Lime slices are tucked around grilled watermelon slices on a white serving dish.

If you’ve never grilled watermelon before, what are you waiting for? It’s super easy and takes just minutes. And with our simple tips, you can get beautiful, even grill marks that look perfectly appetizing in a cookout spread.

For even more flavor, we sprinkle the grilled watermelon with lime and Tajin—these seasonings add a flavorful kick that goes deliciously with sweet, juicy watermelon. You’ll love the delightfully spicy and tangy taste of this grilled watermelon.

Why you’ll want to make this grilled watermelon:

It’s easy to grill sliced watermelon! Just a couple minutes per side, and the result is a slightly smoky, sweet flavor that takes classic watermelon to the next level. Grilled watermelon is a delicious addition to a classic cookout spread.

Plus, you can easily feed a crowd with this recipe. A small watermelon makes 20 slices and a large watermelon provides 50-60 slices. You could even serve the toppings on the side so everyone can season their own. The lime juice and Tajin seasoning are totally optional, but we love the extra burst of spicy, tangy flavor on the lightly sweet watermelon.

What ingredients do I need to make this grilled watermelon recipe?

All you’ll need are:

  • Watermelon
  • Limes
  • Tajin seasoning. You can substitute the Tajin seasoning with an equal amount of red mild chile powder. It’s different from chili powder, so be sure to grab the right one.

Protip: Chili or chile powder?

Chili powder is ground-up peppers mixed with other seasonings, like spices and salt. It’s mostly used in making chili. Chile powder is simply ground peppers with no additives, so it works great in this recipe. Along with the fresh lime juice, you’ll have the perfect flavor substitute for Tajin.

Tight view of grilled watermelon slices piled atop one another with slices of lime nestled among them.

Can I switch up the seasoning on this grilled watermelon?

Absolutely! You can serve the grilled watermelon plain or try any combination of these toppings:

  • Chopped herbs (basil, rosemary, mint)
  • Crumbled cheese (goat, feta, or mozzarella)
  • Sea salt or seasoned salt
  • Salad dressing
  • Balsamic glaze
  • Honey

What happens to watermelon when you grill it?

In addition to infusing it with a pleasing, smoky flavor that compliments the sweetness of the watermelon, grilling the fruit adds a slightly chewy texture. The watermelon is still juicy, but with an appealing “bite”.

How do I make this grilled watermelon with lime juice?

Collage of five simple steps to grill watermelon. A text overlay reads, "How to Make Grilled Watermelon."
  1. Prep the grill/griddle and your watermelon. Set your grill to high heat and cut the watermelon into triangular slices.
  2. Cook slices, 4 at a time (the amount that will fit in the center of the grill, for even lines). Watch for grill marks underneath (about 2-3 minutes).
  3. Flip slices over. Grill for another 2-3 minutes.
  4. Remove cooked slices and lay out on a plate or platter. Repeat this process with remaining watermelon.
  5. Top watermelon with lime juice and Tajin Seasoning. Serve and enjoy!

Protip: Slice ’em thick!

Cut the watermelon slices with a 1” rind. Thicker slices are easier for the tongs to grab on the grill.

What if my watermelon is charring at the bottom before the grill marks show up? 

The key to uniform grill marks is to keep the watermelon slices at the center of the grill, where the heat is the hottest. This way the grill marks will appear before the rest of the slice gets too cooked/charred.

Also, wait the full two minutes before checking for grill marks underneath the slices. This will help to make prominent grill lines.

A hand squeezes a slice of lime over two wedges of melon, a ramekin of tajin seasoning nearby.

Can I make watermelon with Tajin in advance?

Yes! If you’re looking to save time while prepping for a party, you can absolutely grill this watermelon in advance. 

Wait until it has cooled to room temperature, then wrap the platter or plate in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 1-3 days. When you are ready to serve the watermelon slices, top with the lime juice and Tajin seasoning.

What can I serve with grilled watermelon?

Flavorful cookout entrees like Grilled Chicken Hawaiian Kabobs, Grilled Flatbread Pizza, or Grilled Beer Can Chicken would go perfectly with this refreshing grilled watermelon.

You could also whip up a batch of easy homemade dressing to drizzle over the watermelon slices. Balsamic Vinaigrette, Chili Lime Vinaigrette, or Fresh and Simple Lemon Vinaigrette would all be delicious choices.

Looking for more creative recipes for the grill?

Lime slices are tucked around grilled watermelon slices on a white serving dish.

Grilled Watermelon

Yield: Approx. 20 slices
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Grilled Watermelon is a tasty twist on a favorite summer fruit. Enjoy with a sprinkle of lime juice and Tajin seasoning.

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Using a large knife, cut the watermelon in half. Slice off the ends and discard them. Chop watermelon into triangular slices, about an inch thick.
  2. Prep your outdoor grill or indoor griddle and set for high heat.
  3. Use tongs to place four slices of watermelon in the center of the grill.
  4. After 2 minutes, use tongs to lift the slices by the rind to see if the grill marks are set underneath. If not, cook for another minute.
  5. Once the grill marks develop, use the tongs to carefully flip the slices over.
  6. Grill for another 2-3 minutes.
  7. Remove the four watermelon slices and place on a plate or a cutting board to cool.
  8. Repeat with all the slices, grilling four at a time.
  9. Arrange watermelon slices on a platter and top with lime juice (from 1/2 of a lime) and the Tajin seasoning.
  10. Cut the remaining 1 1/2 limes into slices to use as garnish.

Notes

  • If you need to substitute Tajin seasoning, you can use the same amount of red, mild chile powder.
  • You can also make this recipe using a large watermelon (about 20 lbs). You will end up with about 50 slices, which can be seasoned with the juice of one lime and 5 teaspoons of Tajin seasoning.
  • Thicker slices of watermelon do best on the grill. Each of the pieces should have about an inch of rind.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 7Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 75mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 0g

At Wholefully, we believe that good nutrition is about much more than just the numbers on the nutrition facts panel. Please use the above information as only a small part of what helps you decide what foods are nourishing for you.

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