Should You Clean Pineapple Before Cutting It?

Whether they get their produce from a local farmer's market or a big-name grocery store, many people choose to wash their fruits and veggies before eating them. Considering there's no way to know what your produce has come into contact with, giving it a rinse is a good idea, especially for items that you eat the peel of, like berries or apples. However, not every fruit can be eaten all the way through. For example, the spiky rinds of pineapple may lead one to think that there is no point in cleaning it since all the good bits are on the inside, but that is simply not the case.

Despite the natural armor a pineapple skin provides, it's still worth it to give the whole thing a quick bath before cutting into it. The CDC recommends washing your produce before you do anything else to it, "even if you do not plan to eat the peel." This is because "germs on the peel or skin can get inside fruits and vegetables when you cut them." So, the next time you bring home a pineapple to go with a delectable pork loin, wash the fruit before you start slicing.

The simplest way to wash a pineapple

Before cleaning your pineapple, it's wise to wash your hands first, so you don't transfer over any germs and ruin your hard work. When you're ready to move to the fruit, turn on your faucet and rinse the pineapple under the water as it runs. To get into the pineapple peel's nooks and crannies, you might want to gently scrub it with a bristle brush. Once your pineapple is clean, pat it dry, chop off its leaves, and then you're ready to slice it into your preferred rings, chunks, or spears.

Washing any type of produce, including pineapple, can help minimize the presence of dangerous bacteria like Salmonella and Listeria (per the CDC). It will also reduce the germs left behind by store employees, other customers, and anyone else who may have had their hands (or worse — sneezes and coughs) on your produce before you picked it up.

Due to their unusual outer rind, pineapples can be tricky to work with, but there are plenty of tips to make the process easier. One of the simplest things you can do is clean your pineapple before you dig in, so the tropical taste isn't tainted by dirt and bacteria.