The juiciest FAQs ever
EC: Should You Buy Fruit Pre-Cut or Whole?
Credit: Photo by Konzept und Bild/ullstein bild via Getty Images

Look, we don’t know your personal morning fruit needs and, frankly, you don’t know ours, so it’s safe to say we’re in a judgment-free zone here. But seeing as you clicked on a story about whether you should buy fruit whole or pre-cut, as certified breakfast professionals we owe you some expert advice. For the sake of convenience, pre-sliced fruit might seem awfully enticing, but is it worth it, financially, environmentally, and emotionally?

Some Frequently Asked Fruit-Buying Questions (F.A.F.B.Q.):

Generally speaking, is it a good idea to buy fruit whole or cut up?

To answer a question with a question, are you trying to save time or money? If the former, yes—obviously. (Though seriously, if strawberry slicing takes that much of a toll on your schedule, the problem is not contained within the strawberries.) Financially, though, they tend to be a pretty bad bet. The per-pound price is inevitably a few bucks higher, and pre-cut fruit often comes in not-super-environmentally-friendly packaging, like plastic clamshells and foam trays. There are only so many Pinteresting ways to upcycle them before you suddenly realize you’re living under a mountain of half-assed crafts that may topple and crush you at any moment.

Plus, rinds and skins are there for a reason. Cutting fruit ahead of time exposes the edible surfaces to pathogens like salmonella and e. coli, and the pieces are often treated with preservatives and antibacterial solutions. Which, if you’re cool with that, great—just consider washing the slices and chunks before eating them. They’ve also been found to be a little less beneficial because water isn’t carrying nutrients through the cell walls any more. Still, if having an uncomplicated fruit solution is what’s keeping you from grabbing a hunk of sausage and a cinnamon bun as you run out the door in the morning, have at it.

Specifically speaking, should I buy pre-cut melon?

Depends. What is your intention with this melon? Melons are a commitment, honestly. There’s a lot to get through and if you think it’s all going to end in wasted fruit and guilt, then by all means, chunk it up. But you will be depriving yourself of the opportunity to make watermelon rind preserves, which is the finest breakfast condiment known to mankind. If you can live with that, then blessings upon you, your home, and your breakfast nook.

Should I buy pre-sliced peaches?

Are you doing that because you’re freaked out by fuzz? You are safe here, shhhhh. It will be fine. The rest of you are missing out on one of life’s most poetic pleasures.

Should I buy pre-sliced bananas?

That’s weird. But here’s a fun prank you can play on someone to make them think that you did.

Should I buy pre-sliced apples?

Do you care for / are you a toddler and need a quick snack or oatmeal topping and knives are unavailable to you? Go for it. Just know that they’ve been sprayed or dipped in a browning inhibitor that can make them stay looking fresh and tasting crisp for up to 21 days.

Should I buy pre-sliced pineapple?

Yeah, that’s fine. Unless you can pull off this pineapple-slicing technique a la Philippe Vongerichten, in which case you are required to do so every day, ideally in front of a live and delighted audience.

Thank you for your time. The tl;dr—do whatever works for your lifestyle. Fruit is great. Yay, fruit.