A ripe cantaloupe is sweet and slightly soft. If you've eaten them hard and not exactly sweet, try this:
Are they "in season"?
Your best bet to find a great tasting cantaloupe is buying them in season (think hot weather, lot's of sun).
I always pick up a cantaloupe and smell it where it was attached to the vine. If you smell a sweet smell it means that cantaloupe is good and ready. Grab it!
What! Is there is no perfect one? Make one!
If you've smelled a few, but they don't have any smell whatsoever, it just means that they need to be give time to ripen. You can still buy them and bring them home; just don't eat them right away; give them a few days. Let them lay in a warm (room temperature or warmer) place for a few days, and they will ripen and become softer and sweeter. But, don't forget about them; if you leave them for more than a few days they will go bad.
Here's my weird way of eating a sweet, juicy cantaloupe. I spread some butter on bread, sprinkle it with salt and eat it in turn with cantaloupe. Sounds too crazy? Try it and you may like it, too.
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