Are tomatoes fruit or vegetable? I am always asked by my cousins… I don’t know what to answer… Anyone?
Is it a fruit or a vegetable?
There are 2 ways of considering fruits and vegetables:
Scientifically, the way botanists classify them.
In the science of botany, fruits are defined as the organ derived from the ovary and surrounding the seeds. Green beans, eggplants, cucumbers, tomatoes, corn kernels, and avocados are all botanically classified as fruits, but we call them vegetables.
Common usage is just that. If something is commonly used as a fruit, it is called a fruit. If it is commonly used as a vegetable, it is called a vegetable. What we commonly call fruits, usually have a sugar content of 10% or more. (There are exceptions - lemons only have 1% sugar content).
Edible plant parts that are not part of the edible layer that surrounds the seeds, such as roots, stems, and leaves are all commonly called vegetables.
Is a Potato a Vegetable
As if the question about fruits and vegetables wasn’t perplexing enough, there is now another very confusing question, is a potato a vegetable. So is it?
Potato Root Vegetable
We all know the potato, the vaguely spheroid food item (let’s not call it a fruit or a vegetable before we establish, what it is for sure!) is an important part of several delicacies all over the world. Few cuisines you will ever find that completely shun the potato. And even if they do, they’d be pretty silly to! But the potato does enjoy overwhelming popularity all over the world, due to its extensive production. Its high carbohydrate content powers a lot of the world, so to speak.
But is potato fruit or vegetable, or for that matter any fruit vs vegetable questions are pretty much like the chicken-came-first-or-egg, family of questions. So I’m afraid the only way to ascertain the true class to which this humble and popular food item belongs, is by using the definitions of several food items set forth by humans. So now we’ll see the definition of fruits and vegetables which will put the question of is a potato a vegetable beyond doubt once and for all
What we Know: In colloquial usage, it is widely accepted, unknowingly so, that a fruit is something which has a sweet/sour taste and a juicy texture. Fruits are supposed to be essentially something which you can make a juice out of! Another very widely accepted colloquial definition of fruits is if you can make an ice cream flavor of it, it is a fruit. Because, there are fruit flavored ones, yet we haven’t (or at least I haven’t) seen a broccoli flavored ice cream!
What it Is: As the definition goes, a fruit is something which has seeds, which facilitate the procreation of that plant in the future. Biologists say something which can be very complicated to understand, but the crux of the definition is that the fruit is a part of a flowering plant which is derives the ovaries from specific tissues of the flower. So if the thing comes from a flowering plant and has seeds, it is safe to assume that it is a fruit. So since the potato has no seeds whatsoever, we can firmly conclude that the potato is most certainly not, by an stretch of imagination, a fruit. So is a potato a vegetable or starch-rich food item?
What We Know: Can we call something we cannot make an ice-cream or juice out of a vegetable? Well then carrots most certainly make an interesting exception! But generally speaking, if the food item is not a fruit, and comes on a tree, it is a vegetable. Which still doesn’t solve our problem, as a potato comes under a tree!
What it is: Vegetables have been defined over the ages as stuff that is edible and on a plant. So as long as it has something to do with a plant, can be eaten and doesn’t carry its genitals, it is a vegetables. So the leaves, the the buds, the seeds too come under the category of vegetables.
And the roots? Yes, even the roots. But since the definition of vegetables is so unclear, the potato falls under an informal sub-category of vegetables, known as root vegetables or tuberous vegetables. They qualify as vegetables on their merit of being edible tree-based items without any ovaries.
Now that you know, learn how to cook some great stuff with potatoes. Read on for some potato recipes.
So, I think now I have firmly laid to rest, the question about, is a potato a vegetable. Yes, it most certainly is.
Is Cucumber fruit or vegetable?
Cucumbers are easily available, and widely cultivated. It is a plant which belongs to the gourd family. Cucumbers can be dark green or light green in color on the outside, and can have stripes to round spherical bumps on their skin. However, on the inside they are white in color with many small seeds. There are many varieties of cucumbers. The English and Armenian varieties of cucumber are used for making salads, while the lemon cucumbers are great for making pickles. Cucumbers are very healthy fruits…umm…vegetables…? Well, one easily becomes confused because, though cucumbers are considered as vegetables, they are actually a fruit. Similarly, fruits like pumpkins, squash, tomato, green beans, bell peppers are also referred as vegetables. Here, are the reason that support the argument ‘is cucumber a fruit’, and the reason why cucumber is considered as a vegetable.
