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If you are a mom, then being able to cut up a watermelon is a life skill you need. If you already find this task super quick and easy, then chances are you have the same or similar way of doing it that I am about to show you, and you can move on to the next article. But, if the thought of having to cut up a watermelon on the fly with your kitchen full of hungry kids makes your palms sweat and your eye twitch, then pay attention!
The process of cutting up a watermelon is not difficult, and I actually debated even writing this tutorial. However, thinking back to early in my mommy career when I did not have a good method of getting the job done, I realized that a quick pointer like the one I’m about to give you is exactly what would’ve helped me. The process may be easy, but it is not obvious or intuitive. (At least it wasn’t for me!)
There are of course times when you want the watermelon rind left on for slices, and other times that you want it cut into chunks without the rind. These are the steps to quickly cut up a watermelon into chunks (no rind) so it can be eaten with a fork, fingers, or added to a fruit salad.
Also, please make sure you’re using a sharp knife. There’s nothing more dangerous than trying to cut up a watermelon with a dull knife! Ask me how I know.
Step 1: Begin by slicing both ends off of your watermelon, down to the edible, red part of the fruit.
Step 2: With the watermelon resting on one of the flat ends, cut the rind off in strips from the top to the bottom. Continue all the way around the melon until all of the rind is cut off and you are left with a big, bare watermelon ball.
Note: If you have backyard chickens, they LOVE watermelon, so toss the rinds out to them. Or, you can add it to your compost pile.
Step 3: Now, slice your melon ball right down the middle, from the top to the bottom.
Step 4: Take one half of the melon and set it aside. Lay the other half of your melon flat side down on your cutting board. Very carefully make a horizontal cut through your melon, with your knife slicing parallel to your cutting surface. This was a fairly small watermelon, so one horizontal cut was enough. For a bigger melon, you may want to make a second slice through about 1 1/2 inches up from the first cut.
Step 5: Make vertical, parallel cuts through your layers of melon, spacing each cut out about 1 1/2-2 inches.
Step 6: Now, make a series of vertical, parallel cuts running across (perpendicular to) the ones you just made, creating your chunks.
Step 7: Repeat steps 4-6 on the second half of your melon.
Step 8: Scoop your melon into a serving/storage bowl.
*There is a quick way of doing this, so you don’t have to pick up all those pieces with your hands and transfer them to the bowl. You know those flexible plastic cutting boards? Don’t buy one just for this, but if you happen to have a set lying around like I did, take one that you are willing to repurpose. Cut it in half, and then round the sharp corners with your scissors. Now you have two really useful “bench scrapers” to get things up off of your cutting board! It is awesome for sliding right under all the cut melon and transferring a large amount at a time to your serving bowl. If you don’t already have one of these plastic mats, I would invest in a stainless bench scraper.
Step 9: Let everyone dig in!
Did You Know This About Watermelon?
- When choosing a watermelon, pick one that feels heavy for its size
- Choose a watermelon that has one side of it that is flatter and more yellow than the rest of it. This indicates that it sat on the ground to ripen, which is what you want.
- Watermelon is packed with lycopene, a powerful antioxidant
I hope you have found this tutorial helpful! Now, you are armed with the how-to for getting watermelon cut up fast for a crowd this summer! Easy peasy.