If you’re a normal human being, chances are, you’ve probably massacred a mango while trying to cut it. Or purchased a watermelon you thought was ripe but it so was not. Or bought bananas only to have them basically turn black just two days later. We feel you.
We’re about to blow your mind with some fruit and veggie hacks that will make buying them, cutting them, and eating them so much easier. Honestly–you’ll wonder how you lived so long without them.
Continue reading for 45 fruit and veggie hacks that are seriously genius.
Shucking corn can be a real pain in the you-know-what. No matter how meticulous you are, there’s always those little strings of husk that don’t seem to want to leave the cob. This trick will nip that problem in the bud.
Simply cut off the bottom end of the corn then throw it in the microwave for 2-4 minutes. Hold the top of the husk and give it a shake, the cob will fall right out!
Pomegranates can be a bit tricky to work with. If you want to cut them in a way that will leave all of the seeds intact, simple cut the beautiful, tasty fruit into wedges then scoop out the seeds with a spoon.
Have you ever opened your pantry only to find that your potatoes look like some sort of alien lifeform? Prevent your taters from sprouting by storing some apples alongside them. The gases that are emitted from the apples do a magical trick to help prevent that from happening.
It’s so annoying when you have to toss your bananas in the trash because they ripened too quickly and turned dark brown. Keep them fresher for longer by wrapping the stems in tin foil.
Trying to peel peaches can leave them totally macerated. There’s an easy way to do this! Simply carve an ‘X’ at the top of the peach and then blanch them in boiling water. The skin will peel right off.
Once cut, apples become brown really quickly and can make a fruit salad look less-than-appetizing. Keep them crisp and fresh looking by putting them in a cold water bath sprinkled with salt. Take them out when you’re ready to serve.
Picking a perfectly ripe avocado is a real gamble. Sometimes they’re way too hard and other times they’re way too ripe. Here’s how to pick the perfect avo every single time. That little nub at the top? Remove it. This will give you a sneak peek as to what’s inside. If it’s really dark underneath, it’s too ripe. If it’s nearly white, too unripe. If it’s perfectly green, you’re good to go.
Food Network explains how to get the perfect cut of your pineapple every time. “First, cut off the top and bottom of the pineapple, slice through the middle, cut each in half, cut the centre off of each pineapple quarter, slice off the rind and then trim them up. Ta-da!”
Since you just learned the hack about how to pick the perfect avocado, you might have already purchased some unripened ones. No big deal! Just put them in a paper bag with some bananas and the gasses that emit from the fruit will ripen them right up.
Make Instagram-worthy salads and dishes with this awesome hack. To get super thin slices of onion, asparagus, or radishes by using your vegetable peeler. So beautiful!
Have you ever taken a stalk of celery out of the fridge only to find that it’s gone limp? Yep. That’s the worst. Keep celery, broccoli, and lettuce crisp by wrapping it in aluminum foil before throwing it in the fridge.
Peppers can become soft and unappealing to eat if they sit in a produce bowl or in the fridge for too long. Keep them super fresh by slicing them up, placing in freezer bags, and storing in the freezer. Thaw when you need them.
When purchasing mushrooms, they usually come in packaging wrapped with plastic wrap. This is how they should be stored to keep them fresh. If you open the packaging, be sure to re-cover it with a new wrap of plastic.
Tomatoes are super sensitive to the cold. Once exposed, they can lose their texture, moisture, and taste, so it’s best to keep them out of the fridge. Store them on the counter instead.
Keeping lemons on the counter will speed up their ripening process and they’ll last only about a week. If you refrigerate them, they’ll last about four weeks.
The same goes for oranges and other citrus fruits. By keeping them in the refrigerator it will double or even triple their lifespan.
Butternut squash can be a really difficult squash to cut, but Southern Living explains how to do it properly. “Place squash on its side, and, using a large knife, slice off the top and bottom ends. Remove the thick outer skin with a peeler. Cut the squash in half lengthwise, then spoon out and discard the seeds.”
If you have dozens of cherry tomatoes to cut, it can take quite a bit of time. But not if you know this trick! Place all of your cherry tomatoes on a plate (or plastic lids) then place another plate or a plastic lid on top of them. With one hand, hold down the top plate. Use a serrated knife and slide it between the plates and cut the cherry tomatoes with ease.
