Fruit vs Vegetable

January 19, 2018

Have you ever wondered or ever been asked if something was a fruit or a vegetable?  I have been asked so many times.  I thought that I would help shed some light on this topic on how to tell if it is a fruit or a vegetable.


The word fruit has different meanings in different contexts.  In botany, fruits are the ripened ovaries of flowering plants.  It must contain seeds, either inside or on the outside.  They are mainly sweet, sometimes tart, with bitter seeds.  Fruits are low in fat and calories, high in fiber, often high in natural sugar.


The term vegetable generally means the edible parts of plants.  Vegetables do not contain seeds.  They are not sweet or very subtly sweet.  While each vegetable is distinct in taste, hardly any vegetable can be classified as sweet, sour, salty, or bitter.  Fruits and vegetables are alike in how they are low in fat and calories and high in fiber.  However, starchy vegetables like beets and potatoes are very high in sugar.


The best advice I can give is fruits and vegetables are classified depending on which part of the plant they come from.  A fruit develops from the flower of a plant, while the other parts of the plant are categorized as vegetables.  Fruits contain seeds, while vegetables can consist of roots, stems and leaves.  


From a culinary perspective, fruits and vegetables are classified based on taste.  Fruits generally have a sweet or tart flavor and can be used in desserts, snacks or juices.  Vegetables have a more mild or savory taste and are usually eaten as part of a side dish or main course.

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