Category: Pretty Produce

31 Brown Fruits Names + PHOTOS: The ULTIMATE List

The most complete list of brown colour fruits, EVER. Including pictures, fun facts, tastes, and uses, ranging from pears, chocolate, to berries. We got you covered!🤎

Table of Content

Intro and Disclaimer

Thirty-one brown fruits including names, photos, and further explanations, making this one the most comprehensive list you can find on the Internet!

Before we get started, a disclaimer is there are a small number of fruits whose dominant color is not brown, but still have some brown in them. I include them here because as you know, brown is also a subjective color. For example, something that is brown-ish red could still be considered brown. Besides, this post has to live up to its title of the most comprehensive list on the Internet right! 😉

Alright, let’s jump right into it!

Super Small Brown Fruits

1. Dates

A white bowl containing brown Mazafati dates on a wooden plank and a white striped napkin.

Fun fact(s): Dates are one of the oldest cultivated fruits, with evidence of their cultivation dating back to around 4000 B.C. as explained by this Smithsonian Magazine article.

Taste and texture: Dates have a rich, caramel-like sweetness and a chewy texture with a slight stickiness.

Uses: Dates are really great as a whole food, unprocessed alternative to sugar! They’re perfect in desserts, such as the simple but delicious date & peanut butter combo, energy bars, sweet sauces, and like what I did here in my No-Sugar Chocolate Date Spread.

2. Jujube Dates

A bunch of red jujube dates taken from above as a flat lay.

Fun fact(s): Jujubes (aka Chinese dates or red dates) have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. Theywere later proven by science to be high in antioxidants, vitamin C, and fiber. These nutrients have been shown to improve blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol levels, and reduce the risk of diseases such as colorectal cancer as explained in this WebMD article!

Taste and texture: Jujubes have a sweet, apple-like flavor when fresh and a chewy texture when dried.

Uses: Jujubes are often dried and used in traditional Chinese desserts, teas, and herbal remedies. However, they can also be eaten fresh or cooked into jams, sauces, and preserves. I’ve even made banana bread using jujube and they’re delicious!

3. Turkish Figs

A bunch of dried Turkish figs taken from above in a flatlay format.

Fun fact(s): These brown Turkish figs, also known as Texas everbearing figs, are a popular variety of figs prized for their sweet, rich flavor and reliable fruit production. They’re both delicious when eaten fresh or dried as in the photo above!

Taste and texture: Fresh Brown Turkey figs have a lusciously sweet taste with a jam-like texture and a hint of honey and caramel. Whereas the dried ones are sweet, seedy, crunchy, and chewy!

Since these are usually sold coated with corn starch here in the Netherlands, I kinda think that they taste a bit like mochi! Speaking of mochi, you might like my Nutella Mochi Daifuku recipe!

Uses: They are delicious when eaten fresh. However, they also pair well with (vegan) cheeses, charcuterie boards, and salads, and can be used in desserts like fig tarts and cakes.

4. Medlar

A brown medlar fruit still in the plant, with an insect on it.

Fun fact(s): Although it is way less common to find medlar across Europe and the US these days, medlar was often depicted in medieval art.

Taste and texture: Medlars have a tart flavor when raw, but once bletted (allowed to overripen and partially ferment), they develop a complex taste similar to apple butter with a hint of cinnamon.

Uses: Bletted medlars are typically used in jams, jellies, and puddings. For more info about medlar, I recommend checking out this article!

5. Raisins

Close-up shot of dried raisins taken from above.

Fun fact(s): Raisins are dried grapes and the process of drying concentrates their natural sugars, making them sweeter than fresh grapes. Speaking of grapes, you might like my Chocolate Covered Grapes recipe for a fun snack/dessert!

Taste and texture: They have a chewy texture with a sweet flavor.

Uses: Raisins are commonly used in baking, particularly in bread, cakes (such as in this Weetabix Cake Loaf), and cookies, as well as in savory dishes like rice pilafs and salads.

6. Mulberries

A bunch of dried white mulberries looking brown, taken from the side.

Fun fact(s): There are several species of mulberries, but the most commonly cultivated for their fruit are Morus alba (white mulberry), Morus nigra (black mulberry), and Morus rubra (red mulberry). The picture above shows dried white mulberries which is why they look brown!

Taste and texture: Mulberries have a sweet-tart flavor reminiscent of blackberries, with a juicy texture and a hint of crunch from their tiny seeds.

Uses: They can be used fresh in desserts like pies, tarts, or dried and added to trail mixes, granola, or as toppings for breakfasts such as in this Acai Breakfast Bowl!

Small Brown Fruits

1. Kiwi

Four green kiwi fruit with fuzzy brown skins.

Fun fact(s): Contrary to the popular belief that kiwi is native to New Zealand, kiwi has Chinese origins. It was actually first called the Chinese gooseberry!

Taste and texture: Brown on the outside but usually either green or yellow on the inside, kiwifruit has a fuzzy and hairy skin with sweet-tangy-citrusy flavor, edible black seeds, and juicy flesh.

Uses: Kiwifruit is enjoyed fresh or used in fruit salads, smoothies, and desserts. One tip I have is to wait until your kiwis are a little bit overripe. They’re just much sweeter this way!

2. Sapodilla

Brown sapodilla fruit in a basket, with one sapodilla opened up to show the yellow flesh inside.

Fun fact(s): Besides its edible fruit, the bark and leaves have been used in traditional medicine to treat ailments like fever, diarrhea, and arthritis. Similar to kiwifruit, they also have a bit of that hairy and fuzzy skin. However, the flesh really differs as sapodilla usually has yellow/orange/brown-ish flesh.

Taste and texture: Sapodilla has a unique taste similar to brown sugar with a soft and sometimes grainy texture.

Uses: Sapodilla is eaten fresh or often used in smoothies, milkshakes, and baked goods.

3. Santa Rosa Plums

A bunch of Santa Rosa plums on a vintage white and blue plate.

Fun fact(s): Santa Rosa plums were developed by horticulturist Luther Burbank in Santa Rosa, California. This is also where it got its name from!

Taste and texture: Santa Rosa plums offer a perfect balance of sweet and tart flavors with juicy, tender flesh.

Uses: These plums are versatile, lending their sweet-tart flavor to jams, preserves, pies, compotes, and adding depth to savory dishes like roasted veggies or salads.

4. European or Italian Plums

A bunch of European or Italian plums on top of one another.

Fun fact(s): European plums do not grow in the wild, but only in cultivation! They also have orange flesh inside.

Taste and texture: European plums have a dense texture and a rich, honeyed sweetness with subtle tartness. Similar to most fruits, the longer you wait until they ripen, the sweeter they will be.

Uses: They are often made into tarts, cakes, jams, and sauces.

5. Longan

Longan fruits with a couple of them opened to show the white flesh and dark seed.

Fun fact(s): Longan is also known as “dragon eye fruit” as it resembles an eyeball when peeled, with white translucent flesh and dark seed inside.

Taste and texture: This round brown fruit has a sweet and floral note similar to lychee, with a juicy and slightly firm texture.

Uses: Longan is often eaten fresh as a snack, added to fruit salads, or used in sweet dessert soups. They are also commonly infused into tea!

6. Langsat / Longkong

Brown langsat fruits with skin, taken from above.

Fun fact(s): This round brown fruit looks similar to longan as it also has white translucent flesh, but the biggest difference is that when peeled, langsat flesh looks more like cloves (like garlic cloves, or like what you see in oranges), while longan has a single berry in each fruit.

Taste and texture: Langsat has a sweet and tangy flavor with a hint of sourness, and its flesh is juicy and succulent.

Uses: Langsat is typically eaten fresh, but it can also be juiced or used in jams, jellies, and preserves.

7. Rambutan

Rambutan fruit, opened up to show the pearl-like fruit inside.

Fun fact(s): Rambutan literally translates to “hairy” in Indonesian, referring to its hairy and spikey exterior.

Taste and texture: Rambutan has a sweet and slightly tart flavor, with white, juicy, and tender flesh surrounding the seed inside.

Uses: Rambutan is commonly eaten fresh as a snack or added to fruit salads and desserts like fruit cocktails (es buah).

8. Salak / Snake Fruit

A bunch of brown salak or snake fruit on top of one another, taken from above.

Fun fact(s): Salak, also known as “snake fruit,” gets its name from the reddish-brown, scaly rough brown skin that resembles snake scales. But don’t worry, there’s nothing dangerous about this fruit!

Another fun fact is that salak is native to Indonesia, which is where I come from!

Taste and texture: Salak has white flesh with a crunchy texture similar to an apple, with a sweet and tangy flavor. Depending on the variety, they can have hints of pineapple, grapefruit, and sugar.

Uses: Like many other Asian fruits, salak is typically eaten fresh.

9. Tamarind

Tamarind fruit with tamarind leaves, showing the brown flesh inside.

Fun fact(s): Although this one is still considered a fruit, people usually use in cooking than eaten fresh. An example of where this is used is in My Mum’s Vegan Rendang recipe!

Taste and texture: Tamarind has a unique sweet-sour flavor with a hint of tartness, and its pulp is sticky and fibrous.

Uses: Tamarind is used to flavor dishes such as curries, soups, sauces, and chutneys, as well as beverages like tamarind juice.

10. Passion Fruit

A bunch of passion fruits in a basket, with some fruits opened to show the orange seeds inside.

Fun fact(s): Passion fruit is named after its distinctive flower that resembles the crown of thorns said to represent the Passion of Jesus Christ. I gotta say that the first time I saw this flower, I was just super impressed!

Taste and texture: This round brown fruit has a sweet-tart flavor with tropical notes. Moreover, its pulp is filled with crunchy seeds with orange jelly-like coating.

Uses: Passion fruit is commonly used in desserts like mousses and cheesecakes, as well as in beverages like cocktails, mocktails, juices, and smoothies.

11. Chestnut

Chestnuts with hulls and without hulls to show the spikey hulls.

Fun fact(s): Botanically, chestnuts are fruits in and of themselves while most nuts are the seeds of a fruit. Although botanically, they’re considered nuts, they have a high starch and water content, making them more similar to grains or starchy vegetables than typical nuts. As you can see, chesnuts also have spikey hulls!

Taste and texture: Chestnuts have a subtly sweet and nutty flavor with a creamy texture when cooked, and they are often compared to potatoes or sweet potatoes in taste and texture.

Uses: Chestnuts can be roasted, boiled, or pureed and used in both sweet and savory dishes, including soups, stuffings, desserts like chestnut cream, and holiday treats like.

12. Walnut

Brown walnut with hulls, with one of them cracked opened to show the walnut inside.

Fun fact(s): If you wonder why walnut is included here, that’s because nuts are actually fruits as they’re defined as “dry, single-seeded fruits that have high oil content” here by the USDA.

Taste and texture: Walnuts have a rich, earthy flavor with a slightly bitter undertone and a crunchy texture.

Uses: Walnuts are versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes, including salads, baked goods (like in my Brownie Baked Oats, which is a part of my Healthy Baked Oats No Egg recipe). Walnuts are also great in savory dishes like pesto and as crunchy toppings!

Medium-Sized Brown Fruits

1. Red Banana

A bunch of red bananas which look like they have brown skin.

Fun fact(s): Red bananas, also known as “Red Dacca” bananas, get their name from their deep red-purple skin, which indicates their high antioxidant content.

Taste and texture: They have a creamy texture and a slightly sweeter flavor compared to traditional yellow bananas, with hints of raspberry or strawberry.

Uses: Red bananas are typically eaten fresh as is, but they can also be used in smoothies, baked goods, and desserts like fruit salads and ice creams. Speaking of banana

2. Canistel / Eggfruit / Yellow Sapote

Yellow sapote or canistel being hung in a market in Bogor, Indonesia.

Fun fact(s): Canistel, also known as “eggfruit” due to its creamy, custard-like texture. It has yellow/orange flesh inside, a similar color to mangos.

Taste and texture: Canistel has a sweet flavor reminiscent of sweet potatoes or pumpkin pie, with a smooth and velvety texture similar to mashed potatoes. Moreover, at least the ones in Indonesia (which we call sawo mentega, literally translated to margarine/buttery sapodilla) have hints of durian!

Uses: They are commonly eaten fresh or incorporated into desserts like puddings, custards, and pies.

3. Mamey Sapote

Mamey sapote with brown skin, red flesh, and a big black seed on a wooden board.

Fun fact(s): Mamey sapote has many names in different parts of the world such as zapote, mamey, and zapote grande across Latin America, or chico-mamey in the Philippines!

Taste and texture: This round brown color fruit has a sweet and creamy flavor with a smooth, velvety texture. Some people describe it as tasting like mango while others describe it as a mix of peach, apricot, and raspberry.

Uses: Mamey sapote is typically eaten fresh, but it can also be used in smoothies, milkshakes, and desserts like custards and mousses.

4. Black Sapote

Creamy, chocolatey black sapote with green skin looking like chocolate pudding.

Fun fact(s): Black sapote is often called “chocolate pudding fruit” because its flesh has a dark brown color and a taste and texture reminiscent of chocolate pudding when ripe. Speaking of pudding, you might also like my Flax Seed Pudding recipe which is perfect for both breakfast and dessert!

Taste and texture: It has a mild, sweet flavor with hints of chocolate and vanilla, and its flesh is soft and creamy.

Uses: Black sapote is best eaten fresh when fully ripe, but it can also be used in smoothies and desserts. It can even be used as a natural chocolate substitute in recipes!

5. Bosc Pear

Close-up of a brown Bosc pear on a white plate with a white background.

Fun fact(s): Bosc pears, also known as “Beurre Bosc,” originated in France or Belgium and were named after a horticulturist who first introduced them.

Taste and texture: They have a sweet flavor with hints of cinnamon and nutmeg, and their flesh is dense, crisp, and juicy.

Uses: Bosc pears are excellent for both cooking and eating fresh. They hold their shape well when baked or poached, making them ideal for pies, tarts, and desserts like pear crisps and compotes.

6. Nashi Pear

Someone cutting a brown Nashi pear with a large knife on a bamboo cutting board.

