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How To Tell If A Watermelon Is Bad

When I think of watermelon I think of summer. Watermelon is such a refreshing juicy snack or side on a hot summer day.

You don’t want to buy or eat a watermelon that is bad so I have created this post to give you a list of things to look for. The way it looks on the outside is a good indicator of how it will be on the inside.

Watermelon sliced into triangles on a cutting board with a knife laying on the board.

How to tell if a watermelon is bad is as simple as looking it over and smelling it. If it looks bruised, damaged, or has mold in it then it is not good. Also if you notice that it smells bad do not eat it.

3 Signs to tell if a watermelon is good

Knowing if your watermelon is good to eat or not is important so that you aren’t eating spoiled or moldy watermelon.

You want to make sure that you eat cut-up watermelon within 3-4 days and if you haven’t cut it yet it will last about a week left out before it starts to turn bad.

You can leave a whole watermelon uncut in the fridge to lengthen the freshness for up to two weeks.

Let’s go over the obvious signs of how to know if a watermelon is bad. You really want to check these things before you cut a watermelon.

1. How does it look?

Look at the outside and make sure that there aren’t any mold or dark spots on the rind. If the outside of the watermelon looks damaged then it has probably affected the inside of the fruit as well.

Watermelon should have dark and light green alternating colors on the outside and a dark pink-reddish inside when it is fresh.

If the inside color looks dull you may want to check the other signs as well. Any signs of mold inside or outside are indicators that you should not eat it.

2. Smell it

The outside of watermelons doesn’t have much of a smell to them but you may notice a slight sweet smell. If you smell mold or mildew at all then you want to discard it.

The same goes for the inside of the watermelon. If you have cut it up and you are not sure if it is good because it looks ok then smell it for a sweet smell.

It should smell like it tastes. A nice light sweet aroma.

I also have an entire post on how to tell if a watermelon is ripe. This is important of you think that you have bought one that has not ripened yet.

3. Feel gritty or dry?

If you notice that your watermelon is gritty or dry then it is past its prime. You may notice that the flesh of the watermelon is separating from the seeds or the rind.

At this point, it should not be eaten. You want juicy sweet watermelon.

ColorBad watermelon has a dull, matte finish instead of a shiny, glossy appearance.
TextureA mushy or overly soft texture is a sign of a bad watermelon.
SmellUnpleasant, sour, or musty odors indicate a spoiled watermelon.
WeightA watermelon that feels too light for its size may be dehydrated and overripe.
SoundsA hollow or flat sound when tapping the watermelon can be a sign of overripeness.

Also, find out how to tell if grapefruit is bad or how to tell if limes are bad.


Knowing how to tell if a watermelon is bad is essential for anyone who enjoys this refreshing and nutritious fruit. Be sure to properly store your watermelon so that it doesn’t go bad before you can enjoy it.

By paying attention to the color, texture, smell, weight, and sound of the watermelon, you can ensure that you’re consuming a ripe and tasty fruit while avoiding potential health risks associated with spoiled fruits.

Keep these tips in mind, and you’ll be able to confidently select the perfect watermelon every time, ensuring that you and your loved ones can savor the delicious flavors and reap the numerous health benefits this fruit has to offer.

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