Mixed melons with peppery minted lime syrup

Total Time
12 min
7 min
5 min
This seemingly straight-forward salad has a little trick up its sleeve: cayenne pepper. It makes an appearance in the homemade lime and mint syrup. It’s a small dose—just 1/8 teaspoon—but it’s just enough to make its presence known without wreaking too much havoc. If you’d like it to be hotter, feel free to add more. When choosing melons, here are a few tips. Watermelons don’t ripen after you pick them, so look for melons with a yellow spot on the bottom. Cantaloupes and honeydews give a fragrant aroma from the stem area, which is a strong indicator it is ripe. You can, of course, save on prep time by using packaged chunks of melon available in the produce section of your supermarket.



½ cup(s)


½ cup(s)

Fresh lime juice

6 Tbsp

Cayenne pepper


Peppermint leaves

2 Tbsp, fresh, chopped

Lime zest

2 tsp, grated

Honeydew melon

2 cup(s), cubed (about 3⁄4 pound)

Fresh watermelon

2 cup(s), cubed (about 3⁄4 pound)


2 cup(s), diced, cubed (about 3⁄4 pound)


  1. Combine the sugar, water, lime juice, and cayenne in a small saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil. Boil, until the mixture is syrupy, about 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, then stir in the mint and lime zest; let stand about 2 minutes.
  2. Combine the honeydew, watermelon, and cantaloupe in a large bowl. Pour the syrup mixture over the fruit and toss well. Serve at once or cover and refrigerate overnight and serve chilled. Yields 1 1/2 cups per serving.