Fun fact(s): Nashi pears, also known as “Asian pears” or “apple pears,” are native to East Asia. They have been cultivated for thousands of years in China, Korea, and Japan!

Taste and texture: This brown round fruit has a crisp and juicy texture similar to apples, with a sweet and refreshing flavor and a subtle floral aroma. I’d say that they’re crispier but more watery than your regular pears.

Uses: They are often eaten fresh as a snack or added to salads for a crunchy texture and sweet flavor. They can also be used in cooking and baking, particularly in Asian cuisine, where they are used in dishes like stir-fries and in Korean BBQ Marinade.

Speaking of BBQ, you might like my Barbecue Mayo / Aioli recipe here!

7. Coconut

Coconut fruit cracked open on a grey background.

Fun fact(s): Coconuts usually float in water and are water-resistant, meaning that they can travel across oceans and grow again on new shores. What a traveller!

Taste and texture: Coconut flesh is sweet and creamy, with a distinctly tropical flavor, while coconut water is refreshing and hydrating with a slightly sweet taste. It’s definitely my favorite thing to order whenever I’m in a tropical country!

Uses: This highly versatile fruit has so many applications in the kitchen! Coconut milk, cream, and oil are commonly used in Asian cuisines, while shredded coconut is often used in desserts such as in my Pineapple Carpaccio Dessert with Coconut Flakes.

8. Cacao

Two hands holding brown cacao beans after roasting.

Fun fact(s): Each year, cacao trees will typically produce about 40 pods, amounting to 2500 beans. That’s a lot!

Taste and texture: Cacao beans have a rich, complex flavor with bitter, fruity, and nutty notes, while cocoa powder and chocolate derived from cacao have a deep, intense chocolate flavor.

Uses: Cacao is used to make various chocolate products, including cocoa powder, chocolate bars, cocoa butter, and chocolate chips (which I then used in my Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Baked Oats). It is also used in baking, desserts (such as my Dark Chocolate Peanut Clusters), and beverages like hot chocolate and milkshakes (such as in my Banana Nutella Milkshake / Smoothie).

9. Baobab

Someone opening up a brown baobab fruit to show the creamy white pulp inside.

Fun fact(s): Baobab fruits come from baobab trees, which have a long history of cultural significance in Africa where they are revered as sacred trees.

Taste and texture: Baobab fruit has a tart and tangy flavor similar to citrus fruits with a sweet undertone.

Uses: The pulp is used to make a nutritious baobab powder that can be added to smoothies, juices, yogurt, and baked goods.

10. Banana Blossom

Brown / reddish banana blossom with a bunch of green bananas on top, with the banana leaves behind.

Fun fact(s): Also known as “banana heart” or “banana flower,” it is the large, tear-shaped flower that grows at the end of a cluster of bananas on the banana plant. Fascinating!

Taste and texture: Banana blossom has a mild, slightly bitter flavor with a crunchy texture similar to artichoke hearts, and its petals are often cooked as a vegetable in Southeast Asian cuisine. Speaking of veggies, you might also like my List of 35 Brown Vegetables!

Uses: Banana blossom is used in a variety of dishes in Southeast Asian cuisine, including curries, stir-fries, and soups. It can also be preserved in brine for later use, which is how I usually get my banana blossom: in cans!

Recently, they’re also popular as a fish substitute among vegans, with some turning them into fish and chips!

Big Brown Fruits

1. Durian

A couple of spikey durian fruits being hung with white raffia string in a market somewhere in Asia.

Fun fact(s): Durian is often referred to as the “king of fruits” due to its large size, spikey exterior, strong aroma, and distinctive flavor profile.

Taste and texture: Durian’s flavor is often described as a combination of sweet and slightly fermented taste, with creamy, custard-like flesh. However, its aroma can be off-putting, which is also why it’s banned in lifts and public transport in Singapore😂.

Uses: Durian is primarily eaten on its own. However, it is also used in various desserts, including ice creams, cakes, and pastries.

2. Cantaloupe Melon

A bunch of yellow/brownish cantaloupe melons taken from above.

Fun fact(s): Cantaloupe is the most popular variety of melons consumed in the US!

Taste and texture: Cantaloupe has a sweet and juicy orange flesh with a subtle musky aroma. It has a soft and tender texture.

Uses: They are commonly eaten fresh as a snack or added to fruit salads, smoothies, and desserts. It can also be used in savory dishes like salads, and salsas, or even made into cold soups.

3. Santa Claus Melon / Piel de Sapo

Close-up of green/brown-ish Santa Claus melon, which is also called Piel de Sapo.

Fun fact(s): Santa Claus melon, also known as “Christmas melon” or “Piel de Sapo” got its name as it’s usually harvested from June to October, but will stay fresh until around Christmas!

Taste and texture: Santa Claus melon has a mild, sweet flavor similar to honeydew melon with juicy flesh.

Uses: Similar to cantaloupes, Santa Claus melon is usually enjoyed on its own or added to fruit salads, smoothies, and desserts. Of course it also makes it a versatile ingredient in salads, salsas, and cold soups!

FAQ

What fruit is brown in color?

Some examples of brown fruits are kiwi, bosc pear, dates, passion fruit, coconut, plum, and cantaloupe melon. Other brown fruits that are harder to find in the West are sapodilla, longan, salak, tamarind, baobab, chocolate habanero peppers, and sapote.

What is the brown fruit that looks like chocolate?

If it looks like a cacao pod, then it’s probably a baobab fruit. But if you’re looking for fruits that taste like chocolate, it’s called black sapote.

What is the brown fruit like lychee?

Longan or langsat are my two best guess! Rambutan could also be one although they have a more reddish skin color.

What brown fruit is similar to rambutan?

It’s either longan or langsat. Lychee could also be it although lychee has more of a pinkish skin.

What is a brown fuzzy skin fruit?

It’s either kiwi or sapodilla. And another fun fact is that kiwi is botanically classified as a berry!

What is a tropical fruit that is brown on the inside?

It’s probably sapodilla or tamarind!

Final Words

There you have it, 31 brown fruits across the world, highlighting the richness of the plant-based world!

From the citrusy sweetness of fuzzy kiwifruit to sweet and chocolatey richness of black sapote, I hope this post inspires you to discover new flavors and enjoy the pleasures of cooking with nature’s bounty.

If you like this post, I think you will also like these posts:

🤎 35 Brown Vegetables List

🤍 35 White Vegetables List

🩷 25 Pink Vegetables List

🖤 33 Black Vegetables List

Happy cooking, and may your culinary adventures be filled with delicious discoveries!🧑‍🍳😋

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35 White Vegetables List (PICTURES + Names): The Ultimate List

The most complete list of white vegetables you can find on the Internet. From names, pictures, fun facts, texture, taste, and how to cook them, we got you covered.

Table of Content

Introduction and Disclaimer

12 White Vegetables

7 White Root Vegetables

6 White Chinese Vegetables

5 White Beans

5 White Spices, Seeds, and Grains

FAQ

Intro and Disclaimer

Thirty-five white vegetables which make the most comprehensive list you can find on the Internet!

I’m using the broader definition of vegetables as any edible plant part, so this post includes stuff like beans, spices, seeds, and grains. But don’t worry, the majority of it includes your usual veggies, from your regular cauliflower to all kinds of mushrooms!

Vegetables

1. Cauliflower

One large white cauliflower, zoomed in to see the texture of the florets.

Fun fact(s): Have you ever wondered if cauliflower and broccoli are related? That’s because they are! Cauliflower is a member of the Brassica family, the same family as broccoli and cabbages.

Taste and Texture: Mild and slightly nutty, with a firm yet crumbly texture.

Uses: Roasted is best since it caramelizes and brings out the natural sweetness, but they’re also great in stir-fries. For more creative uses, use it as a high-fiber substitute for rice or pizza crust. A lot of vegans also use this to make a healthy creamy bechamel sauce!

2. Kohlrabi

Two kohlrabi on a grey linen napkin on a white marbled background.

Fun fact(s): Kohlrabi is a member of the cabbage family and is sometimes referred to as the “German turnip.”

Taste and Texture: Mildly sweet and crisp, with a flavor reminiscent of broccoli stems and a hint of radish.

Uses: Can be eaten raw in slaws, sliced for snacks, or cooked in stir-fries, soups, and gratins.

3. White Corn

Two white corn lying on a reflective surface.

Fun fact(s): White corn is a staple in Mexico. Think of tortillas, tamales, cornbread, and cornmeal!

Taste and Texture: Sweet and tender, and crisp when ripe. It has a similar texture has yellow corn.

Uses: Commonly used in salads, salsas, or cooked as a side dish, but also ground into masa flour to make tortillas and tamales. Yums!

4. White Eggplant

A white eggplant on the vine, lying on the ground looking like a nest.

Fun fact(s): White eggplants, also known as “ghostbuster eggplants” or “ivory eggplants,” originated in Asia and are now cultivated in various regions worldwide.

Taste and Texture: They’re mild, slightly sweet, creamier and less bitter than purple eggplants.

Uses: You can use white eggplants in any eggplant recipe, from stuffed aubergine, to baked, stir-fried, and even to make creamy baba ganoush!

5. White Asparagus

A pile of white asparagus stacked on top of each other.

Fun fact(s): White asparagus is grown underground and covered so that they’re and protected from sunlight, preventing chlorophyll development which would’ve given that green color. So basically, they’re the same as green asparagus, but just different in how they’re grown!

Taste and Texture: Mild and slightly sweet, they’re softer and have a subtler flavor than green asparagus.

Uses: Often peeled and steamed or boiled, served with hollandaise sauce or used in salads and risottos. White asparagus is also very popular in the Netherlands where I live right now, that it’s often referred to as “white gold” (you can read more about it in this article by I am Expat!)

6. Chicory

Three chicory vegetable on a white plate, taken from above.

Fun fact(s): Believe it or not, chicory can be used as a caffeine-free coffee substitute! ☕

Taste and Texture: This leafy vegetables is bitter and crisp.

Uses: Chicories are commonly used in salads, sautéed as a side dish, or grilled. I recommended cooking them to mellow out the bitter flavor!

7. Fennel

Three fennel bulbs with green fronds, standing next to each other.

Fun fact(s): Fennel is often used as both a vegetable and an herb, with its fronds (the green top) and seeds imparting distinct flavors.

Taste and Texture: Crisp and crunchy, with a mild anise or licorice flavor.

Uses: Sliced raw in salads, roasted, sautéed, or braised; the bulb and fronds are both edible.

8. Baby Boo Pumpkins

A bunch of white baby boo pumpkins.

Fun fact(s): Baby Boo Pumpkins are miniature pumpkins often used for decorative purposes during Halloween. They’re edible though!

Taste and Texture: Mild and sweet, with a smooth, tender texture.

Uses: Perfect for stuffing, roasting, or pureeing into soups, and their small size makes them ideal for individual servings!

9. Carnival Squash

White and orange carnival squashes, with some white and green carnival squashes.

Fun fact(s): Carnival squash is a hybrid between sweet dumpling and acorn squash, featuring unique color patterns. They’re so pretty!

Taste and Texture: They’re sweet and nutty with a buttery texture.

Uses: I recommend roasting or baking them so you can keep colorful skin which adds a nice appeal to dishes! However, they’re also great for pumpkin puree and soups.

10. Mushroom

A bunch of white button mushrooms taken from above.

Fun fact(s): This white button mushroom is actually the same variety as a brown cremini mushroom, with the only difference being the age. If you leave the white button mushrooms to grow, they will turn brown into cremini mushrooms!

Speaking of brown, you might like my List of 35 Brown Vegetables (Names + PHOTOS + More!) or my List of 31 Brown Fruits (Names + PHOTOS + More!)

Taste and Texture: Earthy and savory, with a meaty texture.

Uses: Mushroom is a versatile ingredient that adds so much umami! You can use them in soups, stir-fries, risottos, side dishes (such as in this Caramelized Mushrooms and Onions), sauces, and various other dishes.

11. Oyster Mushroom

White oyster mushrooms taken from below to show the nice texture below the mushroom cap.

Fun fact(s): Oyster mushrooms are named for their oyster-shaped caps! Meaning that they’re still 100% vegan!🌱

Taste and Texture: Mild and anise-like, often described as having a delicate seafood flavor by some. Texture-wise, they are velvety, dense, and meaty, making it a great choice as a meat substitute!

Uses: They’re great in stir-fries, soups, risottos, and as a meat substitute in various dishes. Basically, you can boost the flavor of any recipes that use common mushrooms by subbing them with this variety!

12. Cauliflower Mushroom

Cauliflower mushroom found in a forest, looking like white corals.

Fun fact(s): Cauliflower mushrooms are wild fungi that grow in a unique, frilly, and cauliflower-like shape.

Taste and Texture: Earthy, savory, and nutty, they have a firm and meaty texture.

Uses: As with many other mushrooms, you can use cauliflower mushrooms to sub in any recipes that use mushroom! Check out this article from Masterclass for more info.

White Root Vegetables

1. White Turnips

Close-up of white turnip bulbs with the green tops.

Fun fact(s): The Irish used to carve turnips instead of pumpkins to make jack-o’-lanterns in the 19th century!

Taste and Texture: Crisp and mildly peppery when raw, turning sweet and tender when cooked.

Uses: Can be enjoyed raw in salads, pickled, roasted, or added to soups and stews. They’re also great when roasted!

2. Purple Top White Globe Turnips

A bunch of purple top white globe turnips.

Fun fact(s): This turnip does not only have two different color, but each color tastes differently! The purple top part is peppery, while the white bottom is sweet.

Taste and Texture: Texture-wise, they’re firm and crunchy when raw.

Uses: Suitable for roasting, mashing, sautéing, or adding to soups and stews.

3. Parsnips

A pile of parsnips, zoomed in.

Fun fact(s): Before sugar beets and cane sugar were widespread, parsnips were used as sweetener.

Taste and Texture: Sweet and earthy, with a starchy texture similar to carrots.

Uses: I like them when roasted, mashed, or used in soups—they add a unique sweetness and creaminess to many dishes!

4. White Sweet Potatoes

White sweet potatoes and some Japanese pink sweet potatoes at the back.

