Here's the easiest way to peel peaches in minutes—no professional knife skills necessary!

Casey Barber
July 06, 2020
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peeled peaches
Credit: Casey Barber

While biting into a fresh, ripe peach is one of the great pleasures of summer, there are lots of other moments when you might prefer a peeled peach.

For pies and cobblers, jams and other canned goodies or smoothies, you might not want any of the fuzzy skin on your peach slices.

Luckily, there's an easy way to peel peaches that doesn't require any special knife skills. The best way to peel peaches is to use both boiling and freezing water to remove the skin, and it's shockingly easy.

Even better, you can peel a whole peck of peaches this way. Step by step, here's how to do it.

The Best Way to Peel Peaches

The easiest way to peel peaches is by blanching them briefly in boiling water, then quickly chilling them in an ice bath to separate the skin from the peach.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and have a large bowl of ice water at the ready next to the stove.

While waiting for the water to come to a boil, use a paring knife to lightly score the bottom of each peach (not the stem end) with an X.

scoring peaches with a paring knife
Score the peach with a paring knife
| Credit: Casey Barber

Carefully submerge the peaches in the boiling water just until the edges of the X start to loosen. Ripe peaches will be ready in 20-30 seconds; firmer peaches may need up to 1 minute until the edges start to peel back.

blanching peaches
Blanch the peaches in boiling water
| Credit: Casey Barber

Use a strainer, slotted spoon or tongs to transfer the peaches to the ice bath.

Pulling peaches out of water with spider
Remove the peach from the boiling water
| Credit: Casey Barber

Let the peaches cool in the ice bath for 5 minutes.

peaches in ice bath in bowl
Let the peaches chill in an ice bath so they don't cook
| Credit: Casey Barber

Gently pat the peaches dry with a kitchen towel, then peel the skins off the peaches with your fingers.

peeling skin off peaches
Credit: Casey Barber

Another Easy Way to Peel Peaches

For firm or slightly underripe peaches, you can use a sharp vegetable peeler.

peeling peaches with vegetable peeler
You can also peel firm peaches with a vegetable peeler
| Credit: Casey Barber

Make wide strokes from the stem to the bottom of the peach to remove the skin.

How to Pit and Slice Peeled Peaches

Once your peach is peeled, use a paring knife to slice all the way around the fruit. The peach will be slippery, so be careful.

halving peeled peaches with paring knife
Carefully cut the peach to remove the pit
| Credit: Casey Barber

Gently twist the peach in half to separate, then remove the pit with your fingers or the paring knife.

halving peeled peaches
Remove the pit with your fingers or a knife
| Credit: Casey Barber

Slice and use any way you please—why not start with peach pie filling?