Watermelon Caprese with Balsamic Reduction


I know we all like to THINK that Labor Day weekend is the official end to summer, but it is not. We still have a couple of weeks left, and these weeks that lie ahead are some of my favorites of the year. This could partly be because my birthday lands on September 6, and that’s pretty much a national holiday. In all seriousness, I think it’s the transition period that I love so much about September. Temperatures (for the most part) are decreasing, fall colors are increasing and the scent of pumpkin is drawing closer and closer. To celebrate the end of summer, I whipped up a super easy caprese, but this time my caprese involves watermelon…delicious, beautiful, “I want you so badly” … watermelon.


Watermelon is definitely one of my favorite parts of summer. It wasn’t until I was in the grocery store on Sunday that I realized summer is almost over and fresh watermelon will soon be gone! This was, for obvious reasons, a really scary thought.

During this period where I was basically freaking out, I picked up some watermelon, and decided something needed to be done, and it needed to be done quickly!

It really doesn’t get much easier than caprese. Traditionally served with tomatoes, I decided to swap out the tomatoes for watermelon, and you guys, it totally worked. It’s just something about that sweet and salty that makes my world go round.

Drizzled with super delish extra virgin olive and a 25 year old balsamic (reduction), I was in sweet and savory bliss.

Celebrate the end of summer with this recipe. It literally will take you all of 10 minutes, and it will fly off the table!


Beer Love:
Beer: 21st Amendment’s Hell or High Watermelon
Brewery: 21st Amendment Brewery
Style: Fruit/Wheat Beer
Alcohol Content: 4.9%
Description: It has been quite a while since I have paired with 21st Amendment’s Hell or High Watermelon. Summer will be drawing to a close very, very soon. I believe that a summer-like recipe like this deserves a summer-like beer pairing, and it is the perfect last hurrah to celebrate the end of summer. I think it’s pretty obvious why I decided to pair this watermelon caprese with a beer that seriously tastes like liquid watermelon. It’s the perfect summer brew. It’s perfectly refreshing and smooth, and oh so light. Although it is on the lighter side, it does not lack in boldness and super amazing flavor. You will want to indulge in this pairing soon! Summer is coming to an end, guys!


I hope everyone had a fab Labor Day weekend! Here is the recipe! xo


Watermelon Caprese with Balsamic Reduction
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
15 min


  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 8 ounces fresh watermelon, cut into 1/2 inch round slices
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/2 inch round slices
  • 6 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt
  • black pepper


  • In a small saucepan, over medium heat, add the balsamic vinegar. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer the balsamic vinegar until it has been reduced by at least half. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • On your serving dish, layer the watermelon, fresh mozzarella and basil in any order that you wish.
  • Drizzle the extra virgin olive oil and balsamic reduction on top.
  • Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper to taste.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!


Categories: American Fare, Appetizers and Snacks, Food and Beer Pairings, Italian-American, Recipes, Seasonal, Summer, Sweet
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
  • http://www.reciperunner.com/ Danae | Recipe Runner

    Your birthday is totally a national holiday! This salad looks fantastic! I have half a watermelon in the fridge, basil in the garden, all I need is some mozzarella, can’t wait to make it!

    • http://www.cookingandbeer.com/ Justine@Cooking and Beer

      Haha, thanks Danae! I knew you would understand! Thank you so much. You would absolutely love it!

  • http://www.acleanbake.com Nora @ A Clean Bake

    Oh this is such a great idea!!!! I am going to try it for myself. Gotta get the watermelon cravings satisfied before it’s all gone…

    • http://www.cookingandbeer.com/ Justine@Cooking and Beer

      Thanks, Nora! I totally agree! It will be a sad day when it’s all gone. :(

  • Kathi @ Deliciously Yum!

    You know how to celebrate, girl! I love the watermelon for tomato swap – so clever. Thanks for holding out on fall recipes a tad bit longer. Like you said, summer still has a couple of weeks to go… after all, you’re a summer baby ;). Hope you get to enjoy something this delicious on your special day!!

    • http://www.cookingandbeer.com/ Justine@Cooking and Beer

      Haha, thanks girly! xoxo

  • Krista

    Love anything caprese and with balsamic reduction… so basically this dish is so happening at my house!

    • http://www.cookingandbeer.com/ Justine@Cooking and Beer

      Haha, thank you sou much Krista! I totally agree!