The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds

The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!

The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds – in less than a minute – no fuss, no mess, no water!!

Some people love to cook. For others, baking is their forte. I guess I’m a bit unusual; I’m crazy about both. There’s actually no category of the culinary arts that I don’t thoroughly enjoy. In fact, sometimes my husband calls me “the crazy kitchen chemist.” The kitchen is my science laboratory; I’m forever tinkering, mixing, measuring, tweaking and testing. I try out new recipes, create my own, and adapt others to suit our family’s tastes.

Sometimes people ask me, “Don’t you ever get tired of cooking?” My answer is unhesitating and always the same: “Practically never.”

But you know what? As much as I love cooking, I have to admit there are certain foods I steer clear of because they intimidate me. I either don’t know what to do with them or they seem just too complicated to deal with.

Pomegranates fell into that category for a long time. As lovely as the ruby red arils (seeds) are in both savory and sweet recipes, the techniques used to extract them just seemed so fussy and messy. Those “in the know” swore by the underwater method; cut the pom in half, submerge it a bowl filled with water. Pick out the seeds allowing them to sink to the bottom of the bowl; discard the membrane and rind which floats to the top, then strain the seeds. “Voila, you’re done!” they proudly proclaimed.

The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!

That was way too much work for me. So, when I really wanted pomegranate seeds, I would buy them at the market in little packages, the work already done for me. But that presented another problem; a tiny portion of these little gems was ridiculously expensive. I didn’t buy them very often.

Then one day, several years ago, my little culinary world was transformed (well, at least in regard to pomegranates)! I discovered a brilliant, super simple, non-messy, no-water way to extract the seeds. And it took less than a minute for a whole pom! I tried it and was thrilled with the results. Now, when pomegranates come into season (as in now), I find myself using them everywhere; sprinkled on our morning yogurt, scattered on salads, brightening up soups and adding vibrant color to savory dishes galore. You might even call me a  “pomegranate aficionado!”

I’m hoping you’ll become one too, since pomegranates are known as a super food with tons of wonderful health benefits, including fighting cancer and heart disease, as well as lowering blood pressure and cholesterol. They’re also loaded with B vitamins, potassium, and folic acid. Next time you’re at the market, be sure pick up a pom or two and try out this amazing technique.

The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!
Wash the pomegranate well before starting. Any time you’re cutting into a fruit or vegetable with a skin or rind, you take the chance of introducing bacteria from the outer surface into the edible portion. After washing, slice the pomegranate in half horizontally.
The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!
Take one of the halves and hold the cut side down in the palm of your non-dominant hand over a medium size bowl. Spread your fingers a bit and position the pomegranate on top them.
The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!
Take a sturdy spatula or a wooden spoon (if I have a choice, I really like a sturdy wooden spoon best) and begin to hit firmly on the top surface of the pom. This is where some people go wrong. They try this technique and it doesn’t seem to work – they’re tapping, not whacking! If you tap too gently, the seeds will NOT be released. Don’t be afraid to give it some good, hard whacks – go ahead, get all your frustration and anxiety out. You’ll feel much better and you’ll have something beautiful to show for it! (For demonstration purposes, I have the bowl set on the countertop. When I actually do this, I like to have the bowl down in the sink. It prevents a mess and it’s gives you a good angle to do the whacking.)
The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!
The seeds will begin to fall through your fingers into the bowl.
The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!
Continue to firmly tap (oops! sorry, I meant to say – WHACK) until all seeds have fallen out. Repeat with other half. You’ll have a bit of white membrane mixed in with the seeds. Just pick this out and discard.
The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds - in less than a minute - no fuss, no mess, no water!!
Store pomegranate arils (seeds) in the refrigerator in an airtight container or zippered bag. Arils will keep this way for 4-5 days. They can also be frozen and stored for several months. To freeze, line a sheet pan with parchment paper or waxed paper. Spread arils in a single layer, uncovered, until frozen, 1-2 hours. Once frozen, transfer to airtight storage container or freezer-zippered bags.
 That’s it – The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds. Super easy. Try it, I think you won’t even believe how simple it is!
P.S. If this technique doesn’t seem to work for you, you’re probably not “whacking” hard enough. Start from fairly high up and give it a good whack. Don’t be timid! A sturdy spatula or wooden spoon seems to work the best.
 
