Quick Overview: How to Peel a Pomegranate Like a Pro
- Select the best pomegranates by looking for ones that are bright in color and heavy for their size. This means they’re full of juicy seeds.
- Use a sharp knife to carefully cut off the stem end or the crown of the pomegranate.
- Use the knife to score the peel of the pomegranate by making shallow cuts through the skin and down to the fruit.
- Gently break open the pomegranate along the scored lines using your hands.
- Are Pomegranates Difficult?
- How to Choose the Best Pomegranate
- How to Peel a Pomegranate Without Making a Mess
- Best Tools for Cutting and Peeling Pomegranates
- Frequently Asked Questions
1. Are Pomegranates Difficult?
The thing about cooking is sometimes you can psych yourself out from trying something new because of how complicated you think it’s going to be. You build up this idea in your head about how difficult or messy it is, to the point where you’ll do anything to avoid the task at hand. For me, one of those tasks was the simple act of peeling a pomegranate.
Seriously. Pomegranate fruit is absolutely delicious, and the ruby red pomegranate arils (seeds) are really great in a wide number of savory and sweet recipes (like pomegranate salad or a simple but fresh pomegranate juice), but the complicated techniques people used to extract them seemed to me like something out of a heist movie. Like something you’ll need a blueprint and a game plan to accomplish, not to mention a mop and a bucket at the ready.
Of course, as tends to be the case, I was being a bit dramatic. After doing some research I found that working with pomegranates doesn’t have to be a mess, or scary, or painful. This delicious superfood is as accessible as any other. And if you look into how the fruit works and you arm yourself with the right tools, peeling a pomegranate is a super easy and even fun task. Let’s explore that.
2. How to Choose the Best Pomegranate
How do you even know which pomegranates are good? Turns out, again – it’s easier than you think.
The first thing you have to do is to rid yourself of the idea that the rind’s color is any indicator of ripeness. That was my first mistake. The rind color of a pomegranate can range from bright pink to red to brick, but this is just a result of the variety of the fruit and not an indication of ripeness.
When shopping for pomegranates, you'll want to look for fruits that are hard on the outside and feel heavy for their size. These characteristics indicates a ripe pomegranate that is full of juicy seeds. Avoid pomegranates that have cracks or bruises, as these can affect the quality of the fruit.
When it comes to choosing the perfect pomegranate, size matters! The bigger the pomegranate, the juicier it will be. So go for the largest fruit you can find. Hard and heavy is the way to go.
Read about the 10 health benefits of pomegranate, here.
3. How to Peel a Pomegranate Without Making a Mess
Peeling a pomegranate is also a lot easier than you might think.
- Use a sharp paring knife to cut through the skin around the top of the pomegranate. Use a circular motion, like you’re giving it a little hat. Once you’ve made a nice little opening, go ahead and pull the lid off the pomegranate.
- Slicing the pomegranate is also very easy. Cut shallow vertical lines along the pomegranate sections (the pith, the white lines inside) running from the top all the way to the base.
- Almost done. Using your hand, gently pull apart the sections of the pomegranate until it separates. It should come apart very easily, revealing those juicy seeds inside.
Boom. See? Much easier than you thought.
4. Best Tools for Cutting and Peeling Pomegranates
Paring knives such as this 2.75” Bird’s Beak knife are ideal for precise cutting work on fruit and vegetables, such as pomegranates. It’s tiny but extremely powerful, and the kind of kitchen tool that will come in handy way more often than you might think.
- Precision forged, wear resistant, single-piece, high carbon steel (German ThyssenKrupp) at 56+ Rockwell.
- This blade is beautifully hand-polished to a satin finish.
- Ergonomic handle; looks great, feels great.
- Fantastic value for the affordable price.
- Because of its small size, it won’t be as versatile as some other pairing knives, but it will do great on precision cuts.
- Its small size also makes it slightly tricky to sharpen.
