Most fruits and vegetables you find in the grocery store have been picked before they are ripe. This allows for travel of the produce to the grocery store without having it rot before it reaches the shelves. When purchasing produce, there are some signs to look for to determine if it is ripe or not. The same is true of cantaloupe. Unripe cantaloupe is not sweet and often the flesh is tough. There are several significant ways to find a good cantaloupe that is ready to eat.
- Pick up the cantaloupe and hold it in one hand. Tap the side of the cantaloupe with the open palm of your free hand. A ripe cantaloupe will have a dull, hollow sound when you tap it with your palm.
- Check the smooth skin beside the ribs of the cantaloupe skin. Green tinges indicate the cantaloupe is not ripe. The skin color near the ribs should have an orange or tan color.
- Feel the weight of the cantaloupe. It should feel heavy for the size. If it feels light for its size, the fruit is not ripe.
- Place your fingers on the end opposite side of the stem end. This is the blossom area and should feel slightly spongy. The stem side should be smooth and not have any remnants of the stem.
- Hold the cantaloupe up to your nose. A ripe, ready-to-eat cantaloupe will have a sweet fragrance.