Fun fact(s): White sweet potatoes are not as sweet as their orange counterparts but have a creamier texture when cooked.

Taste and Texture: Sweet and creamy, with a fluffy texture when cooked. They’re one of my favorite vegetables!

Uses: Great for baking, mashing, or roasting; versatile in both sweet and savory dishes. A nice great hack is to freeze your roasted potatoes to get a nice and creamy vegan ice cream!

5. Celeriac

Celeriac root on the ground with green celery tops.

Fun fact(s): Celeriac, also known as celery root, is a variety of celery cultivated for its edible root. They can grow pretty large too!

Taste and Texture: Mildly nutty and celery-like, with a dense and starchy texture.

Uses: I like using them in soups, stews, gratins, or mashed as a nice and more nutritious alternative to potatoes!

6. Watermelon Radish

Watermelon radishes (matanghong) with white outer skins and green radish tops.

Fun fact(s): If you’re wondering why it’s called watermelon when it really doesn’t look like one, that’s because although it has a white and green exterior, they have a striking pink color when cut open! You can check out what it looks like inside in my List of 25 Pink Vegetables (with Pictures)!

Taste and Texture: Also called the matanghong, they are mildly peppery and slightly sweet, with a crisp and juicy texture.

Uses: Ideal for salads, pickling, or garnishing dishes; the vibrant color makes any dishes pop! I recommend consuming them raw to preserve the color.

7. Cheriette or Cherry Belle Radish

Cheriette or cherry belle radish with green radish tops.

Fun fact(s): Cheriette, also known as Cherry Belle radishes, is known for its early maturity, typically ready for harvest just 22-27 days after planting. I recommend this variety when you just got into gardening so you can see the fruits of your labor without having to wait for so long!

Taste and Texture: Crisp and mildly spicy, with a refreshing and peppery kick.

Uses: Often sliced into salads, sandwiches, or served as a crunchy snack; their vibrant red color adds a burst of color to dishes such as in this 30-Minute Rainbow Poke Bowl, which pairs well with my 3-Minute Oil-free Vegan Mayo or my Yuzu Aioli recipe!

White Chinese/Asian Vegetables

1. Chinese Cabbage

Three chinese cabbages lying next to each other.

Fun fact(s): Also known as Napa cabbage, it is a key ingredient in kimchi, a traditional Korean fermented dish.

Taste and Texture: Mild and slightly sweet, with crisp, tender leaves.

Uses: Commonly used in stir-fries, soups, and of course, kimchi! The leaves can be used as wraps or eaten raw in salads.

2. Beansprouts

A bunch of mung bean sprouts.

Fun fact(s): Beansprouts are from mung beans and they’re so easy to grow that I’m proud to say that I did this when I was seven, because of a science homework that I had to do hahaha.

Taste and Texture: Fresh, crunchy, with a nutty flavor. Definitely try to consume them as soon as you’ve bought them since they can go bad pretty fast!

Uses: Often used in stir-fries, salads, spring rolls, as a topping in soups, and in many other Asian dishes ranging from Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, Thai, Indonesian cuisines, and beyond!

3. Enoki Mushroom

Enoki mushrooms on top of a brown paper bag.

Fun fact(s): Like many other vegetables, enoki mushrooms have many health benefits from being rich in antioxidants, supporting heart and brain health, and slowing down cancer growth as explained in this Healthline article!

Taste and Texture: They have a mild flavor with a slightly chewy, crisp, and noodle-like texture. When served with noodles, it can be hard to tell which one is noodle and which one is enoki!

Uses: Its delicate taste allows them to complement a wide range of dishes without overpowering other flavors. They are often featured in soups, hot pots, and stir-fries.

4. White Shimeji Mushroom

Two separate pieces of white shimeji mushrooms.

Fun fact(s): Also called the beech mushroom, they also grow on fallen beech trees so that means that you can forage them too!

Taste and Texture: Shimeji mushrooms are nutty and slightly sweet, with a firm and meaty texture.

Uses: Use them in stir-fries, soups, and sautés. their distinct appearance adds visual interest to dishes.

5. Taro Root

Taro root, both cut and whole root.

Fun fact(s): Not only is the root edible, but also the leaves! A popular dish is Laing from the Philippines, which is basically taro leaves stewed in coconut milk.

Taste and Texture: Nutty, naturally sweet, and starchy, with a creamy texture when cooked.

Uses: Boiled, steamed, fried, or mashed; commonly used in stews, curries, but also in sweet desserts! They’re a very popular flavor in many sweet dessert and drinks across Asia these days!

6. Daikon Radish

Long daikon radishes stacked on top of each other.

Fun fact(s): Daikon radishes can grow up to 20 inches long. That’s pretty big for a vegetable!

Taste and Texture: Mild and slightly peppery, with a crisp and crunchy texture.

Uses: Sliced or grated for salads, pickled, or cooked in soups and stews, daikon radishes are a versatile ingredient in many Asian dishes!

Beans

1. Cannellini Beans

Cannellini beans spilled out of a bag onto a dark grey surface.

Fun fact(s): Cannellini beans originated from Argentina, but made their way to Italy where it is highly popular now.

Since we’re talking beans now, a lot of other beans that are white are also called “white beans”. In this article, I’ve included cannellini, great northern, and lima beans. Cannellini beans are the largest of the beans!

Taste and Texture: Creamy and slightly nutty, cannellini beans have a mild flavor in general.

Uses: Due to their taste and texture, they’re often used in soups, such as in minestrone soups. Speaking of minestrone, this is a dish eaten daily by the world’s longest-lived families in Sardinia, one of the Blue Zones. So definitely try this Blue Zones minestrone recipe if you’re curious!

Another nice use is to cook them as side dishes, such as in Faglioli all’Uccelletto, which is an Italian side dish of cannellini beans in tomato sauce!

2. Great Northern Beans

Close-up of white great Northern beans.

Fun fact(s): The first fun fact is that although it has a “great” in its name, it’s not the biggest white bean variety since the largest one in this list is cannellini beans.

One of the stories on why it’s called that way is because they thrive in cooler climates, and therefore were widely cultivated in the northern regions of the United States.

Taste and Texture: They have a mild flavor with a smooth and creamy texture.

Uses: Associated with many comfort foods, the Great Northern beans are often used in soups, stews, and casseroles.

3. Lima Beans

A close-up of dried white lima beans.

Fun fact(s): Lima beans are also known as “butter beans” in the American South and in the UK, a name derived from their buttery texture and flavor.

Taste and Texture: Buttery and tender, lima beans have a mild, slightly sweet taste.

Uses: The versatile taste makes them widely used in soups, stews, and dishes such as succotash (a dish primarily consisting of lima beans, corn, and other vegetables), and gigantes (Greek lima beans).

4. Black-Eyed Peas

A bunch of black-eyed peas in a plastic bag, taken from above.

Fun fact(s): Black-eyed peas have cultural significance in Southern American cuisine, often eaten on New Year’s for prosperity and good luck. Speaking of black, check out my List of 33 Black Vegetables to see more!

Taste and Texture: They have a mild, earthy flavor and a creamy but slightly firm texture.

Uses: Due to its taste and texture, it’s often used in stews and soups.

5. Soybeans

A bunch of dried soybeans, some are in a white bowl.

Fun fact(s): Although many vegan products (such as tofu, tempeh, and meat alternatives) are made from soy, soybeans are cultivated mostly for animal feed, with about 80% of soybeans cultivated to feed farm animals as explained in this article from WWF.

Taste and Texture: Soybeans have a nutty flavor and a firm texture when they aren’t processed further into other products.

Uses: Containing all 9 essential amino acids, they’re often used as plant-based proteins such as tofu and tempeh. You can make a delicious Marinated Tofu in 5 Minutes, or go all out and use them in Vegan Poke Bowls.

For another flavor-packed and protein-packed recipe, check out this Indonesian Sticky Tempeh recipe.

Spices, Seeds, and Grains

1. White Pepper

White peppercorns in a clear bowl, with some black peppercorns on the left side.

Fun fact(s): White pepper is black pepper with the outer skin removed.

Taste and Texture: White pepper has a milder and less complex flavor compared to black pepper, with a subtle heat. Texture-wise, it’s very similar to black pepper. The finer you grind them, the smoother they will be.

Uses: In Asian cuisines, we mostly use white pepper instead of black pepper to add some heat. So whenever you’re cooking something Asian, feel free to add some. They’re great in soups, porridge, and stir-fries.

Having said that, try subbing black pepper with white pepper in your favorite recipes and see for yourself how they differ! And no worries, as long as you add a similar amount, you won’t ruin the dish! 😉

2. Salt

Sea salt on a wooden spoon and black surface.

Fun fact(s): Salt has been used for centuries as a preservative, currency, and seasoning, playing a crucial role in various aspects of human history and culture!

Taste and Texture: Salt enhances the natural flavors of food, adding both a savory and salty taste; its texture depends on the form, such as fine crystals or coarse flakes.

Uses: A fundamental seasoning, salt is used in virtually all cuisines to enhance taste, in both savory and sweet recipes!

3. Sesame Seeds

Close-up of white sesame seeds.

Fun fact(s): Sesame seeds are one of the oldest oilseed crops, dating back thousands of years, and they have cultural significance in many cuisines around the world.

Taste and Texture: They have a nutty and slightly bitter flavor and a crunchy texture! They can also be ground into a paste (tahini) or pressed into an aromatic sesame oil.

Uses: Widely used as a topping for bread and pastries, in salads, and as a key ingredient in dishes like this delicious Hummus without Garlic recipe! They’re also great for making crusts and as toppings such as when sprinkled in this Umeshiso Sushi Roll (pickled plum and umeshiso leaves) or this Natto Roll (Japanese fermented soybeans)!

4. White Quinoa

Close-up of dried, uncooked white quinoa grains.

Fun fact(s): Quinoa is a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids!

Taste and Texture: White quinoa has a mild, slightly nutty flavor and a fluffy texture when cooked; it retains a slight crunch, adding a pleasant bite to dishes.

Uses: A versatile grain substitute, white quinoa is used in salads, pilafs, and as a side dish, providing a nutritious base for various culinary creations!

5. Rice

Close-up of uncooked white rice grains.

Fun fact(s): White rice is a staple food for over half of the world’s population, and there are thousands of varieties, each with its unique characteristics!

In Indonesia where rice is widely consumed (and where I come from), people would not consider it a meal if there’s no rice in that meal! 😁

Taste and Texture: Rice comes in various types, from aromatic basmati to sticky short-grain varieties; it has a neutral flavor and can be fluffy, sticky, or creamy depending on the grain length.

Uses: Used in a multitude of dishes worldwide, as a side dish, base for curries, stews, stir-fries, et cetera! They pair well with my mum’s Authentic Vegan Jackfruit Rendang recipe, and the short-grained rice is used in sushi. Check out this Shiitake Roll, Kimchi Sushi, or Cucumber Roll recipe for well-explained sushi recipes!

And if you want an African-inspired recipe, try my Peanut Butter Rice recipe!

FAQ

What veggies are white?

Some white veggies include cauliflower, white potatoes, white asparagus, turnips, and parsnips.

What is a white Japanese vegetable?

A very common white Japanese vegetable is daikon radish: a large, mild-flavored radish commonly used in Japanese cuisine.

What food is purple and white?

Purple and white foods include vegetables like eggplant, purple top white globe turnip, and radicchio.

What root vegetables are white?

White root vegetables include turnips, white radishes, parsnips, celeriac roots, and white sweet potatoes.

What is a long white vegetable?

Some examples of long white vegetables are white asparagus, parsnips, and daikon radish

What makes vegetables white?

Vegetables appear white due to the presence of pigments like anthoxanthins.

Read More

35 Brown Vegetables Names + PHOTOS: The ULTIMATE List

The most complete list of brown vegetables, EVER. From pictures, fun facts, taste, and how to cook them, we got you covered. 😉🤎

From humble potatoes to earthy and umami mushrooms, discover the unique flavors and textures that these brown vegetables can bring to your dishes!

Table of Content

Intro and Disclaimer

Thirty-five brown vegetables that make the most comprehensive and most detailed list you can find on the World Wide Web, aka the Internet! (Okay, they are technically not the same but hey, they’re interchangeable when we’re not speaking too technically 🤓).

Using the broad definition of vegetables as any edible plant part, this list of brown vegetables names also includes beans, grains, nuts, and seeds. I have to live up to its title as the most extensive guide on the internet, right? 😉

Alrights, without further ado………..🥁🥁🥁

Vegetables

1. Potato

A bunch of potatoes under the sun.

Fun fact(s): The potato is the world’s fourth-largest food crop and originates from the Andean region of South America. And if you’re looking for a special day to eat potatoes, try August 19 which is National Potato Day!🥔

Taste and texture: Potatoes have a mild, earthy taste and a starchy, creamy texture when cooked. A quick tip here is to always leave the skin on as the skin has more vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytochemicals than just eating the flesh!

Uses: Fries, baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, boiled, and turned into chips are just some of the ways you can cook with potatoes! It’s a super versatile ingredient!

And in case you’re looking for dips/sauces to go with your fried/baked/boiled potatoes, check out my 2-Minute Spicy Sambal Aioli, 5-Minute Kimchi Aioli, and 3-Minute Gochujang Aioli recipes! Or if you prefer a more neutral dip, try my Vegan Oil-free Mayonnaise (from Tofu)!

2. Yellow Onion

A couple yellow onions stacked with white background.

Fun fact(s): Yellow onions are the most popular onion variety, making up 75% of the global onion production!

Taste and Texture: Yellow onions have a slightly sweet and pungent taste with a crisp texture when raw. When cooked, they become soft and sweet.

Uses: Yellow onions are commonly used as a base for various dishes, such as soups, sauces, stir-fries, and pasta (like in my Creamy Tandoori Sauce Pasta recipe). Another popular one is Caramelized Onions and Mushroom, a delicious and versatile side dish!

3. Shallot

A bunch of brown shallots.

Fun fact(s): People often describe shallots as a cross between onions and garlic. Although taste-wise this is correct, it’s not like they were not genetically crossed in a lab or something like that, as described in this GroEat article. Each of them is a natural plant variety on its own!