Here’s another great example of a Bird’s Beak paring knife that can be used for small cuts on all kinds of products. As part of the Shogun series, this little guy sports a ruthlessly sharp scalpel-like stainless steel edge, hand finished to a mirror polish using traditional Japanese knife sharpening methods.
- Top of the line materials: made of razor-sharp Japanese super steel cutting core at 62+ Rockwell hardness
- Has added chromium for corrosion and stain resistance.
- Not only is it a great performer, it’s also beautiful; check out the “tsunami rose” pattern on the steel.
- Military grade G10 handle, highly impervious to heat, cold, and moisture.
- Not everyone is a fan of the Shogun series blade pattern.
- As a small paring knife, this is not quite as versatile as other knives in this list.
Style, elegance, and cutting ability all come together as part of Dalstrong’s Frost Fire Series, a collection of light-weight, razor-sharp steel knives with an icy cold look. This 3.5” paring knife looks beautiful and handles great.
- Features a “frosted” look thanks to a precision-based sandblast finish.
- Extremely sharp knife, at a 16-18° degree angle per side.
- Features a seven-layer high-carbon steel with added cobalt and expert heat-treatment.
- The honeycomb finish on the handle makes this a piece of art as much as it is a kitchen tool.
- Not every home cook might care for the frosted look of this unique knife.
- It’s a little lighter than you might be used to.
Of course, cutting into a pomegranate is famously a messy task. With the tips above, hopefully you’ll be able to do it without leaving a mess. Whatever the case, it’s always good to use a cutting board just to be on the safe side.
- Perfect size for a cutting board, more than able to fit a wide array of daily tasks.
- It will only look better and better with time, as the wood develops a rugged, lived-in look.
- This is the kind of cutting board people ask you about; it’s an eye-catching tool for sure.
- With its two steel handles, you’ll be able to quickly and comfortably move it from place to place.
- If you think you might be needing something bigger, check out the Lionswood Colossal.
- And if you’re not a fan of wooden tablewares and tools such as wooden spoons or wooden cutting boards, check out the option below.
This wood-fiber cutting board is an excellent alternative. It has a beautiful, sleek color, and thanks to its construction it’s a highly useful and practical tool.
- With its non-slip silicone feet, you can be sure this won’t slip while you try to cut.
- Sports a premium G10 serving handle, which is extremely handy and comfortable.
- A very easy tool to take care of. Easy to use, clean, and store.
- A great value for the amazing price.
- If you prefer a wooden cutting board, check out the option above.
- Not everyone is a fan of the shape and color, but that will depend entirely on your personal preference.
5. Frequently Asked Questions
What is the easiest way to peel pomegranates?
First, use a sharp knife to carefully cut off the crown, or stem end, of the pomegranate. Then use the knife to score the peel of the pomegranate by making shallow cuts through the skin (not too deep). Score the pomegranate into quarters. Then you can simply use your hands to gently open the pomegranate along the scored lines.
How do you peel a pomegranate and get the seeds out?
After peeling, use your hands or a spoon to carefully remove pomegranate seeds. You can do this by gently pulling the seeds away from the pith (the white part of the pomegranate).
How do you deseed a pomegranate quickly?
Aside from the method described above, you can quickly cut and deseed a pomegranate by placing the pomegranate quarters in a bowl of water and separating the seeds from the pith by pressing on the pitch with your fingers. The seeds will sink to the bottom of the bowl while the pith will float to the top.
Do you spit the seeds out in pomegranate?
Pomegranate seeds are perfectly edible, and they provide roughage to help with digestion. However, if you’re not a fan of the texture, you can chew the seeds to release the pomegranate juice and then simply spit it out.
Can you freeze pomegranate seeds?
Yes, you can freeze pomegranate seeds. To do so, simply spread the seeds out in a single layer on a lined baking sheet, freeze until solid, and then transfer to an airtight container or freezer bag. Label the container or bag with the date and store in the freezer for a few months.