Pick a ripe watermelon.

Ripe, red watermelon is sweet and refreshing, but a semi ripe and pale melon is a taste bud disappointment. To pick a ripe watermelon, use these three tips to choose the best.

  1. Look for one that is beginning to lose its gloss.
  2. Look for the ground spot, the part of the melon that was on the ground. It should be yellow, not green or white.
  3. Give it a thump and listen for a hollow sound.

If you’re still not sure, buy melon that is already cut into halves or quarters. You can see the flesh and that takes the guess work out of it. Melons that are cut in cubes and packed in plastic containers are not as fresh as the melons cut at the store.

Watermelons are high in the antioxidant lycopene and the lycopene value increases after harvest if you leave the melon on the counter. So don’t chill it until after you’ve cut it. And on an interesting side note, the smaller personal watermelons have more lycopene than larger melons.