Why Cucumber (Technically Speaking) Is a Fruit?
What are Fruits?
According to botany, a fruit is the ripened ovary, together with seed of a flowering plant. Many species of fruit comprise the ripened ovary and surrounding tissues. Flowering plants use fruits as a means to propagate the seeds. In cuisine, when we are discussing fruit as food, the term is usually applied to those fruits, which are sweet, juicy and fleshy like apples, watermelons, oranges, etc. Hence, many nuts, grains or vegetables which botanically belong to the fruits category, are not referred to as fruits. So, a single terminology cannot be used to define the enormous variety of fruits.
Reasons for Cucumber Being a Fruit
Cucumber comes from the gourd family, which include other fruits like squash, and it also belongs to the same genus as the muskmelon. So, botanically speaking, the answer to the question is cucumber a fruit, is YES. These fruits fall under the category of fruits. In cucumber there are seeds present inside, with surrounding tissues.
Why Is Cucumber Considered as a Vegetable?
What are Vegetables?
The term vegetables is a culinary term, which has no established scientific value and is somewhat arbitrary and subjective. All parts of the herbaceous plants are eaten as food by humans, whether a part or whole of the plant. For example, mushrooms which belong to the biological kingdom of fungi are commonly considered and used as a vegetable. As vegetable is not a botanical term, any edible part of the plant whether it is leaves (spinach), stems (asparagus), roots (carrots), flowers (cauliflower), bulbs (garlic), seeds (peas) and the botanical fruits like tomatoes, squash, capsicums, etc.
Reasons why Cucumbers are Considered as a Vegetable
Cucumbers are vegetables in the culinary sense. These vegetables are eaten raw and used to make salads. However, similar to tomatoes and squash they are usually perceived and prepared and consumed as vegetables. Apart from being eaten raw, cucumbers are used to make many food preparations and pickle recipes.
Cucumbers offer many health benefits. They are an excellent source of vitamin A and vitamin C. It also consists of many other important nutrients like folate, sulfur, potassium, etc. They contain around 96% of water, and contain antioxidants. Eating cucumbers can prevent many disorders like acidity, fever, blood pressure, etc. You can also use fresh and cool skin of cucumbers to treat sunburn skin.
So, yes when it comes to culinary sense cucumbers are vegetables. But, in botanical terms, cucumbers are classified as fruits. I hope the above facts, cleared your doubt regarding, is cucumber a fruit or a vegetable. No matter what cucumbers are, they provide many health benefits. So, consume cucumbers raw and add them to your salads to gain most of their health benefits.
Avocado, scientific name Persea americana, belongs to the family Lauraceae of the order Laurales. It shares the same family with camphor and cinnamon. Known by different names in different regions, avocados are highly valuable plants all over the world. Among the several cultivars, the Hass avocado is the most sought after variety. Though, it is easy to grow an avocado tree from seeds, it takes about six years to bear fruit. Considering this, commercial plantation of avocados is done using grafted plantlets. Read more on how to grow an avocado tree.
Avocados are enriched with various types of macronutrients and micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fats, dietary fiber, carotenoids, calcium, magnesium and potassium. Considering the fact that avocados are free of sodium and cholesterol, the nutritional value of avocado has been studied from the health perspective. So we actually know a lot about these wonderful avocados. The most confusing question for many of us is whether avocado is a fruit or a vegetable. Let’s take a look at the various concepts that have been put up regarding avocados.
Avocado, Fruit or Vegetable: Botanical Aspect
In botany, fruit is the reproductive organ and/or seed bearing part of the plant. Hence, botanically speaking, there is no doubt that the avocado is a fruit and not a vegetable. It belongs to the berry type of fruits. Nevertheless, there are several true fruits that are used as vegetables in our day-to-day lives such as peas, tomatoes, chillies, peppers, cereal grains, etc. In fact, as far as the botanical definition of fruit is concerned, there are no true vegetables as such. Read more on tomato - fruit or vegetable.
