Chef's Recipes

Watermelon rind pickles

Curtis Stone recipe for watermelon rind pickles.

By Curtis Stone
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 5 mins cooking plus pickling
  • Serves 10 - 12
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Watermelon rind pickles
"Crunchy and tangy, watermelon rind pickles are a Southern classic that complement melt-in-your-mouth, smoky meats," says Stone. "They're delicious and, with the texture of crisp pear, they can be eaten straight from the jar. Plus, if you're a stickler for waste like me, you'll be pleased to find a use for the entire fruit." Start this recipe at least a day ahead.


  • ½ 5kg-6kg thin-skinned watermelon (see note)
  • 1 white onion, sliced into 3mm rings
  • 3 green jalapeños, sliced into 3mm rings
  • 3 tsp coriander seeds
  • 3 tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • 625 ml (2½ cups) white vinegar
  • 220 gm (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 1½ tbsp sea salt flakes


  • 1
    Cut watermelon into 8 wedges, scoop out flesh with a large spoon, leaving about 2mm on the rind (reserve flesh for another use). Slice rind crossways into 3mm thick slices and combine with onion and jalapeños in a tall narrow jar.
  • 2
    Dry-roast coriander and mustard seeds until fragrant and mustard seeds pop (1-2 minutes). Add vinegar, sugar, salt and 625ml water, then bring to the boil, whisking to dissolve the sugar. Pour into jar, cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for at least 12 hours to pickle. Watermelon rind pickles will keep refrigerated for up to a week.


Note If your watermelon has thick, tough skin, remove the outer layer with a vegetable peeler.