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Pomegranates are my favorite fall/winter fruit.  They taste amazing and look so lush.

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A few years ago, I got to tour the POM Wonderful groves.  After eating one straight off the tree, warm and juicy from the sun, I have loved pomegranates ever since.

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(There is some controversy about POM’s labeling practices and as well as some practices by their sister company, Fiju Water, but I have to say that all the people I met at POM – from the directors to the factory workers – were pretty awesome and loved their product.)

 

Anyway – the tricky thing about pomegranates, of course, is opening them without ruining your shirt. The edible part (the arils) are little juicy seeds that burst when handled roughly. 

 

The key is to opening a pomegranate is to do it underwater.

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Step 1:  Select your pomegranate.  The fruit should be heavy for it’s size with no serious bruising (the skin is pretty tough so cosmetic bruises aren’t a big deal). 

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Step 2:  Turning the crown away from you, slice off the top.

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Step 4: Score the fruit.  Cut through the skin to the white webbing all around the fruit.  You’ll be able to tell where to cut because you can see the webbing through the topped-off crown.

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Step 5:  Submerge the fruit in a bowl of water.  With the wedge under water, rock it back and forth until you can pull it away from the rest of the fruit.  Repeat until all the wedges are separated.

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Step 6:  Keeping the wedge under water, use your fingers to loosen the arils from the white webbing.  The white part will float to the top and the arils will sink to the bottom.  Repeat.  The whole process takes about 10 minutes, but I promise it’s worth it.

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Step 7:  Scoop the white parts off the top of the water, and then drain the arils.  Store in tupperware in the fridge.

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Like little rubies!

 

I love to eat arils in oatmeal, in yogurt, cereal, on top of peanut butter toast, or just by the handful.  Yum!

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Thought of the Day:

 

“Truth is always revealed at the right moment and at the right place. You don’t need to be concerned about proving it. You need only to be concerned with being it and living it. Trying to prove truth reveals stubbornness. When you find that someone is not believing what you say, ask yourself if you believe in it. if you do, then you need not be concerned of proving it to others. Where there is doubt in yourself you’ll want to prove it to everyone.” – Brahma Kumaris

{ 67 comments }

 

Leave a Comment

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen November 17, 2011, 10:28 am

    This is super helpful b/c I just bought a POM planning to make pancakes with it this weekend but no clue how to open it easily!

    Reply
  • Chelsea @ Naturally Sweet Recipes November 17, 2011, 10:30 am

    Best trick ever! I love pomegranates and they aren’t so bad to open when you know how to do it easily. Although, some argue you lose half the juice when you put in in the water, do you find that to be true? The water turns a light pink, but I like submersing it way better than trying to cut it open. I love that quote as well! So true!

    Reply
    • CaitlinHTP November 17, 2011, 10:32 am

      I don’t think so. The arials are tougher than you think. I do think it’s important not to manhandle the fruit though, underwater or not.

      Reply
  • Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table November 17, 2011, 10:33 am

    That water trick has saved many a shirt! Great post.

    I’ve been eating my pom on top of salads with apples and shaved fennel. Love the sweetness with the fennel.

    Reply
  • Elizabeth @ reads recipes runs November 17, 2011, 10:35 am

    OMG I LOVEEEEEE pomegranates!! We used to have a huge tree in our backyard that I would eat from, amazing. Although I was a kid and didn’t care if all the clothes I had turned red… haha.

    Reply
  • Ashley O. @ The Vegetable Life November 17, 2011, 10:35 am

    I love pomegranates, but when I went to buy one last week at the store they all looks realy bad and it made me sad :( Hopefully I’ll have better luck tracking a good one down this weekend!

    Reply
  • Mary @ Bites and Bliss November 17, 2011, 10:40 am

    The first time I opened a pome, it stained my mom’s kitchen walls and counter. It was everywhere!!

    Reply
  • Joanne November 17, 2011, 10:40 am

    Beautiful photos. Your hair looks gorgeous!
    The thought of the day is SO what I needed. Thank you :)

    Reply
  • Liz November 17, 2011, 10:48 am

    LOVE the thought of the day. Thank for sharing :)

    Reply
  • Amelia November 17, 2011, 10:49 am

    Yes! I tell everyone about this pom trick. I’ve never had a problem with stains this way. Can’t wait to enjoy pom seeds on yogurt this winter.

    Reply
  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat November 17, 2011, 10:51 am

    Yum I love these! When I used to live in the Middle East, the guys that worked in the juice shops (yes, there are lots of them!) would just whack the pomegranate with the back of a spoon and the arils would fall out so fast. I tried doing it once and ended up just whacking my hand – ouch!! I prefer the underwater method far more. Great photos here Caitlin!

    Reply
  • Colleen November 17, 2011, 10:55 am

    Thank you! I’ve been eyeing pomegranates in the stores, but haven’t bought any because I was clueless on how to open them. Not anymore.

