The reddish-pink color of a watermelon is reminiscent of the heat of summer days and picnics with the family. But people are starting to replace the nostalgic red watermelon with a trendier and more unique watermelon bearing a similar green rind but with a bright yellow inside. So, what exactly is yellow watermelon, and how does it differ from the common red watermelon?

Red vs Yellow Watermelon

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Caroline Ingalls

Yellow watermelons lack lycopene, which is the chemical that produces a reddish color in fruits and vegetables like tomatoes and red grapefruit. While the large amounts of lycopene in red watermelon give it a pinkish-red inside, the lack of lycopene in yellow watermelon yields a yellowish color.

Surprisingly, yellow watermelon was cultivated before red watermelon. Yellow watermelons were bred to have higher lycopene content once watermelon became more popular, which turned it redder over time. Originating in Africa, this yellowish kind of watermelon is said to have a somewhat sweeter flavor and a thicker rind than its red cousin.

Nutritional Benefits of Yellow Watermelon

In terms of nutritional value, yellow watermelon amounts to about 46 calories in a cup and makes for a wonderful snack. Similar to red watermelon, yellow watermelon is high in vitamins A and C, which can support the immune system and skin health. Unlike red watermelon, yellow watermelon contains more beta-carotene, which is an antioxidant that may protect against cancer and eye diseases.

With its many health benefits and low calorie count, yellow watermelon is a great choice for anyone who's looking for a sweet, refreshing snack. This yellow fruit can also be used for desserts, such as fruit tarts or smoothies, or it can also be included as a topping on a creative salad. It can also be juiced for a refreshing drink that retains the yellow watermelon's original flavor. Not only can yellow watermelon aid with detoxing and prevent bloating, but the high percentage of water can also keep you hydrated for the whole day.

How to Pick the Best Watermelon

Yellow watermelon is generally interchangeable with red watermelon, and I would personally choose whichever is cheaper at the grocery store. That said, for those who have not tried yellow watermelon before, I would highly recommend it.

If you're at the grocery store looking for a nice, ripe yellow watermelon, check for melons that have a creamy yellowish spot on the rind. A ripe watermelon, yellow or red, should feel quite heavy and should also make a hollow sound if you lightly thump it. Watermelons are usually the tastiest during the summer, but that shouldn't stop you from picking up a yellow watermelon any time of the year.