How to Cut a Watermelon (3 different ways!)


I’m back with another easy, super helpful kitchen hack that’s perfect for summer: how to cut a watermelon! I’ve got three easy methods for cutting a watermelon that will make your snacks, BBQ’s and picnics a breeze.

I’ve also included storing & freezing instructions, plus delicious ways to use your fresh cut watermelon. Try out each method and let me know your favorite in the comments!

Welcome to the AK Back to Basics Series

We’re thrilled to share the first *official* Back to Basics recipe tutorial! In this FREE series, we’ll be walking you through a new kitchen tutorial or cooking hack to help you gain confidence in the kitchen. We’ll release a brand new Back to Basics post every Sunday morning to kick off your week.

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Have a cooking issue you’ve always wanted help with? Leave a comment at the bottom of this post and we’ll add it to our list!

How can you tell when a watermelon is ripe?

The first step in perfectly cutting a whole watermelon is, of course, to get one! Choosing a ripe watermelon can seem daunting, but there are a few tricks you can use to tell if a watermelon is ripe or not:

  • Pick it up. To start, the watermelon should be pretty heavy for how large it looks. If you’re choosing between two watermelons that look similar in size, choose the one that’s heavier as this means it has a lot more juice in it.
  • Look for a yellow spot. The underside of the watermelon should have a yellow-ish spot, which indicates where it was sitting as it grew on the ground. If it has a white spot, this means the watermelon is not yet ripe.
  • Smell it. A ripe watermelon should have a slight, sweet smell to it (similar to what the inside smells like).
  • Give it a knock. Carefully thump the watermelon with your knuckles and listen carefully. A ripe watermelon will sound hollow, whereas an unripe watermelon will sound more like a “slap.”

How to cut a watermelon: three different ways

Method 1: cut it into triangles

Use this easy method for cutting a watermelon into triangles if you’d like to serve triangle slices on a platter for guests or even for grilling!

Step 1: place your watermelon on a sturdy cutting board and use a sharp knife to cut about 1/2 – 1″ off the stem end and the opposite end of the fruit so that you have two flat surfaces.

Step 2: tip the watermelon onto one of the flat surfaces so that it’s facing upright.

Step 3: cut the watermelon vertically down the middle, starting at the top flat end.

Step 4: take one of the watermelon halves and place the large, flat, cut side down on your cutting board.

Step 5: cut 1″ half moons across the watermelon half, keeping the knife parallel to the two ends you cut off in the beginning.

Step 6: cut each of those half moons into 2, 3 or 4 smaller triangles, depending on how big you want them!

Step 7: repeat steps 4, 5 & 6 with the other half of your watermelon.

Method 2: cut it into cubes

Use this cubing method for watermelon to keep pieces in the fridge for snacking, adding pieces to fresh salads, or even in the freezer for frozen drinks and smoothies.

Step 1: repeat steps 1 & 2 above.

Step 2: use a large, sharp knife to vertically cut off the skin, moving the knife around the edge of the watermelon so that you’re not cutting straight down (and subsequently cutting off the juicy parts). Cut any remaining white parts off.

Step 3: once you’ve cut off all of the skin, cut the watermelon into 1″ planks.

Step 4: cut each of those planks into 1″ cubes and enjoy.

Method 3: make watermelon balls

This method is a fun, pretty way to serve watermelon! Use watermelon balls in salads, on kabobs or on a skewers as a cute appetizer.

Step 1: repeat steps 1, 2 & 3 from the first method.

Step 2: place one of your watermelon halves flesh-side up on your cutting board.

Step 3: use a melon baller or small cookie scoop to scoop out balls of watermelon.

Step 4: repeat steps 2 & 3 with the other half of your watermelon.

How to store fresh watermelon

  • In the refrigerator: store your fresh cut watermelon in airtight containers or bags in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.
  • In the freezer: spread out your cubed or balled watermelon on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place it in the freezer for a few hours until frozen solid. This is called a flash freeze and will prevent the chunk of watermelon from freezing together. After the pieces are frozen, add them to freezer-friendly, airtight containers and store them in the freezer. Try frozen watermelon in smoothies, as fruity ice cubes or just as a cool summer treat!

Delicious ways to serve watermelon

Besides serving it up on a platter and watching guests devour, here are some fun, delicious ways to enjoy watermelon:

Get more of our delicious summer recipes here!

More helpful how-to guides & tutorials

Check out all of our how-to guides on the blog here.

I hope you loved this easy, step-by-step tutorial on how to cut a watermelon! Be sure to leave a comment if you try it out, and sign up for the AK VIP List to get more Back to Basics posts straight to your inbox.

Learn exactly how to cut a watermelon into triangles, cubes or melon balls! With this step-by-step tutorial, you’ll be able to safely and easily cut a watermelon in just a few simple steps. Use fresh-cut watermelon in your favorite summer recipes!

  1. Place the watermelon on its side on a cutting board.

  2. Cut about ½-1” off the stem end and opposite end so that you have two flat surfaces.

  3. Tip the watermelon onto one of the flat surfaces.

  4. FOR TRIANGLES

    Cut the watermelon vertically down the middle, starting at the top flat end.

    Take one of the watermelon halves and place the large flat cut side on your cutting board.

    Cut 1” half moons across the watermelon, keeping the knife parallel to the two ends you cut off in the beginning.

    Cut each of those half moons into 2, 3, or 4 smaller triangles, depending on how big you want them!

  5. FOR CUBED WATERMELON

    Use a large, sharp knife to vertically cut off the skin, moving the knife around the edge of the melon so that you’re not cutting straight down. Cut any remaining white parts off.

    Once skin is all off, cut vertical 1” planks.

    Cut each plank into 1” cubes.

  6. FOR MELON BALLS

    Cut the watermelon vertically down the middle, starting at the top flat end.

    Use a melon baller or small scoop to scoop out balls of melon

Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats



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