19 Exotic Fruits You Need To Try


Tired of apples? Fruit is a quick and healthy snack to either keep on hand at the house or to take with you while you’re on the go. Sometimes though, you need a break from the same old fruit. If you thought you were branching out by buying a kiwi or pomegranate, you’ve got to check out these fruits.

1. Star fruit

If you’ve never seen one, a star fruit is a bright yellow tropical fruit that’s shaped like a star. It originated in Thailand and throughout Asia, but it’s also grown in Florida and Hawaii, so you should be able to find them. It’s great for dieters and packed full of antioxidants and flavonoids.


2. Dragon Fruit

Dragon Fruit looks like it came directly out of Eden, with its bright pink skin and yellow and green spines. It’s said to have a taste that’s like a pear, watermelon and kiwi and is very popular in Mexico and Asia. Check out a nearby Asian market store if you can’t find them in your local grocery store.


3. Chayote

Although technically a fruit, the chayote is more like a vegetable and typically cooked like a summer squash. It’s a common place item in most grocery stores.


4. Kumquat

A kumquat looks like a small orange and tastes like a tangerine or clementine. What makes this particular fruit stand out? It’s entirely edible, including the peel. They are grown in Florida, so you should be able to find them easily.


5. Mangosteen

With a dark purple skin and bright white fruit, the mangosteen definitely looks exotic. Though grown in Asia, you can typically find this antioxidant-filled fruit in local Asian marketplaces or if all else fails, you can try it canned. A tad expensive compared to other fruits, the mangosteen’s taste has been compared to everything from strawberries to vanilla ice cream, and is said to outweigh the cost.


6. Paw Paw

Native to America, the paw paw is a fruit that most people haven’t tried. It’s rich in vitamins and minerals and said to taste like a mix between a banana and a mango. Since it is native to the US, you should be able to find it near you.


7. Sapodilla

This sweet fruit is filled with antioxidants. Grown in Florida, this fruit is rare, but shouldn’t be impossible to find. It’s said to taste like a pear covered in brown sugar or caramel. Whose needs unhealthy candy when you can eat a sapodilla?


8. Sugar Apples

Sugar apples have a texture and taste completely different than the apples we’re used to. They look like a large, hanging artichokes and taste sweet, like custard. Like most other tropical fruits, the only state where sugar apples are grown is Florida. While they may be difficult to locate, you should be able to find them at a specialty grocer or at a local Asian marketplace.

9. Ackee

Native to tropical West Africa, this strange looking fruit is the national fruit of Jamaica. Combined with fish it’s exquisite and it gathered a lot of popularity over the last decades with more and more people finding out about it. Ackee tree is over ten meters tall with a thick trunk and dense branches, so growing it can be a bit tricky…

10. Rambutan

Native to Indonesia and Malaysia, Rambutan means hairy and one look at this exotic fruit reveals the origins of its name. Its taste is both sweet and sour, although most people who have tried it compare it to a strange tasting grape. The Rambutan tree is even higher than the Ackee tree, towering over other plant-life with its impressive height of over 20 meters.

11. Physalis

Native to warm temperate and subtropical regions of the world, Physalis doesn’t look like a tomato but it has been described as its brother. Now it’s mostly cultivated in Mexico, where 47 endemic species of it are under protection of the State. As we mentioned earlier it can be used as an exotic replacement for tomato or in a salad.

12. Jabuticaba

Native to Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, and Bolivia it’s also known as the Brazilian Grape Tree. If you like alcohol then Jabuticaba is the fruit for you because it has been used for quite some time in Brazil and Paraguay for commercial purposes. Uncultivated, it provides us with these yummy fruits once a year, but if watered regularly it can produce much more fruit.

13. Durian

Native to Southeast Asia, Durian has been known for over 6 centuries in Europe, although it is quite unknown in the United States. The fruit with the first smell on the list, that people described as some very smelly socks or onions who have gone bad, it is still very much loved in Asia and around the world. Durian fruit is used to flavor a wide variety of sweet edibles giving them a specific taste.

14. Synsepalum dulcificum or Miraclefruit

Native to  West Africa, this is perhaps the strangest fruit on the list and the one we are most eager to try out. Because of its ingredient to miraculin it causes every sour tasting fruit, like lemons, to taste very sweet. Of course first you eat some Miraclefruit and then try those lemons and watch your friends stand amazed…

15. Langsat

Another strange looking fruit, native to  Southeast Asia, Langsat has many different names like buahluku, buwa-buwa or lanzones but the correct name for it is: Lansium domesticum. It is very sweet if ripe, but can be very sour if it’s picked before its time. Actually, not picked, but shaken, because this is how the natives distinguish when the fruit is ready. It has many uses, but most of the people just eat it raw or as a syrup.

16. Cherimoya

Native to the Andes this fruit amazed the great writer Mark Twain with its juicy taste. “The most delicious fruit known to men.” he called it, referring to its strange taste that can be described as the combination of banana, pineapple, papaya, peach, and strawberry. Quite a list that can be summed up with one, already existing product: commercial bubblegum.

17. Aguajefruit

Native to tropical South America, Aguajefruit grows in and around swamps and can be over 40 meters high, towering over all other vegetation. Fruit is edible and actually very healthy because it contains a lot of Vitamin A and C, although it has been used in vine manufacturing for over a century.

18. Jackfruit

Native to parts of South and Southeast Asia, there are many interesting things that you need to know about Jackfruit or simply jack or jak.  Its fruit is the largest tree-borne fruit with its glorious 80 pounds (36 kg) in weight. Cultivated for over 6000 years in India, Jackfruit is the national fruit of Bangladesh and has a rather fruity and sugary aroma.

19. Monstera Deliciosa

For the end, we prepared a very special fruit that’s native to tropical rainforests of southern Mexico, south to Colombia, but now can be easily found and bought in Jamaica that’s really trying to commercialize it. Its fruit takes about a year to be perfectly ripe and if you eat it before that time, it can be highly poisonous. The taste is pretty similar to pineapple and was used by the natives to relieve the symptoms of arthritis.

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