How To Pick A Superstar Watermelon + Watermelon Lime Slushie Recipe

In this post I’m sharing tips for how to pick a watermelon that’s ripe and sweet, the best way to cut it up, plus a simple 3-ingredient recipe for Watermelon Lime Slushies!

How to Cut a Watermelon

Picking out a watermelon at the grocery store can be such an anxiety plagued experience, am I right?

Sometimes I find myself standing in front of a crate of 50 watermelons and spend just a *little* too much time trying to pick the best one.

Can you blame me?

If you pick a bad one, you’re stuck with 15-20 whopping pounds of watermelon terribleness.

And then your options are to either force yourself to eat this yucky watermelon or throw it away…and both are less than desirable options.

So my goal today is to help you pick sweet, ripe watermelons because I know how disappointing it is to get home, take your first bite of some sort of produce you buy, only to find out it sucks.

We all want great watermelon for snacking, and to use in recipes, like my 3-ingredient watermelon slushies (recipe is down at the end).

Easy Watermelon Slushie is the perfect summer drink!

All the tips here are tidbits I have gathered from personal experience and lots of conversations with produce people and farmers.

Also note that there are now some really wonderful tips in the comments section as well, like looking closely for bee sting marks!

Here’s what to look for when selecting a watermelon:

Tip #1: Pick a dull looking watermelon.

A shiny appearance indicates an underripe melon. This applies to honeydew melons too.

Tip #2: Find the field spot.

This is a creamy spot on the melon, and it’s where the watermelon was resting on the ground.

The field spot should be a yellowish creamy color, like shown with my watermelon:

how to pick a ripe watermelon

The darker the color of the creamy spot, the longer it was on the vine sweetening up.

If it is white (or not even there), put it back, because this indicates an underripe melon.

Tip #3: What’s all that knockin’ about?

A dull thud indicates an underripe melon. You will get a dull thud if the flesh is soft, which you don’t want. Your knuckles should bounce off the melon, and the surface should be pretty hard/firm.

Tip #4: Pick it up!

Is the watermelon heavy for its size? It should be, and this applies to pretty much ALL produce. When I pick up onions for example, I pick the heaviest one for its size, because that means there is lots of water in there.

The watermelon pictured here in my post was a whopping 18 pounds!  It was heavier than the other comparably sized melons around it.

Tip #5: Make sure it’s uniformly shaped. 

Some watermelons are round, some are oval, and either is fine.

But if there are irregular bumps, this indicates the melon may have gotten inconsistent amounts of sun or water.

While you’re here, let me show you how to cut the watermelon up so it’s in delicious little chunks that are easy to eat:

how to pick the best watermelon

Cut the top and bottom off so it can lay flat on a cutting board (I like this one because it has grooves on the side that catch the juices).

how to pick a sweet watermelon

Run a sharp knife down the sides, taking the rind off.

watermelon picking and cutting tips

Cut it into the desired number of disks, then cut it up into chunks.

Now you can eat as is, or you can freeze the cubes to make a Watermelon Slushie!


Watermelon Lime Slushies

A simple and refreshing drink for summer, made with 3-ingredients: watermelon, lime juice, and simple syrup!

1 review


  • 2 cups watermelon, diced and frozen for at least 2 hours
  • 2 tbsp simple syrup, optional
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • lime slices, for garnish


  1. Place the watermelon, simple syrup, and lime juice into a blender and pulse until blended and you get your desired consistency (I didn’t want chunks in mine, so I blended it pretty thoroughly).
  2. Pour in a glass and serve, garnished with a lime slice. Enjoy!


Nutrition Information Serves Serves 2     adjust servings
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per ServingAs Served
Calories 50kcal Calories from fat 2
% Daily Value
Total Fat 0g0%
Saturated Fat 0g0%
Sodium 2mg0%
Carbohydrate 13g4%
Dietary Fiber 1g4%
Sugars 10g
Protein 1g

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs:

Total FatLess than65g
Sat FatLess than25g
CholesterolLess than300mg
SodiumLess than2,400mg
Total Carbohydrate300g
Dietary Fiber25g

Did you make this recipe?

I'd love to know how it went!

Leave a comment or share a photo on social media tagging me @fifteenspatulas.

All images and text ©.