Fresh watermelon

How to select

Melons are best when picked at the peak of ripeness, yet still firm. Select melons that are symmetrical in shape, free of cracks, bruises, or soft spots.  Melons should have a slight softness to the touch.

How to prepare

  • Cut 1/2 in. off each end of the watermelon. 
  • Stand the watermelon on one end and cut off the skin by following the shape of the watermelon. 
  • Keep removing the skin by following the white color of the inner peel. 
  • Cut the melon in half vertically, then cut each half in half again. 
  • Continue to cut into desired shapes and sizes.

How to store

Set an uncut watermelon in a cool, dark place for no longer than four days.  Store cut watermelon in an air tight container in the refrigerator.  The sooner you eat it, the better.  Watermelon flavor deteriorates after long refrigeration, and the flesh disintegrates quickly after removing it from the rind.

Peak season


Ways to use

  • The sweetness of watermelon pairs well with sharp cheeses. Enjoy a wedge with feta cheese, ricotta, sharp cheddar or Swiss.
  • Add watermelon to savory summer salads along with cucumber, tomatoes and greens such as watercress, baby arugula and spinach. Top off your salad with fresh herbs such as mint, basil and chives then sprinkle with walnuts, almonds or pistachios.

Fun facts

  • Watermelons are 92% water.
  • By weight, watermelon is the most-consumed melon in the United States.
  • According to Guinness World Records, the world's heaviest watermelon was grown by Chris Kent of Sevierville, Tennessee in 2013, weighing in at 350.5 lbs.

Nutrition info and facts

Watermelons are full of antioxidants and vitamins A & C. Consuming watermelon contributes to your daily water intake. Watermelon is a low-calorie food that can aid in weight management. Watermelon contains lycopene, an antioxidant that supports eye health.

1 cup diced watermelon = 46 calories, 11.5 g carbohydrate, 9 g sugar, 5% DV vitamin A, 14% DV vitamin C

Learn more

Growing melons in the home garden (UMN Extension)

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Feel Good Foodie. How to cut a watermelon. October 13, 2023.

Healthline. The top 9 health benefits of watermelon. February 23, 2023.