How To Eat a Pomegranate

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Don’t be intimidated by fresh pomegranates. Use this simple method for removing the seeds!

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Have you ever seen a plump, ruby-red pomegranate at the store and thought to yourself…self, I’d really like to have fresh pomegranate seeds, but I just don’t know how!

Well, wonder no more. I’m going to show you how to to pry the snappy seeds bursting with sweet juice out of a pomegranate with minimal muss and fuss. You’ll be done in 10 minutes or less!

How to Eat a Pomegranate

Print this tutorial!

Like I mentioned, you’re not really eating a pomegranate, rather, you’re eating the pomegranate’s seeds, which are called arils. The arils are what hold the antioxidant-rich, sweet/tart pomegranate juice, and are great for topping salads, yogurt, cereal, oatmeal, or popping ‘em plain and pretending they’re healthy Nerds.

PS did anyone see Kim Kardashian housing Nerds on the last episode of Kim & Kourtney Take New York? Ben and I laughed for days.

Anyways…

Step 1: Pick a pomegranate

Look for a pomegranate that’s large, bright red, and smooth-skinned (the pomegranate in the picture below was a bit more weathered than I typically pick out). It should be heavy for it’s size, plump and not withered whatsoever.

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Step 2: Cut the pomegranate in half

Place a very sharp knife to the right or left of the knob on top, and slice straight down. I usually cut the pomegranate on a plastic cutting board, as the pomegranate juice could stain a wooden board.

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Step 3: Cut each half in half again

At this point you should have 4 quarters of the pomegranate.

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Step 4: Invert one quarter of the pomegranate over a bowl in the kitchen sink, and pop the seeds out with your fingers

I try and get the majority of the seeds out with the peel inverted and facing me (so the seeds are face down in the bowl,) then flip the peel over to get the remainder out. Make sure you are doing this over the sink because pomegranate juice will be squirting out a bit, and it’s easier to contain and clean the juice out of the sink.

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Continue with the remaining three pomegranate quarters.

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Step 5: Fill the bowl of pomegranate seeds with cold water

You’ll want about 3-4 inches of water above the seeds.

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Step 6: Remove any loose peel from the seeds

Give the pomegranate seeds a little swirl with your fingers to let any loose peel float to the top. The seeds will sink to the bottom, allowing you to easily clean the peel out.

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Step 7: Drain the seeds and return them to the bowl

Refill the bowl with cold water one more time, clean out any remaining peel, and drain again.

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That’s it!

Each pomegranate yields between 3/4 cup and 1 1/2 cups (6-12oz) of pomegranate seeds. Store the seeds in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, though I doubt they’ll last that long. ;)

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Still not convinced? Consider this:

Trader Joe’s sells 6oz packages of fresh pomegranate seeds for $4. They also sell whole pomegranates for $2. If you de-seed the pomegranate yourself you’re getting double the seeds, for half the price!

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Now go forth, and eat pomegranates ’til you can eat pomegranates no more! (Which will likely never happen.) ;)

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Print this tutorial!

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What’s your favorite way to enjoy pomegranate seeds or juice?

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Comments

  1. This is awesome! I just got my first pomegranate a few weeks ago, and I really liked it. Definitely going back for more :)

  2. katrina 01.25.2012

    that’s kinda how i do it too, except i pop the seeds out underwater, as it’s FAR less messy that way.

    i was just looking for a pomegranate today for out dinner (quinoa with avocado and shrimp and stuff) but my store didn’t have any. bummer, they are delicious!

    • Me too! I learned that one the hard way! I have to say, though, the extra couple of dollars for the pre-packaged ones at TJ’s is my preferred method! :)

    • Iowa Girl Eats 01.25.2012

      I tried that once and ended up splashing water all over myself. I’m very uncoordinated. :/ If you put the peel upside down there’s hardly any juice splash!

    • june 01.25.2012

      That is what I was going to say.. and then your hands do not turn lovely colors AND no seeds spraying juice on your white wall… not that it has happened to me…..

  3. I also pop the seeds out underwater, and instead of cutting the fruit in quarters, I cut off the top and then score the skin and pull it apart because you lose less seeds that way (when you cut through them you lose the juice). Last winter I ate so many pomegranate seeds that I started getting really bad tummy aches, so this year I had to calm it down! I love eating the seeds by themselves or on top of a salad!

    • I do it the same as you, Lindsay! But after I score the top, I let is soak in water for about 10 minutes to soften the membrane. Then the seeds almost fall away.
      I put pomegranate seeds in smoothies, salads, pasta…you name it!

  4. Yum! I hardly ever see pomegranates in the store here (and I tend to eat more local), but if I see one soon I might splurge and have a special treat. :)

  5. AC 01.25.2012

    Pin-worthy! Thanks! There’s a gal at work that will sit with her butter knife & work SO hard to get each seed out… Her fingers are always a lovely color when she’s done eating!

  6. Karla 01.25.2012

    Love this trick, Kristin, and do it pretty much the exact same way! So, so worth the bit of trouble for the savings, but you have to be careful to watch the red splatters on your clothes if any break open :)

    These jewels are so tasty mixed into a cup of yogurt!

