Summer melon salad with prosciutto, mint-basil pesto, Gorgonzola cheese and arugula is drizzled with balsamic glaze for a refreshingly easy summer side dish!
There’s nothing more refreshing than a light summer salad on a hot & humid day.
You know those kind of summer days I’m talking about: those days you're just sitting there and still have sweat in places you didn’t even know could sweat!
This healthy summer melon salad is made with cantaloupe, watermelon, prosciutto & Gorgonzola cheese that's topped over a bed of arugula and topped with a fresh mint-basil pesto and balsamic drizzle.
I’m pretty sure this is melon salad recipe is summer served on a platter ;).
Aside from the juicy sweetness from the melons, the arugula has a slight peppery-bitterness and perfect crunch to it and the Gorgonzola adds a creamy saltiness that pairs perfectly with the prosciutto.
Then the basil and mint pesto make it super refreshing and the balsamic brings it all together.
Sweet, salty, creamy, tangy and a little crunch=the perfect summer salad combination!
Ingredients for this Summer Melon Salad recipe:
- prosciutto (Italian ham)
- Gorgonzola crumbles
- mint-basil pesto: fresh mint, basil, toasted nuts, Parmesan cheese, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper, olive oil.
I like keeping it rustic and cutting my melon into chunks, but you can certainly use a melon baller (affiliate link) for a more uniform look :).
You can also use honey dew melon in this melon salad.
If you don't like Gorgonzola, some other cheeses that you can use are: goat cheese, feta cheese or mozzarella.
For a vegan version: omit the prosciutto and Gorgonzola. Substitute nutritional yeast for the Parmesan cheese in the pesto.
To make this easy summer melon salad with prosciutto:
- Make the mint-basil pesto: combine all pesto ingredients except the olive oil in a food processor. Pulse to combine. Slowly stream in olive oil until mixture is smooth.
- Evenly spread arugula on a large serving platter. Top with melon, prosciutto & Gorgonzola.
- Place dollops of the pesto all over the salad. Drizzle with balsamic glaze.
This salad is best served right away otherwise the moisture in the melon causes the arugula to wilt.
If you want to make this ahead, I suggest preparing the pesto and remaining ingredients and assembling only once ready to eat.
This summer melon salad is the perfect side dish for your next BBQ, cookout or party!
Or it even makes the perfect dinner because it’s light and refreshing, especially on brutally hot days when you just don’t feel like eating.
What to serve with Arugula Melon Summer Salad with Prosciutto:
- Crusty Italian Bread-optional but highly suggested 🙂
- Grilled BBQ Bourbon Apricot Chicken
- Hasselback Peach Caprese Chicken
- Spinach & Cheese Stuffed Steak Rollups
For some more delicious summer recipes try:
- Triple Berry Custard Pie with Crumb Topping
- Creamy Summer Corn Chowder
- Pesto Quinoa with Grilled Peaches
- Summer Panzanella Salad
Mint Basil Pesto
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves
- ¼ cup toasted nuts (walnuts, pine nuts or cashews)
- ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 garlic cloves
- juice of ½ lemon
- pinch of salt
- pinch of pepper
- ½ cup olive oil, plus more if needed
Summer Melon Salad
- 5 oz bag of arugula
- 6 cups watermelon, cut into 1” cubes or balled
- 5 cups cantaloupe, cut into 1" cubes or balled (about 1 medium melon)
- 4 oz. prosciutto, torn into pieces
- 4 oz. Gorgonzola cheese crumbles
- balsamic glaze, for drizzling
For the Mint-Basil Pesto:
- Combine all pesto ingredients except olive oil in a food processor. Pulse until combined.
- Slowly stream in olive oil until smooth. Add more if pesto seems too thick.
- Store in a airtight container or sealed jar (you will have leftover)
For the Summer Melon Salad:
- Spread arugula onto a large serving platter. Top with melon, prosciutto and Gorgonzola cheese.
- Dollop spoonfuls of the pesto all over the salad (about ⅓ cup).
- Drizzle with balsamic glaze and serve immediately.
*To make ahead, prepare everything and wait to assemble until ready to serve to avoid arugula from getting wilted.
*You will have pesto leftover which can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g