    Reply
  • Jen at luck&funny November 17, 2011, 11:01 am

    Well, isn’t that a nifty trick! It’s the simplest things that make all the difference.

    Reply
  • Army Amy* November 17, 2011, 11:02 am

    I’ve never had a pomegranate before. Do the seeds taste crunchy or smooshy?*

    Reply
  • Cynthia November 17, 2011, 11:03 am

    I have to disagree. I used to open poms under water, but one day I was lazy, in sweats and didn’t care if I got juice all over me. The pomegranate tasted SO much better. The next time I did it underwater and the flavor wasn’t there, it was literally watered down. I think you lose so much of the juice coating the seeds when you do it underwater that it dilutes the flavor. Now, I just throw on an old shirt and go at it! YUM!

    Reply
  • Sonia (the Mexigarian) November 17, 2011, 11:05 am

    The first time I ever tried opening a pomegranate, I looked liked Dexter. :D The submerge under water method truly is far better and cleaner. LOL.

    I would love to visit the POM groves! I love going to orchards. We used to have so many orchards here in Santa Clara Valley, but, well, concrete and tech businesses took over.

    Reply
  • Emily November 17, 2011, 11:15 am

    Great tips! I have yet to try a pomegranate, but this has inspired me. I definitely WILL in the future!

    Reply
  • Athena @ Fitness & Feta November 17, 2011, 11:19 am

    Pomegranates and pomegranate flavored things are my fave! I especially love Pomegranate flavored Chobani yogurt, even though some people don’t love the seeds. Last night my roommates and I had roommate Thanksgiving and we had Pomegranate sangria with our meal. I can’t get enough!

    PS – Love the photography in this post!

    Reply
  • Mac November 17, 2011, 11:28 am

    I love pomegranates, they are a little bit of work, but worth it once you get it done!

    Reply
  • Casey @ Pocket Full of Sunshine November 17, 2011, 11:35 am

    Thanks for the tutorial—I had no clue how to get the seeds out! Now I must try it. :)

    Reply
  • Amanda November 17, 2011, 11:43 am

    I love pomegranates! I learned that underwater trick a couple of years ago and it makes the process so much easier (and less messy).

    I think the process of getting the little arils out forces you to slow down and be present in the moment, rather than something that requires no work, like eating an apple. It’s like pomegranate meditation. :)

    Reply
  • Rachel November 17, 2011, 11:44 am

    Wow. I have always felt that pomegranates were more trouble than they are worth, but now seeing how you’re actually supposed to clean them I might need to give it another chance. Thanks.

    Reply
  • Heather November 17, 2011, 11:48 am

    Great tutorial! I have this pomegranate oatmeal cookie recipe that I love and have serious trouble getting the arils.

    Reply
  • Kim November 17, 2011, 11:53 am

    I’m confused about the calorie count on the Udi’s gluten free wholegrain sandwich loaf. The nutrition label says that 1 slice (56 g) is 160 calories. But then it says that there are 6 servings per bag.
    I’m wondering if ONE slice is really only 80 calories and 2 = 160; or if one slice truly is 16. Do you have any idea?
    Thank you Caitlin.

    Reply
    • CaitlinHTP November 17, 2011, 8:10 pm

      I don’t have any Udis in my freezer right now – I feel like the one time I looked, the slices were like 50 calories?

      Reply
  • Chelsea November 17, 2011, 11:56 am

    I just had a pomegranate for the first time this week and I’m already in loove <3

    Reply
  • Julia H. @ The Petite Spiel November 17, 2011, 12:01 pm

    I guess I never thought about it, but I didn’t realize pomegranates grew on trees!

    Have you ever had dark chocolate covered pomegranate seeds? They’re sold at Costco (and probably other places) and are all kinds of wonderful–just imagine that little juicy burst inside dark chocolate. SO GOOD. Try them.

    Reply
    • Reenie November 17, 2011, 1:42 pm

      I’ve had the dark chocolate covered blueberries & raspberries….but have seen the ones with pomegranates. Sounds good :)

      Reply
  • Amanda November 17, 2011, 12:02 pm

    Do you eat the little hard “seed” part? I love the flavor of the arils but then I spit out the hard part. It makes eating a pomegranate a whole lot of work!!

    Reply
  • Khushboo November 17, 2011, 12:08 pm

    I’m always a mess after peeling pomegranates! Those arils are amazing in salads with balsamic vinegar!

    Reply
  • Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife November 17, 2011, 12:13 pm

    I all of a sudden want some pomegranates!!! :) YUMM. I love those arils, so delicious.

    Reply
  • Hilliary @ Happily Ever Healthy November 17, 2011, 12:13 pm

    Thanks for the tip! I love pomegranates but I always got the juice everywhere!

    Reply
  • Brooke @ sweats & sweets November 17, 2011, 12:47 pm

    I’ve never eaten a pomegranate but have heard stories from my mom and husband about how great they are. I’ve always been curious about how to eat them, they would explain but it never registered. You’re explanation totally makes sense!

