I know there are a lot of ways to cut up a pineapple out there, but I personally think there is only one right way to do it! I grew up in the Philippines, and loved the beautiful ways everyone sliced up fruit. In the markets, the fruit vendors would be carving fruit up so fast that sometimes it was hard to tell what was happening! The ruffled slices of pineapple especially caught my attention, so I asked our cook to teach me how to do it. It’s the only way I have ever cut up a pineapple since!
OK, so not only is this the prettiest way to cut up a pineapple, but it also wastes the least amount of fruit. No hacking clear through the “eyes” of the pineapple and throwing all of the fruit around them away!
(P.S. A quick video tutorial is at the end of this post!)
Let’s get started. You’ll just need a sharp chef’s knife and a cutting board. Some people like to use a smaller knife for the spiral cuts– I’ll leave it up to you, just make sure the knife or knives you use are sharp.
How to Cut Up a Pineapple
- Cut off the top and bottom of your pineapple.
- Slice off the skin– don’t go overboard, only cut deeply enough to get the skin off– you want to see the “eyes.” Use broad vertical cuts all around the outside of the pineapple.
- Now, look at your pineapple. Look it in the eyes! Do you notice a spiral pattern? The is our pathway to the beautiful sculpture it will become. Start at one of the spirals and make a diagonal cut at the top and the bottom to cut out the eyes along the way. I usually cut two or three out at a time, working my way around the pineapple until I reach the last one in that line at the bottom.
- Start again with the eye that was next to the first one. Do it again, and again, row by row. You will probably start enjoying yourself, now that you’re getting the hang of it, and if you are like me, you might even be disappointed when it’s over.
- The hardest part is cutting your beautiful pineapple sculpture in half and into pieces. But that’s what we’re here to do, so take a moment to admire your handiwork, and then go for it.
- Cut each half into wedges, then chop the very center part off of each one– this is the very fibrous and tough stalk. These stalks (we called them piña sticks and fought over them when I was a kid) are very edible and can go into smoothies, but would should be separated from the rest of the fruit. You can serve the fruit in wedges like these, or cut them up into smaller chunks.
Tadaa! You now know the very best, most beautiful way to cut up a pineapple. And you hardly wasted any of that precious fruit. Enjoy!
And here’s the video version of this tutorial: