How to Easily Peel Peaches

Looking for a quick way to easily peel peaches? You’re in the right place. Here is the easiest time-tested (and time-saving!) way to peel peaches — plus a bonus method for when you have just a couple pieces of fruit. 

Go here to learn how to slice peaches.

3 peeled peaches on a white plate

While the skin of this summertime fruit is perfectly edible, the texture of the peel simply doesn’t work in most recipes. Removing the skin seems like a hassle at first glance, but you can put down the knife. There are better ways to easily peel peaches!

How to Peel Peaches: The Blanching Method

Blanching is a cooking technique that works perfectly for removing the skin. It’s much faster and easier than using a knife or vegetable peeler. It’s also perfect for peeling large batches of peaches. 

knife cutting into peach

Step One: Prepare the Peaches

First, you want to score the bottom of your peaches. Use a sharp knife (like a paring knife) to cut a 2-inch X into the bottom of every peach. This will allow you to remove the peach peel quickly and easily after blanching.

Step Two: Prepare the Ice Water Bath

Set aside a large bowl of ice water for the second part of the blanching process.

Step Three: Boiling Water

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil.
  2. Working in small batches of 3-4 peaches at a time, ease peaches into the boiling water. The water will cease to boil with the addition of the peaches, but leave the heat on.
  3. Leave peaches in the hot water for about 60 seconds.
  4. Use a slotted spoon to remove peaches from the boiling water.
peaches floating in a bowl of ice water

Step Three: Ice Bath

  1. Immediately after removing the peaches from the boiling water, submerge them in the ice water.
  2. Leave the peaches in the ice bath until cooled, about one minute.
  3. Remove the peaches from the ice water and pat dry with a towel.
hand pulling peach skin away

Step 4: Peeling

Starting with the scored end, use your fingers to peel the peaches. (It can be useful to use a knife to help “grab” the peels, sometimes.) The skin should peel away easily and without much effort. If not, you can repeat the blanching process.

Can You Peel Peaches with a Vegetable Peeler?

Yes, you can use a vegetable peeler! Using a vegetable peeler is much more effective than using a paring knife. This method works best when you’re only peeling a couple of peaches and they are fairly firm.

However, if you need to peel large batches of peaches, this method is simply too much work! It also doesn’t work well with softer fruit, because it will just end up smashing the peaches as you try to peel them.

fresh peaches in a ceramic container + peeled peaches on a plate

Storage

Peeled peaches are ready to pit, slice, and use in your favorite recipe. What if you peeled more fruit than you can use immediately?

You can store whole or sliced peaches in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about 3 days. Halved or sliced peaches can be frozen in a single layer and then placed in airtight containers to be kept frozen for up to 3-4 months.

Using peeled peaches

Most recipes calling for fresh peaches suggest removing the peel. Once you’ve mastered this technique, try these delicious ways to enjoy (or preserve!) fresh summertime peaches. 

3 peeled peaches on a white plate

How to Easily Peel Peaches

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Active Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

Use this blanching technique to remove the skin from fresh peaches, leaving behind as much fruit as possible.

Materials

  • Fresh peaches
  • Water
  • Ice

Tools

  • Stock pot
  • Large bowl
  • Slotted spoon
  • Knife

Instructions

  1. Score the tip of each peach (opposite the stem end) into an X with a knife.
  2. Fill a large bowl with water and ice; set aside.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  4. Working in small batches of 3-4 peaches at a time, ease peaches into the boiling water and heat for 60 seconds. (The water will cease to boil with the addition of the peaches, but leave the heat on.)
  5. Use a slotted spoon to remove peaches from the boiling water and transfer into the ice water. Leave peaches in the water for about a minute, or until cooled.
  6. Transfer peaches to a dry towel and pat dry.
  7. Starting with the scored end, use your fingers to peel the peaches. (It can be useful to use a knife to help “grab” the peels, sometimes.) 

Notes

The peach skin should peel away easily and without much effort. If not, you can repeat the blanching process.

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About the author: Kris Bordessa Kris Bordessa founded Attainable Sustainable as a resource for revitalizing vintage skills. Her book, Attainable Sustainable: The Lost Art of Self-Reliant Living (National Geographic) offers a collection of projects and recipes to help readers who are working their way to a more fulfilling DIY lifestyle. She’s a certified Master Food Preserver and longtime gardener who loves to turn the harvest into pantry staples.

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