    Reply
  • Jennifer November 17, 2011, 12:55 pm

    YUM. My favorite restaurant in Phoenix (The Barrio Cafe) puts pomegranate seeds in their guacamole that they prepare tableside. Sooo good!

    Reply
  • Vicky S. November 17, 2011, 12:58 pm

    Pomegranates, walnuts, fage 0% and agave…. my pregnancy craving! I eat it as often as possible!

    Reply
  • hilary November 17, 2011, 1:10 pm

    oh my goodness pomegranates are delish! i eat them every morning in my oatmeal. oats, walnuts, pomegranates and some greek yogurt. nothing beats it!

    Reply
  • Candice @ Sailing on Paper November 17, 2011, 1:15 pm

    The best advice for opening pomegranates that I’ve seen! I’ve never opened one because I was too intimidated…but now I’m definitely going to try.

    Reply
  • Amber K November 17, 2011, 1:22 pm

    I love pomegranates, and anything tastes better when you have to work for it!

    Reply
  • Ellie@fitforthesoul November 17, 2011, 1:24 pm

    You make the simplest things look so wonderful and delicious! I tried this trick before, and it worked pretty well :) I think I saw it on a video?

    Reply
  • Maren November 17, 2011, 1:36 pm

    Thank you for this! I’ve never bought one before because they seem so intimidating!! I can definitely do this, though ;)

    Reply
  • Reenie November 17, 2011, 1:41 pm

    Sometimes they have a lil phamplet beside the poms (at the store) that has the instructions as Caitlin explained ;)

    Reply
  • Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers November 17, 2011, 1:47 pm

    Thanks for the tips! I haven’t purchased a whole one myself, but I’ve had the seeds on a salad (and in a martini) before.

    Reply
  • Fran@ Broken Cookies Don't Count November 17, 2011, 1:52 pm

    I never really knew how to do that. Are you supposed to eat the pits inside? Can’t figure that out either!

    Reply
  • Emily November 17, 2011, 1:52 pm

    I’ve never had a pomegranate! I’ve always been too afraid of them.
    Love the thought of the day:)

    Reply
  • Laura November 17, 2011, 1:57 pm

    As in most things cooking, I just follow Nigella Lawson. :) Cut pomegranate in half, hold over bowl, smack the back with a wooden spoon and the seeds just fall out.

    Reply
  • Brittany @ GOtheXtraMile November 17, 2011, 2:02 pm

    Ahh thank you for posting this, I just got a pomegranate and was wondering how the heck I was going to open it!! :)

    Reply
  • kathleen @ the daily crumb November 17, 2011, 2:22 pm

    thanks, caitlin!! this is very helpful… thinking of using pomegranate in a t-day recipe :)

    Reply
  • katie @ KatieDid November 17, 2011, 3:35 pm

    your photos are particularly gorgeous of the pomegranite, I love the sort of dark vibe with the side light coming through. very pretty! So excited pom season is upon us!

    Reply
  • Beckyh November 17, 2011, 4:30 pm

    Martha stewart has a genius way of opening a pomegranate that takes a few minutes =) She basically taps the quartered pomegranate and the seeds fall into a bowl.

    Here is the link http://www.myspace.com/video/pom-wonderful/how-to-open-a-pomegranate-on-martha-stewart/48099680

    Reply
  • Hillary November 17, 2011, 5:42 pm

    My best friend in college and I used to sit on the couch watching Sex and the City, while peeling pomegranates and shoving the arils in our faces. Totally wild, right?

    Reply
  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin November 17, 2011, 6:58 pm

    I’m so happy that it’s pomegranate season now. I love using the arils in salads and grain dishes!

    Reply
  • Dominique November 18, 2011, 12:20 am

    Awesome tip! I usually just cut it into wedges and peel the arils away from the white part. A really weird combo that I just discovered but is really weird is pumpkin pie ice cream and pomegranate arils. It’s totally bizarre but so good. The pumpkin pie ice cream is amazing on its own but the pomegranate seeds elevate it to a whole other level.

    Reply
  • Collette November 18, 2011, 4:11 am

    I watched Jamie Oliver prepare a pomegranate once on his show – it seems a little less time consuming than your way (no soaking required!). I couldn’t find a video of the show, but here’s the general gist of it:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lH47Oorrdk

    Reply
  • Lauren @ HugsKissesNDishes November 18, 2011, 1:54 pm

    oooh.. you made it look so easy! I always want pomegranates but get lazy, but I think I’ll give them a chance with your trick! Thanks :)

    Reply
  • Andrea August 5, 2013, 2:31 am

    First timer here just ate one, the seeds are sweet and plenty take an hour 2 eat them all, the rind is bitter just chuck it. Here in Florida, a grocer was my best bet, the trees around here are all lemon on properties.

    Reply

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