Taste and Texture: Shallots have a milder, sweeter taste compared to onions. Texture-wise, it has the same texture as other onions. So they are crisp when raw, but they get softer when cooked.

Uses: Shallots add a unique flavor to dishes and are often used in dressings and vinaigrettes. Fried shallots are also used as garnishes in many Asian cuisines. In Indonesian cooking, garlic and shallots almost always go together which is also what I’m doing in My Mum’s Authentic Vegan Rendang (Using Jackfruit) recipe!

4. Ginger

Ginger root on a white background.

Fun fact(s): Ginger has a long history of medicinal use and is believed to have originated in Southeast Asia.

Taste and Texture: Ginger has a spicy and warming taste, along with a fibrous and crunchy texture. It is considered an aromatic since it packs a lot of flavor, similar to garlic and onion.

Uses: Ginger is a staple in Asian cuisine and is used in stir-fries (such as this Indonesian Sticky Tempeh recipe), curries, and soups for its distinctive flavor. They are also great additions to marinades, like in my No-Cook Marinated Tofu recipe. Moreover, it is also often used in herbal drinks (ginger tea and ginger shots, anyone?) and desserts.

5. Parsnip

A bunch of parsnips in a farmer's market.

Fun fact(s): They look like carrots, but they are not exactly carrots. Anyways, parsnips were used as a sweetener before beet and cane sugar became widely available in Europe.

Taste and Texture: Parsnips have a sweet, nutty flavor with a tender yet slightly fibrous texture.

Uses: You can use parsnips by roasting, boiling, mashing, or adding them to soups and stews, offering a unique sweetness and nuttiness to your dishes. For a more unique twist, try subbing potatoes with parsnip to make some parsnip / mixed root vegetable hash browns!

P.S. They also pair well when served with one of my creamy aioli recipes: from Japanese yuzu aioli, to my Smoked Paprika Aioli and my Smoky BBQ Aioli recipes!

6. Cassava

A bunch of cassava, both whole and cut, in a light brown basket.

Fun fact(s): In Indonesia where I’m originally from, cassava to us is like how potatoes are to Westerners. So instead of serving fried with dipping sauces, we would serve boiled/steamed cassava with desiccated coconut and palm sugar syrup. And instead of eating potato chips, cassava chips are just as popular!

If you’d like to learn more, I highly recommend checking out this article from Ubud Food Festival!

Taste and Texture: When cooked, cassava has a mild, nutty flavor and a starchy, dense texture. It is similar to a potato, but more fibrous.

Uses: Cassava can be boiled, fried, mashed, or used to make flour. Some dishes that use cassava are cassava fries, chips, bread, and even dessert.

7. Taro

Taro, both whole and cut lengthwise, with a white background.

Fun fact(s): Taro is considered sacred in many cultures such as in Hawaiian and African cultures. It is also often used in rituals, ceremonies, and religious festivals.

Taste and Texture: They have a slightly sweet and nutty taste with a starchy, smooth, and creamy texture when cooked.

Uses: Taro is often used in both savory and sweet dishes, such as taro chips, taro cakes, soups, and desserts. It is also a very popular flavor in Asian desserts such as taro ice cream, taro bubble tea, and taro mochi!

8. Malanga

Malanga, both whole and cut lengthwise.

Fun fact(s): This brown root vegetable can grow up to 1.5 meters! For a root vegetable, that’s pretty tall!

Taste and Texture: Malanga has a nutty and slightly sweet taste similar to taro. It is also starchy, firm when raw, and gets creamy when cooked.

Uses: In Caribbean, Latin American, and African cuisines, malanga is often used in dishes such as soups, stews, and fritters. People also often make mashed malanga (puré de malanga) as a side dish.

9. Yam

A bunch of raw yams at the farmer's market.

Fun fact(s): Yams hold important cultural significance in African and Caribbean societies. It reminds me of the book Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, where yams symbolize masculinity and become a status symbol of a man’s ability to support his family.

Taste and Texture: Yams have a slightly sweet taste and a starchy, firm texture that softens when cooked, similar to sweet potatoes.

Uses: Yams can be boiled, baked, fried, or used in soups and stews, and they are also popular in desserts and casseroles.

10. Salsify

Salsify root, both whole and cut crosswise to show the white color inside.

Fun fact(s): You probably have never seen this vegetable if you live outside Europe, but it is quite popular in many central and southern European countries!

Taste and Texture: Salsify has a subtle oyster-like flavor when cooked. So if you ever need a vegan alternative for some oyster taste, you know what to use! 😉

Some people also describe its taste as being similar to artichokes!

Uses: Salsify can be boiled, sautéed, or used in soups and stews; similar to the usual ways you would use root vegetables.

11. Jerusalem Artichoke

A bunch of Jerusalem artichokes in a big white bowl.

Fun fact(s): Not gonna lie, I thought this was an aromatic vegetable similar to ginger and turmeric. But it’s not. Also, turns out that the Jerusalem artichoke is not actually an artichoke but a sunflower species! 🤯 I wonder who gave this name hahaha.

Taste and Texture: Jerusalem artichoke has a unique sweet, nutty flavor with a crisp and slightly crunchy texture when raw, becoming tender and creamy when cooked.

Uses: You can use them in soups, salads, roasted vegetable sheet pans, and gratins. I really like just roasting them or adding them to soups so I highly recommend you to try some!

12. Celeriac

Whole celeriac root, with the celery stalks still in tact.

Fun fact(s): Celeriac, also known as knob celery, is cultivated for its bulbous root rather than its stalks, which are more commonly associated with regular celery stalks.

Taste and Texture: It has a mild celery-like flavor with a dense, firm texture, similar to that of a turnip or potato. Kinda like potatoes with a kick, if you will.

Uses: Celeriac is often used in soups, stews, and gratins, and it can be mashed or pureed to add a unique flavor to dishes. It’s definitely one of my favorite winter vegetables so if you haven’t tried it yet, you know what to do! 😉

13. Water Chestnut

Close-up of a bunch of raw water chestnuts in the farmer's market.

Fun fact(s): Water chestnuts are not nuts but aquatic vegetables, and they grow in marshes, ponds, and other shallow water bodies.

Taste and Texture: They have a crunchy, slightly sweet taste and a water chestnut-shaped bulb with a crisp texture. It reminds me of the markets in fall and winter here in Europe where the smell of roasted chestnuts is just so tempting!

Uses: In Asian cuisines, people often use them in stir-fries and as a filling in dumplings. However, two of my favorite ways to cook them are to roast them and to make chestnut soups!

14. Butternut Squash

Butternut squashes in a large, light blue, wooden crate.

Fun fact(s): Butternut squash is a type of winter squash and a member of the gourd family, which also includes pumpkins and zucchinis.

Taste and Texture: They have a sweet, nutty flavor and a smooth, creamy texture when cooked, similar to pumpkins.

Uses: Butternut squash is often roasted, pureed for soups, used in casseroles, or turned into a delicious pasta sauce.

15. Lotus Root

Grilled lotus root in a rustic black plate.

Fun fact(s): The Lotus root comes from the exact same plant as the lotus flower! It grows in muddy waters and it has distinctive holes once cut.

Taste and Texture: They have a mild, slightly sweet taste and a crunchy texture, similar to that of a water chestnut.

Uses: Lotus root is commonly used in Asian cuisine, particularly in stir-fries, soups, and pickles, and it adds a unique texture and flavor to various dishes. And if you ever visit Singapore and have the chance to order a mala hot pot, this is a must-add vegetable!

Mushrooms

16. Swiss Brown Mushrooms

A bunch of swiss brown mushrooms or cremini mushrooms.

Fun fact(s): Also known as brown/cremini mushrooms, they are essentially the younger version of portobello mushrooms!

Taste and Texture: Swiss brown mushrooms have a mild, earthy flavor and a firm, meaty texture when cooked, making them versatile for various dishes.

Uses: They are great for sautéing, grilling, or using in pasta dishes, stews, and risottos. Another everyday use is in the Caramelized Mushrooms and Onions recipe to be used as a side dish.

They pack so much flavor but are still versatile, making them one of the things that I regularly buy!

17. Portobello

Portobello mushroom flipped upside down.

Fun fact(s): Portobello mushrooms are mature cremini mushrooms that have grown to a larger size. Moreover, the spelling of this mushroom is still unclear since some also spell them as portabello and portabella.

Taste and Texture: Portobello mushrooms have a robust, meaty flavor and are often used as a vegetarian meat substitute.

Uses: They are often grilled, roasted, or stuffed! Since it tastes super similar to the more affordable cremini mushrooms, I highly recommend cooking them whole instead of chopping them up to be used as a filling or toppings!

18. Brown Shimeji Mushroom

Brown shimeji mushroom with a white background, taken from above.

Fun fact(s): Brown shimeji mushrooms are also called beech mushrooms and are a popular ingredient in Japanese and other Asian cuisines.

Taste and Texture: Brown shimeji mushrooms have a delicate, nutty flavor and a tender, slightly crunchy texture, while their clustered appearance adds an attractive touch to dishes.

Uses: They are typically used in stir-fries, soups, and noodle dishes, as well as in hot pots and various Japanese-style meals.

19. Oyster Mushroom

Close up of oyster mushrooms from underneath with illuminating light.

Fun fact(s): Oyster mushrooms get their name from their resemblance to oysters and are available in various colors, including white, grey, and pink.

P.S. If you wanna see what pink oyster mushrooms look like, check out my list of 25 Pink Vegetables (+ Photos!)

Taste and Texture: Oyster mushrooms have a delicate, mild flavor and a tender, velvety texture, making them popular in vegan and vegetarian dishes.

Uses: Oyster mushrooms are great for sautéing, frying, or adding to soups, sauces, and stir-fries, bringing a subtle umami taste to recipes. This is my go-to ingredient whenever I’m back home in Indonesia since they are super cheap there!

20. King Oyster Mushroom

Five king oyster mushrooms with a black background.

Fun fact(s): While portobello mushrooms are like the adult version of Swiss button mushrooms, king oyster mushroom is not the adult version of oyster mushroom. King oyster mushrooms are also known as king trumpet mushrooms and are valued for their large, meaty stems with less pronounced mushroom caps.

Taste and Texture: King oyster mushrooms have a rich, savory flavor and a firm, chewy texture, often compared to seafood like scallops or abalone. Another great vegan alternative!

Uses: They are perfect for grilling, roasting, or slicing into medallions, and they are often used in gourmet dishes or as a meat and fish substitute in various cuisines.

21. Shiitake Mushroom

A bunch of fresh shiitake mushrooms.

Fun fact(s): Shiitake mushrooms have a long history of culinary and medicinal use in Asia, dating back thousands of years.

Taste and Texture: They have a distinctive, savory, and umami-rich flavor with a meaty, slightly chewy texture when cooked. Definitely one of my favorite ingredients to cook with due to its rich umami flavor!

Uses: They are often used in stir-fries, soups, noodle dishes, and as a key ingredient in vegetarian and vegan recipes due to their robust taste and texture. If you’re also a fan of sushi, I highly recommend checking out my Shiitake Roll recipe for the best of both worlds!

Beans, Legumes, and Grains

22. Pinto Beans

Close-up of raw speckled pinto beans.

Fun fact(s): Pinto beans are named after the Spanish word “pinto,” meaning painted, due to their speckled appearance.

Taste and Texture: Similar to most beans, pinto beans have a creamy texture and a mild, earthy flavor when cooked.

Uses: They are commonly used in Mexican and American Southwestern cuisine, including dishes like refried beans, chilis, burritos, and soups.

23. Brown Lentils

Close-up of raw, uncooked brown lentils.

Fun fact(s): Lentils are one of the oldest cultivated crops, dating back thousands of years. It also has many other varieties such as green, yellow, red and black lentils. And if you’d like to learn more about Black Vegetables, check out my list of 33 Black Vegetables (Photos Included!).

Taste and Texture: Brown lentils have a nutty flavor and a tender yet slightly firm texture when cooked, making them versatile for both soups and salads.

Uses: Given their texture, brown lentils are widely used in stews, curries, salads, and vegetarian dishes as they also cook very fast and absorb flavors well!

24. Chickpeas

Close-up of raw, uncooked chickpeas or garbanzo beans.

Fun fact(s): Along with lentils, chickpeas or garbanzo beans are also one of the earliest cultivated plants in the world!

Taste and Texture: Chickpeas have a mild, nutty taste and a firm, slightly grainy texture when cooked. They are also popular for their creaminess when pureed.

Uses: Chickpeas are a staple in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine and are used in dishes like hummus, falafel, curries, salads, and stews. And if you’ve never tried making your own hummus before, give this 5-minute Hummus recipe a try! I doubt you’ll ever go back to store-bought hummus ever again! 😉

25. Soy Beans

Close-up of raw soybeans with some cracked skin.

Fun fact(s): Soybeans are unique among legumes as they are the only ones that contain a significant amount of all essential amino acids, making them a complete protein source. And just like lentils, a black soybean variety also exists, as I explain in my List of 33 Black Vegetables (+ Pictures) post.

Taste and Texture: Soybeans have a mild, nutty flavor and a firm texture. However, they can be transformed into various products with distinct textures like tofu, tempeh, and soy milk.

Uses: Soybeans are used in a variety of forms, including in making tofu, soy milk, soy sauce, and as the base ingredient for various plant-based meat alternatives. They are also fermented into tempeh which is super popular in Indonesia (cues my Sticky Tempeh recipe here that is a flavor bomb and is a favorite of many!)

26. Brown Rice

Close-up of uncooked brown rice with some red rice grains.

Fun fact(s): Brown rice is the whole-grain form of rice, with only the outermost hull removed, which makes it more nutritious than white rice. Speaking of white rice, you would probably also like my List of 35 White Vegetables (with Pictures) here!

Taste and Texture: Brown rice has a nutty flavor and a firmer texture than white rice due to its intact bran and germ layers, and it retains its shape well when cooked.

Uses: Brown rice is a popular alternative to white rice and can be used in a variety of dishes, including stir-fries, rice bowls (such as in my Rainbow Poke Bowl recipe), pilafs/pulao, casseroles, and as a side dish to your mains.

