How to Cut a Watermelon
It’s a summer life skill day! This post is going to show you the easiest, best method for how to cut a watermelon into cubes of any size.
Eating cold watermelon right out of the refrigerator is one of summer’s greatest joys.
Yet, despite my love of this naturally hydrating, ultra-refreshing fruit, I very rarely buy and cut up a watermelon. Why? Because it’s a pain. Or so I thought.
Thanks to this easy method for cutting watermelon, however, that all changed. As it turns out, I’ve been cutting watermelon wrong all along. Now that I can cut a watermelon properly, we have it in our fridge almost every day, and I am a happy summer gal.
I owe the revelation of the best way to cut a watermelon to my sister. Her 2- and 4-year-old daughters are absolutely hooked on it (smart little ladies they are), so she set out to speed up the cutting process for everyone’s sake, especially her own as Head Watermelon Cutting Officer.
Below, you’ll find a tutorial for how to cut a watermelon step-by-step. I’ve included both photos and a video. This is without a doubt the easiest way to cut a watermelon you’ll find!
Once I’ve cut the watermelon into pieces, I like to divide my bounty into two.
- Half I keep in the refrigerator for straight up snacking. Cool, fresh watermelon never ever fails to hit the spot.
- The other half I freeze in a ziptop bag for making a creamy Watermelon Smoothie. See below for watermelon freezing tips.
Other watermelon cube possibilities: you can use them to create a great big fruit salad, or go a little sweet and savory with this Watermelon Feta Salad with Mint Avocado and Lime.
In addition to going over how to cut a watermelon properly, this post also includes helpful tips for how to pick a watermelon, how to know if a watermelon is ripe, the best way to store it, and more.
Picking the Perfect Watermelon
One of the keys to delicious watermelon is picking the right one. Here are a few tips for how to select the perfect watermelon:
- Look for a watermelon that is matte, not shiny, as shiny watermelons are often overgrown.
- Select one without any visible bumps or holes, as this can signal issues with watering or bugs.
- A heavy watermelon is a juicy watermelon. Pick up a few to see which one feels the heaviest for its size.
How to Tell When Watermelon is Ripe
These tips will help you select a watermelon that is perfectly ripe and juicy.
- A ripe watermelon should make a hollow sound when you tap or knock on its rind.
- The rind should not scratch easily or give way under light pressure.
- The bottom of the watermelon has what is called a “field spot.” When a watermelon is ripe, this spot should be yellow.
How to Cut a Watermelon
This is the absolute best way to cut a watermelon into pieces. You can also use it to make watermelon cubes of any size, as well as to cut watermelon sticks.
- Rinse and dry the whole watermelon.
- Slice it in half crosswise (you’ll end up with two circular, versus oblong pieces).
- Cut off the stem end.
- Place the watermelon cut side down on a cutting board.
- Holding your knife at an angle, cut down towards the cutting board to remove the rind and white flesh. You should see the dark pink insides of the watermelon (pictured above) after you’ve made the cuts.
- Continue cutting until all the rind has been removed.
- Cut the watermelon into thirds, making 3 full circle pieces.
- Slice the circles into cubes.
- Repeat with the other watermelon half.
- Chill the cubes in the refrigerator (if desired). ENJOY!
If you are looking for more cool ways to cut a watermelon, in step 7 (when the watermelon is in thirds), instead of slicing the melon into cubes or sticks, stamp out shapes with a cookie cutter. Stars would be festive for the Fourth of July or Labor Day, or try hearts for a special celebration.
Watermelon Storage Tips
- To Store a Whole Watermelon. Store a whole watermelon at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
- To Store Watermelon Cubes. Refrigerate watermelon cubes in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
To Freeze Watermelon Pieces
- To Freeze. Lay the watermelon pieces in a single layer on a parchment or wax paper-lined baking sheet, and freeze until solid. Once frozen, transfer the pieces to an airtight freezer-safe storage container or ziptop bag and freeze for up to 3 months.
Cutting Watermelon for a Party
This method also works well if you are looking for how to cut watermelon for a party. Set out a bowl of watermelon cubes, then watch everyone’s eyes light up.
If you will be serving this watermelon at a party, I recommend allowing at least 4 hours for it to chill in the fridge (8 hours is even better) to make sure the pieces are icy cold and as refreshing as possible.
Recommended Tools to Cut Watermelon
- Sharp Chef’s Knife. A sharp knife is important when cutting a watermelon, and this one is perfect.
- Extra Large Cutting Board. When cutting something as large as a watermelon, the extra space is wonderful.
- Storage Containers. An easy way to portion and store your watermelon pieces.
Thank you to my sister for this game-changing watermelon cutting hack. I hope this easy way to cut watermelon leads to more melon munching, and thus more summer joy for you the way it has for me.
How to Cut a Watermelon
- 1 watermelon
- cutting board and knife
- Rinse the watermelon and pat it dry.
- Using a sharp chef's knife, carefully slice the watermelon in half crosswise (not lengthwise) so you have two pieces that have a round, circular cut side (if you cut it lengthwise, you'd have an oval).
- Starting with the first half: trim off the stem end of the watermelon so that you can see some of the red flesh easily peaking through the circle.
- Turn the melon face down on the cutting board (so that the larger, fully cut side is flat against the board.
- Starting at the top, stem end, hold your knife at an angle and gently cut down towards the cutting board so that you remove a strip of the rind. Cut deep enough to where the rind is fully removed and you see the dark pink flesh of the watermelon (remove all of the white/very light pink part. You'll lose some of the red with it, but that's OK.).
- Rotate the melon and repeat, continuing until you have cut away all of the rind.
- Cut the melon horizontally into thirds, so that you end up with 3 pieces that are each a full circle.
- Cut each circle into cubes of your desired size.
- Repeat with the second melon half.
- Place in a container and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours (for icy cold watermelon) or refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for 3 months or longer.
- TO STORE WATERMELON CUBES: Refrigerate watermelon cubes in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
- TO FREEZE: Lay the watermelon pieces in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and freeze until solid. Once frozen, transfer the pieces to an airtight freezer-safe storage container or ziptop bag and freeze for up to 3 months.
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