Choosing a Ripe Melon

It's terribly disappointing to cut into a watermelon and find that it is still mostly pink inside and has little sweetness to the meat. But what do you look for when choosing one at the grocery? How can you pick the ripest one?
There are two reliable methods:
Yellow Belly
Examine the underside of a melon. Ripe ones will have a cream or yellow belly, unripe ones will be white or green.
Slap Test
Ripe melons will sound hollow when you slap them. But what does "hollow" sound like?
Practice on your body. Give your forehead a couple of light slaps. Repeat on your chest. Repeat on your stomach. Notice how the sound changes for each one. The sound your stomach makes when slapped is the "ripe" sound you're looking for.
It's best to compare three watermelons side by side. You'll easily be able to pick the one that sounds most hollow when slapped.

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2 of 11 comments
  • Anita Anita on Apr 23, 2015
    How do you know when a cantaloupe is ripe?
  • Jan Grimes Jan Grimes on May 28, 2015
    By the smell......if you can smell them before you walk up to the display, they are ripe! There's other ways, I'm sure, but I never miss using this for cantaloupe.