Watermelon is a common item to serve at picnics and is enjoyed by people of all ages. Bringing a whole melon to cut up during the picnic is not always ideal. Rather, cut the watermelon before you get there, but be sure it’s chilled, because chilled, crisp watermelon is much more satisfying than warm watermelon.
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Chill the entire watermelon for approximately four to six hours prior to cutting it. To maintain the quality of a ripe watermelon, according to University of Illinois Extension, store it at room temperature until you’re ready to chill it for serving.
Cut the watermelon as desired, such as into slices. You can also cut it into slices, remove the rind and cut the watermelon into cubes, or cut the watermelon in half and use a melon scoop to scoop out watermelon balls.
Place the cut watermelon into plastic storage bags or in sealed storage containers. Place them in the refrigerator or in a cooler with ice packs or ice until you’re ready to leave for the picnic.
Save and cool the watermelon halves if you scooped out watermelon balls. You can serve the watermelon in the chilled rinds. If you are going to serve the watermelon in a bowl or container, chill that instead in the refrigerator or cooler.
Serve watermelon balls in the chilled watermelon rinds or in the chilled bowl or container. You can also place the bowl or container into a larger one with ice cubes around the sides to help keep the watermelon cool at the picnic. Alternatively, serve the watermelon in a special container that has a built in ice pack that your freeze first.
If you do decide to bring a whole watermelon to the picnic, keep it in a cooler until you’re ready to cut and serve it.