Here's How To Pick Perfect Produce Every Single Time

Follow these produce-picking guidelines, and you’ll never waste money on less-than-perfect fruit and veggies again.

Picking Perfect Produce
Loading Video...
Show: HGTV Happy

Related To:

Picking perfect produce is no easy task. Sure, picking a bad apple may be pretty obvious, but what about produce with thick rinds or skins? It can sometimes feel like a gamble tossing them into your shopping cart. Luckily, we’ve got a grocery bag full of tricks!

Watermelon

Watermelons are some of the harder fruits to buy. Unfortunately, the more idyllic watermelons are not the best. So, if it is very large and dark green, you may want to opt for another one. Small, round watermelons tend to be much sweeter and visible veining and yellow spots can mean the same. For a final check, give it a tap and, if it sounds hollow, you’ve just found the perfect watermelon!

Pineapple

Photo by: Cassidy Garcia

Cassidy Garcia

When choosing between two pineapples, always choose the more yellow fruit over the greener one. Green just means it needs more time, whereas a golden color means it is sweet and ready to eat. For your next test, give it a little squeeze. If the skin has some give, that is a good sign. The finals signs of a perfect pineapple are a sweet-smelling base and the pluck test. If you can easily pull a leaf out of the top, that means the fruit is ripe.

Yellow Squash

Photo by: Cassidy Garcia

Cassidy Garcia

When picking squash, smaller is better. Always check the skin, as it is a good indicator of a tender squash. If your nail easily scratches the skin, that is a good sign that you have a great yellow squash!

Cantaloupe

Cantaloupes, much like watermelons, are better when they are paler and have loose webbing on the rind. Other good signs are a sunken stem that smells sweet. Remember these, and you’ll have no issues finding a succulent cantaloupe.

Avocado

Photo by: Cassidy Garcia

Cassidy Garcia

Everyone knows good avocados are very difficult to find. They are either under-ripe or overripe, but almost never perfect. To up your chances, look for one that is medium-sized, soft, but not mushy and reveals green once you pull off the stem. These tricks may just lead to the best guacamole you’ve ever made!

Strawberry

It is incredibly important to pay attention when buying strawberries. Under-ripe strawberries are tart and tough and overripe berries tend to easily mold leaving the whole carton of berries ruined. To remedy this, look for these tell-tale signs. Strawberries should be bright red from top to bottom, have a healthy green top and no mold or dark spots (which will quickly spread to the other berries). Following these steps will leave you with a glorious basket of berries!

Next Up

Why Are My Cucumbers Bitter?

Cucumbers are one of summer’s best gifts — unless you bite into a bitter one. Find out the science behind why cucumbers are bitter and what you can do to prevent it.

How to Grow Mushrooms at Home

Learn about mushrooms and how to grow them at home three ways — in a box, in a bucket or on a log — plus find sources for mushroom growing kits and supplies.

How to Ripen Green Tomatoes Indoors

Enjoy the fruits of your gardening labor by ripening green tomatoes indoors with these easy tips.

How to Care for Succulents

Succulents are often regarded as the ultimate low-maintenance plant, but even seasoned gardeners have seen them perish under their care. Read our growing guide to help keep them happy indoors and out.

How to Tell If a Watermelon Is Ripe

These eight easy tricks will help you tell when watermelons are ripe and ready to buy or to harvest.

How to Plant and Grow Onions

Get our tips on planting, growing and harvesting onions in your garden.

How to Grow Cucumbers

Get advice for planting, growing and harvesting cucumbers, including suggestions for types and varieties to grow, companion plants, plus tips for solving common cucumber problems.

How to Get Rid of Weeds

Make this garden chore fly by with these simple, fast and easy tips for getting rid of weeds. Plus, get advice for preventing weeds in the garden.

How to Grow Stargazer Lilies

The easy-to-grow Stargazer lily has fragrant, bold blooms and is undoubtedly the most popular lily to grow.

Philodendron Care

Find out how to care for philodrendron, an easy-to-grow, popular and very decorative houseplant that thrives indoors with the proper care.

Go Shopping

Get product recommendations from HGTV editors, plus can’t-miss sales and deals.

On TV

6am | 5c
7am | 6c
8am | 7c
9am | 8c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Zillow Gone Wild

8pm | 7c

Zillow Gone Wild

8:31pm | 7:31c

House Hunters

10pm | 9c

House Hunters

10:31pm | 9:31c

House Hunters

11pm | 10c

House Hunters

11:30pm | 10:30c

House Hunters

12am | 11c

House Hunters

1am | 12c

House Hunters

1:30am | 12:30c

Zillow Gone Wild

2:59am | 1:59c

Zillow Gone Wild

3:30am | 2:30c

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.