27. Buckwheat

Close-up of raw, uncooked buckwheat grains.

Fun fact(s): Despite its name, buckwheat is not related to wheat and is technically a seed, making it a suitable option for those with wheat allergies or gluten intolerance.

Taste and Texture: Buckwheat has a robust, earthy flavor with a tender, slightly chewy texture when cooked, and it is commonly used in both savory and sweet dishes.

Uses: Buckwheat is often used to make soba noodles, pancakes, and porridge, and it can be a versatile grain substitute in various recipes. They are also often sold as buckwheat flour, which is a great, healthier flour substitute to make your pancakes, waffles, banana bread, and anything else that requires flour!

Nuts

28. Peanuts

Close-up of peanuts, still on their skin, with more unshelled peanuts around it.

Fun fact(s): Technically, peanuts are not nuts but legumes, belonging to the same family as beans and lentils.

Taste and Texture: Peanuts have a slightly sweet and nutty flavor with a crunchy texture when roasted or a creamy texture when ground into peanut butter.

Uses: Peanuts are used in various culinary applications, from both savory and sweet snacks/desserts to sauces (such as satay sauce, or used in this 3-Ingredient Peanut Butter Rice recipe).

If you’re a fan of the peanut butter and jelly combination, try my Peanut Butter & Jelly Baked Oats (No Banana Required). And if peanut butter + chocolate sounds good to you, you will love my 2-Ingredient Chocolate-Covered Peanuts recipe!

29. Almonds

Close-up of raw almonds with skin.

Fun fact(s): Although almonds and peaches look and taste very different, they are genetically very similar as they are both part of the Prunus genus!🍑

Taste and Texture: Almonds have a mild, subtly sweet flavor and a crunchy texture when raw, while roasted almonds have a more pronounced nutty taste.

Uses: Almonds are versatile and can be eaten on their own, used as toppings in salads, cereals, and yogurt bowls (such as in this Vegan Quark Bowl), ground into almond flour for baking, or made into almond milk.

30. Hazelnuts

Close-up of raw hazelnuts with their skin in tact.

Fun fact(s): Hazelnuts are a key ingredient in one of the world’s most popular confections: Nutella. This iconic chocolate-hazelnut spread was first created in the 1940s in Italy and has since gained a global fanbase.

P.S. Make your own Homemade Vegan Nutella (Sweetened with Dates) using my recipe, or try my 5-Minute Nutella Banana Smoothie, my 5-Minute Nutella Acai Bowl, or this Nutella Mochi!

Taste and Texture: Hazelnuts have a rich, slightly sweet and bitter flavor with a crunchy texture when roasted and a smooth, creamy texture when ground into hazelnut butter.

Uses: Hazelnuts are commonly used in desserts, chocolates, and pastries. You can also make hazelnut milk from them. And of course, any other recipes that use Nutella technically use hazelnuts too!

31. Cashews

Close-up of raw cashew nuts.

Fun fact(s): Unlike most nuts which grow inside some kind of shell, cashews grow outside of a fruit called the cashew apple.

Taste and Texture: Cashews have a buttery, mild flavor and a creamy texture when roasted. When made into cashew-based sauces and creams, there is that slight cheese-like flavor to it, which is why it’s an excellent ingredient in a plant-based kitchen!

Uses: Cashews are popular in both sweet and savory dishes, used in vegan cheese substitutes, curries, stir-fries, and desserts like cashew-based cheesecakes. You can also use them to make vegan oil-free mayo!

32. Walnuts

Close-up of shelled walnuts.

Fun fact(s): Walnuts are known for their distinct brain-like appearance, and guess what, they’re also great for the brain! 🧠

Taste and Texture: Walnuts have a rich, slightly bitter flavor and a crunchy texture. This makes them a common addition to both sweet and savory dishes.

Uses: Walnuts are frequently used in baking, salads, pesto, and as a topping for oatmeal and yogurt. They are also used in muhammara (red pepper and walnut dip), which is one of my favorite dips!

33. Flax Seeds

Close-up of whole brown flax seeds.

Fun fact(s): Flax seeds are one of the richest plant-based sources of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an essential omega-3 fatty acid beneficial for heart health.

Taste and Texture: Flax seeds have a mild, nutty flavor and a relatively smooth texture when raw. When soaked, they become soft and chewy, which makes them great base ingredients for pudding! Check out my viral Flax Seed Pudding recipe (with 3 Variations) if you’re curious how they would taste like!

Uses: Flax seeds are a great source of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids. They are commonly used in smoothies, baked goods, granola, and as an egg substitute in vegan recipes (such as in my No Banana Baked Oats, 5 Variations recipe).

34. Sunflower Seeds

Close-up of shelled sunflower seeds.

Fun fact(s): Sunflower plants grow super tall! I’ve seen plenty that are taller than me, and apparently, some varieties grow as tall as 4.5 meters (15 feet)! 🤯

Taste and Texture: Sunflower seeds have a mild, nutty flavor and a crunchy texture both when raw and roasted.

Uses: In Indonesia, sunflower seeds are often eaten just as they are as snacks. You can also use them just like you would any nuts, such as making granola bars and energy balls, as toppings for your salads, or as a garnish for your smoothie bowls and other dishes (such as in this Beetroot Steak Tartare recipe!).

35. Sesame Seeds

Close-up of unhulled sesame seeds.

Fun fact(s): Sesame seeds are the oldest oilseed crop and it has been cultivated for over 4,000 years!

Taste and Texture: Sesame seeds have a nutty, slightly sweet flavor and a crunchy texture, particularly when toasted. It’s a super flavorful and aromatic seed, making it one of my favorite ingredients to work with!

Uses: They are commonly used as a garnish for bread, buns, and cookies, and they are a key ingredient in tahini (sesame paste) and various Asian dishes like in Chinese sesame noodles, Japanese gomashio (sesame salt garnish), and in sesame mochi!

Bonus: Fun Trivia Questions!

What is a root vegetable with brown skin?

Some root vegetables with brown skin are cassava, potato, sweet potato, taro, celeriac, malanga, yam, parsnip, lotus root, and salsify. The color inside might vary, but from the outside, they all look brown!

What is a brown vegetable with white inside?

What a fun question! Some examples are mushroom, celeriac, yellow onion, lotus root, taro, cassava, salsify

What is a brown vegetable that looks like a potato?

Jicama! This low-calorie vegetable is rich in fiber and vitamin C. A lot of people also think that jicamas look like turnips. This root vegetable also has many names such as Chinese/Mexican potato, Mexican yam (bean), Mexican turnip, and Mexican water chestnut.

What is a brown vegetable that looks like a carrot?

Parsnips! Parsnips have a sweeter and nuttier flavor as compared to carrots. But indeed, if parsnips are orange in color, they would be indistinguishable from each other!

FAQ

What fruits and vegetables are brown?

Some examples of brown fruits are chestnuts, dates, kiwis and sapodillas. Some examples of brown vegetables are potatoes, yellow onions, shallots, mushrooms, cassava, butternut squash, brown lentils, chickpeas, flax seeds, and sesame seeds.

What is the brown root vegetable called?

There are many brown root vegetables but some examples are potatoes, cassava, yam, malanga, jicama, taro, celeriac, lotus root, parsnip, and salsify.

Are brown beans vegetables?

Technically they are considered legumes. However, using the broad definition of vegetables being the edible parts of a plant, brown beans can then be considered vegetables. This broad definition is also what I use here in this post to make this the most complete list of brown vegetables on the internet!

Are brown rice vegetables?

Similarly, brown rice is considered a whole grain, so not exactly a vegetable. But if you define vegetables as the edible parts of a plant, then yes, they are considered vegetables in that sense.

Is brown rice and vegetables healthy / a good diet?

Yes, it is. Brown rice is a whole grain with a low glycemic index which will make you feel full for longer. It is also good for your heart health so when combined with fiber-packed vegetables, it’s a healthy meal that will make you feel full and energized!

However, remember that variety is always key so you can get the full spectrum of nutrients instead of just getting the same set of nutrients over and over again!

Conclusion

So, there you have it—the rich and earthy world of brown vegetables!

From the humble potato to the hearty mushroom, and everything in between, these brown veggies bring warmth and depth to your plate. Whether you’re roasting, sautéing, or simmering, these veggies are ready to add their unique flavors and textures to your kitchen.

So next time you’re at the market, don’t overlook these brown goodies😉 Happy cooking! 👨‍🍳🤎

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Pink Vegetables

The most complete list of pink vegetables you can find on the Internet. From pictures, fun facts, texture, taste, and how to cook them, we got you covered.

Table of Content

Intro and Disclaimer

Twenty-five visually captivating pink vegetables that will surely add a vibrant touch to your culinary adventures!✨ From cute, adorable pink radishes to stunning pink cauliflowers, we’ll uncover everything you need to know about them. So prepare to feast your eyes on incredible pictures of these gorgeous pink veggies!

Want to know how they taste? I gotchu! I’ll get you the scoop on their flavors and textures, so you can imagine how they’ll elevate your dishes. And don’t worry, I also share some delicious ways to incorporate these pink wonders into your recipes. Because this is what The Fruity Jem is all about: nutritious plant-based food made easy!🙌

Quick disclaimer, some of these vegetables may also look a bit more purple than pink. But you know, light purple with heavy red tones, that’s kinda pink, isn’t it?🤔😀

So alrighty, without further ado………🥁🥁🥁

1. Pink Radish

a bunch of pink radish and french breakfast radish

Fun fact(s): Radishes belong to the same family as broccoli and cauliflower, known as the Brassicaceae family. So this is probably what they meant by “same same but different” in Southeast Asia😂

Other than that, radishes are rich in calcium, potassium, and other minerals which help to lower high blood pressure and reduce heart disease risks!💖

Taste and Texture: Whether it’s pink radishes or French breakfast radishes (both pictured above), they both have a crunchy texture and a mildly peppery taste. Note that they might taste a bit bitter if they are not grown in the right conditions.

Uses: Use them in salads, bowls (such as this 30-minute Rainbow Poke Bowl recipe), pickled for added tanginess, or sliced as a colorful garnish.

2. Watermelon Radish🍉

slices of watermelon radish from above

Fun fact(s): Watermelon radishes get their name from their striking appearance, as their flesh is a vibrant pink color that resembles a watermelon. With that bright pink inside, it’s one of the prettiest vegetables ever!

Another fun fact is that they’re completely white on the outside (which you can see in my List of 35 White Vegetables). Guess it’s kinda like “true beauty is on the inside”, isn’t it? 😙😛

Taste and Texture: They have a crisp texture and a mild, slightly sweet flavor with a hint of peppery undertones.

Uses: Due to their beauty, I recommend serving watermelon radishes raw such as in salads, or sliced for crudités (raw veggie platter) to really expose the bright and pretty pink interior!

3. Pink Potatoes🥔

a bunch of kerrs pink potatoes

Fun fact(s): One of the pink potatoes variety (called Kerr’s Pinks potatoes) is the second most popular potato variety in Ireland. This pink root vegetable was first cultivated in Scotland in 1907.

Taste and Texture: Depending on the variety, they can have a creamy or a firmer texture. In terms of taste, they are quite similar to regular potatoes but definitely check for the packaging or ask the sellers since it can differ depending on the variety!

Uses: Use them in similar ways you would use regular potatoes. Think of boiling, roasting, mashing, or using them in soups and stews for a more hearty meal!

4. Murasaki Sweet Potatoes🍠

japanese sweet potatoes in a market

Fun fact(s): The Murasaki sweet potatoes have pink to purple outer skin and light yellow flesh inside. Although it is often referred to as Japanese sweet potatoes due to its name, Murasaki sweet potatoes originated in Louisiana in the US.

Throwback to me thinking that poké bowl originated from Japan😂 (P.S. nope, it’s from Hawaii).

Taste and Texture: They have a moist and creamy texture with a sweet and slightly nutty flavor. It definitely is one of my favorite pink colour vegetables!

Uses: Japanese sweet potatoes are delicious when baked, roasted, or steamed. You can also use them in both sweet and savory dishes. If you’re more adventurous, try freezing them after baking to get yourself some healthy ice cream in the summer months! 🍠🍦🌞

5. Pink Onions🧅

a bunch of pink onions from above

Fun fact(s): Pink onions are milder and sweeter than their yellow counterparts. Think of it as the onion type between red onions and yellow onions.

Taste and Texture: They have a crisp texture and a mild, slightly sweet flavor. And since it is a cross between the yellow and red onion, it tastes less sharp than yellow onions, but not as mild as the red onion variety. Which means, it’s also great for this 4-ingredient Caramelized Onions and Mushroom recipe!

Uses: Use pink onions in salads, sandwiches, salsas, and stir-fries, as their vibrant color adds visual appeal to various dishes. You can also make pickled onion using this onion variety!

6. Beet

beet both whole and cut

Fun fact(s): Beets have been used historically as a natural fabric and food dye due to their striking color. Nowadays, it is definitely one of the easiest natural dye you could use in the kitchen!

Not only that, but beets are also rich in fiber, vitamins, and other minerals. Just in one cup of cooked beets, you can get 7% each of your daily vitamin C, iron, and B6, 34% of your daily folate, 9% of your daily magnesium, and 12% of your daily fiber. Talking about some plant power here!🌱💪

Taste and Texture: Beets have a sweet and earthy flavor. Once cooked, it has a tender texture while it will taste slightly crunchy texture when raw.

Uses: You can roast, boil, steam, or grate them raw for salads. You can also puree them to use to make pink pancakes, use their juice as a natural dye in baked goods, make a pretty pink beet pasta, or an irresistible beet soup. Their greens are also edible are great for salads as it also adds a pop of pink!

They’re also great substitutes to mimic that ‘beefy’ look. So although they will definitely taste different, check out this 15-Minute Beetroot Tartare which is a quick and fancy spin on the classic beef tartare recipe!