It might sounds strange but you should be sprinkling some salt on your watermelon slices. Just a tiny pinch of salt (either kosher or sea salt) will enhance the sweetness of the melon and reduce bitterness if it’s a bit underripe.
Cutting the kernels off a cob of corn is fairly easy, but it can create a bit of a mess. Keep your counters corn-free by holding the corn on the center of a bundt pan and cutting the kernels off. They’ll fall right into the body of the bundt pan.
If you’re health-conscious or lactose-intolerant, this is such a yummy hack. Freeze bananas and then blend them up for a delicious ice cream alternative.
Lemon rinds are super rich in antioxidants, even more so than lemon juice. If you plan on using your lemons right away, be sure to grate the rinds off and freeze them for use in salads, smoothies, tea, and water.
If you’re serving watermelon at a BBQ or gathering, save the rind to use as a bowl. Cut the watermelon in half, carve out the fruit, chop it up and place it back in the rind to serve. Don’t forget the pinch of salt!
Lemons require juicing for lots of recipes but lots of times, people are making it way harder on themselves than it needs to be. Be sure to cut the lemon lengthwise not width-wise. It will make it so much easier to juice and you’ll get more bang for your buck.
Mangos often seem like a really tricky fruit to cut, but they’re really not. All you need to do is cut the mango in half, making sure you’re cutting along the seed. Then, create small squares by cutting in a checkered manner. Lastly, invert the mango skin and now you have perfectly diced mango.
You can easily make dehydrated fruit at home with this awesome hack. All you need to do is slice or dice the fruit then bake at 130-160 degrees. The time will depend on the fruit but here are some general rules:
Most people on the planet have been opening and peeling their bananas completely wrong. The proper way is actually give it a little squeeze at the bottom–not the stem–and peel it that way. That’s how monkeys do it too!
When white wine gets warm, it’s not the tastiest. Instead of adding an ice cube, which will water it down, freeze some grapes and plop them in!
Easily de-stem and remove the not-so-tasty ‘core’ of a strawberry with a straw. Simply poke the straw right on through! Strawberries made better with a straw!
If you only used half of your avocado, be sure to keep the pit inside the other half before you store it in the fridge. It will help keep it fresher for longer.
Purchasing a whole watermelon can leave you with a lot of leftover fruit. If your family or guests didn’t eat all of it, cut the rest into chunks and place in the freezer. Once frozen, you can throw in the blender for some super yummy watermelon juice/smoothie.
Like apples, avocados can turn brown quickly after they’re cut. Help prevent this by rubbing the avocado flesh with some lemon juice or olive oil. The citric acid from lemons prevents the browning and the oil in olive oil prevents oxidation.
Okay, so it’s not a fruit/veggie hack but we just wanted to throw this awesome hack in here. Once you cut a block or wedge of cheese, the exposed side can become hardened. Wrapping it in cheesecloth will help, but if you don’t have any handy, dampen a paper towel with vinegar and wrap the cheese up with it instead. We promise the little bit of vinegar won’t alter the taste.
Of course washing your fruits and veggies before eating is a good thing, but be sure to do it right before you plan on eating it. Don’t rinse it before putting in the fridge because the moisture left on the fruit will deteroriate it faster.
Berries are the exception to the “no rinsing before fridge” rule. “To prevent your berries from molding prematurely, quickly wash your berries in a solution of three cups water and one cup vinegar, then rinse and dry them thoroughly. This will kill the bacteria before they hit the fridge,” says Food 52.
As we’ve mentioned before, fruits and veggies emit gasses as they age and ripe. These gasses can affect the other produce that’s around them. Be sure to store all of your produce separately to retain maximum freshness.
The leafy greens of a carrot are beautiful (and edible!) but if you want to keep your carrots super fresh, chop them off before storing in the fridge. They’ll stay fresher for longer.
When storing your tomatoes, on the counter or in a produce bowl, make sure you store them with the stems down. It will help keep air out and keep moisture in.
“To extend the life of bagged greens, transfer them into a plastic storage container lined with paper towels, then add another layer of paper towels before locking the lid on. The Kitchn found that the hard sides prevent the leafy greens from getting crushed, and the paper towels serve to absorb moisture. The experimenter found that, for the most part, the greens were still good after 10 days.”