Take A Pringles Can To Your Watermelon For Perfect Rounds

Although peak watermelon season officially ends in September, the juicy fruit is available year-round. It's a summertime favorite for people of all ages, whether enjoyed handheld by sandy fingers at the beach, or puréed and frozen for a slushy adult cocktail. While delicious in its traditional form, home cooks are opting for more modern presentations, swapping classic wedges out for batons — which look like sticks — and rounds. Watermelon rounds can serve as a tasty alternative to tomatoes in non-fruit salads, and as an excellent complement to cheese in salty-sweet appetizers. In savory salads, low-carb watermelon rounds can stand in for crostini, especially when topped with lightly dressed baby arugula and salty feta cheese.

To make watermelon rounds, you can use a cookie or biscuit cutter to stamp out individual circles from thick slices of melon — a process that can be time-consuming and leaves you with oddly shaped leftover chunks. Alternatively, thanks to a recent hack on TikTok and Youtube, you can make these rounds lightning-fast using an empty Pringles can. As a bonus, you get to enjoy all the chips first.

The Pringles can and watermelon hack

Before cutting, rinse and dry the melon. Even though you'll discard the rind, this step prevents bacteria on the surface from contaminating the cut fruit. Next, grab a full-sized Pringles can. This hack works best on a petite watermelon, less than 10 inches long, to ensure a clean cut.

Although you should wash the can before use, odors may linger. So, unless you enjoy unusual flavor combinations, avoid pungent varieties like sour cream and onion. For easier watermelon retrieval, we recommend using a serrated knife or box cutter to remove the can's bottom, creating a hollow cylinder.

To prepare the watermelon for cutting, slice a thin layer off the top and bottom to expose the flesh. This also stabilizes the melon, preventing it from rocking. Press the Pringles can into the watermelon flesh and twist to cut. Once you reach the bottom, withdraw the can, which will now be filled with fruit. Press on one side of the watermelon and slide the fruit onto a cutting board. If you kept the can intact, use a paring knife to coax the watermelon out of the tube.

Finally, slice the watermelon into half-inch rounds. They should be sturdy enough to pick up but should require no more than two or three bites to eat.

How to use watermelon rounds

As an appetizer, watermelon rounds excel in a variety of savory recipes. Reimagine your favorite watermelon salad recipes by laying several watermelon rounds on a bed of peppery arugula or your choice of baby lettuce. Top each round with slices of tomato, avocado, and crumbly cheese, such as goat, feta, or ricotta salata. Build a pyramid on the watermelon, then sprinkle with chopped nuts like pecans or walnuts. Lightly dress the dish with a vinaigrette, or drizzle it with balsamic glaze, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

For added depth, consider candying the nuts by caramelizing them with sugar and a dash of cayenne pepper for a spicy kick. If you prefer a nut-free alternative, roasted watermelon seeds can maintain the texture.

For dessert, use grilled watermelon rounds for s'mores. The size is perfect for sandwiching between graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate. To achieve char marks and enhance sweetness, coat the watermelon with sugar or honey and sprinkle it with sea salt before grilling. The sugar will aid in caramelizing the fruit, and since you'll grill the watermelon for roughly two minutes per side, there's little risk of it burning. To assemble the watermelon s'mores, place a square of chocolate on a graham cracker, followed by a toasted marshmallow and a grilled watermelon round. Add another square of chocolate and top with a second graham cracker. The additional layer of chocolate helps prevent the juicy watermelon from making the crackers soggy.