7. Chioggia Beet

chioggia beet cut and whole

Fun fact(s): Chioggia beets (or candy cane beets) have a distinctive concentric ring pattern inside. This creates a beautiful pink and white striped appearance when sliced. I like to think of them as bull’s eye beets! 🎯

Taste and Texture: They have a mildly sweet and earthy flavor, and their texture is tender and crisp when raw, becoming soft and slightly buttery when cooked.

Uses: You can enjoy them raw in salads or crudités (raw vegetable platter), pickled, roasted, or used in various cooked dishes to showcase their unique color pattern. Similar to other vegetables, I recommend using them raw to preserve their aesthetic appearance. For more creative recipes though, try making a vegan beet carpaccio!

8. Rainbow Swiss Chard

rainbow swiss chards from above with dark grey background

Fun fact(s): Swiss chard is part of the beet family. While beets are mostly grown for their roots, Swiss chards are mostly grown for their stems and leaves. One thing for sure though, is that its vibrant pink stems and veins make it an attractive addition to the garden and to our plates!

Taste and Texture: Pink Swiss chard has a slightly bitter and earthy flavor with crunchy stems.

Uses: Cook the leaves by sautéeing, steaming, or using them raw in salads. As for the bright and colorful stems, cook them separately or use them as colorful garnish.

9. Purple Cauliflower

a few pink cauliflowers for sale

Fun fact(s): Okay first of all, whether it’s pink or purple, I think it’s very subjective so I’ll just include it in this list since I want to make this the most complete list in the internet so far✌.

But anyways, the pink/purple color of cauliflower indicates a higher presence of anthocyanins, which are powerful antioxidants known for their potential health benefits. This is the exact same pigment that gives certain flowers and fruits their vibrant hues.

Taste and Texture: Pink cauliflower has a mild, slightly nutty taste and a dense yet tender texture.

Uses: It can be steamed, roasted, stir-fried, or used in recipes where regular cauliflower is called for, bringing a visually appealing twist to the dish!

Maybe some creamy pink cauliflower pasta, anyone? Or maybe roasted pink cauliflower soup? 😉

10. Pink Kale🥬

ornamental pink kale plant from above

Fun fact(s): This pink kale variety is not grown for flavor, but more for its aesthetic appearance. However, it is actually still edible and tastes quite similar to regular kale!

Taste and Texture: It has similar texture to other kale varieties. Taste-wise, it can taste a bit more bitter than the regular kale.

Uses: Use them in salads, smoothies, sautés, stir-fries, or even baked into kale chips! And in case you have not tried kale chips yet, please, do yourself a favor and try it!

11. Ornamental Cabbage

pink ornamental cabbage from above

Fun fact(s): Similar to pink kale above, ornamental cabbages are primarily grown for their beautiful and colorful foliage rather than for consumption. People often mix them up with pink kale, but remember that cabbage leaves are broad and relatively smoother while kale leaves are curly.

Taste and Texture: While ornamental cabbage is edible, its taste and texture are often less desirable compared to other cabbage varieties. This is because it tends to be more bitter and fibrous.

Uses: People usually use them as a decorative element in flower beds or floral arrangements to add a pop of color to gardens and landscapes.

12. Purple Brussels Sprouts

cut up purple brussels sprouts on a bamboo cutting board

Fun fact(s): The purple/pink color in Brussels sprouts is due to the presence of anthocyanin, which is an antioxidant with various health benefits. These pigments are also found in other purple-hued vegetables and fruits, contributing to their vibrant colors.

Taste and Texture: Pink Brussels sprouts have a similar taste and texture to regular green Brussels sprouts, with a slightly more bitter and nuttier flavor and a firm, dense texture.

Uses: They can be roasted, sautéed, steamed, or used in various dishes such as stir-fries, salads, or as a side dish. Them being one of my favorite vegetables, it’s definitely something I look forward to in the winter!😋

13. Pink Beans

close up of pink beans
Raw Organic Dry Pink Beans in a Bowl

Fun fact(s): Pink beans, also known as pink kidney beans, are a popular legume variety that is widely used in Latin American, Caribbean, and American cuisines.

Taste and Texture: Pink beans have a mild and slightly sweet flavor with a creamy texture when cooked, making them a versatile ingredient in various dishes.

Uses: Use them in soups, stews, chili, refried beans, salads, and side dishes, offering a nutritious and plant-based protein-rich addition to meals.

14. Borlotti Beans

sugar or borlotti or red-speckled or cranberry beans from above

Fun fact(s): This type of beans has many names: sugar beans, red-speckled beans, and cranberry beans. They are named after the distinctive red and beige speckled appearance on their skin.

Cranberry beans are also rich in plant-based protein, fiber, and other vitamins and minerals such as folate, phosphorus, thiamin, and manganese.

Taste and Texture: Red speckled beans have a mild and slightly nutty flavor with a creamy texture when cooked, making them a popular choice in various cuisines.

Uses: Use them in soups, stews, chili, salads, and side dishes, or cook them in dishes like pasta or casseroles.

15. Pink Oyster Mushroom🍄

pink oyster mushroom grey background

Fun fact(s): Pink oyster mushrooms are a variety of edible oyster mushroom species, known for their delicate pink hue and soft, velvety texture.

Speaking of oyster mushrooms, there is also the regular brown oyster mushrooms which is a part of my list of 35 Brown Vegetables (+ Photos!). Go check it out if you’re interested! 🤎

Taste and Texture: Pink oyster mushrooms have a mild and delicate flavor with a tender and slightly chewy texture when cooked.

Uses: You can use them the same way you would use regular oyster mushrooms. Think of stir-fries, soups, pasta dishes, or sautés, adding a touch of color and adding that punch of umami to your culinary creations!

16. Pink Chicory (Treviso Pecoce variety)

radicchio treviso precoce on top of the other from above

Fun fact(s): First of all, I have included 3 pink radicchio varieties in this list. The Treviso Precoce variety is a type of chicory that features elongated, pink-tinged leaves with white veins.

Taste and Texture: It has a slightly bitter and peppery taste, and the leaves have a crisp texture.

Uses: Use them in salads, grilled as a side dish, or incorporated into pasta dishes to add a touch of color and flavor.

17. Chioggia Radicchio

radicchio chioggia on a dark green box

Fun fact(s): Also known as red chicory or Italian chicory, has deep red leaves with white veins forming an intricate pattern.

Taste and Texture: It has a bitter and slightly spicy taste, and the leaves are crisp and crunchy.

Uses: Radicchio Chioggia is commonly used in salads, as a grilled vegetable, or added to risotto and pasta dishes for a vibrant and slightly bitter flavor.

18. Pink Radicchio (Rosa del Veneto variety)

rosa del veneto close up

Fun fact(s): Rosa del Veneto is a specific variety of radicchio known for its round shape and beautiful and calming pastel pink color.

Taste and Texture: It has a mild and slightly bitter taste, and the leaves are crisp and crunchy.

Uses: Enjoy them raw in salads so you can preserve their beautiful light pink color, use them as a garnish, or grill them to bring out its unique flavor profile.

19. Rhubarb

a bunch of rhubarb stalks from above

Fun fact(s): Although the stalks make for mouthwatering desserts, the leaves are toxic and should not be consumed. However, the stalks are an excellent source of vitamin K which is important for bone health and blood clotting. The vitamin A it contains also keeps your skin looking young!

Taste and Texture: Rhubarb stalks have a tart and tangy flavor, with hard and crisp texture.

Uses: Although commonly used in desserts, such as pies, crisps, and compotes, rhubarb can also be used in savory dishes. Think of chutneys or as a tart ingredient in sauces to add that bit of tanginess which rounds off any dishes really well!

And speaking of dessert, why not try this pretty pink 5-Minute Frozen Berries Overnight Oats or this 5-Minute Cheesecake (Overnight Weetabix) recipe?🍓 Or if you’re more into cakey dessert, try this Frozen Berries Baked Oats (variation number 4 in this recipe!)

20. Graffiti Eggplant🍆

graffiti eggplant plant

Fun fact(s): I’m guessing the name is taken from graffiti art people see in the streets, given their unique and eye-catching purple and white striped skin!

Taste and Texture: It has a tender and creamy texture with a mild and slightly sweet flavor.

Uses: You can grill, roast, sautée, or use them in dishes like ratatouille, stir-fries, or salads. Or even better, make a creamy eggplant dip (baba ganoush), which has a similar texture to my 5-Minute Creamy Hummus recipe!

21. Pink Banana Squash🍌🎃

a pink banana squash on the ground

Fun fact(s): The pink banana squash is an heirloom variety of winter squash that is named for its elongated shape, resembling a large banana.

Taste and Texture: It has a sweet and nutty flavor with a dense and creamy texture, making it well-suited for baking, roasting, or using in soups and stews.

Uses: Use them as a substitute to squash or pumpkin in a recipe and you’re set to go! So think of pies, casseroles, purees, or simply roasted as a side dish.

22. Mammoth Forage or Purple-Top White Globe Turnip

a bunch of purple top white globe turnip from above

Fun fact(s): The part of the turnip that grows beneath the ground is white, while the part above the ground is pink/purple!

Taste and Texture: They have a mildly spicy or peppery flavor, particularly when consumed raw, and the flesh is crisp and tender.

Uses: For the best results, cook them by roasting, sautéing, or boiling, which helps mellow the spiciness and brings out their natural sweetness.

23. Pink Hopi Corn🌽

a bunch of pink corn in mexico

Fun fact(s): The pink Hopi corn is an extremely rare Native American corn variety. They are traditionally cultivated by the Hopi (also called the People of Peace) for centuries.

Taste and Texture: As an heirloom variety that is not widely cultivated across the world, there may be variations in flavor and texture. I can imagine that texture and taste-wise, they would not differ much from the regular yellow corn variety, but it’s best to experience them firsthand for a more accurate description!

Uses: The Hopi would steam their corn overnight, and dry them later on to preserve their harvest. Then, they will grind them into a corn meal, or add them to stews. I recommend checking out this NMAI Magazine article (the magazine of the Smithsonian’s National Museum) if you’re interested to learn more!

24. Red Spinach

red spinach on a white background
Top view red spinach isolated on white background, Healthy foods concept.

Fun fact(s): Red spinach gets its name from its vibrant red/pink/purple stems and leaves, which make it visually striking and appealing in culinary preparations.

Taste and Texture: Red spinach tastes very similar to regular green spinach with some sweeter tones. The leaves are tender and smooth in texture, just like your regular spinach.

Uses: Feel free to use red spinach as a substitute for regular spinach in recipes. You can enjoy them raw in salads, added to stir-fries, sautéed as a side dish, or used in soups, stews, and curries.

In Indonesia where I’m originally from, this red spinach variety is widely sold in regular supermarkets. It is often used as a natural food dye too to make stuff like pink noodles. We often cook them into soups (called sayur bening), or stir-fried.

P.S. if you’re a fan of Indonesian cuisine or would like to try one, check out this Vegan Rendang recipe (slowly braised curry-like dish cooked in spices and coconut milk), or this Sticky Tempeh recipe which is a healthy rendition of the Indonesian kering tempeh! And don’t worry, I always have step-by-step recipes with pictures (some with videos) so you can cook the dish confidently!

25. Rainbow Carrots🥕

five rainbow carrots on a rustic background

Fun fact(s): Did you know that carrots are not always orange? Let me introduce you to rainbow carrots: a vibrant and colorful assortment of carrots that come in various hues including orange, purple, yellow, white, and red!

Due to their extensive variety, they also made it to my 33 Black Vegetables List (+ Pictures)!

Taste and Texture: Rainbow carrots generally have a sweet and earthy flavor, similar to traditional orange carrots. They are crisp and crunchy when fresh.

Uses: To consume them, try roasting, steaming, stir-frying, or consuming them raw in salads and vegetable platters. Their vibrant colors definitely add an aesthetic touch to dishes! Some pink carrot soups, anyone? 😉

Conclusion

So there you have it, folks! A list of pink vegetables that can add a pop of color and nutrition to your meals. These veggies are not only pleasing to the eye but also loaded with vitamins and minerals.

Why stick to boring green salads when you can mix them up with some pink powerhouses✨? So next time you hit the grocery store or farmer’s market, don’t forget to grab some pink produce and get creative in the kitchen. Your taste buds (and Instagram feed) will thank you!😉

And if you like this post, you might also like my List of 31 Brown Fruits (including Photos!)🤎

FAQ

What are some pink vegetables?

From various types of root vegetables such as radishes, pink (sweet) potatoes, pink onions, and beet, to leafy greens (or should I say, leafy pinks) such as pink kale and pink radicchio, I got you covered. I’ve listed 25 pink vegetables including pictures, fun facts, taste&texture, and culinary uses!

What are some white and pink colored vegetables?

Some examples are different kinds of radish, rhubarb, borlotti/cranberry beans, and chioggia beets.

What vegetables are pink on the inside?

Beet, watermelon radish, beet, and certain varieties of pink carrots and pink potatoes are some examples.

What vegetable is hot pink?

Love the question🔥 Of course, hot/neon pink is probably not a naturally occurring color but vegetables that come close are watermelon radish, radish, pink kale, and ornamental cabbage.

Which fruit is pink in color?

Grapefruit, pomegranate, pink dragronfruit, watermelon, pink lemon, and pink pineapple to name a few

Is there a natural pink food?

Yes for sure! Naturally pink foods typically use pink vegetables and fruits as its main ingredients. Some examples are rhubarb-based desserts, fruit jams like strawberry jam, dragon fruit smoothie bowls, beet soup, beet pasta, and beet hummus.

What sliced pink and white vegetable is commonly used as a garnish for bowls of noodles in Asia?

If you mean in Japan, that is called “beni shoga” which is pickled ginger. This sliced pickled ginger adds some tang and freshness to the dish.

What are the pink and white things in ramen?

Most of the time, they are sliced pickled ginger, also known as “beni shoga” in Japanese. They add a tangy and refreshing flavor to the dish, which is why they are often added.

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33 Black Vegetables + PHOTOS: The Complete List

The most comprehensive list of black vegetables you can find on the Internet. Includes fun facts, taste, texture, and uses in cooking! Basically, all you need to get to know these black vegetables!