Print

How to De-Seed a Pomegranate – in Less than a Minute, No Fuss, No Mess, No Water!!

4.6 from 11 reviews

  • Author:
  • Category: Tips and Tricks

Ingredients

  • 1 pomegranate
  • a sharp knife
  • a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon
  • a medium size bowl
  • storage container or zippered bag

Instructions

  1. Wash the pomegranate well. Any time you’re cutting into a fruit or vegetable with a skin or rind, you take the chance of introducing bacteria from the outer surface into the edible portion.
  2. Slice the pomegranate in half horizontally.
  3. Take one of the halves and hold the cut side down in the palm of your non-dominant hand over a medium size bowl. Spread your fingers a bit and position the pomegranate over them.
  4. Take a sturdy spatula or a wooden spoon and begin to tap firmly on the top surface of the pom. Don’t be afraid to give it some good whacks. If you tap too gently the seeds will not be released.
  5. The seeds will begin to fall through your fingers into the bowl. Continue to firmly tap until all seeds have been removed. Repeat with other half.
  6. Store pomegranate arils (seeds) in the refrigerator in an airtight container or zippered bag. Arils will keep this way for 4-5 days. They can also be frozen and stored for several months. To freeze, line a sheet pan with parchment paper or waxed paper. Spread arils in a single layer, uncovered, until frozen, 1-2 hours. Once frozen, transfer to airtight storage container or freezer-zippered bags.

The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Arils - no fuss, no mess, no water!!



86 thoughts on “The Easy Way to Remove Pomegranate Seeds”

  • This is a great tutorial, Chris! Whenever I de-seed pomegranates it looks like I have bled all over the kitchen!
    Besides the crazy high price tag on ready to eat arils, another reason for DIY pomegranate arils is to maximize the nutrients available.
    I tell my clients that once you cut fruit and expose the inside to oxygen you begin a downhill loss of all of those super-nutrients!
    Here’s to Wholesome! Bethany Thomson, RDN, LDN

  • Don’t the poms stain really bad? That’s the reason I haven’t done this before. If you deseed it over the counter, won’t it make a huge mess? I am disabled so the cutting parts of your recipes I have to get help with. Am more worried about the staining. Karen

    • I actually usually put the bowl right in the sink and do the whole thing there. But if you’re doing it on the counter, just use a large bowl and you’ll be fine. The seeds will all go into the bowl. I’ve done it that way too.

    • Just wear an apron! After getting dressed in the morning, the first thing is put on an apron. It usually stays on all day..I’m messy, so this has saved many outfits.

      • Haha! I probably should wear an apron, just never got in the habit. But, like I mentioned in the post, I do this little trick in the sink as it’s a better angle for me to do the whacking. Honestly, I’ve never gotten a drop on myself and the sink stays clean too.

  • Thank you for this. Now my son can enjoy one of his favorite snacks with a lot less work for mom. I will share this with friends and family

  • I read this whole article thinking I was going to learn how to get the SEEDS out of a pomegranate. All you’ve done is get the little red kernels out of the pomegranate. The seeds are still in them! How do you get the SEEDS out, They taste terrible and I’ve never figured out how to get rid of them. I love the taste of pomegranate, but hate the seeds! What a misleading article!

    • Haha, you might need to switch to another fruit. You do eat the tiny pomegranate seeds, kind of like with raspberries. Zillions of people love them (including me and my family) and use the beautiful arils in all kinds of sweet and savory recipes. I think they add a nice little crunch. I understand that everyone’s tastes are different though. I think it might be better for you to enjoy pomegranate juice 🙂

  • I saw my sister-in-law do this a few years ago and she made it look so easy! I was astounded that I had been doing the underwater technique with such a fuss, lol. I can’t believe the price of arils either, Chris – crazy!
    I love that you did this post and it will make so many readers happy to see how easy it is!
    Welcome home 🙂

  • I love pomegranate seeds but have always bought them in those expensive little packets because I didn’t want the hassle of removing the seeds myself. Yes – like many others, I too was intimidated by a piece of fruit. But last weekend I bought a pomegranate at the farmer’s market with the notion that, once and for all, I was going to tackle the challenge of getting at those juicy little seeds. This morning I found your post and voila – 5 minutes later I’ve got a heaping mound of my favorite snack.

