If you have a recipe that calls for just a few olives, removing the stones yourself is worth the minimal effort required (store-bought pitted olives are sometimes soft and slightly mealy due to the inner meat’s exposure to the salty brine). To remove a pit easily, follow these steps.
Step 1: Place the olive on a cutting board and firmly press down on it with the side of a chef’s knife. (Face the blade away from you.) If the olive doesn’t immediately split apart, use the knife to apply a gentle rocking motion, rolling the olive back and forth once or twice on the cutting board until the olive breaks open and the pit is revealed.
Step 2: Pull out the pit. Chop or slice as needed.