Table of Content

Intro and Disclaimer

Using the definition of vegetable as any edible part of a plant, I have also included black beans, legumes, grains, seeds, and spices in this list of black vegetables. Gotta make sure that this article really lives up to its title of the most comprehensive one on the internet, you know 😉

And a short disclaimer, some of these vegetables may not look really black in color. However, I still include them since they have the word “black” in their name.

And since spring is here, if you’re still looking for something fun to plant this year, pick some of your favorite black vegetables from this list, buy some seeds, plant them in some fresh soil, and before you know it, you got yourself some pretty ingredients to use in your next cooking adventure!👨‍🍳

Alright, without further ado………🥁🥁🥁

Vegetables

1. Black Eggplant

Eggplants from above

Fun fact(s):

Since the Black (Beauty) Eggplant is quite a common vegetable that is used in many cuisines, here are two fun facts about eggplants (or aubergine for our European and British friends)!

  • Eggplants are technically (well, botanically) a fruit. A fruit is defined as the mature ovary of a flowering plant that contains seed. By this same definition, tomatoes, cucumber, and bell peppers are technically (or, botanically) fruits!
  • Eggplants have so many different varieties both in shape and color. The term “eggplant” itself originated in reference to a type of white eggplant which really looks like white eggs, as you can see in my List of 35 White Vegetables with Pictures!

Taste and Texture: When raw, black eggplants have a mild, slightly bitter flavor and tender texture that resembles that of zucchini. When cooked, black eggplants have a moist, creamy texture that makes them so well-loved and therefore widely used in many cuisines.

Uses: As it also absorbs flavor well, it is a great meat replacement in vegetarian in vegan dishes. In fact, that is also my favorite way to use eggplants. I’ve had great success using it in making a Japanese teriyaki bowl, and roasting cubed eggplants to use in salads or grain bowls!

2. Black Tomatoes

A bunch of black tomatoes growing on the vine

Fun fact(s): These black heirloom tomatoes (or black beauty tomatoes) are grown from seeds that have been passed down for generations. They are also typically open-pollinated, meaning they are pollinated naturally by wind, insects, or birds.

Taste and Texture: They often have a more complex and sweeter taste when compared to regular red tomatoes. Texture-wise, it is very similar to regular tomatoes.

Uses: My favorite way to cook heirloom tomatoes is to…not cook them at all! As in, serve them raw😉 This way, you’d be better able to really taste it, noting the deeper, richer, and more complex notes that your black tomatoes have. Think of using them in your salads, salsa, sandwiches, bruschetta, or gazpacho!

3. Black Olives

Black olives on the branch

Fun fact(s): Black olives are actually the same as green olives with the only difference being green olives are harvested when they are still unripe whereas black olives are harvested when they are already ripe. And oh, raw, uncured olives are probably not something you want to eat as they don’t have a pleasant taste!

Taste and Texture: This black vegetable have a rich, slightly salty, and tangy flavor, with a meaty texture. They are soft and fleshy, making them a great addition to many dishes.

Uses: Olives are often used in Italian, Greek, and Mediterranean cuisines. Some of my favorite ways to eat olives are in pasta, pizza, and in tapenades!

4. Black Pumpkin

A couple varieties of black and gray pumpkins from above

Fun fact(s):

  • There are actually so many varieties of black pumpkins out there with various shapes and skin textures. Some popular varieties are the Thai Kang Kob pumpkins and kabocha pumpkins. One thing they have in common though, is that their skin is dark in color with a bright yellow to orange flesh just like your usual orange pumpkins.
  • Talking about the best Halloween decoration, aren’t we?🎃👻

Taste and Texture: Although black isn’t the most appetizing color, the flesh of black pumpkins tastes earthy, sweet, and slightly nutty. Sounds like yums!

Texture-wise, they are tender and have creamy consistency when cooked.

Uses: This black vegetable is perfect to use as substitutes for your regular pumpkin in classic recipes such as pumpkin soup, pumpkin pie, roasted pumpkin, or even pumpkin risotto!

5. Black Potatoes

Black potatoes purple inside

Fun fact(s): Some common varieties of black potatoes are the Shetland black potatoes, purple Peruvian, purple majesty, all blue, and Vitelotte potatoes. I am also fortunate since here in the Netherlands, purple potatoes are often sold in the winter months. Finding one when you go to the supermarkets made up for the cloudy, grey, and often rainy winter I would say!

Taste and Texture: The taste and texture of the specific type of black/purple potatoes vary. Some would hold their shape well when cooked, making them great for roasting and boiling. Whereas some other varieties are more crumbly when cooked, making them more suitable to be used in mashed potato recipes. But in general, the taste is similar to your regular potatoes.

Uses: Depending on the texture of your black potatoes, the most suitable uses would vary too. If it’s more crumble and creamy, it would be great for recipes such as mashed potatoes. But if it’s a firmer variety, it would be great for roasting as a side dish, or in homemade chips!

6. Black Truffle

Two black truffles stacked

Fun fact(s): Black truffles grow underground. And since they grow underground, you need trained dogs or pigs to guide you to find the truffles, after which you have to carefully dig them out of the ground. No wonder they are so expensive!

Taste and Texture: Black truffle tastes earthy, woody, and umami with a chocolatey tone. It has a deep rich flavor which makes it unsurprising that it is so well-loved all over the world.

Uses: They can be incorporated in many dishes such as infused into oils or sauces, or shaved or grated as a finishing touch. Or why not try making your own Truffle Mayonnaise by using this vegan oil-free mayo recipe as a base? 😉

A little goes a long way with black truffles so you definitely do not need to have a full bite to be able to enjoy it!

7. Black Trumpet Mushroom

Black trumpet mushrooms on a colander

Fun fact(s): Looking like small trumpets coming out of the ground, I think it’s one of the cutest mushrooms ever! They also have hollow and fragile stems, which really remind me of trumpet flowers!

Taste and Texture: Black trumpet mushrooms have an earthy, rich, and smoky flavor. Some people also describe its taste similar to truffles, talking about a good substitute over here! Texture-wise, they have a meaty but tender texture.

Uses: They can be used in almost any savory dish but as always, if you’re trying it the first time, I recommend not mixing too many flavors together. Think of simple recipes like stir-frying them with olive oil, or using them in your risotto!

8. Black Fungus

Chinese black fungus dried

Fun fact(s):

  • Black fungus is also called the “tree ear” or “cloud ear” fungus, they are most often used in Chinese and Japanese cuisines.
  • As with many of the vegetables in this list, they are packed with nutrition! Like a lot of other types of mushrooms, they are low in calories and fats but high in protein and fiber.
  • It has many health benefits such as promoting a healthier gut, protecting cognitive health and even against cancer.
  • Most often sold in dried form in your local Asian supermarkets, you first need to soak them in warm water for at least 1 hour. They will then expand about 3-4 times in size so take this into account when portioning them.

Taste and Texture: Black fungus has a mild, subtle flavor and it absorbs the flavor of the dish it is cooked with. It is not as meaty as the more well-known mushroom such as white buttoned or portobello mushrooms but rather has a slightly crunchy and jelly-like texture. The texture and mouthfeel are indeed the reason why it is used in recipes, rather than its distinct taste.

Uses: My mum likes to use them in soups but you can also use them in stir-fries such as these Garlic Chives & Black Fungus recipe. Or this Tofu with Mushroom Sauce recipe.

9. Black Carrots

Black carrot discs cut up, purple or pink inside

Fun fact: Although they are believed to have originated in the Middle East, South Asia and East Asia, I’m lucky that here in the Netherlands where I live, most supermarkets would sell black/purple carrots, especially in the lead-up to Christmas. Cutting up a black carrot (another popular variety is the black nebula carrots) is such a sight since you can then see the deep, intense, pretty purple color inside the carrot!

Taste and Texture: Black carrots are sweet and earthy in taste, and some might have a slight peppery note. Regarding texture, it’s similar to regular orange carrots: firm and crunchy.

Uses: Since black carrots are not that different from orange carrots both in terms of taste and texture, you can use them the same way you use orange carrots. I’ve roasted them for a Christmas dinner once and the mere sight of it really made it a festive occasion. I also used it in my roasted pumpkin salad and they definitely make for cute decorations!

In my experience, they don’t preserve their bright purple color when cooked. So if you want to preserve the color in your dishes, one tip I have is to opt for recipes when they are prepared raw.

10. Black Garlic

Two cloves of black garlic with one clove peeled

Fun fact: Black garlic is not a naturally growing variety of garlic. Instead, it is essentially the same as your regular white garlic, but it has been aged over a couple of weeks (or even months). The garlic cloves go through the Maillard reaction to transform the proteins and sugars in the garlic to produce that distinctive flavor.

Taste and Texture: Black garlic has a unique flavor profile and does not have a garlicky taste at all. It has a sweet, umami, and slightly tangy taste with a note of balsamic vinegar or molasses.

Texture-wise, black garlic is also softer, closer to the texture of plump dried fruits instead of being firm and a little bit crunchy like white garlic. If you ever have the chance to try black garlic, I would highly suggest doing so as it has a rich, complex, and umami flavor–an experience that you shouldn’t miss!

Uses: Although the taste is different, black garlic could be used to replace regular white garlic. Two of my most favorite ways to use black garlic are in making black garlic ramen and black garlic pasta. Some other ways people use black garlic are in making black garlic butter, aioli, sauces, and dressings. You can also add it to your soups, pasta, pizza, rice, and noodle dishes!

11. Black Corn

Black corn close up

Fun fact(s): Black corn is an ancient corn variety grown by the Aztecs, which is also why they are often called black Aztec corn. One popular variety is called the Maiz Morado black corn.

Taste: They have a slightly sweeter and nuttier flavor compared to traditional yellow or white corn, but have similar texture profiles.

Uses: You can use them to substitute your regular corn in recipes. So think of tortillas, tamales, porridge, and even popcorn! Sounds like a great Halloween snack huh🎃👻

12. Black Radish

One whole black radish, and one cut up

Fun fact: Black radishes have often been used in traditional remedies such as in alleviating cough and phlegm, and supporting digestive health in traditional Chinese medicine.

Taste and Texture: The taste of black radish is sharp, pungent, and spicy. As such, they are often used only in small amounts to add a burst of flavor. In terms of texture, it is similar to the regular radish so it is also firm and crunchy when raw.

Uses: Try roasting them into chips or adding them to your salads (both raw or roasted). Be sure to balance its sharp taste with other milder and sweeter ingredients!

13. Salsify

Salsify with some parts cut into discs

Fun fact(s): Salsify is also known as an oyster plant, because guess what, it kinda tastes like an oyster to some! Well, talking about some good vegan alternatives, isn’t it? 😉

PS And if you don’t think it tastes like oyster, some other people say that it tastes like artichoke.

Taste and Texture: The taste of black salsify isn’t as strong as it sounds like. In fact, it is actually quite mild. Since it is a root vegetable, it also has similar textures to parsnips and carrots.

Uses: Once you have peeled the skin, you can cook salsify the same way as you cook your root vegetables. Try roasting them, adding them to soups and stews, or as a standalone vegetable!

14. Nori Sheet

Nori sushi sheet on a grey background

Fun fact(s):

  • Although nori sheets look dark green to black, it is actually made from red algae. This red algae turns dark green when dried, which explains the color that we see.
  • Nori sheets are made similarly to the way papers are made. The seaweed is shredded and pulped, before pressing them into thin sheets and drying them.

Taste and Texture: Nori sheets have a mild and slightly salty taste, with an umami flavor. Nori sheets are thin and crisp, with a slightly chewy and brittle texture.

Uses: Nori sheets have gained worldwide popularity as it is used in making our beloved sushi. These days, sushi comes in so much variety from the traditional ones up to the Americanized version (hello California roll!) and creative flavors such as this vegan kimchi sushi!

If you’re not a fan of sushi, you can also cut them up into shredded nori to use as a garnish on Japanese dishes!

Beans, Legumes, and Grains

15. Black Beans

Black beans close up

Fun fact(s):

This nutrient-dense food is a good source of plant-based protein, fiber, iron, and other vitamins and minerals. It’s also a staple food in many Latin American, Caribbean, and African cuisines.

Taste and Texture: Black beans have a slightly sweet and earthy flavor, with a hint of nuttiness. Regarding the texture, they have a dense and meaty texture, with a smooth and creamy interior when cooked. This creamy texture makes them a popular ingredient in many dishes from chilis, salads, to creamy bean dips!

Uses: Ask any vegan or vegetarian and I bet they have at least heard about black beans. They are great to add on your chilis, stews, and soups, but can also be added to your salads, tacos, and burritos and even be blended up into a creamy bean dip similar to hummus!

16. Black Chickpeas

Italian black chickpeas close up

Fun fact(s): There are two main kinds of black chickpeas: the one cultivated in India (kala chana variety) and the one cultivated in Italy (ceci neri variety). Well, guess now we only need Indonesia to cultivate its black chickpea variety before we can do a black chickpea Eat Pray Love tour?🍴🙏💖

Taste and Texture: Anyways, the Indian varieties are often brown in color while the Italian varieties are deep black in color. They are both smaller in size than the regular chickpeas, but are richer in taste and creamier in texture.

Uses: Some common ways to use them is to make curries, or use them the same way you use the regular chickpeas which is in making that rich, creamy, and luscious hummus!

PS: Have 5 minutes to spare? Make my 5-minute homemade hummus which will convert you from #TeamStoreBought to #TeamHomemade hummus right away!

17. Black Soybeans

Black soybeans close up

Fun fact(s): Surprise surprise, Chinese fermented black beans are not made from black beans, but from black soybeans instead. I didn’t know this before and almost put “fermented black beans” under “black beans” instead of “black soybeans” but I guess this information was lost somewhere in translation, isn’t it?

Anyways, similar to black beans, black soybeans are also a nutritional powerhouse. It is packed with fiber and plant-based protein, while at the same time reducing the risk of coronary heart disease and strengthening your bones.

The last fun fact is that when cooked, black soybeans change color from black to dark brown or dark green. Makes me feel like I’m doing a science experiment whenever this happens!👩‍🔬🧪

Taste and Texture: Contrary to its name, black soybeans taste closer to black beans than to soybeans. Texture-wise, black soybeans have a firm texture that holds up well when cooked. Similar to black beans, it also has a smooth and creamy interior.