Avocado, Fruit or Vegetable: Culinary Aspect
Avocados are often used as vegetables in the kitchen. They are widely included as a vegetable ingredient in salads and other savory meals. Avocados are also used as vegetables in a variety of cuisines and traditional food recipes. Occasionally, an avocado is used as fruit in dessert recipes and ice creams. Hence, in terms of culinary aspect, the avocado can be considered both as a fruit and as a vegetable.
Avocado, Fruit or Vegetable: Common Aspect
For a layman, fruits are borne in trees, while most vegetables are grown as herbs and at times, as shrubs. Since avocados are harvested from trees, they are included in the fruit category. Another common aspect that categorized avocado as a fruit, is that the majority of the species belonging to the Lauraceae family are fruit trees. In addition, avocados continue to ripen after being plucked from the tree, which is a characteristic feature of most fruits. If you search for avocados, you will find them in the fruit market with other varieties of fruits. Hence, in this case also, avocados belong to fruits and not to vegetables.
Well, this was a brief regarding the query ‘is avocado a fruit or vegetable’. So the answer as to whether avocado is a fruit or a vegetable, depends entirely on your perspective. Many people are of the opinion that avocados are actually fruits, but taste like vegetables. To be precise, avocados are considered both as fruits and vegetables in our day-to-day usage. On a simpler note, it does not matter if the avocado belongs to any group, either fruits or vegetables, as long as it is incorporated in the diet plan.
Is a corn vegetable?
The actual point of debate starts from the origin of corn. Where does corn come from? Does corn come from the vegetative part of the plant or the reproductive part of the plant, are the two things that need to be considered before raising the question - is corn a vegetable. As we know, products that we get from the reproductive part of a plant are known as fruits and the products that we get from the vegetative part of the plant are known as vegetables.
Deciding why is corn considered a vegetable is not much of a tough call. If we see through the botanical angle, corn is a grain and not a vegetable. Basically, corn is the caryopsis of the corn plant. Caryopsis simply means dried fruit. Caryopsis is also called as ‘grain’. This means that corn is just the normal grain like the wheat and oats. The only difference between the other grains and corn is that they are not eaten raw, like the corns. Corns can be consumed raw by us, like say tomatoes or any such vegetables. For common people, corn is a vegetable as we consume corn in the diet by preparing variety of dishes, the same way we do with all the other vegetables. People also ask questions like - is corn a fruit then?
Well, it is a fact that an ear of corn consist of 800 to 1000 tiny fruits, which are attached to a hard, woody cob that is inedible. The actual answer to the question- is corn a vegetable or a fruit can be- no corn is neither a vegetable nor a fruit but corn is actually a grain.
Is Corn a Healthy Vegetable?
Is corn a starchy vegetable which is also healthy? Corn is said to be a healthy vegetable. Corn is actually a compound of carbohydrates which is all rich with vitamin C and dietary fibers, called as pericarps. The kernel of the corn is a huge storehouse of a large amount of proteins and starch. We can describe one corn kernel as a ‘planted’ egg! The pericarps can be said to be the hard eggshell, that protects the inner substance, while the endosperm of the corn which are starchy can be considered as the egg white. You may think, I am out of my mind, comparing egg with the corn ear. But really, an ear of corn consists all the qualities of an egg.
As we settled the debate on the point that corn is a grain but for normal people who regularly consume corn, it is a vegetable. Well, is corn a starchy vegetable? Does it fit into the list of starchy vegetables? Corn is definitely a starchy vegetable. Following are the nutritious values of the corn.
Starch: As we know, starch enhances the nutritious value of many plants and grains. The energy that is collected through green leaves is converted into sugar and this sugar is then converted into starch. This whole process occurs with the help of certain enzymes that are present in the corn. Hence, corn is a starchy vegetable. But then as we also know that corn is ‘not’ a vegetable, it is considered as only a starch like that of the potatoes.
