Are you ready for another tutorial to level up your kitchen skills? In this weeks’ Back to Basics, we’re putting our knife skills to the test and learning exactly how to cut a pineapple into three different shapes!
Let’s be real, it’s SO tempting to buy the $10 pre-cut pineapple from the grocery store. Whole pineapples look nice but they’re spiky on the outside, all seem to look the same, and tbh it took me a bit to really figure out the best way to cut one up.
With this step-by-step tutorial for cutting a pineapple you’ll be able to easily slice that baby up into pretty rings, longer spears and perfect chunks that you can freeze or use in your favorite sweet and savory recipes?
Ready? Let’s get to it!
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How can you tell when a pineapple is ripe?
Before cutting a pineapple we have to first pick one! Use these tips for choosing a ripe pineapple the next time you head to the store or farmer’s market:
- Check the color. The yellower the outside of the pineapple, the riper it is. Pineapples that are green all over are likely not super ripe and won’t ripen much after you buy them.
- Smell it. The base of the pineapple should smell a little sweet and fruit — like the inside of the pineapple. Overripe pineapples will start to smell a little funky, so if it smells *off* in any way try picking a new one.
- Give it a squeeze. Although pineapples have those pesky spikes on the exterior, you can still give them a squeeze and feel for a little bit of give. A ripe pineapple will be just a little bit soft (but not squishy).
How to cut a pineapple: 3 different ways
Method 1: make rings or rounds
Use this method to serve pineapple on a tray in a pretty presentation!
Step 1: lay the pineapple on its side and use a sharp knife to carefully cut off the top where the leaves are located, making a cut around 1/2 inch down from the leaves. You’ll also want to cut 1/2 inch off of the bottom of the pineapple.
Step 2: place the pineapple upright on your cutting board and carefully slice the skin off from top to bottom, going around the pineapple until the skin and tough bits are completely removed.
Step 3: at this step you can remove the core of the pineapple using a pineapple corer before cutting rounds, otherwise, simply lay the pineapple on its side and carefully cut it into 1/2 inch thick rounds (we’ll remove the core in the next step).
Step 4: remove the core from each round using a small paring knife or a small, round cookie cutter.
Method 2: make long slices or spears
Use this method for grilling pineapple or even dipping it in chocolate. YUM.
Step 1: start with steps 1 & 2 of the previous method so that you’re left with a skinless, whole pineapple.
Step 2: keeping the pineapple upright, cut the entire fruit down the middle lengthwise.
Step 3: lay both halves flat on your cutting board, then cut in half lengthwise again.
Step 4: remove the thick core from each wedge that you created by slicing it off at an angle.
Step 5: cut each wedge in half lengthwise once more and enjoy!
Method 3: make chunks
Pineapple chunks are perfect for eating straight from a bowl or fruit platter, or freezer for later to make delicious smoothies and blended cocktails! Use either of the 2 methods above as a starting place for cutting the pineapple into chunks.
Option 1: start by making rounds according to the instructions in Method 1, then cut each round into equal-sized chunks.
Option 2: start by making long slices or spears according to the instructions in Method 2, then cut each spear into equal-sized chunks.
Storing & freezing tips
- In the refrigerator: store fresh cut pineapple in airtight containers or bags in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.
- In the freezer: spread out your cut up pineapple on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place it in the freezer for a few hours until frozen solid. This is called a flash freeze and will prevent the chunk of pineapple from freezing together. After the pieces are frozen, add them to freezer-friendly, airtight containers and store them in the freezer. Try frozen pineapple in smoothies, as fruity ice cubes or just as a cool summer treat!
Our favorite ways to use fresh cut pineapple
Fresh pineapple is delicious on its own, but here are some other fun ways to enjoy it!
- Add it to your favorite smoothies like this Refreshing Pineapple Kale Smoothie or this party-friendly 3-Ingredient Pineapple Mango Smoothie (with a fun boozy option!)
- Use it in a fresh salsa found in these Chipotle Chicken Tostadas or these Grilled Fish Tacos
- Jazz up your one pan meals with these Firecracker Chicken Meatballs or this One Pan Caribbean Jerk Chicken
- Throw it on the grill on its own or on wonderful Vegan Turmeric Pineapple Tofu Kabobs
- Looking for the ultimate sweet & savory combo? Place a pineapple round on these BBQ Bacon Hawaiian Turkey Burgers
- We also love to keep it simple by dipping fresh cut pineapple in a little melted chocolate
Get more of our delicious summer recipes here!
More of our how-to guides & tutorials
- How to Cut a Watermelon (3 different ways!)
- How to: Cut & Dice an Onion
- Our Favorite Homemade Tomato Sauce (using fresh tomatoes!)
- How to Freeze Fresh Herbs
- How to Grill Delicious Vegetables (4 different ways!)
Check out all of our how-to guides here!
I hope you loved this easy, step-by-step tutorial on how to cut a pineapple! Be sure to leave a comment if you try it out, and sign up for the AK VIP List to get more Back to Basics posts straight to your inbox.
How to Cut a Pineapple (3 different ways!)
Learn how to cut a pineapple three different ways to use in your favorite sweet and savory recipes! With this step-by-step tutorial you'll be able to easily and safely cut a pineapple into rings, long slices and chunks. Tips, tricks and recipe ideas included!
- 1 ripe pineapple
Lay the pineapple on its side and carefully cut off the top where the leaves are located, making a cut at around ½ inch down from the leaves, as well as ½ inch off of the bottom.
Place the pineapple upright on your cutting board and carefully slice the skin off from top to bottom, going around the pineapple until the skin and tough bits are completely removed.
Lay the pineapple on its side and carefully cut it into ½ inch thick rings.
Remove the core from each round using a small paring knife or a small, round cookie cutter.
FOR LONG SLICES
Keeping the pineapple upright, cut the entire fruit down the middle lengthwise.
Lay both halves flat on your cutting board, then cut in half lengthwise again.
Remove the thick core from each wedge that you created by slicing it off at an angle.
Cut each wedge in half lengthwise once more and enjoy.
Once you’ve cut the pineapple into 8 wedges or equal-sized rings using one of the methods above, cut each wedge or round into ½-1 inch chunks.
To store: store fresh cut pineapple in airtight containers or bags in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.
To freeze: spread out your cut up pineapple on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place it in the freezer for a few hours until frozen solid. This is called a flash freeze and will prevent the chunk of pineapple from freezing together. After the pieces are frozen, add them to freezer-friendly, airtight containers and store them in the freezer. Try frozen pineapple in smoothies, as fruity ice cubes or just as a cool summer treat!
Method by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats
The first time I knew how to cut a pineapple, I still didn’t know how to cut it. Thanks for this helpful post.
I’m so happy it’s helpful!