A pomegranate's jewel-like red arils (often referred to as seeds) hold bursts of sweet-tart juice and are packed with vitamin C, fiber, and polyphenols (the same compounds that give red wine its good-for-you reputation). Read on for techniques and recipes that make the most of this season's superfruit—plus a handy tip for getting arils out of the fruit.
To pick a pomegranate... Do some heavy lifting!
Only go by color if you're selecting pomegranates to use as table decoration. Otherwise, weight is your best bet: Heaviness indicates that the pomegranate packs plenty of juice.
The easiest-ever way... To seed a pomegranate.
- Cut the pomegranate in half horizontally.
- Hold one half over a bowl, cut side down, and hit the top with a heavy spoon or ladle. A few seeds will fall out— you're just getting started!
- Continue hitting the pomegranate on top and sides. It should begin to soften and become flexible, releasing more and more of the seeds from the membrane.
- Refrigerate your stash in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Five things to do... with pomegranate seeds.
- Sprinkle on a salad. Try them with arugula, citrus, toasted pepitas, and avocado for a refreshing, healthy lunch. Or, in this Fennel-and-Endive Salad with Pomegranate Seeds and Walnuts.
- Add to guacamole with finely diced fruit, such as mango or pineapple, and fresh cilantro for a tropical twist on the classic dip.
- Serve with roasted or braised meat, such as these Pomegranate-Braised Short Ribs, to add pretty color and a bit of bright flavor.
- Stir into plain yogurt or steel-cut oats to add crunch without relying on higher-calorie items like nuts or granola.
- Drop in a glass of sparkling wine for a festive New Year's Eve cocktail.