heap of watermelon slices as background

Is it really almost August? I’m not sure I’m ready for summer to wind down just yet. Time to soak up every last little amazing moment of the next few weeks.

One of my favorite summer barbecue memories is my grandpa bringing ice-cold Green River watermelons to slice and serve for dessert. That amazing fruit, juice dripping everywhere, is a memory worth recreating, but maybe in a less messy way.

Wanting to fully soak in every ounce of that sweet, seasonal watermelon, I found a variety of recipes — everything from frozen treats to sweet salads to savory side dishes. Time to slice up a gorgeous, ripe melon and try some new recipes. For even more ideas, visit our Money-Saving Recipes board on Pinterest.

Frozen treats

Watermelon smoothies and slushies are a simple and delicious way to cool off and soak up every last blissful moment of these warm summer days. Sitting out on your back patio with a frozen strawberry watermelon smoothie in your hand is a perfect way to beat the heat. By simply blending 10 ounces of frozen strawberries and 3 cups of fresh watermelon cubes, you’ve got an easy and even healthy treat.

Another delicious two-ingredient watermelon frozen treat sure to delight the kids is this recipe for Watermelon Popsicles. In eight popsicle molds, add watermelon-flavored yogurt (or use a complementary flavor like blueberry or strawberry), 1/4 cup per mold. To each filled mold, push in diced watermelon chunks. Fill the mold with the remaining yogurt. Insert popsicle sticks and freeze for at least four hours.

Sweet salads

Watermelon is a must-add ingredient to any summertime fruit salad. Mixed with fresh berries, other gorgeous melons, pineapple, mango and kiwi, topped with a light and sweet honey-laced dressing is the perfect addition to any barbecue potluck. Add in some garden-fresh mint and even some crunchy pecans or glazed walnuts to top everything off.

Try this perfect watermelon salad that has an added bite from a little feta cheese. In a large bowl, add 2 cups diced watermelon, 1 1/2 cups blueberries, 1 chunked English cucumber, 4 ounces of sliced feta cheese and 1/4 cup sliced basil. Toss to combine. Top with a dressing of 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, 3 tablespoons honey, 1/4 cup olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Savory sides

Watermelon is one versatile fruit! Not just a dessert or sweet side dish, melon is also especially tasty in savory dishes as well. Grilled watermelon is perfectly paired with a curried shrimp salad. Try a twist on Caprese salad by skewering watermelon, goat cheese and basil. Grilled halibut tacos are even more tasty with a watermelon salsa.

Try this Watermelon Feta Orzo Salad. Stir together 1 tablespoon lemon zest, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil and 2 teaspoons honey. Pour half the mixture over 1 1/2 cups cooked orzo pasta. Season with salt and cool. Add 5 cups cubed seedless watermelon, 6 ounces crumbled feta cheese and 1/4 cup fresh, chopped basil. Add remaining dressing and toss to coat evenly.

— Jennifer Durrant