To get the most from your mango adventures, you’ll want to know how to choose, ripen, and store your mangos once you get them home.
The first step is choosing a great mango, and you might be surprised to learn that you shouldn’t judge a mango by color alone. Mangos come in a range of colors – many shades of green, yellow and red – and lots of mangos show more than one color. The colors of a mango will vary by variety, growing region and even that mango’s position on the tree. That’s because in some varieties, the red blush on the skin is an indicator of how much sun that mango received. So, mangos from the inner part of the tree can taste just as luscious, but have much less of this red coloring.
You’ll want to choose a mango based on its firmness and when you plan to eat it.
- Don’t focus on color. It is not the best indicator of ripeness.
- Squeeze the mango gently. A ripe mango will be slightly soft to the touch.
- A firmer mango would be a good choice if you don’t plan to eat it for several days.
- Use your experience with produce such as peaches or avocados, which also become soft to the touch when ripe.
- Ripe mangos will often have a fruity aroma at their stem ends.
Ripening & Storing Mangos
- Keep unripe mangos at room temperature. Never refrigerate mangos before they are ripe.
- Mangos will continue to ripen at room temperature, becoming sweeter and softer over several days.
- To speed up ripening, place mangos in a paper bag at room temperature.
- Once ripe, mangos should be moved to the refrigerator, which will slow down the ripening process. Whole, ripe mangos may be stored for up to five days in the refrigerator.
- Mango may be peeled, cubed and placed in an airtight container in the refrigerator for several days or in the freezer for up to six months.
Handling & Cutting Mangos
- Always use a clean knife and cutting board to cut a mango.
- If you have handled or cut any type of meat or seafood, you must ALWAYS sanitize your hands, work area, utensils and cutting board before handling or cutting any fruits or vegetables, including mangos.
- Always wash mangos before cutting.
- For step-by-step cutting instructions, or to watch a video about selecting and cutting mangos