Learn how to cut and deseed a pomegranate with no stress or mess. It only takes one time to become a pomegranate cutting pro with this no-fail method!
Pomegranates are pretty high up in my “favorite fruits” lineup. They’re sweet, tart, versatile, fun to eat… and often a bit of a disaster, if we’re being honest.
If you’re cutting through a pomegrante for the first time unguided, it can be a surprisingly huge pain to de-seed. The seeds burst easily and leak magenta juice when cut into, and that juice can stain your fingertips at best, or your countertops at worst. If you’ve bought the containers of already-plucked seeds in order to avoid the hassle of cutting open your own pomegranate, you’re certainly not alone. But those containers are expensive– and why pay up for convenience when there’s an easy way to do it yourself?
Read on to learn how to cut open and deseed a pomegranate in less than 5 minutes— without puddles of pomegranate juice to deal with after.
HOW TO CUT A POMEGRANATE
Packed with hundreds of ruby red seeds called arils, pomegranates are one of nature’s most beautiful fruits once you cut them open. That is, of course, if you can cut them open and remove the arils without bursting too many in the process. Luckily, it’s easier to do than you think! This method requires only a few minutes, no stress, and no mess.
Let’s jump in.
1. REMOVE THE TOP OF THE POMEGRANATE
To start, use a sharp knife to slice around the top of the pomegranate. You want to score the skin and membrane without cutting deeply enough to disturb the arils.
Then, use your fingertips to pry off the top of the pomegranate, exposing the upper seeds and pith. You’ll be able to see the separate segments of the pomegranate now– they have white membranes between each section.
2. SCORE ALONG THE SEGMENTS
Next, we’re going to score along the outside of the pomegranate, lining up with the papery white pith inside of the pomegranate. This will help us to break the pomegranate into sections. You want to pierce the skin and through a bit of the membrane but to avoid cutting into the seeds.
Once it’s scored all around the segments, it’s time to crack it open.
3. OPEN THE POMEGRANATE
Pull apart each segment and the pomegranate will crack where it’s been scored, opening up like a flower. Remove the inner cone of pith and then your pomegranate is fully cut open with the seeds exposed– and not a single seed has been broken!
HOW TO REMOVE POMEGRANATE SEEDS
Opening the pomegranate is only half of the battle. It’s time to remove those seeds without breaking or bruising them! Your kitchen doesn’t have to look like a crime scene as long as you use the water method.
1. DITCH THE WOODEN SPOON & GRAB A BOWL OF WATER
You may have seen people smack the back of the cut pomegranate with a spoon to release the arils before. It works, this isn’t my favorite method. If you whack the back of the pomegranate, the seeds will bruise and break, and it makes a mess.
Instead, I like to dunk the whole pomegranate in a bowl of water and gently remove the seeds with my hands. The seeds separate easily and sink to the bottom while the membrane and skin will float on top of the water.
2. SKIM THE SKIN AND PITH
Using a fine mesh strainer, skim off any papery pith that has floated to the top. Shake the seeds a bit to release any pith that might be trapped below or loosely attached to the seeds. Skim until only the seeds remain in the water.
3. SCOOP OUT THE ARILS
Using the same strainer, remove the arils from the bowl of water and use them as desired! It’s that easy– no pomegranate juice staining your fingers and surfaces!
HOW TO EAT POMEGRANATE
There are hundreds of great ways to use pomegranate seeds as an ingredient in any type of dish from appetizers to desserts. Here are a few of my favorites:
- Sprinkle over dips and appetizers. You can often find pomegranate seeds accompanying appetizers from the Levantine region (Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Iraq, and Israel). I use them in this Mezze Platter!
- Mix with roasted vegetables. Roasted vegetables such as carrots, cauliflower, and sweet potatoes pair wonderfully with tart pomegranate arils! Or use them in my personal favorite variation: Roasted Honey Balsamic Brussels Sprouts.
- Decorate desserts. Ruby red pomegranate arils look beautiful as a decoration, and they also add a pop of tartness that makes the sweet desserts all the more delicious. Use them with chocolate or on Matcha Wreath Christmas Pavolva.
- Add to drinks. Pomegranate juice is delicious on its own or as an ingredient in cocktails like Pomegranate New York Sours or Pomegranate Mojitos.
Let me know what recipes you make with your pomegranate seeds!
WATCH THE HOW-TO VIDEO
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