This article is shared with permission from our friends at positivemed.com.
Most people eat only the juicy flesh inside of the watermelon. However, watermelon rind is completely edible. Furthermore, watermelon rind is very healthy for your body in many ways. In fact, 95 percent of the food value of a watermelon is in the rind!
What’s in Watermelon Rind?
Watermelon rind, much like the flesh of a watermelon, is mostly made of water. Because of this, it may help the kidneys process waste more efficiently. Adequate hydration lowers blood pressure as well. Watermelon rind is also chock-full of vitamins C, B6, and A, and you can get a good amount of Zinc and Potassium from eating this part of the fruit.
The Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture even states that the citrulline in watermelon rind can fight free radical damage, and it can boost the immune system. All of these vitamins and minerals can be found in just one serving of rind totaling 50 calories.
Benefits of Consuming Watermelon Rind
Citrulline can also aid in weight loss, and the fiber found in the watermelon rind can help you feel fuller for longer. Studies have shown that people who consume natural citrulline lose 30 percent more weight than those who do not.
The lycopene in watermelon rind may also be able to reduce the inflammation responsible for arthritis pain, and the folate in the rind may also lessen the risk of heart attack and colon cancer. Because watermelon is a god source of beta-carotene, it benefits eye health as well.
One surprising advantage to eating every part of the watermelon concerns physical closeness with your partner. Scientists from Texas A&M’s Fruit and Vegetable Improvement Center have noted that the citrulline in watermelon rinds can relax the blood vessels responsible for successful closeness between partners.
Even pregnant women can take advantage of healthy watermelon rinds. Small portions of the rind can reduce heart burn, and it can reduce the swelling associated with pregnancy. The natural sugars can even reduce morning sickness! If you’re troubled by muscle cramps, try eating a little bit of watermelon rind to guard against future cramps.
Using every part of the watermelon doesn’t just benefit your health. It can stretch your food dollars as well. You can make pickles using watermelon rind since it has the same consistency as a cucumber. If you have access to a juicer, you can juice the rind for a great-tasting drink that fights free radical cell damage. Watermelon rind can be made into jam and relishes, and you can shred it to add to fritters, breads, cakes, or muffins. Click here to read the full article.
How to Cook with Watermelon Rind
Surprisingly enough, there are a variety of recipes out there that use watermelon rinds. Here are a couple you can try:
Candied Watermelon Rind
(via The Galanter’s Kitchen)
1/4 medium watermelon, washed
1/2 cup water
1 cup coconut sugar
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-2 tablespoon powder sugar
Cut the watermelon into wedges. Remove the flesh and eat it or set aside. Using a vegetable peeler, peel away the green outer skin. Cut white part of rinds into chunks.
Put rinds into a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, and simmer for about 5 minutes. A pink-orange foam can float to the surface, discard it. Drain and rinse the rinds.
Combine sugar and water, let dissolve, add rinds, bring to boil, cook 15 minutes, turn heat off and let rinds stay in syrup, covered with kitchen towel, about 8-10 hours.
Bring to boil again, cook 15 minutes, turn heat off and let rinds stay another 8-10 hours. And do it again one more time but add lemon juice and vanilla extract and cook 15 minutes, drain the rinds from the syrup (reserve the syrup for other uses if you want or store candied rinds in syrup).
For the full recipe, click here.
Watermelon Rind Chutney
- 1 (8-lb) piece watermelon (flesh and rind)
- 1 1/2 cups cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/4 cup minced peeled fresh ginger
- 2 tablespoons minced small hot green chile, such as Thai or serrano (including seeds)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns, coarsely crushed with flat side of a large knife
- Remove watermelon flesh from rind and reserve flesh for another use.
- Scrape off and discard any remaining pink flesh from rind, then cut rind crosswise into 2-inch-wide strips and remove green peel with a Y-shaped vegetable peeler or a sharp knife. Discard green peel. Cut white rind into 1/2-inch cubes (you will have 5 to 6 cups).
- Bring rind and remaining ingredients to a boil in a 4-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until rind is tender and translucent and liquid is syrupy, 45 to 55 minutes.
- Cool chutney, uncovered, then chill in an airtight container 1 to 3 days to allow flavors to mellow.
- For full recipe, click here.
If you enjoyed those delicious recipes, here’s one more – Watermelon Rind Slaw recipe.