Uses: Similar to regular yellow soybeans, you can make black soy milk out of black soybeans. Another recipe you can try is making Kuromame (sweetened black soybeans), which is a classic Japanese New Year delicacy.

18. Black Lentils

Black lentils close up

Fun fact(s): Sometimes, black lentils are also called Beluga caviar lentils due to their resemblance to caviar. Sounds like a great vegan substitute huh?😉

And in case you’re wondering, although the Indian “urad dal” is commonly translated to black lentils, they are not of the same variety. Urad dal looks more like mung beans (but black) instead of looking like lentils.

Taste and Texture: Black lentils have a more earthy and richer flavor than the other lentil varieties. It holds its shape quite well when cooked, although it will also taste creamy when mashed!

Uses: Since black lentils hold their shape quite well, it’s great in both salad and stew recipes! Try a black lentil salad with roasted vegetables, or add them to your soups for more bulk!

19. Black-Eyed Peas

Black eyed peas on a scooping spoon

Fun fact(s): Black-eyed peas are often eaten on New Year’s Day in the Southern United States as they symbolize good luck and prosperity.

Taste and Texture: Black-eyed peas have an earthy and slightly nutty flavor and creamy consistency when cooked. The texture is comparable to other beans, so they are soft and creamy inside, while still firm on the outside.

Uses: For a traditional Southern dish, try Hoppin’ John: a combination of black-eyed peas, rice, and pork. To make it plant-based, feel free to omit the pork!

Other recipes to try are black-eyed pea curry, stew, or even dip!

20. Black Badger Carlin Peas

Black badger carlin peas close up

Fun fact(s): If black-eyed peas are often on New Year’s Day in the Southern United States, these black peas are eaten on November 5th in the North of England.

Taste and Texture: These black vegetables have a slightly nutty and earthy flavor, similar to regular green peas but with a slightly firmer texture. When cooked, it becomes creamy!

Uses: For a traditional recipe, try making some parched peas which are basically cooked black badger carlin peas, served with malt vinegar and salt. Or cooked, and then oven-dried to make them crunchy!

21. Forbidden Black Rice

Forbidden black rice close up

Fun fact(s): The Chinese type of black rice is sometimes called “forbidden rice” because, in ancient China, black rice was reserved exclusively for the aristocracy and therefore forbidden for the common people.

And fun fact, the intense color also makes it a great natural purple dye!

Taste and Texture: They have a slightly nutty flavor and are a bit more aromatic than the usual white or brown rice. There is also a slightly sweet and floral tone.

Texture-wise, unlike its glutinous black rice cousin (which we will cover soon!), Chinese black rice is not sticky and can be eaten just like regular rice.

Uses: You can make Chinese congee (rice porridge) with black rice for a traditional recipe. Or maybe try making some Chinese sweet dumplings, so good!😋

22. Glutinous Black Rice

Glutinous black rice close up

Fun fact(s): Similar to the Chinese black rice variety, but they’re sticky! The glutinous version is very popular in Indonesia since it is commonly used to make a breakfast/dessert recipe of black rice pudding. The color also means that it’s rich in antioxidants which reduces the risk of chronic conditions such as heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and some types of cancer.

Taste and texture: Unlike regular rice, glutinous black rice is sticky and more chewy. Flavor-wise, it has a nutty and sweet flavor. I also think it’s more fragrant than your regular white rice!

Uses: This glutinous rice variant is more commonly used in sweet dishes, such as in Thai black sticky rice with mango, and in Indonesian black rice pudding. Both of which are some of my favorite vegan desserts!🥭🥣

23. Black Quinoa

Three colored quinoa from above

Fun fact(s): Quinoa (including black quinoa) is technically not a grain, but a seed. However, since it has a similar nutrient profile and is often eaten the same way as grains, it is classified as a “pseudocereal”.

It contains all 9 essential amino acids, making it a very popular plant-based protein source. Other than that, it is also packed with nutrients and is naturally gluten-free.

Taste and Texture: Similar to other quinoa varieties, black quinoa tastes earthy and nutty. However, people often describe it as slightly sweeter. It has a firm and slightly crunchy texture when cooked.

Uses: Some delicious dishes to pair up black quinoa with are in salads or buddha bowls, poke bowls (such as this 30-minute Vegan Poke Bowl recipe) , quinoa and bean burger, stuffed vegetables, as a substitute for rice in stir-fries, or to serve your chilis with.

Seeds

24. Black Sesame Seeds

Black sesame seeds close up

Fun fact(s): A very versatile ingredient widely produced in Asia (mainly Japan, China, and India) that can be used both in savory and sweet dishes!

Taste and Texture: Similar to the regular white (hulled) and brown (unhulled) sesame seeds, which btw made it to my List of 35 Brown Vegetables (+ Photos!), black sesame seeds have a nutty, earthy, and slightly bitter flavor that adds a complex and deeper tone to your dishes. When toasted, the flavor becomes deeper and a little bit smoky. Similar to all other seeds, they have a firm and crunchy texture.

Uses: A popular way to prepare black sesame seeds is to make black sesame paste which could then be used as fillings or flavorings in many Asian desserts and baking. From using black sesame paste as a filling in buns, in rice flour balls (like this tang yuan), to ice cream! For savory recipes, try some black sesame-crusted tofu or black sesame hummus!

P.S. it’s also great as garnish for Asian-inspired recipes such as this 30-Minute Rainbow Poke Bowl, or this Quick and Easy Sticky Tempeh recipe!

25. Poppy Seeds

Macro shot of poppy seeds

Fun fact(s):

Not only do poppy plants produce beautiful poppy flowers, but the same flowers also produce these crunchy, earthy, and nutty poppy seeds that are commonly used in baked goods! Talks about beauty and practicality over here!

However, if you are expecting a drug test, it’s best to skip eating poppy seeds at least 48 hours before since although poppy seeds themselves do not contain opium content, they might be contaminated by opium alkaloids (such as morphine, codeine and thebaine) in its extraction process.

Taste and Texture: Poppy seeds have a nutty and slightly sweet flavor with a crunchy and slightly gritty texture. When used in baking, they can provide a slight crunch to the texture of the dish which always adds a nice depth to the dish.

Uses: Poppy seeds to Eastern Europeans are like sesame seeds to Asians: it’s everywhere! Thanks to a Hungarian colleague of mine, one poppy seed recipe that I still am super curious to try is this Hungarian Beigli (a Christmas delicacy of poppy seed and walnut roll). Another delicious ways to eat poppy seeds are to incorporate them in your baked goods such as muffins, cakes, and bread. Two other favorites are poppy seed bagels and crackers!

26. Black Mustard Seeds

Black mustard seeds close up

Fun fact(s): Black mustard contains the lowest number of seeds per pod: only 4 seeds per pod. Compare this to white mustard which contains 8 seeds each, and brown mustard which contains 20 seeds per pod!

Taste and Texture: Black mustard seeds are smaller and have a stronger flavor compared to brown or yellow mustard seeds.

Uses: It is considered a staple in Indian kitchens as it is included in a lot of spice blends, which will often be tempered (fried in oil or ghee to release its aroma). Tempering also makes the flavor milder and slightly sweeter. Additionally, they are more often used in South Indian than in North Indian cooking.

Another popular use of mustard seeds is in pickles. They are often added in very little quantity due to their sharp taste!

27. Nigella Seeds

Macro shot of nigella seeds

Fun fact(s): Although they are also often called “black cumin”, nigella seeds come from different plant species.

Taste and Texture: Nigella seeds have a unique flavor that is slightly bitter, with a hint of onion-like flavor which also caused these seeds to sometimes be called black onion seeds. Some people also note the hint of oregano and black pepper. As you can imagine, the flavor adds depth and complexity to dishes.

Uses: They are commonly used as toppings on naan bread, in Indian, Middle Eastern, and North African spice blends. So if you want to experiment using this ingredient, try incorporating them into your bread-baking🍞 and curry/lentil-making🍛 adventure!

28. Chia Seeds

Macro shot of chia seeds

Fun fact(s): Chia seeds were considered an endurance food by the Aztecs and Mayans as the seeds were consumed on long hunting expeditions. The Tarahumara Indians are famous for their long-distance running capabilities and they consume chia seeds to fuel their runs! So if you’re training for a marathon, this would be something you could try!🏃‍♀️🏃‍♂️

Taste and Texture: When dry, chia seeds have a crunchy and firm texture similar to other types of seeds. However, after soaking, chia seeds turn to be pudding-like, but you might still be able to feel the crunch if you bite your chia seeds carefully. They have a mild, neutral flavor, making them a great addition to many recipes.

Uses: Chia seeds would expand their size up to 12x when soaked in water! This property also makes chia seeds an easy-to-find ingredient to make easy but tasty chia puddings!

They are also often used as an egg substitute in vegan cooking. Some other ideas to use chia seeds are to mix them in your smoothies or breakfast bowls, homemade chia jam, chia puddings (which is the cousin of a popular recipe of mine: 5-Minute Flax Seed Pudding with 3 variations!), or energy balls.

Spices

Small note: since spices are often only added in small quantities and not consumed whole, I will not elaborate on the texture in this section!

29. Black Pepper

Black peppercorns close up

Fun fact(s):

I guess we don’t need any more introduction to this spice that is so widely used worldwide so here is a fun fact instead: Did you know that black pepper actually comes from green peppercorns? The drying process is the one that turns them black!

Not only that it adds a kick to your dishes, but it also has many great science-backed health benefits with its high antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Some studies also show its ability in improving blood sugar control and cholesterol levels, and protecting against cancer and brain-related diseases!

30. Vanilla

Two vanilla pods with white background

Fun fact(s): Vanilla comes from the orchid family, and it is actually the only orchid species which produces edible fruit. So not only is the smell and aroma so sweet, but the plants look beautiful too!

Most vanilla produced is actually hand-pollinated instead of being naturally pollinated by the melipona bee that is found in Central America. This labour-intensive process also makes vanilla the second-most expensive spice, right after saffron.

Taste: It has a sweet and creamy taste, with subtle floral and fruity notes.

Uses: Vanilla is widely used in sweet recipes such as ice cream, cookies, pancakes, cakes, puddings, you name it!

PS it’s also one of my favorite smells in the world!

31. Black Cardamom

Black cardamom on a black background

Fun fact(s): Now if vanilla is the second most expensive spice in the world, cardamom sits in third place.

Taste: Black cardamoms have a smoky, earthy, and slightly sweet taste with a hint of bitterness. Remember that a little goes a long way here!

Uses: Unlike a lot of spices where you can use one variety to substitute for the other, don’t try doing that for black cardamoms! Green cardamom adds a subtle taste while black cardamom has a much stronger taste! So if you do want to substitute green cardamom with it, definitely only add a liiiiittle bit!

Similar to green cardamom, they work well in curries and stews, also in rice dishes.

32. Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal powder

Fun fact(s): Activated charcoal is actually a manufactured product and cannot be found naturally in food. Due to that reason, just to be clear, I do not recommend prolonged and regular consumption of activated charcoal.

Moreover, Healthline concludes that studies supporting its health benefits are older studies and have limited scope. Just want to mention this since this is the exception to the rule of thumb that darker food means more antioxidants, which is because activated charcoal doesn’t grow naturally.

But hey, once in a while and just for fun wouldn’t hurt, right? 😉

Taste and Texture: Although charcoal has an intense and striking black color, it is both tasteless and odorless.

Uses: The tasteless and odorless properties make it a great natural food colorant and is commonly used to make black burger buns, pizza crusts, pancakes, cocktails, and my favorite way…ice cream!

33. Urfa Biber

Close up shot of urfa biber

Fun fact(s): A fan of sun-dried tomatoes? Now, how about sun-dried chilli peppers? Let me introduce you to Urfa biber, also called Urfa pepper or Isot pepper🎉

The chilli peppers are dried in the sun during the day, and wrapped in fabric or plastic at night to preserve their natural oil.

Taste and Texture: They come from Urfa, a region in Turkey and are a very versatile spice with a smoky, earthy, and of course, spicy taste. It also has a very subtle chocolate-like sweetness to it that complements the flavor well. The first time I tried this pepper, I immediately fell in love with the depth of flavor it brings!

Uses: Use them as spice rubs, in your stews, or as toppings if you’d like a bit of flavor boost to your meal. Urfa biber can even be added to chocolatey desserts to add a bit of smokiness which will balance out the sweetness!

FAQ

What is the black pigment in vegetables?

The black pigment in some vegetables is due to the presence of anthocyanins, which are water-soluble pigments responsible for the blue, purple, and black colors in plants. Anthocyanins are produced to protect the plant from damage by external environmental factors.

These anthocyanins also have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that are good for the body. A win-win solution, huh? 😉

Are there any naturally black foods?

Certainly! From black corn, black tomatoes, and black pumpkins, to things you might not heard before such as salsify, I’ve compiled a list of 33 black vegetables (with pictures) here — the most complete one on the internet right now!

Is black beans vegetables?

If you define vegetables as edible parts of plants, then yes. However, they are also considered a type of legume (which is a family of plants that include beans, peas, and lentils).

Are black olives vegetables?

Technically, olives are fruits and they are a type of drupe fruit which also includes cherries, peaches, and plums. However, due to their savory flavor and frequent use in savory dishes, they are often considered culinary vegetables.

What are some examples of black-colored vegetables?

Some examples are black carrots, black pumpkins, or an easy one would be black eggplants. If you’re interested to learn more though, I’ve compiled a list of 33 black vegetables (with pictures) — the most comprehensive one you can find on the internet right now!

Let me know if you’d like more posts like this!

And…..alright, congrats on making it til the end! 🎉 If you’re planning to plant some of these vegetables in your garden this year, or if this inspired you to go on a veggie hunt to your local market/grocery store, or whatever comment that you have, I would LOVE to hear from you!

Leave your comments in the comment box below; let me know what you think about this post.

And if you like this post, check out this 25 Pink Vegetables post (again, including pictures and more details, making it the most complete pink vegetables list on the internet)!💗 Or my 31 Brown Fruits List! 🤎

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