweetness in the corn or diminish the bite of the arugula. This summer salad was definitely a keeper.