How to buy the perfect watermelon, mango, and pineapple

Unless you have x-ray vision, it can be a bit tricky knowing which piece of fruit is going to be ripe and perfect to eat. Check for these giveaway signs.

January 12, 2023

Whole watermelon

  • Watermelons are about 90% water, so the weight is a sign of its water content. A heavy melon means it should be nice and juicy.
  • Give it a tap. If it sounds hollow, give it a miss as it could be dry and cracked in the middle.
  • Look for a patch of creamy yellow on one side (where it has rested on the ground). This means the melon was ripe when it was picked.  

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  • The best way to buy a mango is to simply use your senses.
  • Have a good look and avoid any fruit that is bruised.
  • A ripe fresh mango should have a fragrant aroma.
  • It should ‘give’ slightly to the touch (avoid ones which are very hard or very soft).
  • Also avoid mangoes that are wrinkled or shrivelled as they will be overripe with an unpleasant fermented flavour.

When you find your fruit say no to plastic bags!


Pineapples don’t ripen further once they are picked, so it’s important to choose a pineapple that’s ripe.

  • Look at the ‘eyes’ around the sides of the pineapple. If they are a uniform size all the way to the top, that’s a good sign the pineapple is ripe. Avoid the ones where the eyes near the top are significantly smaller than the ones at the base.
  • Choose fruit that is free from soft spots or bruises, and if it has a top, make sure the leaves are fresh and green.  
  • A perfect pineapple should feel nice and heavy for its size.
  • Smell the bottom of the pineapple where it was cut. It should have a faint pineapple scent but should not smell too strong or fermented. A strong smell means that the pineapple is overripe and might be mushy.
  • Pick a small leaf on the top of the pineapple near the centre. If it comes out easily and looks fresh and crisp at the bottom – it’s good!

Once you’ve found your perfect piece of fruit, try one of our simple and delicious recipes:

Super simple watermelon, feta & mint salad

Chicken tacos with mango & avocado salsa

Kaffir lime chicken with mango salad

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