How to Select and De-Seed a Pomegranate

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how to de-seed a pomegranate

Pomegranates are gorgeous autumn/winter fruits full of glistening ruby-red seeds called arils, which are like little capsules of  juice that burst in your mouth. The taste is similar to citrus – a little tart, a little sweet – and they’re full of vitamin C and antioxidants. De-seeding a pomegranate is easy once you get the hang of it — plus, it’s half the cost of buying the arils ready-to-eat.

How To Select a Pomegranate

When you see pomegranates in the store, they’re ripe and ready to eat. Select pomegranates that feel heavy for their size (the heavier the fruit, the juicier it will be) with firm, blemish-free skin. And, before working with pomegranates, be sure to put on an apron and use a stain-proof work surface because the juice splatters and stains.

How to de-seed a pomegranate

cutting X in fruit

Begin by cutting an “X” about one-inch deep in the top of the pomegranate. Hold the pomegranate facing down over a bowl of cold water and break it apart into quarters.

Under the water, bend each quarter back and use your fingers to nudge the arils out of the membrane.

Person removing pomegranate arils in a bowl of water.

Don’t worry if some of the membrane ends up in the water.

Pomegranate seeds in a bowl of water.

It will all float to the top; just skim or pour it off.

Person removing a membrane from a bowl of water and pomegranate arils.

Finally, drain the arils in a colander. That’s all there is to it! The seeds will keep well in the refrigerator for several days.

Sieve of pomegranate arils.

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  • This advice was a huge time saver and so much cleaner. Thank you Jenn!

  • Hi Jen-
    I love your site! Wanted to share, I used to peel pomegranates your way, until I saw a note in Yotem Otelengi’s Plenty: Cut the pomegranate in half along its equator. Take one half in your hand, cut side down, over a bowl. Use a wooden spoon and beat the rind. All the arils fall out through your fingers, but the pith stays put. It’s by far the fastest, neatest and easiest method I’ve tried. Try it and see!

    • Thanks for that suggestion, Rebecca. Publix has pomegranates on sale 2 for $5.00 and I’m eager to try your way of deseeding them! Happy Halloween, too!

    • Just learned this and it worked SO well!!!

      • — Elaine on November 11, 2022
      • Reply
  • This method is online from many sites. It makes me a little sad! We used to do it this way, but we hated wasting the bit (give or take 3 tbsp) of juice that collects. For several yrs now -using kitchen gloves- I make SHALLOW cuts very close together all around then pull out sections like an orange. This is done over a deeper bowl and gently pull off the seeds. If done gently there’s not that much juice explosion and you have saved the juice. No water throwaway!

    • I make a shallow cut around the middle, pull the fruit apart and lay a half cut side down on my palm over a large bowl, take a wooden spoon and whack the heck out of the pomegranate – the seeds come tumbling out without the white membrane – totally clean. Easy and doesn’t loose any of the juice.

      • Wow, I just tried the ‘wooden spoon whacking’ method and it worked like a charm!! Jenn I’ve always done the water method but this one definitely seemed faster and easier!

  • This makes all the difference to me when it comes to fixing a salad using Pomegranates. Thank you for the tip.

  • I have heard of this before but never tried it. Thanks! I love pomegranates.

  • I bought my first pomagrante after seeing your article on how to seed it. Thank you so much! Now for a real stupid question, after you seed and clean them, how should they be stored? Thank you and have a Happy Thanksgiving.

    • Susie, The seeds will keep well in the refrigerator for several days. Enjoy!

  • What a great and easy way to peel a pomegranate! I tried this and it was so easy!

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