How to Cut a Watermelon

Three Methods:Cutting the Rind then SlicingCutting Wedges then SlicingCubing

One of the most popular summertime fruits is the watermelon. This cooling, sweet king of fruit is also very healthy. You can buy one in a supermarket cut, sliced, or in chunks. They are fresher, however, when you buy them whole and cut them yourself. This article will give you step-by-step instructions on how to cut a watermelon from beginning to end.

Method 1
Cutting the Rind then Slicing

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    Wash the rind of a watermelon with regular soap or with a fruit wash. Everything which the knife touches on the outside of the melon will end up in contact with the watermelon flesh as it slices through.
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    Use a sharp knife to carefully slice off the top and the bottom. A serrated knife works best for items that have a softer interior and tougher exterior like melons, tomatoes, and breads. Knives must be longer than the food/fruit you're going to cut.
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    Stand the melon on end, and carefully slice down through the center.
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    Note that if you cut along the dark stripes on the outside of the watermelon, then the watermelon seeds will end up on the outside of the pieces of watermelon, making them easier to remove.
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    Cut each half into sections.
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    Hold the section in one hand while you slowly remove the melon from its rind.
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    Slice down from the top to the rind in even slices. Continue in this way until each section has the fruit removed.
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    Place each section into a bowl.
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    Try arranging them on top of a fruit platter for a delicious, refreshing, and healthy treat.

Method 2
Cutting Wedges then Slicing

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    Find the center of the watermelon and cut at the mid-point between it and the end of the frui.t
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    Take the larger piece of the watermelon and turn so that it is standing up.
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    Cut down the middle.
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    Take one of the halves and slice into 0.51 inch (1.3 cm) pieces and repeat on the other slice.
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    On the other piece that you haven't cut yet, cut 0.5 inch (1.3 cm) thick, round slices of watermelon.
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    Slice into squares/rectangles and cut off rinds if desired.

Method 3

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    Cut watermelon in half. This may take a little muscle, but you need to get the watermelon in two equal halves to make cutting it up easier.
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    Turn watermelon over on the cutting board so that the rind is facing outward. This approach not only makes it easier to cut the melon, it is also safer than cutting directly into the fruit (which can be slippery).
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    Cut slices directly into the rind, starting at the base of the watermelon (closest to the cutting board).
    • Make downward cuts so you end up with triangular pieces.
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    Turn melon around so your cut pieces are in front of you vertically. Make sure you wipe away any juice with a paper towel.
    • Make downward cuts into the watermelon, but going the other direction (so you create cubes). Keep in mind the rind is still on the melon.
    • Try to hold melon together while you are cutting (this can be slightly tricky).
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    Serve as is or remove rind. To remove rind, extract a piece and slice rind on the cutting board. You can also de-seed at this time as well.


  • Try a watermelon milkshake! It sounds weird, but it's amazingly good. You will want to use pureed watermelon with vanilla ice cream in a ratio of about 1/3 watermelon to 2/3 ice cream. (You can vary it depending on how strong a flavor you want, of course.) Put the watermelon into the blender or food processor first and blend it just enough to make it into mush. Put that into a separate container, then blend the vanilla ice cream by itself until you get the consistency you want. Then add the watermelon to the ice cream and blend the whole thing together. Pour it into a tall glass and serve.
  • Watermelon, with its sweet and subtle taste, can be used as a palate cleanser during meals.
  • Watermelon can also be enjoyed with salt, cottage cheese, feta cheese, and/or salad greens for a delicious cool summer lunch. If you want to try something unusual, try adding a couple drops of hot sauce.
  • Blend watermelon in a blender or food processor (without the rind or seeds) for a wonderful summer beverage!
  • Instead of cutting the watermelon from slices, try cutting the rind away from the watermelon: 1) Slice off the end as instructed above, but then move the knife 3-4" in toward the middle of the watermelon and cut off a big thick slice all the way through the width of the watermelon; 2) Lay the slice down on the cutting board, and begin trimming off the rind, working all the way around the slice; 3) You should now have a big thick slice of pure watermelon with no rind; 4) Now make parallel cross-wise in bit-sized widths (1"-1.5") across the width of the watermelon; 5) Rotate 90 degrees and make the same size cuts again, so that individual pieces are cut; 5) Repeat Steps 2,4-5 in 3-4" slices the rest of the way through the watermelon; 6) Discard both end pieces. You have now quickly cut up an entire watermelon into uniform sized cubes without ever having to make a curved cut.
  • For easy 'grab and go' portions; halve a whole melon, then scoop out the flesh with an ice cream scoop. Store in the fridge, in a bowl. Enjoy quick, cool, sweet snacking for you and your family!
  • It's great to cut it so the rind remains intact so that you can hold a slice neatly with your hands.
  • Some untrained folks insist most cutting injuries occur when pushing the knife away from the body, and losing control of the knife at the end of the motion. Any use of knives should be with great caution, but it is NOT safe to cut in this manner, as seen in the picture. Given that no sane kitchen worker would ever use this method as it presents a potential serious injury, if you feel that there is no option at least protect your non-cutting hand with a steel mesh glove (if available) or a thick tea towel to absorb any contact from the blade. To assess the risk, imagine the blade moving along the cut without the food in place. If that blade ultimately ends up anywhere near your unprotected body, the cutting method is clearly unsafe.
  • Some people like a bit of citrus such as lime juice sprinkled over the pieces for an especially refreshing snack.
  • Try putting the cut pieces in a container with a flavored rum or vodka, and then let it chill for a few hours before serving.
  • Sprinkling a dash of salt and pepper also enhances the fruit's taste.
  • For a quick clean up place the watermelon on your cutting board inside of a clean 33 gallon (124.9 L) garbage bag. Adding a few paper towels or sheets of newspaper absorbs any extra juice and stops it from dripping out if the bag has holes. Once you have finished cutting your watermelon remove your cutting board from the garbage bag and tie up the rinds and waste in the garbage bag and place it in the appropriate waste container used in your community. Better yet, compost the rinds and reuse the bag for actual garbage.
  • Another approach, making small pieces neat to eat, is to slice the watermelon into cross sections at least an inch thick. Then cut that circle in half. Place the half like a smile on the cutting board and rock it toward the other side from your hand. Then using the knife for chopping, cut a small sliver to be about 1" square at the rind. If you do this so the knife hits the cutting board beyond the slice, it will leave the rind not fully cut. While rolling the smile back the other way, chop again and again. This can be done very quickly for a party, and you get a slice that fits easily on a plate and bite size pieces, each with a green handle, can be broken off with little trouble, making it neater. Or, if this chopping is done in advance, the results will stack compactly to be returned to the refrigerator awaiting the party.
  • Different gourmet sea salts taste differently on melon flesh.
  • Watermelons are seedless as well as seeded. Choose carefully when shopping to make sure you buy the type you want.
  • To make the watermelon even fresher, you can grow it in your own garden.
  • The rind can also be used in cooking, such as preserves and pickling.


  • Since dull knives require more force to cut and are more likely to slip, sharp knives are safer to use than dull ones .
  • The knife is sharp and large. Make sure you handle it carefully because you do not want to cut yourself.

Things You'll Need

  • Watermelon
  • Cutting board
  • Large Bowl
  • Large knife (a serrated bread knife works best for cutting through the rind)
  • Sharpener (if knife is dull)
  • Small knife
  • Cloth/Wipe (to wipe blade off)
  • Wastebasket (for non-edible parts of watermelon or wipes)

Sources and Citations

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