Nepali Watermelon Rind Pickle

Made with watermelon rind, this Nepali-style watermelon rind pickle is a fantastic condiment or a side dish to all your meals.

I love freshly cut, chilled watermelons with little black salt on a hot Summer day. Who doesn’t right? But how about the watermelon rind that often gets thrown away. In the last year or so, I have learned to utilize the watermelon rind ….remember the easy and delicious Watermelon Rind Curry? My aunt suggested I make a pickle with watermelon rind, similar to Nepali Mula Ko Achar or Khalpi Ko Achar (ripened cucumber pickle).

Nepali Watermelon Rind Pickle indeed turned out to be very delicious, with a crunchy yet little soft texture and so much flavor! I am intrigued by the texture of watermelon rind, how it’s close to ripened cucumber. In Nepal, it is served as a condiment with rice, or a main dish. During the festivals and get together, it is typical to serve a variety of vegetable-based achar (pickles) such as Nepali Mula Ko Achar, Khalpi Ko Achar, Tomato Achar.

I hope this festival season, you will add something different to your table with Nepali Watermelon Rind Pickle. Here is a rough recipe from a small personal sized watermelon rind. I was able to get 1-32 oz jar worth of pickle from it. You can easily scale up or down the recipe based on your needs.

Nepali Watermelon Rind Pickle

For about 1 -32 oz jar


  • 600 grams chopped watermelon rind (only the white part, skin peeled)

  • 1 .5 tablespoon salt ( I used coarse Kosher salt so please adjust accordingly to you taste)

  • 1 heaping tablespoon red chili powder (add more/less based on your taste and how hot the peppers are )

  • 2 teaspoon turmeric powder

  • 2 tablespoon mustard powder

  • 3 tablespoon mustard oil


  1. Reserve the watermelon rind. Scoop out flesh/red part with a knife or an ice cream scoop. Peel the skin (green part) . We only need the white part for the recipe.

  2. Cut the white part into small-medium bite size pieces. Pat dry the rind with paper towel, . If you have time, it is best to let it sun-dry for few hours to remove the excess moisture.

  3. In a bowl, add watermelon rind pieces then add salt, spices – turmeric, red chili powder, and mustard powder. Add mustard oil to the mix until spices evenly coat the watermelon rind. Give a quick taste and adjust salt and spices per your taste.

  4. Pack the watermelon rind with spices/juices into a clean glass jar. I used a 32 oz glass jar. Use a jar that leaves a little space on top. Too much air in the jar can lead to spoilage of pickles.

  5. Cover the jar tightly with a lid, and place it outside in the direct sun for few days and bring it indoors in the evening.

  6. Use a clean spoon to taste it after 4-5 days; the pickles are ready when you see air bubbles forming in the jar. The pickles should be still crunchy with a sour taste.

  7. Leave the jar on your kitchen counter top if you’d like more sour taste. Once you are happy with the taste, move the pickle jar to the refrigerator.

  8. Enjoy with rice or as a side dish.

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Dixya Bhattarai

Dixya Bhattarai

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