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Cut Watermelon: How Long Does It Last and How to Store It

How long does cut watermelon last.
Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / stevepb

Have you chopped up all your watermelon for a party and are left wondering how long cut watermelon lasts? We’ve got answers and tips for proper storage.

Watermelons are refreshing to eat when it’s roasting outside and are the perfect summer fruit. Not only do they provide hydration, but they’re packed full of nutrients, such as vitamins A and C, magnesium, potassium, and they’re also low in calories.

Watermelons are known for their size, they’re big! But what if we don’t want to or can’t eat all of it in one go? How long does cut watermelon last? We’ll give you some tips on how to store cut watermelon to keep it fresh. 

One thing to remember when buying a watermelon is to buy the right size for you, so if you live alone and aren’t planning on inviting any friends over for dinner, go for a smaller watermelon — this will prevent you from having to throw out any leftovers that aren’t eaten fast enough. In addition, it’s best not to cut up all the watermelon at once if you don’t plan on eating it straight away — just cut as much as you need to extend the watermelon’s freshness. 

Best Watermelon Storage Conditions

When watermelon is cut it should be refrigerated.
When watermelon is cut it should be refrigerated.
(Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / Mberg38)

How long is watermelon good for? The first thing to do is learn how to know a watermelon is ripe. Whole watermelons can be stored at room temperature, out of direct sunlight in temperatures below 75℉ for up to ten days, if the temperature is higher than this they will last for five days at room temperature, doing so helps maintain flavor and nutrients — however if in doubt and you have space, there’s no harm in refrigerating your watermelon straight away, it can stay whole there for up to two weeks. 

How long does cut watermelon last? Once the watermelon is cut it must be refrigerated as the freshness will reduce when the red flesh is exposed to the air. Signs of spoilage include a slimy or mushy texture, dry or gritty watermelon flesh, a sour smell and color that is not deep red or pink. To check for spoilage on the outside of the whole melon, look for mold (dark or white spots) and ensure the watermelon is a healthy pine green color.

    How to Store Large Pieces of Cut Watermelon

    Wrap the flesh side of the watermelon.
    Wrap the flesh side of the watermelon.
    (Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / Pexels)

    If you only cut the amount of watermelon needed, you’ll be left with a large part of watermelon with the rind on and part of the flesh exposed. So, let’s look at how to store watermelon. The best thing to do with the exposed part is to wrap it in a plastic wrap alternative like silicone wrap or oilcloth.

    Once wrapped, place on a plate in the refrigerator for up to one week, this will keep the flesh moist and prevent any odors from other foods from being absorbed. Wrapping the watermelon like this will determine how long the cut watermelon will last. 

    How to Store Cubed or Balled Watermelon

    Store watermelon cubes in an airtight container in the fridge.
    Store watermelon cubes in an airtight container in the fridge.
    (Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / MMT)

    If the rind of the watermelon has already been removed and it’s been cut into smaller pieces, it’ll need to be stored in an airtight container and placed in the refrigerator. Ensuring that the watermelon cubes are exposed to as little air as possible will determine how long cut watermelon lasts. The watermelon balls or cubes will need to be consumed within four days and will start to get more watery and flavorless with time.

    Finally, if you think that the watermelon will not be consumed within the time limits mentioned above, it can be frozen. The best way to do this is when the watermelon is cut into cubes, do not attempt to freeze a whole watermelon — check out more about how to freeze a watermelon.

    Other Ways to Eat Watermelon

    You can blend watermelon into a smoothy or punch.
    You can blend watermelon into a smoothy or punch.
    (Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / ExplorerBob)

    Watermelon is juicy and sweet, but did you know you can eat the rind too? That’s right, don’t just throw it on the compost, check out these 4 watermelon rind recipes, including pickled watermelon rind, jam, smoothies or using the watermelon rind zest in salads or soups. Or, to use the rind and the flesh together, try our watermelon kimchi recipe, it’s sweet and sour! Watermelon punch is a great way to give your summer party an extra kick.

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