Fiber: Corn can be said as the ultimate source of fibers. A cup full of corns or any food recipe rich with corn can make up to all the daily fiber requirements of a person. Fibers in corns help in lowering the blood cholesterol levels and also reducing the risk of colon cancer. Corn fibers are also very healthy for people who are suffering from diabetes and high blood sugar levels. Hence, corn must be included if the person is switching on a high fiber diet.
Vitamins: Corn is a rich source of vitamins, that are important for maintaining human health. Corn is rich in several important vitamins like vitamin C, vitamin B5, vitamin B9 (folic acid), and vitamin B1 (thiamin). Corn must be an important part of the daily diet for people suffering from various vitamin deficiencies. Especially, pregnant women must consume corn as it provides starch and folic acid which is the most important vitamin for them.
You can add corn in the daily diet by preparing many of its variety dishes, various styles of popcorns, corn as a side dish and you can even have it raw! Corn can even be consumed when it is not the season of the corns. They are available in frozen form, that can be bought to the normal room temperature and then made up into different corn dishes. Forget the debate about is corn a vegetable, is corn a healthy vegetable, is corn a good vegetable and all such other questions; as you know the answer now- corn is a grain! Let’s just concentrate upon the health benefits of corn and keep adding it into the meal to stay healthy!
Bell pepper or sweet pepper is a cultivar group of the species Capsicum annuum (chili pepper). Cultivars of the plant produce fruits in different colors, including red, yellow and orange. The fruit is also frequently consumed in its unripe form, when the fruit is still green. Bell peppers are sometimes grouped with less pungent pepper varieties as “sweet peppers”. Peppers are native to Mexico, Central America and northern South America. Pepper seeds were later carried to Spain in 1493 and from there spread to other European, African and Asian countries. Today, Mexico remains one of the major pepper producers in the world.
Bell peppers are botanically fruits, but are generally considered in culinary contexts to be vegetables. When cut off, the top of the bell pepper is referred to as a “pepper pan”
The term “bell pepper” or “pepper” or “capsicum” is often used for any of the large bell shaped capsicum fruits, regardless of their color.
Rhubarb is often commonly mistaken to be a fruit but rhubarb is actually a close relative of garden sorrel, and is therefore a member of the vegetable family. Rhubarb is rich in vitamin C and dietary fiber.
Rhubarb is a perennial plant (the kind that grows from year to year) which forms large fleshy rhizomes and large leaves with long, thick (and tasty) petioles (stalks). Rhubarb stalks are commonly found in supermarkets, fresh rhubarb is prized by gourmet cooks. Some folks say the finest quality rhubarb is grown in Michigan, Ontario, Canada, and other northern states in the United States. Fresh rhubarb is available from early winter through early summer. Winter rhubarb is commercially produced in forcing houses in Michigan and Ontario.
You shared very good information about the fruits and vegetables. I get help from your this post.
Thank for your sharing.
Fruits and vegetables are very effective for the health. I also prefer to eat fruits and vegetables because these are more beneficial for the health.
Hello to all
Both are the great blessing for the body to keep it fit and active in order to do the work in daily routine life as per the schedule.
I think its a question like “which came first an Egg Or a Hen”.
Tomatoes I believe are a fruit. I may be wrong though.
I enjoyed reading this post was very informative, thanks!
Fruit and vegetables both are good for health.it provide a lot’s of vitamin and protein.our body needs sufficient amount of protein to fight against dangerous disease.
I’ve heard that tomatoes are fruits, but are sometimes thought to be vegetables because they are most often eaten with vegetables.
Got to see so many interesting facts about the tomatos. After reading that all about tomatoes, still I will consider it as a vegetable.
Both of them i like, cell pepper or sweet pepper is a cultivar group of the species Capsicum annuum (chili pepper).
Its a great site for getting the information…
Thank you for sharing this great informative stuff here…
I think there are 2 ways of considering fruits and vegetables:
But I believe tomatoes are a vegetables.Because its mostly use in kitchen.I may be wrong though.
Informative discussion on fruits and vegetables and like to say we must add fruits and vegetables in our daily meals because not only they control our body weight but also boost energy level, stabilize blood pressure and improve immunity system. Fruits and vegetables reduce the risk of certain types of cancer, stroke and heart problems.
Importance of both them is the same in healthy life. We need to have both the items…