    Enjoying the fruits of my labor as I write this comment. Thank you!!

    • Yay! Your life will never be the same 🙂 Your heart will start beating a little faster from this day forward when you see a big bin of pomegranates on sale. Sometimes one of my local grocers has poms 10 for $10, I love it!

  • I know this is an old post, but thought I’d ask anyways . Once the seeds are “whacked ” out 🙂 do you wash them before eating or just go to town? I’m almost 30 weeks pregnant and pomegranates are a huge craving lately. I can’t keep buying them in the packages – too expensive – so want to try this but not sure if it’s safe to eat the seeds without a wash? Thanks !

  • Awesome advise!

    There was a lady at my former employer that would drive to work, clock in, and spend the first half hour of her morning picking out the seeds. I hope she learns to do it the easy way, (if she still has her job.)

    • Funny story Pennie! When I first tried this method, I was shocked at how easy it was. Now poms are a regular seasonal part of our diet. We love them in the morning with yogurt, honey, granola and fresh fruit!

  • Chris, We have three large Pomegranate trees that keep me busy. We use a table-top lever action orange squeezer to get juice for freezing. The chickens get the pom halves that have a few un-squeezed arils after I’m done. I have read all the comments about the WHACKING method, and I know from experience that it works well. My question is—what is the Politically Correct way to eat the arils in polite company? Do you spit out the hard little centers or juice them in your mouth and swallow the pits? Thanking you in advance, Malcolm.

    • Hi Malcolm,
      You’re not the first one to ask that question. It seems pomegranates are a mystery to many! We just eat them whole and consider the seeds a nice little crunch and source of fiber, kind of like blackberries, raspberries, nuts, seeds, etc. We love them on our morning yogurt, on oatmeal, salads, etc.

  • I just tried this method – worked like a charm. However, I wish I had read the comments first. My kitchen was covered in pomegranate juice spray. For the second half I put the bowl in the sink. I’m tall so I had to stoop uncomfortably but it did confine the mess.

    • Thanks Denise – and sorry about the mess! I modified the recipe to mention that. We had to post the pictures, so we couldn’t take them in the sink, because of lighting. Good point!

  • Love this fruit! So glad it’s just coming back into season here in New Zealand! I love to use a meat mallet to get the seeds out! Works great!

  • Well, I thought it was too good to be true! It just so happens I to have 2 pomegranates in my fridge. I had to try your method and voila! it worked. It took me longer to read your beautiful post than it did to deseed the pomegranate! I wore an apron…and I set the bowl into the sink basin…this kept the splattering to an easy clean up.
    Thank you for this amazing helpful hint!

  • Wow!! I am so very impressed! This Totally worked. I love pomegranate seeds to just eat as they are! This is a very super easy method and no mess at all. Not many things you pin on pinterest usually work out to how they say it will……but yours Did and I am so happy!!!

  • OMG! That’s unbelievable!! I just tried that and it works perfectly! Amazing! :)) I’m so happy!!:) Thank you so much for the tip! My husband will be astounded! He loves pomegranates so much, but never has the patience to sit down and de-seed one.
    Thank you! Thank you! Thank youuuuu!!:))))

  • YEA! I threw out the last pomegranate I bought, but saw you salad with the apple dressing and today poms were on sale 2-$4.00 … not sure if that is good or not, but hey, SALE and I remembered that you noted you had a trick. It works for me! As you wrote, you need to WHACK! I used the back end of a big wooden spoon with a wide handle, i.e. not a spoon with a dowel kind of handle. Very quick and I have a lovely bowl full of arils – probably three times as many as in the POM pack which was going for nearly $5.00 and I have $2.00 in my bowl full (1 pomegranate).

    Thanks! I found you looking for sweet potato brioche. I used my own brioche recipe, but I HAVE been working on making pumpkins. So far, mine are not looking as cute as yours, but I will keep trying.