  7. elizabeths 01.25.2012

    I love them! They’re tasty over Greek yogurt and honey…yuuuummmmmm!

  8. I love poms! DELISH!

  9. Emily 01.25.2012

    I also recommend wearing an apron to protect your clothing!

  10. Love them in a savory salad with walnuts & a mustard vinaigrette

  11. Great tutorial – under water is the only way to do it! Unless you want red stains all over your clothes :-)

    I love having pomegranate on oatmeal or yogurt!

  12. Cheryl 01.25.2012

    Another vote for doing the process underwater! I just use a big bowl and put it in the sink in case it spills. My favorite way to eat pomegranates on a spinach salad with feta cheese and raspberry vinaigrette.

  13. nicoleigh 01.25.2012

    My first and only time trying to eat a pomegranate was a big mess. But then I found an awesome pin in Pinterest…..
    http://www.littlebitfunky.com/2011/11/how-to-eat-pomegranate.html
    Next time, I’ll be attempting the water trick.
    However, I’m struggling finding some pomegranates!

  14. Carrie 01.25.2012

    First time I bought/prepared a pomegranate was a few weeks ago, in order to make your Superfood Salad – I’m hooked!

  15. Caitlin 01.25.2012

    Oh man, this makes me wish I had grabbed a pomegranate while I was at the grocery store earlier! They’re so delicious! Thanks for sharing your tips!

  16. Adam 01.25.2012

    Tonight I made the superfood salad you posted a week or two ago. (It was delicious!) That was the first time we have ever had a pomegranate. Then I logged on and saw this. Too bad I didn’t check before I cooked! It will be a quicker process next time…

  17. Nancy 01.25.2012

    I quarter the Pom then let sit in cold water for 10 min, then take the seeds out. That softens the membranes between the seeds so it’s no problem. FYI, just another option for getting to the wonderful seeds that I love.

  18. Jennie M 01.25.2012

    I eat them straight out of a bowl with a spoon, just like cereal. I’ve honestly never cooked with them or put them on salad. Just raw and delicious!

  19. Susan 01.25.2012

    Oh man! A couple weeks ago I bought my first pomegranate with high hopes of figuring this out. I cut it in half and long story short, it was ALL OVER ME AND MY TAN SWEATER! I got so frustrated I threw the whole thing away. Now I need to go get another and give it a shot again! Thanks for sharing!! :)

  20. Stacey E 01.25.2012

    I have never tried these…but I’m going to now!

  21. Lisa 01.25.2012

    I like pomegranate flavored things, and pomegranate juice, but whenever I’ve had a fresh one, the seeds were hard and crunch, reminiscent of eating wood. :(

  22. Shannon 01.25.2012

    Your way is much easier than mine. I can’t wait to buzz over the TJ’s and buy me a pomegranate. Thanks! : )

  23. Susan 01.26.2012

    Another good way – especially if you are having a bad day and want to let the anger out is to half the pomegranate then hold one half in the palm of your hand over a bowl – skin side up – then bash the heck out of it with a wooden spoon. The seeds will just drop out.

  24. Sarah 01.26.2012

    I get the fresh english peas from TJ’s and make a salad with pomegranate seeds, peas, a little gorgonzola and arugula. so good.

  25. Eleni 01.26.2012

    My favorite way to eat them is plain. I think pomegranates are so pretty…the seeds look like little gemstones!

  26. Great tutorial, I definitely used to be very intimidated by pomegranates!

  27. Jeralyn 01.26.2012

    So much work but totally worth it.

  28. I have seen these little beauties at the store, but had no idea what to do with them, thanks!!!

  29. Calee 01.26.2012

    I’ve tried this before … and my kitchen still looks like a murder scene. I love poms, but I can’t seem to get this right. Maybe I’m picking the wrong ones?

    • Iowa Girl Eats 01.26.2012

      Just make sure to keep the pom quarters inside the bowl when you’re getting seeds out. Mine don’t usually spray, but that must just mean yours are extra juicy!

  30. Hannah-lyz 01.26.2012

    I de-seed mine in a bowl of luke-warm water! Stops your hands from freezing, and stops those pesky poms spraying their juice everywhere! Plus, because the seed sink and the pith floats, it’s even easier to sort through it! I love pomegranites! My mum and I used to cut a pomegranite in half, take half each, and sit on the sofa, picking the seeds out with a pin! Such fun, and a great fun way to eat a pom! (it takes longer, but that just means you enjoy it for longer!) x

  31. Robyn 01.26.2012

    This is awesome! I can’t get myself to spend the extra money to buy jsut the seeds. IT takes me forever to get the seeds out but to me it’s worth it. Hopefully this will make things faster from now on. I love to get a pom and then melt dark chocolate chips with just a bit of oil in the microwave. Then I add in the pom seeds and stir it up and drop it by spoon fools onto a cookie sheet covered with parchment. Put them in the freezer for a few minutes to harden. When you bite into them the juice explodes in your mouth and you have the delicious cold dark chocolate added to that. IT’s a antioxidant packed flavor explosion!

