How to Eat Pomegranate Seeds (Arils): Benefits, Nutrition Facts & Storage

Pomegranate Seeds
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The pomegranate is a delicious fruit that anyone can have. People want to know more about it, especially how to eat pomegranate seeds. The pomegranate (Punica granatum) is a fruit-bearing shrub in the Lythraceae family that usually grows between five and 10 meters tall.

In the Northern Hemisphere, the pomegranate season lasts from September to February, while in the Southern Hemisphere, it’s from March to May. The pomegranate originated in the region stretching from modern-day Iran to northern India.

Today, the fruit is cultivated throughout the Middle East and the Caucasus region, South Asia, Central Asia, north and tropical Africa, and in parts of the Mediterranean region. It is also grown in parts of Arizona and California.

The best pomegranates are ripe, deep-colored with a red to reddish-brown outer rind, and heavy for their size. Their tough, leathery shells open to reveal clusters of seeds called arils, which are filled with juice but covered in inedible pith.

What Exactly Is a Pomegranate Aril?

What is an aril? It’s simply the fleshy covering of the seeds found inside a pomegranate. The unique interior of the fruit is quite a sight to behold. The translucent, ruby-colored flesh coats a tiny, white or pink seed, but the entire aril can be eaten.

How to Eat Pomegranate Seeds (Arils)

How to Select the Best Fresh Pomegranate

  • Heaviness: The weight of the pomegranate signifies how juicy it is. Lighter pomegranates do not contain as much juice as heavier ones.
  • Rind color: Look for pomegranates with deep-colored red rinds. The rinds come in a range of colors, from pinkish to bright red and even brown. They should also be glossy.
  • Shape: A ripe pomegranate will have more of a square shape because the sides will be flattened instead of being rounded.
  • Firmness: Check for bruises on your pomegranates by holding each pomegranate and gently squeezing it. They should be firm, with no soft spots.
  • Surface: You’ll want a pomegranate with a smooth, even surface. However, in very ripe pomegranates, the rind may be split open due to the expanding, juice-filled seeds.

How to Remove the Seeds from the Pomegranate

  • Choose a pomegranate with thin, tough, and even skin. A heavier pomegranate is a juicier pomegranate.
  • Use a sharp knife to slice off the crown. Score the pomegranate such that you could break it into quarters.
  • Soak the fruit in cold water to loosen up the seeds. With the pomegranate underwater, gently pull the fruit apart into quarters.
  • Use your fingers to separate the seeds in each quarter slice, and collect them from the water.
  • Let the seeds dry for five minutes, and enjoy.
  • To save some for later, place the seeds in an airtight container and refrigerate them for up to three days. You can also freeze them for up to six months.

What Is the Best Way to Store a Pomegranate (Unopened & Opened)?

  • It’s best to store pomegranates in the refrigerator. Whole pomegranates can be kept on the counter, but they will last longer in the refrigerator.
  • Again, pomegranate seeds should be refrigerated in an airtight container. Be sure to use a glass or ceramic container because the seeds easily absorb harmful chemicals from plastic containers.
  • For long-term storage, pomegranate seeds can be sealed in a freezer-safe container and frozen.

Recipes to Try While Pomegranates Are in Season

Most pomegranates grown in the United States come from California and are in season from the end of September through November.
Some mouth-watering pomegranate recipes that you must try are:

1. Pomegranate Dip with Goat Cheese

Ingredients – 4 ounces soft goat cheese, 1/4 cup heavy cream, 1 tablespoon lemon zest, 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 3 teaspoons honey, 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds (arils), endive leaves for serving

How to Make It

Using an electric mixer on high speed, whisk the goat cheese and cream in a medium-sized bowl for about two minutes. The mix should be light and fluffy.

Add lemon zest, thyme, salt, pepper, and two teaspoons of the honey, then beat until they combine for about one minute.

Fold in six tablespoons of the pomegranate seeds.

Sprinkle the remaining two tablespoons of pomegranate seeds on top and drizzle with the remaining one teaspoon of honey.

Serve in endive leaves.

2. Pomegranate Margaritas

Ingredients – 1 tablespoon lime zest; 1 cup pomegranate juice, chilled; ½ cup lime juice; 1 cup blanco tequila, chilled; ¼ cup triple sec liqueur; 1 lime wedge; 2 tablespoons homemade simple syrup; ice cubes; pomegranate seeds, for garnish; lime slices, for garnish

How to Make It

Sprinkle lime zest on a small plate.

Combine pomegranate juice, lime juice, tequila, triple sec liqueur, and simple syrup in a pitcher.

