Cucumber Salad with Watermelon Jalapeño Dressing

If you are looking for a quick summer side dish that is full of flavor and freshness, look no further than this Smashed Cucumber Salad with Watermelon Jalapeño Vinaigrette. 

A smashed cucumber salad is as simple as it sounds. It only requires one simple technique, breaking down a cucumber.  To begin, use a broad knife to cut English, or thin skinned cucumbers in half and then in half again to get four long quarters. Lay the quarters seed side down on a cutting board.

Use the broad surface of your knife to smash the cucumbers keeping in mind the goal is to remove the seeds. If you’d like to get a child involved, have them use a wooden spoon to smash the cucumbers, or even a thick walled glass that can be used to roll down the length of the cucumber.

From there, this flavorful side dish is just a few steps away from finding a place on your table! Just be careful when handling the jalapeño for yourself and/or your little sous chefs.  The oils are stubborn and require soap and water to rinse off. 


Smashed Cucumber Salad

  • Author: Brandon Hertzler
  • Prep Time: 40 min
  • Total Time: 40 minutes



  • 68 thin skinned cucumbers
  • 2 c. cubed watermelon – divided
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. mirin or white wine vinegar
  • 1 jalapeño
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • Mint – for garnish


  1. Begin by cutting the cucumbers lengthwise into quarters as described above.
  2. Once the seeds are smashed out, cut the cucumber slices into roughly one inch pieces, place in a serving blow and season with a large pinch of salt. Allow the cucumbers to rest for five to ten minutes so the salt can draw out the excess moisture.
  3. Next, take a cup or more of cubed watermelon and cut it into matchsticks. Set aside until ready to assemble the salad.
  4. For the vinaigrette, combine ½ c to 1 cup of cubed watermelon, a tablespoon of olive oil, a teaspoon of mirin or white wine vinegar, and one one jalapeño, seeds removed, into a food processor or blender until well blended.
  5. Pour off any excess liquid from the cucumbers and add in matchstick cut watermelon. Pour vinaigrette over the salad and toss gently. Top with lime zest, mint and some fresh lime juice. Let sit in the fridge for 30 minutes before serving.

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