Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad (Oil-Free, Vegan)

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Easy Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad - Healthy, Plant-Based, Vegan, Oil-Free Summer Recipe from Plants-Rule
Easy Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad – Healthy, Plant-Based, Vegan, Oil-Free Summer Recipe from Plants-Rule
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Oil-Free, Vegan Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad

Juicy, sweet watermelon. Plus, juicy, sweet heirloom tomatoes. Isn’t this a match made in food heaven? This quick, easy vegan salad highlights fresh summer flavors. Keeping it oil-free, it’s light and low-calorie. Simple and delicious!

Healthy, delicious organic watermelons are in season during the summer at most farmer's markets
Healthy, delicious organic watermelons are in season during the summer at most farmer’s markets

Choosing the best Watermelon and Heirloom Tomatoes

Because this salad has so few ingredients, it’s important that they be of high quality. But how do you pick the best watermelons and heirloom tomatoes?

First of all, remember that both are fruits. Yes, tomatoes are a fruit. When choosing any fruit, pick something that is HEAVY. Heavy often means juicy. If a melon is heavier than it looks, that’s the winner. If it feels suprisingly light? Put it down and try another.

There is a huge variety of melons in season during the summer.  Choose what looks best at your farmer's market for the most delicious plant-based recipes
There is a huge variety of melons in season during the summer. Choose what looks best at your farmer’s market for the most delicious plant-based recipes

Second, look for a spot on that watermelon. Having a yellow spot on a melon means it was allowed to sit in the field until fully ripe. If there’s no spot, it usually means the melon was picked too soon. A good way to remember this trick? Just think:

“I SPOT a juicy melon!”

Chef Katie’s tip to look for the spot when choosing a ripe melon

Thirdly, give those tomatoes a sniff. Put your nose right up to those tomatoes. Close your eyes, and inhale. You should smell the rich, fresh smell of a vine-ripened summer garden. But, if your nose is left searching for a smell, put that tomato down and pick another.

Fourth, be flexible. Sometimes the best-looking melons aren’t seedless watermelons. If you find a heavy, ripe cantaloupe or a beautiful Santa Claus melon, choose these. If the big heirloom tomatoes aren’t in-season yet, maybe the small Sungold and Cherry tomatoes are the best choice. Try to be flexible and malleable to the market. In turn, you’ll have the most delicious recipes.

Watch to Learn More:

Why You’ll Love this Healthy Salad:

This salad is incredibly versatile. It’s simple enough for a weeknight dinner. But, it’s also elegant enough for entertaining. You can use it for vegan lunches throughout the week. Or, double the recipe for a plant-based side dish you can take to summer parties. This salad is:

  • Fresh
  • Light
  • Easy to make
Easy Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad - Healthy, Plant-Based, Vegan, Oil-Free Summer Recipe from Plants-Rule
Easy Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad – Healthy, Plant-Based, Vegan, Oil-Free Summer Recipe from Plants-Rule

Chef Katie’s Healthy Cooking Tips:

Making Ahead of Time: If you’re making this salad ahead of time, layer everything in a big bowl, without tossing.  Toss the salad within an hour of serving.  If you toss it too soon, the vinegar will break down the watermelon and tomatoes.  This may cause them to become mushy.

Watermelon and other melon varieties:  Use any variety of seedless watermelon or other melons for this recipe.  Yellow watermelons, Sun and Moon heirloom watermelon, Santa Claus melon, and cantaloupe would all be delicious.

Watermelon, Heirloom Tomatoes, Pine Nuts, and Fresh Mint come together quickly for this healthy, easy, vegan, oil-free salad from Plants-Rule

Heirloom tomato varieties:  Use any variety of heirloom tomatoes for this recipe.  Mix and match with different colors like Green Zebra, Red Zebra, or Purple Cherokee.  Choose what is in-season at the farmer’s market. 

Stretch this meal: To make this a heartier entrée, add some healthy plant-based carbs.  Boiled fingerling potatoes, chickpeas, brown lentils, cooked quinoa, and roasted red potatoes would all be delicious!

Sherry vinegar: Sherry vinegar has a slightly sweet, oaky flavor.  Because it is blended and aged, it is reminiscent of wine.  It is less sweet than balsamic and more complex than red wine vinegar.  It’s a traditional ingredient for Tomato Gazpacho and Chimichurri sauce. Yet, you can use it to replace red wine or balsamic vinegar in salad dressings, marinades, and sauces.

Oil-Free: I’m on a mission to get rid of empty calories, like those found in refined oils. This salad skips the oil for a simple splash of vinegar. Toasted pine nuts add richness. You don’t need the oil in this recipe. There’s plenty of delicious, natural flavor from the beautiful, fresh ingredients!

Toasted pine nuts add nutty richness for this healthy, plant-based, oil-free vegan recipe
Toasted pine nuts add nutty richness for this healthy, plant-based, oil-free vegan recipe


Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad (Oil-Free, Vegan)

Easy Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad - Healthy, Plant-Based, Vegan, Oil-Free Summer Recipe from Plants-Rule
Easy Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad – Healthy, Plant-Based, Vegan, Oil-Free Summer Recipe from Plants-Rule

Easy |  Servings: 4  |  Ready In: 10 minutes |  Yield: 6 cups

If you like this recipe, you’ll also like:Watermelon Calypso Bean Salad, Grilled Corn and Easter Egg Radish Salad, Mango Black Bean Salad, and Stuffed Brandywine Tomatoes.

Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad (Oil-Free, Vegan)

Sweet juicy watermelon and heirloom tomatoes make the perfect pair. Pops of flavor from Sherry vinegar, toasted pine nuts, and fresh mint complete the dish. This oil-free vegan salad is summer, pure and simple.
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Califlornia, Farmer’s Market, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Healthy, Italian, Oil-Free, Plant-Based, Summer, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword 10 minutes or less, 5 ingredients or less, CSA, date-sweetened, easy, Farmer’s Market, fat-free, fresh, healthy, heirloom, light, low-fat, oil-free, plant-based, quick, simple, summer, vegan
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 121kcal

Ingredients

  • ½ cup pine nuts toasted
  • 4 cups cubed watermelon about ½ a small, seedless watermelon
  • 2 medium heirloom tomatoes cubed
  • 2 teaspoons Sherry vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint torn
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • To toast the pine nuts: Place the pine nuts on a baking pan. Toast in a 350F oven for 4-5 minutes, until golden brown and aromatic. Remove from the oven and let cool. You can also toast the pine nuts on the stove top. Place them in a small, dry pan (no oil needed). Toast over medium heat 4-5 minutes, until golden brown and aromatic, stirring every 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
  • To make the Oil-Free, Vegan Watermelon Heirloom Tomato Salad (Oil-Free, Vegan): In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Gently toss, using your hands. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

Nutrition Facts
Servings 4.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 121
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6 g 10 %
Saturated Fat 0 g 2 %
Monounsaturated Fat 2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0 %
Sodium 77 mg 3 %
Potassium 221 mg 6 %
Total Carbohydrate 16 g 5 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 6 %
Sugars 12 g  
Protein 3 g 5 %
Vitamin A 28 %
Vitamin C 41 %
Calcium 1 %
Iron 5 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.


Shopping and Gear List

  • Columela Sherry Vinegar (Solera 3) Reserva, 12-Ounce
  • Raw Pine Nuts 1 LB (Whole and Natural) NO PPO
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