Rub the lime wedge around the rims of six glasses and dip in the zest.

Fill the glasses with ice and pour about a half cup of the margarita mixture in each.

Garnish with pomegranate seeds and lime slices.

3. Spiced Pomegranate and Pears

Ingredients – 1 pomegranate, peeled; 3 pears, peeled, cured, and cut into wedges; 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice; 2 tablespoons light brown sugar; 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon; 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg; 2 tablespoons almonds, finely chopped; 4 sprigs fresh mint leaves, for garnish

How to Make It

Place the pomegranate seeds and sliced pears in a bowl, tossing them with lemon juice to coat.

Mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a small bowl, then add the mixture to the fruit. Blend well.

Refrigerate for at least one hour, covered, to blend the flavors.

Serve in individual dishes and garnish each with a sprig of mint and chopped almonds.

Also Read: 10 Benefits of Pomegranate Juice

Pomegranate Nutrient Composition

The below chart features the pomegranate’s nutritional information for a serving of one pomegranate (4″ diameter) (282 g).




11.3 g (45% DV)


38.5 g

4.7 g (9% DV)


52.7 g (18% DV)

3.3 g (5% DV)


666 mg (19% DV)
Vitamin K

46.2 mcg (58% DV)

Vitamin C

28.8 mg (48% DV)

1.0 mg (7% DV)

Important Minerals and Other Elements in Pomegranate Seeds

Rich in Potassium & Zinc

Pomegranates are the among the best zinc-rich fruits. Zinc is an essential nutrient required for the healing of wounds and proper immune function. Pomegranates are also rich in potassium.

Vitamins & Fiber

Pomegranates are also rich in vitamin C and fiber. The majority of that fiber is found in the white seeds hidden beneath the pockets of juice. One pomegranate contains about 48% of the recommended daily vitamin C intake.

Low Calorie

With 234 calories in an entire pomegranate, it’s a relatively low-calorie food. This makes them a tasty and ideal snack for people who are careful about their weight.


Pomegranate seeds contain a high number of antioxidants, which help in protecting the body against inflammation and free radical damage. There are also antioxidants like polyphenols, which include tannins, flavonoids, and anthocyanins, in the peel.

Health Benefits of Eating Pomegranate Seeds

Some of the pomegranate seeds benefits include:

1. Potent Medicinal Properties – They contain two unique plant compounds, namely punicalagins and punicic acid, that are responsible for most of their health benefits.

2. Cancer Prevention Potential – Pomegranate constituents are shown to modulate transcription factors, pro-apoptotic proteins, anti-apoptotic proteins, cell cycle regulator molecules, protein kinases, cell adhesion molecules, pro-inflammatory mediators, and growth factors in various cancers.

3. Anti-Inflammatory Effects – Initial research has indicated that the fruit may help fight inflammation in the gut, while other studies have shown the potential anti-inflammatory effects of punicic acid from pomegranate seed oil on breast cancer cells.

4. Blood Pressure-Lowering Abilities – In one study, people with hypertension had a significant reduction in blood pressure after consuming five ounces (150 ml) of pomegranate juice daily for two weeks. Other studies have found similar effects, especially for systolic blood pressure, which is the higher number in a blood pressure reading.

5. Anti-Heart Disease Potential- Small studies have shown that pomegranate juice improves blood flow and keeps the arteries from becoming stiff and thick. It may also slow the growth of plaque and buildup of cholesterol in the arteries.

6. Arthritis and Joint Pain-Fighting Potential – Since the plant compounds in pomegranate have anti-inflammatory effects, it is possible that they could help treat arthritis. Laboratory studies suggest that pomegranate extract can block enzymes that are known to damage joints in people with osteoarthritis.

Final Thoughts on Pomegranate Seeds

The pomegranate fruit has several properties that make it a very healthy fruit to eat. It is very beneficial because it contains powerful medicinal properties, has anti-inflammatory effects, lowers high blood pressure, may reduce the chances of a heart attack, and helps fight arthritis and joint pain.

It also contains several nutrients like fiber, natural sugars, proteins, potassium, zinc, vitamin K, and vitamin C, which are all very important for the human body. It is very safe to eat pomegranate seeds because apart from the nutrients they contain, they also are low in calories and have antioxidants as well.

So go ahead and make dishes from pomegranate seeds that are mouth-watering and delicious like pomegranate dip with goat cheese, pomegranate margaritas, and spiced pears and pomegranate, among others. Enjoy the good times with your family and friends knowing that the pomegranate is a great food item to keep in your kitchen.

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