Learn to properly slice tomatoes for sandwiches, cut them into wedges for salads and dice them for sauces and salsas with this step-by-step guide.

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One the most plentiful and versatile fruits (yes fruits!) of late summer, tomatoes are tasty addition to meals any time of day. You can blend them into an omelet, bake them in a summer veggie strata, slice them for a simple salad, or puree them into a zesty gazpacho. And don't forget all the saucy possibilities—from classic red to bright and citrusy salsa!

No matter what you're making, you'll need to prep your tomatoes before you start cooking. When choosing your fruit, look for produce with no blemishes or punctures. If ripe, it should be firm with just a little give. Though an extra sharp chef's knife or paring knife (if you only have a few tomatoes to cut) will do the job, a serrated knife is best for easily cutting through the skin of the fruit. Here's the best way to break them down.

A cutting board with a knife and different cutting styles of tomatoes on it
Credit: Joy Howard

How to cut a tomato into slices

1. With a serrated knife, hold the fruit firmly and trim away the stem end.

hands using a knife to slice tomatoes on a wood cutting board
Credit: Joy Howard

2. Slice it crosswise into rounds.

hands using a knife to slice tomatoes on a wood cutting board
Credit: Joy Howard

How to cut a tomato into wedges

1. Firmly hold the fruit in place and halve it lengthwise.

hands using a knife to cut a tomato into wedges on a wood cutting board
Credit: Joy Howard

2. Cut "V" shape into the top of each half to trim away the stem.

hands using a knife to cut a tomato into wedges on a wood cutting board
Credit: Joy Howard

3. Slice each half into wedges.

hands using a knife to cut a tomato into wedges on a wood cutting board
Credit: Joy Howard

How to dice tomatoes (without seeds and core)

1. Slice the fruit into wedges as directed above, then run your knife between the pulp and flesh of each wedge to trim away the core.

2. Halve each remaining piece of flesh lengthwise.

hands using a knife to dice tomatoes on a wood cutting board
Credit: Joy Howard

3. Dice the strips into small pieces.

hands using a knife to dice tomatoes on a wood cutting board
Credit: Joy Howard