If you’ve ever eaten a freshly cut pineapple, you might have noticed a burning or tingling sensation in your mouth.
Pineapples have an enzyme called bromelain which is an acid that breaks down proteins (like the acids in our stomach). It’s a very unpleasant feeling and for a pineapple lover like me who essentially eats the whole thing in one sitting (not recommended by the way), this can be pretty bad.
Soaking the pineapple in salt water deactivates this enzyme so it eliminates the irritation completely. Salt also makes the pineapple taste a bit sweeter so it’s a win-win if you ask me 🙂
Pineapples are one of my favorite fruits to eat fresh, in smoothies or in savory dishes as well. If you’re looking for ways to use up leftover or extra pineapple, check out some of my pineapple recipes:
- Pineapple Fried Rice
- Pineapple Guacamole
- Pineapple Mango Spinach Smoothie
What are the Health Benefits of Pineapples?
Pineapples are not only sweet and juicy, but they are also healthy. This fruit is a good source of fiber, and is packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Some of the vitamins that you can get from pineapples include Vitamins C, A, B6, E, and K. It’s also a source of calcium, zinc, iron, and potassium. One cup of pineapple chunks contains approximately 120 calories, 34 g carbohydrates, 28 mg Vitamin C, 2 grams of fiber, and other nutrients.
With all these vitamins and minerals, they feature anti-inflammatory properties and are great for your immune system, digestion, and bone health. So incorporate them into your diet, either by eating them as is or adding them to your dishes for a nutritious and healthy boost.
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Cut Pineapple
Do you need to cut a fresh pineapple but don’t know where to start? It can look overwhelming, but it’s actually pretty easy! So here’s a step-by-step guide on how to cut a pineapple easily with a minimal amount of waste.
Step 1: Remove the outer layer of the pineapple.
Stand the pineapple up right and cut off the green spiky top first. Then, remove the outer layer by carefully cutting the skin off the sides. Try to keep it as close to the edge of the pineapple as you can. If there is still some skin remaining on the pineapple flesh, you can go back and cut it off. You wouldn’t want to waste the sweetest, juiciest parts of the pineapple at the edge!
As you cut close to the edge, you should see some brown, scraggly dots or the “eyes” that need to be removed. Don’t eat them because they’re prickly. You can either cut them off or if you look close enough, you’ll notice that the ‘eyes’ line up in a spiral. So cut away the eyes, making V-shaped trenches as you rotate around the pineapple to get rid of them.
When your pineapple is peeled, cut it down the middle in half, then in quarters. Lay one quarter flat on the cutting board and cut off the core of the pineapple. Although the core is edible, it can be hard and not sweet. Cut the pineapple into chunks as desired.
Next, set aside your pineapple chunks in a large bowl.
Step 2: Make the salt solution.
Boil half a cup of water. In a bowl, add some salt and pour the hot water. Mix thoroughly until the salt is dissolved.
Next, add 5 and a half cups of cold water into this salt solution and stir.
Step 3: Combine the salt solution with the pineapple.
Take the bowl of pineapple chunks, and then pour the salt solution. Let it sit for about 15 to 20 minutes before draining.
Step 4: Store and enjoy.
After fully draining the pineapple chunks, store them in a clean container and enjoy! You can also keep your leftovers in the fridge.
How to Cut & Prepare a Pineapple
- 1 pineapple cut in chunks, as desired
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1/2 cup water hot
- 5 1/2 cups water cold
- Remove the outer layer of the pineapple. Cut into chunks, as desired. Set aside in a large bowl.
- Boil 1/2 cup of water. In a bowl, add the salt and pour the hot water to combine. Mix well to dissolve the salt.
- Add 5 1/2 cups of cold water into the salt mixture and stir.
- Pour the salt mixture into the bowl with pineapple. Let this sit for about 10-15 minutes. Drain well.
- Store in a container and enjoy!
- Use a sharp knife when cutting and peeling a pineapple. Otherwise, it can be challenging and you may run the risk of cutting your fingers.
- Sliced pineapples must be stored in an airtight container. Consume within 3 to 5 days, because keeping them longer will make them smell and taste fermented.
- You can also cut the pineapple and freeze it for up to 12 months in a resealable plastic bag.
How to Tell if a Pineapple is Ripe
The easiest way to tell if a pineapple is ripe is by smelling it from the bottom. If it smells like a sweet pineapple, it’s ripe. If it doesn’t, it isn’t quite ready yet. On the other hand, if it smells fermented and the skin is brownish, it’s likely overripe.
The best kind of pineapple is one that is firm, and not too soft. The leaves should also look green and fresh, and not dried out. It doesn’t matter if the pineapple is green, golden, or a mix. The best way to indicate ripeness is the smell.
Contrary to common belief, pineapples don’t continue to ripen once picked. Sure, the outside will turn golden and softer, but the sugars won’t continue to develop.
With this, it’s highly recommended to eat pineapples as soon as you buy them. If you need to store your pineapples, place them in the refrigerator to keep them fresher longer.
Pineapples are among my favorite treats since I was young. While pre-cut pineapple chunks and rings are undoubtedly more convenient, there’s something special about buying whole fresh pineapples.
Hopefully, my blog post taught you how to cut pineapple easily and prepare it in a way that allows you to fully enjoy this delicious fruit. Let me know if this has been helpful! I’d love to know 🙂