Does Watermelon Go Bad? How Long Does It Last?

logo by Editorial Staff | Updated on August 4th, 2022

Is it possible for watermelon to spoil? How can you tell if a watermelon has gone bad, and how should watermelons be stored? Here’s the definitive handbook.

So you went to the supermarket and purchased a large number of watermelons. Watermelons are both tasty and low in calories, making them an ideal snack. However, you have realized that you purchased far too much and are now wondering:

sliced watermelon on green surface

Does watermelon go bad?  How can I keep watermelons? Is it possible to freeze watermelon?

The good news is that a full watermelon may be stored in the refrigerator for at least two weeks.

The bad news is that, while pre-cut watermelon might save time, it only lasts 3-5 days before going bad.

But don’t worry, there is a solution. Once you’ve chopped your watermelon into little pieces, you can freeze it for later use in smoothies and other watermelon-based dishes.

How Long Does Watermelon Last?

Watermelon, like other fruits, has a short shelf life. A whole one should keep well in the pantry for about a week and maybe up to 10 days or so in the fridge.

The timer begins to run after you cut it apart. The fruit should keep its freshness for 3 to 5 days. The fresher it is, the longer it will last.

It’s better to consume it all straight away, as is customary, although this isn’t always possible. Please remember that wrapping is critical if you want to keep the leftovers in the fridge for longer than a day.

If you want to keep the watermelon for longer, freeze it according to the instructions above.

WatermelonRoom temperatureFridgeFreezer
Whole7 to 10 days3 weeksOne year
CutOne day4 to 5 days10 to 12 months

When Does Watermelon Go Bad After It’s Been Cut?

Watermelon, whether sliced or chopped, may be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days. Whether you cut it or bought it that way, it must be refrigerated immediately.

Wrap it securely in plastic wrap or place it in an airtight container. Unwrapped fruit dries out in the fridge and absorbs odors from within, affecting the taste.

How to Tell if your watermelon is bad

Always check to see whether your watermelon has gone rotten before freezing it. Here are some warning indicators to look for:

Date of Expiration

To avoid unexpected shocks, strictly adhere to the watermelon shelf life. It is especially important when purchasing pre-cut fruit.

Nitrates are present.

One of the best ways to tell if your watermelon is fresh and has naturally ripened is to look for nitrates. Watermelons with yellow rinds and white streaks in the flesh should be avoided.

The tried-and-true approach is to crush a piece of pulp and mix it with a glass of water. Water will get muddy if you consume nutritious fruit. On the other hand, watermelon with a high nitrate content will turn the water crimson. It is preferable to avoid it.

External Appearance

  • Color — Depending on the variety, watermelon has a uniform pine green color with or without stripes. Any variation from the expected hue should raise your suspicions.
  • Mold — Any dark patches or white, fuzzy, green, or black mold on the watermelon skin suggest that the fruit has spoiled.

Internal Appearance

  • Texture — Shriveled, grainy, dry, mushy, or slimy fruit flesh is a sure symptom of a rotten watermelon.
  • Color – Deep pink or clear red indicates a healthy fruit. To avoid food poisoning, never consume anything if it is yellow, orange, or black in hue. Remember that certain kinds, such as Tendergold, Yellow Doll, Desert King, and Yellow Baby, have naturally yellow or orange flesh.
  • Smell — A bad stench or vinegar-like odor indicates that the watermelon has gone sour.
  • Taste – A sour flavor instead of a fresh, sweet, and juicy flavor indicates that the watermelon has rotted, and you should not consume it.
  • Hollow center — This indicates that the watermelon is overripe or contains growth hormones, both of which can be poisonous.

The Dangers of Consuming Expired Watermelon

Food illness can occur fast if you consume rotten watermelon. Within a few hours, the first indicators that anything is awry will show, and they will include:

  • Tiredness and headache
  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Diarrhea

In extreme situations, the patient may develop a fever, joint pains, and cramps.

Another hazard is food illness caused by Listeria, which may develop on the watermelon rind and contaminate the flesh after cutting.

If you have diabetes, you should exercise caution because this fruit includes a high natural sugar content. In rare situations, watermelon can trigger an allergic response, resulting in difficulties breathing and swelling following eating.

Furthermore, the purpose of the lycopene it contains and how it impacts human health is not known. Nonetheless, avoiding watermelon with yellow fiber pulp and the glossy, polished-like pulp that smells sour would be beneficial.

How to Choose a Watermelon

A healthy watermelon should have no bruises or decaying patches. When compared to other watermelons of similar size, it should be hefty. The bottom of a ripe watermelon will be cream tinted.

  1. Are there any bruising, rotting, or holes in the watermelon?
  2. Is it cumbersome? It should weigh a lot. Watermelon is almost entirely composed of water. It’s not ideal if it feels light for its size in comparison to other watermelons.
  3. The watermelon’s bottom side, lying on the ground, should be creamy in color. If it’s white, it’s not ripe. It is overripe if it is bright yellow.

When is the watermelon season?

Watermelon season in the United States lasts from June through September. However, you can now get sliced watermelon all year at most supermarket stores.

However, remember that the delicious and juicy watermelon we all enjoy will most likely not be available throughout the winter months. During the winter, watermelon is often imported from Mexico and Central America.

How Do You Store A Watermelon?

If kept refrigerated, a full uncut watermelon or sliced watermelon can keep for about 2 weeks.

Sliced watermelon will keep in an airtight container for 3-5 days.

Don’t plan on eating your watermelon straight away?

To freeze, break it into small pieces and place them in heavy-duty freezer bags. You may freeze the watermelon for 10-12 months and utilize it later.

But keep in mind that freezing the watermelon will affect its texture. As a result, you should only use frozen watermelon in a smoothie or dish – it won’t be very tasty.

Is it possible to freeze watermelon?

Cut watermelon can be frozen. It is not advisable to attempt to freeze a whole watermelon. When freezing watermelon, make careful to remove the seeds first. Only seedless watermelons should be frozen.

Watermelon that has been frozen will have a different texture when it is defrosted. We recommend freezing it in little bits and slowly defrosting it in the fridge.

Watermelon Freezing Instructions

Freezing watermelon is a breeze. Follow the instructions outlined below.

  • Cut your watermelon into bite-size cubes or large chunks, or use a melon baller or spoon to cut it up.
  • If you want a sweet boost, sprinkle sugar or syrup on our watermelon. For every pound of watermelon, use roughly 12 cups of granulated sugar.
  • Then there’s flash freeze. Line a baking pan with baking paper and distribute your watermelon slices. Wrap with cling film and place in the freezer for 2 hours.
  • Now that the watermelon has frozen, you may move it to a single large airtight container where all of the pieces will not stay together.

Don’t defrost your watermelon until you’re ready to eat it. Because watermelon is 91% water, you’ll wind up with mushy, flavorless watermelon sludge.

What Can You Make With Frozen Watermelon?

As previously said, you should not defrost frozen watermelon.

Instead, blend frozen watermelon into a smoothie or make your watermelon sorbet.

On hot days, use frozen watermelon as fruity ice cubes in your beverages, or eat it on its own!


Watermelons, like other fruits, do not store well and should be consumed as soon as possible.

Uncut watermelon stays for 2 weeks in the refrigerator; however, sliced watermelon only lasts 3-5 days.

Because the hard barrier around the watermelon works as a barricade between the fruit within and the outside world – once shattered, your watermelon is susceptible!


Editorial Staff

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