Grapefruit can be red, pink, or white, and while it’s definitely known for its puckering power, its flavor can range from intense to sweet. Whichever type you choose, grapefruit is known for its tart and sweet balance, and is packed with health benefits.
With a high dose of vitamins A and C in every juicy segment, grapefruit can help boost immunity and has even been shown to lower blood pressure and be beneficial for lowering triglyceride and blood sugar levels. “bad” LDL cholesterol. And, since grapefruits are over 90% water, adding them to your daily diet can also boost hydration.
Grapefruit is also generally easy to find. Once available primarily during its growing season, which runs from October to June, grapefruit can now be purchased year-round in most U.S. markets. When selecting grapefruits of any variety, look for the heaviest fruits as they tend to be the juiciest. A ripe grapefruit with no green color on the skin and no soft spots will probably taste better.
Grapefruit has long been a popular fruit eaten for breakfast, but keep in mind that whichever variety you choose, the potential of this versatile superfruit extends far beyond the morning.
Probably the most popular grapefruit variety – and one of the most widely available – is the red grapefruit. Although sometimes simply labeled as “red grapefruit”, there are several cultivars or varieties, including Ruby Red and Rio Red, both of which top the grapefruit chart for sweetness. Generally, red grapefruit will be sweeter than pink or white grapefruit, although there are always a few exceptions. The rich scarlet color of red grapefruit pulp comes from its high content of lycopene, an antioxidant that helps protect the body against chronic disease and environmental toxins.
“Red grapefruit is an excellent source of vitamin A,” says Jessica Randhawa, owner and chef of The Forked Spoon, which uses grapefruit as an ingredient in everything from cocktails to ceviche.
In addition to its sweet taste, red grapefruit tends to have a thinner skin than other types, which maximizes the amount of tender, seedless fruit inside.
The pink-colored pink grapefruit tastes similar to red grapefruit but offers unmatched flavor parity among fruits of its type, according to Randhawa.
“The right balance of sweet and tart is found in pink grapefruit. Their flesh is usually very juicy and non-acidic. Not only do they taste great, but these grapefruits are packed with vitamin C, fiber, and vital antioxidants like beta-carotene and lycopene. “, says Randhawa.
Although pink grapefruit — named for its blush-hued flesh — isn’t usually as sweet as red grapefruit, the complexity of their flavor profile makes them ideal for eating solo, adding to salads, or even refreshing water. flat. Like red grapefruit, pink grapefruit is generally easy to find and is generally available year-round in most US markets.
The white grapefruit, unlike its red or pink cousins, has pale yellow colored flesh. It has a thin rind – thinner than most oranges, in fact – and ranges from a distinctive green to light yellow. As the fruit ripens, the rind turns darker yellow. White grapefruit is sometimes called “yellow” or “gold” grapefruit for the yellow tint of its ripe skin.
Cultivated less for its flesh than for its slightly bitter juice, white grapefruit is a familiar ingredient in sodas and cocktails. “White grapefruits are the least sweet variety,” says Randhawa. “However, they possess an intense flavor that is good for making juices and syrups.”
The prized bitterness of white grapefruit comes from its high acid content and the thick layer of albedo that lies between the skin and the flesh. Peel or cut a white grapefruit and you will discover its lively, intense and acidic perfume.
Notable Grapefruit Varieties
Although grapefruit can be categorized as red, pink, or white, there are dozens of related cultivars and fruits that can be difficult to tell apart from one another.
White grapefruit is sometimes confused with Oroblanco grapefruit. Although the two are both members of the citrus family and look very similar, the similarities end when it comes to parentage and flavor. The Oroblanco and the white grapefruit are different species. Oroblanco is part pomelo — a sweet citrus fruit native to Southeast Asia that can grow to the size of a watermelon — and part grapefruit.
“Oroblanco, which means ‘white gold’ in Spanish, has a thick rind, lemon-yellow skin and is nearly seedless,” says Randhawa, but unlike tart white grapefruit, the flesh of Oroblanco “is juicy and sweet with little no bitterness.”
Likewise, the melogold grapefruit is not a “true” grapefruit, but a cross between a pomelo and a grapefruit. It has pale, yellow-tinged, sweet-sour flesh and a green-tinged exterior.