These sweet, leathery homemade fruit strips contain all the health benefits of watermelon and taste just like watermelon candy. Watermelon jerky makes the perfect take-along for hiking, day trips in the car, or for family movie night. And it’s a great stand-in for your vegan friends and family! Simple to make (I love simplicity, don’t you!) — a little slicing, a sprinkle of salt, and some patience — I promise your children will ask for more of these healthy and delicious watermelon jerky treats!
I can honestly say that I love all things watermelon! And now the candy-like taste of watermelon jerky means watermelon can go with me anywhere. ~ Loretta Lanphier, NP, BCTN, CN, CH
Despite its simplicity, watermelon jerky pieces are full of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and potassium that promote health and wellness. Eating watermelon can be compared to getting an intravenous nutrient therapy. Watermelon dramatically reduces inflammation, helps to flush out edema, aids in weight loss, and can reduce depression. Watermelon is also able to improve the immune system and nourish vision.
RELATED: Health Benefits of Watermelon
Healthy and Delicious Watermelon Jerky Recipe
Dairy-Free | Gluten-Free | Low Fat | Vegan | Vegetarian | Wheat-Free | Preservative-Free
- 1 – ripe watermelon (organic is best)
- Himalayan Salt to taste
- Quarter the watermelon. Slice into 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick sheets. Slice off the rind and slice each sheet into 1/4″ thick strips.
- Arrange the strips on a parchment paper-lined dehydrator tray. Lightly sprinkle Himalayan salt, on each watermelon strip.
- Dehydrate the watermelon at 170 degrees for 10 – 12 hours. If using an oven, bake at 135 for 18 – 24 hours or until the watermelon pieces are crisp and dry. Let the slices cool completely before removing them from the tray.
- Once they are dried out and firm and cooled, place them into a resealable plastic bag or airtight glass container and keep in your pantry. This will make it easy for your children to get their own watermelon jerky snack.
- Watermelon jerky will keep in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag at room temperature for up to 1 week…if they even last that long!
Healthy and Delicious Watermelon Recipe Hints
- Crumble some of the watermelon jerky strips on your salads. Chances are you will prefer it over any other type of jerky.
- Mix the following together to use in place of the Himalayan salt? 1 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt, 1/4 teaspoon organic black pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika.
How to Choose a Fully Ripe Watermelon
1) When you purchase a watermelon sliced into halves or quarters, choose the flesh that is deepest in color and lacks any white streaking. If the watermelon is seeded, the seeds should also be deep in color, or white.
2) When you purchase a whole watermelon, there are three features to look for.
- Weight – A fully ripened watermelon will feel heavy for its size. Heaviness in a watermelon is a good thing because the water content of a watermelon will typically increase along with ripening, and a fully ripened watermelon will be over 90% water in terms of weight. Water is one of the heaviest components in any food.
- Rind – Look for a watermelon with a relatively smooth rind that is slightly dulled on top. The top and the bottom of watermelon are worth determining and examining on a watermelon. The bottom is the spot where it was resting on the ground. A fully ripened watermelon will often have a ground spot that has turned creamy yellow in color. Opposite from the ground spot will be the top of the watermelon. In a fully ripened watermelon, that spot will typically not be shiny but somewhat dulled. The green color may appear in many different shades, however, from light green to deeper shades.
- Thumping – Even though somewhat controversial (who can resist thumping?), most experts seem to believe that a fully ripened watermelon will have a deeper, hollower “bass” sound rather than a solid and shallow “soprano” sound.
†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Oasis Advanced Wellness/OAWHealth does not dispense medical advice, prescribe, or diagnose illness. The views and nutritional advice expressed by Oasis Advanced Wellness/OAWHealth are not intended to be a substitute for conventional medical service. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician of choice.