  • my first time ever eating or even cutting a pomegranate and YUM!!!…and cutting it was super easy and super stress relieving as I was pounding out the seeds…a bonus when raising teenagers, beat the pomegranate..not the teenagers! haha

  • I always feel like such an outsider in the pomegranate world. I love to spend the time necessary to pull it apart.

    My grandmother has a pomegranate tree in her backyard and I spent the entire month of November and much of December (there was a week in December when I wasn’t home) eating one a night as my dessert.

    Though, I will admit it’s a bit harder to peal the ones from the stores since they dont pick them when they’re ripe. If you’re getting them off the tree, you can just wait until the fruit splits. It’s quite convenient. It usually takes me at least 10 extra minutes to pull apart the ones from the store.

    • Maybe they should change the old saying “take time to smell the roses…” to take time to pull the pomegranates apart….” .Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. How wonderful that you get to spend time with your grandmother 🙂

  • Whoa! I wish I would’ve known this a long time ago. I’m like you–I avoid them because it always seemed like too much work. Great step by step photos too! Looking forward to meeting you next week at the Mixed Conference!

  • Chris,
    Wonderful tip-I am one of those people who avoided these beautiful little fruits? Or are they a vegetable?
    Well, whatever they are I will embrace them and use your technique!
    Jemma

  • It was funny, the other day I just happened to find a post on G+ on how to de-seed a pomegranate. Can’t find that post for the life of me now, but used the technique for my latest post and liked it. De-seeding a pomegranate really is easier than you would think, which I love. I need to try your technique next, guess I will be making another treat with delicious pomegranates soon:-) Thanks for sharing! Hugs, Terra

  • Are you kidding me? What the heck? That is easy! Even I can do that! I have a pomegranate on the counter and I was to afraid to try to cut it, so it dried out and now I use it for decoration. lol I am sooooooooo going to buy a pomegranate this week, so I can try your technique. I can’t believe how simple it is!

  • Dear Chris..it doesn’t work for me either..I don’t like the water method..I find it robs the arils of some of their juice..taste..
    I saw this method on YouTube a while back..just like yours..and I just can’t..a mess..
    I do it by hand..I’ll try again:-)

  • I can’t believe it is that easy. Really, I have been peeling them and although I love poms but I was thinking they really weren’t worth the effort. Since they are in season now, I am really thankful for your tip.

  • When I was in the fifth grade (a hundred years ago) I wore a beautiful white pleated skirt to school. A classmate offered me a half of pomegranate and I dropped it in my lap. Bye-bye white skirt! I’ve been shy of pomegranates since then. I will try your method, and I’ll be wearing an apron!!!

  • I saw that method on one of Nigella Lawson’s shows. The first time I tried it there was pomegranate juice spattered from one end of the kitchen to the other! Now I just rip them apart and nudge out the arils with my fingers.

    • I’d encourage you to try it again. Put your bowl in the sink if it makes a mess. It makes it really easy to “whap” it do when it’s down a bit lower. I’ve honestly done this so many times and have shown so many people and it never makes a mess.

  • Chris – there is NO way I couldn’t have known this!! We eat poms ALL the time and I even did a post about how to deseed them in water. Now you are telling me I don’t need the water??? What?? I’m pulling one of of the fridge tonight to try it out. Thank you for sharing fabulous lady.

  • Dear Chris, we all love those very helpful kitchen tips – I read through your articcle in Parade Magazine and marveled at the bright and colorful pictures as well as your detailed description on how to de-seed a pomegranate withour using water – it is a wonderful technique to know, that´s for sure!
    Thanks for all your helpful and detailed tips and tricks – I continue to be amazed at all your talnets!
    Einen schönen Montag noch und liebe Grüße aus Bonn!

  • I too use to avoid Pomegranates for this same reason. As a kid though it was fun picking them out but now who has the time. Everyone should have a few tips up their sleeve and this is one of them. As always, lovely photos and nice tutorial. I suppose it best not to have a young boy try this – he may use that spatula as a baseball bat – look out!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


47,60K Shares
Pin
Share
Tweet
Stumble
Yum