7 fruit hacks to make you a real life fruit ninja

From strawberries and kiwi to lemons and mangoes, make the most out of all your fruit with these seven hacks!

You will need a sharp chefs knife unless another kitchen tool is noted.

1. Strawberries

This one is a cinch!

Take a straw — we used a reusable metal one — and insert it into the tip of the strawberry.

Slide the straw through the center of the berry towards the top and middle of the green stem. Push the straw all the way through until the top pops out.

No more wasting the fruit from the top of the berry again!

2. Kiwi

Slice the top and bottom of the kiwi to expose the center of the bright green fruit.

Using a spoon, slide the tip of the spoon into the top of the kiwi between the skin and the fruit. With light pressure wiggle the spoon down without going all the way through and without piercing the brown, fuzzy skin.

Turn the kiwi in your hand as the spoon glides along the fruit. Once all the way around, pop the inside kiwi fruit out from the skin and enjoy!

3. Mandarin or Tangerine

Simply slice the top and bottom of the citrus without cutting into the pulp. Score the peel from top to bottom. Carefully open the citrus at its center and unfurl the pods of fruit which will still be intact in a row inside the peel.

Pop out the pods individually and enjoy!

4. Mango

There is a large pit in the center of the mango, so cut either side (or lobe) of the fruit first to remove the flesh from the pit.

To easily peel the mango from the skin, place it on the edge of a water glass. Holding the fruit in one hand with the mango skin is facing the outside of the glass, firmly slide it down alongside the natural curve of the glass until it completely separates from the skin.

5. Lemons

When life gives you lemons, get all the juice that you can!

Don’t: Cut the lemon in half to squeeze the juice.

Do: Cut the lobe off each side of the center of the citrus to ensure less seeds and more juice.

Another helpful tip when juicing a lemon: Place the fruit under your palm and somewhat firmly press into it the countertop or cutting board as you roll it away from you, to get the pulp and juices flowing before you slice into it.

6. Apples

This is a beautiful way to enhance your fruit and show off some serious knife skills.

Start by slicing each lobe of the apple as close to the core as possible so you have two even sides of the apple. Set aside the core.

Lay one of the sides of the apple flat onto the cutting board and using your chefs knife make a small slice downward just to the right of center without cutting more than a centimeter or so into the fruit. Turn the knife and make a similar small size slice into the fruit so that you are cutting at a 90-degree angle. You should be left with a small leaf looking shape.

Move the knife another centimeter or so to the left, away from the initial cut, and make a slightly deeper slice downward. Repeat on the side and remove that piece which should look like a leaf with a 90 degree angle.

Repeat two more times and set the slices aside.

Repeat the same slices on the other side of the same piece of apple. If you mess up, use the half that you did not yet cut.

Place the core on the cutting board and using the tip of the chefs knife, or a small paring knife, cut in a curve shape from the base of the remaining fruit to the tip where the stem would have been to make a “C” shape.

Get the sliced half of your apple. Assemble the angled slices in the order you cut them, gently pull and fan them back. Repeat on the other side.

Cut a small flat piece off the bottom of the the curved “C” slice to create a flat surface so that it can stand perpindicular to the cutting board and place it in front and the apple.

Voila! The apple should resemble a swan.

7. Watermelon

Easily cut long and even rectangular spears from a large watermelon.

First slice the melon in half lengthwise. Lay one of the halves flat on a large cutting board and slice long even one inch-wide strips from right to left.

Holding it together, turn the sliced melon so the long cuts are now facing the other direction. Make the same one-inch cuts evenly across the rest of the watermelon.

You will be left with long 1-by-1 inch spears of fruit that can be easily lifted out by the green rind. Leave on a platter or put in a bowl to enjoy.

If you want to get really fancy — scoop the other half of the watermelon out and use it as a serving bowl!

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