  32. Julie 01.26.2012

    Thanks for the tutorial! What I love best about this post, though, is knowing that you watch Kim and Kourtney Take NY–and yes, I did see Kim housing those nerds!

    • Iowa Girl Eats 01.26.2012

      Hahaha yesss! Another soul who will admit to watching K&K! ;)

      • WendyG 01.27.2012

        I can’t believe how much I have been loving Scott more now since watching K&K Take NY!!!!!!!!!!! He is a riot! I love Kourt’s crazy couponing!!!!!!!! This weekend will be a GOOD episode! I was super sad without the Office last night…..ummmm I need my Dwight fix!

  33. iowa meet NYC 01.26.2012

    I have never de-seeded a pomegranate before, but I am going to now [now: after my next trip to the grocery store]. Loved the ‘nerds moment’ on KKTNY. But most importantly .. IOWA has TRADER JOES? Since When? It took 23 years and moving out of Iowa for me to be introduced to the amazing-ness that is TJ’s. I may come back now! [Love your blog!]. {chelset}

  34. Aparna 01.26.2012

    Bought The 60 Second Pomegranate Deseeder in Nob Hill the other day for $2.99. Give it a try! Honestly took me less than a minute…(Please don’t buy it on Amazon…..they are selling it for $14.99!!)
    Here is the link:
    http://www.amazon.com/The-60-Second-Pomegranate-Deseeder/dp/B0071N1VDY/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1327615333&sr=8-3

  35. tonya 01.27.2012

    THANK YOU!! so much for this. i’ve always been afraid of the pomegranite. it’s intimidating. i’ve gazed at it from across the produce aisle but it’s always given me the side eye. i plan to get acquainted this weekend. :)

  36. [...] the quinoa was cooking I de-seeded my pomegranate. Not quite as easy as Kristin made it look. I splattered red juice all over my kitchen, but it was worth it. Sweet enough to [...]

  37. Sarah 02.04.2012

    I just de-seeded my first pomegranate!!! Yum! Thanks for this post.

    A little taste of summer from snowy, blustery Newfoundland, Canada.

    Sarah :)

  38. [...] Need tips on how to easily clean a pomegranate? This can be a project in and of itself. Visit IowaGirlEats here. [...]

  39. [...] Pomegranate: Although eating is a bit tricky (I have yet to learn how to “harvest” the seeds, knows as arils), pomegranate juice is a source of vitamin C and K.  For step by step instructions, visit Iowa Girl Eats to learn how to eat a pomegranate. [...]

  40. [...] better than a breakfast of fresh fruit. [thanks to iowa girl eats, I purchased & seeded my very own pomegranate. they're an intimidating [...]

  41. [...] still not convinced and think they still look like a little too much work for your liking (here’s a simple way to seed one, by the way), next time you’re in the grocery store, at least buy a [...]

  42. pomlover 01.21.2013

    There’s a much easier way. Pick up a “pom deseeder”. They work great! Health food store or online http://www.pomegranatedeseeder.com
    Been using them for a while. Now all my friends have them.

  43. Mo 02.02.2013

    I’m an English girl who has recently really got into cooking, but we don’t do cups over here. I think I’ve found a site that offers the oxo good grips with the cups measurements just like yours in the pic but before I buy I just thought I’d ask, can I use that for both wet + dry measurements? I’ve heard you can’t.

  44. Mel 02.10.2013

    Are you subscribed to Joey Graceffa?

  45. Andrea 08.04.2013

    I just ate one 4 the first time, I got it from a grocery, they gave it 2 me in a paper bag, I just cut it across with a plastic knife like I did my passion fruit and it broke apart into sections where I could pick the little red things out 2 eat, it tasted like cranberry but with a sweet flavor not so bitter. I have not eaten a cranberry come 2 think of it but am familiar with the juice which is heavily advertised. Some juice came out but not too bad. I wonder how they get the trees in California, I have found lemon trees here in Florida on properties but not the pomegranate, interesting.

  46. […] better than a breakfast of fresh fruit. [thanks to iowa girl eats, I purchased & seeded my very own pomegranate. they're an intimidating […]

  47. […] So I had a bit of a setback this past week…I injured my Achilles tendon. Just normal walking causes incredible pain and trying to run was an even worse idea. Nevertheless I have made it to the gym! This is still my month and I can definitely say that my eating has been clean and healthy. I have been loving pomegranates this past month! If you haven’t tried them you definitely need to! Who doesn’t love an antioxidant filled fruit with immune supporting effects? For tips on how to pick them check this link: http://iowagirleats.com/2012/01/25/how-to-eat-a-pomegranate/ […]

  48. […] So. A sweater was injured in the making of this recipe. I’d never deseeded a pomegranate before, and…well. It was a problem. Even though I followed this super-helpful tutorial. […]

  49. […] If you’ve never tried pomegranates or are wondering how to eat them, check out this great tutorial. […]

  50. kathy 02.11.2014

    do you dry the seeds on a paper towel before storing in fridge or just leave them damp?

    • Kristin 02.13.2014

      However much water is left over after shaking out in the strainer is just fine!

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