Select a pineapple that is plump and fresh-looking. The leaves in the crown should be fresh and green, and the body of the pineapple firm. The larger the pineapple, the greater the proportion of edible fruit, but a larger fruit won’t necessarily be better tasting or riper than a smaller one.

The color of the pineapple’s outer shell is not necessarily a sign of maturity or ripeness: a pineapple’s flesh can be ripe, sweet, and ready to eat when the shell is still quite green. Ease in pulling leaves from the crown is not a sign of ripeness.

Once the pineapple is picked, it won’t ripen any further or get any sweeter, since unlike most fruits, a pineapple draws its sweetness from starches in its plant base. Fresh pineapples from Hawai`i are picked at maximum ripeness for delivery to U.S. and Canadian markets: the sooner they are eaten, the better. If you don't plan to use your fresh pineapple right away, store it in your refrigerator, where it will keep longer.

Chocolate Covered Pineapples and Mac Nuts