May 29, 2024
Picking the perfect watermelon can be a challenge! This article provides five simple steps, expert tips, and visual cues to help you choose the sweetest watermelon every time. You'll be able to avoid bland or underripe melons and enjoy juicy and delicious watermelons all summer long!


There’s nothing quite like biting into a juicy, perfectly ripe watermelon on a hot summer day. Unfortunately, picking the right one can be a challenge! We’ve all been there – eagerly slicing open a melon only to find it bland or not quite ripe yet. But fear not! With these five simple steps, you’ll be able to pick the sweetest watermelon every time!

5 Simple Steps to Picking the Sweetest Watermelon for Summer

When it comes to picking a watermelon, there are a few things you should look for to ensure it’s ripe and sweet:

Step 1: Look for a Uniform Shape and Size

Watermelons should have a uniformly oval or round shape. If there are lumps or bumps, it could indicate that the melon didn’t ripen properly. Additionally, make sure the watermelon is a good size for its variety – smaller melons should be denser and heavier than larger ones.

Step 2: Check for a Creamy Yellow Spot on the Bottom

Flip the watermelon over and check the bottom – look for a creamy yellow or buttery spot. This is where the watermelon rested on the ground, and it indicates that the melon is ripe and juicy.

Step 3: Give it a Tap (and Listen for the Sound)

Give the watermelon a tap with your knuckles. It should sound hollow – a deep, dull thud could indicate that the melon is underripe or overripe.

Step 4: Examine the Rind (and Look for Sugar Spots)

The watermelon’s rind should be smooth and free of blemishes. Look for a “sugar spot” – a discolored spot that indicates a high sugar content. This will be the sweetest part of the watermelon!

Step 5: Pick it Up and Weigh it (and Check for Heaviness)

Lastly, pick up the watermelon and give it a heft. It should feel heavy for its size – a sign that it’s juicy and ripe.

The Ultimate Guide to Choosing a Perfectly Ripe Watermelon

While the above steps are a great starting point, there are a few more factors to consider when choosing the perfect watermelon:

Genetics, growing conditions, and harvesting practices all play a role in a watermelon’s ripeness and sweetness. Choose a variety that’s known to be sweet, and look for melons grown in ideal conditions (such as sandy soil and warm temperatures). Additionally, try to find a watermelon that’s been allowed to ripen fully on the vine – these will be the sweetest!

How to Tell if a Watermelon is Ripe – The Top Signs to Look For

Here are some specific visual cues to look for when picking a watermelon:

  • A uniform shape
  • A smooth texture
  • A deep color (for example, a deep green on the outside and a deep red on the inside)
  • A large, well-defined sugar spot

Contrary to popular belief, thumping or shaking the watermelon is not a reliable method for determining ripeness.

Expert Tips for Picking the Sweetest Watermelon Every Time

We consulted with produce experts and farmers to gather their insider knowledge on picking sweet watermelons:

  • Choose a watermelon with a large, well-defined sugar spot – this is a sign of high sugar content
  • Look for a watermelon with a uniform shape and size
  • Avoid melons with white streaks – this indicates that the melon wasn’t allowed to fully ripen on the vine
  • Choose a watermelon that’s heavy for its size – this indicates that it’s juicy and ripe

Don’t Settle for Blah – How to Avoid Picking a Bland Watermelon

Finally, a few extra tips to avoid picking a blah watermelon:

  • Avoid melons with white streaks or green patches – these are signs that the melon was picked too early
  • Look for a melon with a consistent color – uneven coloring can indicate that the melon wasn’t allowed to ripen properly
  • Choose a watermelon with a smooth rind – blemishes can mean the melon wasn’t grown in ideal conditions


With these five simple steps, insider tips, and visual cues, you’ll be able to pick the sweetest watermelon every time.

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