Tips for Picking and Prepping the Perfect Pineapple

Published on March 28, 2022

As the star of our Pineapple Habanero hot sauce, this sweet yet delightfully acidic fruit is like no other (just ask our friends at Jarritos – they love it too!). While it looks as distinct as it tastes, choosing a ripe pineapple can be a challenge. The next time you’re at the grocery store, follow these tips to pick the perfect one!

1. Ignore the colour – mostly

Pineapples can be considered ripe whether their skin is green or yellow, so look for ones that have vibrant and healthy green leaves – this is a reliable indicator of how fresh the fruit is.

2. Texture is key

We like to think of this as the Goldilocks factor: you’re looking for a firm shell, but slightly soft with a bit of give when you give it a squeeze. Since pineapples stop ripening after being picked, an underripe one with a solid or hard shell will likely stay that way.

Similar to fruits such as watermelon, weight is another factor to consider – the heavier it is, the juicer the fruit.

3. Your nose knows best

If you detect a sweet and tropical smell near the base of the fruit, you have yourself a ripe pineapple! If you don’t detect a scent, that tells you it isn’t ripe. If you pick up on a bitter or even vinegary smell, it’s probably past peak ripeness.

Prepare your pineapple

Ready to make fresh pineapple salsa with your molcajete and tejolete? Start by cutting off the top leaves and the bottom with a sharp chef’s knife to give yourself flat surfaces to work with. With flat side down, peel the skin by cutting in a downward motion following the shape of the fruit. Keep your knife in the flesh rather than the skin itself. Rotate and repeat until all of the skin as been removed.

Cut in half lengthwise, and then in half again, giving you access to remove the pale yellow core by cutting on an angle. 

The last step is to cut into bite sized cubes to keep on hand for healthy snacking, or dice to use in your salsa!