A Step-By-Step Guide to Mango Peeling and Slicing

Don't ever buy mangoes from the grocery store again unless you want to waste money. Learn how to peel and cut a mango in two different ways, complete with photos and detailed instructions, so you can enjoy this delicious tropical fruit. One of the best-tasting fruits available is the mango.

Don't ever buy mangoes from the grocery store again unless you want to waste money. Learn how to peel and cut a mango in two different ways, complete with photos and detailed instructions, so you can enjoy this delicious tropical fruit.

A hand holding a large section of peeled yellow orange mango

One of the best-tasting fruits available is the mango. Adjectives tropical, sugary, and tasty

However, it may be a daunting and difficult task to finally taste that sweet, deliciousness.

Good news: I'll demonstrate two quick and easy methods for slicing mangos so you can enjoy them whenever they're in season.

The best method for peeling and slicing a mango depends on your personal preference. But I'm here to show you the tried-and-true methods that have always given me the cleanest cuts when slicing mangoes.

When I first attempted to slice into a mango, I didn't realize there was a huge pit in the middle. After attempting a horizontal cut through the mango and having my knife strike the pit, I had a pretty quick realization of the problem.

Even so, I was still clueless as to the depth of the hole. I shifted the knife and gave it another go, but this time it went straight through the pit. again and again

Let's just say that by the time I was done with that mango, it was a mangled mess.

A large brown speckled yellow and orange mango on the left and a smaller slender yellow mango on the right on a white surface

While different mango varieties may have slightly different tastes, they all have very similar "anatomies."

Mangoes, Big and Fat

Big, juicy mangoes isn't the most accurate scientific description, but it's all I can think of.

A number of different names are used for these things around the world, but they are all essentially the same. Skins of the large, juicy mangoes range in color from green to red to yellow. Many of these mango varieties used to be more fibrous, making them slightly more difficult to cut, perhaps twenty years ago. These days, however, you can easily find ones that are less fibrous, have more meat, and keep their shape when cut.

When you're trying to peel and cut one of these massive mangoes, you might find yourself with more than your hands full. So I begin by severing the stem's connection to the base.

Close-up of a knife slicing through the bottom of a yellow orange mango on a wooden cutting board

If you cut off the mango's stem, it will become flat on its bottom, allowing you to use it as a cutting board.

You can peel a mango by cutting off the top. Proceed until no more skin can be removed.

A knife slicing the peel off a large yellow mango sitting on a wooden cutting board

It's time to begin slicing the mango, which should still be resting on the flat base you cut earlier.

A large yellow orange peeled mango next to a knife on a wooden cutting board

Consider that the pit in the center of the mango is half an inch thick. Make a horizontal incision on the mango's flat side close to the pit. Slicing through may cause you to sense it.

A knife slicing into a large yellow orange mango on a wooden cutting board

Flip the fruit over and do the same thing on the other side.

Close-up of a knife slicing a large chunk off a yellow orange mango

Then, place your mango on its side and use a paring knife to remove the meat from around the pit.

A knife cutting off a section of mango off the pit on a wooden cutting board

Carefully remove any remaining mango meat from the pit. Discard the pit However, hold off on discarding it just yet.

A small paring knife resting between a mango pit and chunks of mango on a wooden cutting board

Pieces, slices, etc., should be cut from the large flat sides and the large chunks you removed from the mango.

Cubed chunks of yellow orange mango on a wooden cutting board

Mangoes can be eaten fresh or blended into smoothies. YUM

But wait Isn't there something wrong with the hole? What a huge size it is now that you can see it! It makes sense that I had such a hard time slicing through the mango's flesh.

You could go ahead and throw away that pit, but there is still some usable mango on there.

Here's where things get messy as you suck on the pit and scrape the meat off with your teeth. It's not pretty, juice will be all over your hands and face, and you may even get "wedgies" in your teeth, but it's worth it to get every delicious morsel you can. I won't show you any pictures of me doing it, but just look at how much you can haul out of that hole!

A hand holding a mango pit with the mango meat scraped off

Mangoes, tiny, yellow, and small

These mangoes are smaller than the "big fat" mangoes and can be recognized by their bright yellow skin, though the term "small yellow mangoes" is not very scientific.

Mangoes from the Philippines (or Manila) are commonly available in Hong Kong. You may also know them as Mexican Ataulfo, honey, or jade mangoes. They have a more concentrated flavor and a lower density than the larger varieties.

A hand holding a yellow smooth skinned mango

As is customary, I trim the mango's base before setting it upright on the cutting board. Finally, I decide to keep the skin intact.

Like a giant mango, cut the pit in half lengthwise.

A knife slicing into a yellow mango set on a wooden cutting board

To separate the meat from the skin, hold one of the pieces in your hand and work a tablespoon under the skin. So basic, it's laughable

Side by side photos with a hand holding a section of mango and a spoon scooping out the mango flesh on the left, and two large chunks of mango and the peeled skin on the right

The mango flesh can also be eaten by scooping it out of the skin. Fast and easy results

Close-up of a hand holding a section of mango and a spoon scooping out the mango flesh

Using a paring knife, remove the skin from the meat that is still attached to the pit.

Three photos showing cutting away the peel from a mango and cutting the mango flesh off the pit

Also, don't throw away the pit; you could be throwing away some delicious mango meat.

That settles it, then. Mangoes can be cut and eaten in two distinct ways.

Keep in mind that the large, plump mangoes can be cut with the skin still attached, and the flesh scooped out and eaten immediately, just like the smaller, yellow varieties.

A metal spoon with a chunk of yellow orange mango flesh scooped out from a large section of mango

In contrast to the smaller yellow ones, these are too large to consume in a single sitting. As a result, I prefer to make cubes out of them.

A white round plate containing cubed chunks of yellow orange mango

Mangoes are delicious, and their arrival is often a harbinger of warmer months ahead. We adore them simply by themselves, but my personal favorite way to enjoy a mango is in a fruit salad with other deliciously fresh fruits. Put them in a blender with some mango and you've got yourself a delicious and refreshing mango fresh fruit sparkler.

Mangoes are delicious when they are in season, and now you know how to enjoy them quickly and easily, whether you prefer to eat them whole, in chunks, or straight from the shell.

~ Lisa

  • To make a flat surface, remove the mango's stem and cut off the bottom. Use this as a pedestal for the mango on the cutting board.
  • One way to peel a mango is to start at the top and work your way down to the cutting board with a sharp knife. Iterate all the way around the mango, turning it as needed.
  • Cut across the flat sides of the mango, as if the pit were half an inch thick. Separate the mangoes into sections and cut them into slices, chunks, etc.
  • Place the mango pit on the cutting board and remove the remaining mango flesh by cutting around the pit.
  • Without peeling, slice the mango in half lengthwise, flat side down, being careful to avoid the pit.
  • Using a tablespoon, remove the mango flesh from the skin on each of the flat sides. The mango flesh can then be cut into chunks or eaten directly from the skin.
  • Carefully remove the skin by laying the pit flat on a cutting board and cutting around it.
  • Mangoes can be eaten by cutting the flesh carefully away from the pit or they can be eaten directly from the pit.
  • The smaller yellow mangoes can still be prepared using the Peel and Cut method, but they can be trickier to work with because of their size. When dealing with smaller mangoes, I find the cut-and-scoop method to be the most effective.
  • Mangoes at their peak are slightly yielding when squeezed and emit a subtle aroma.
  • Mango is best when eaten fresh, but if I have any leftover I'll store it in the fridge for a day and eat it with yogurt or blend it into a smoothie.
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This post has been updated with a recipe card and new information as of 5 October 2019.

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