All about Avocados: Fruit or Vegetable?

Try this nutritious fruit in dips or salads (Image via Pexels @Ready Made)
Try this nutritious fruit in dips or salads. (Image via Pexels/Ready Made)

Avocados, sometimes known as alligator pears, are distinguished by their creamy smooth flesh and rough exterior. Native to Mexico and Central America, this delicious fruit has quickly become popular throughout the world and is now used in a wide variety of dishes to elevate their flavor and texture.

It's often called a superfood — for the sheer amount of nutrients and health benefits it provides. Perhaps best known as the star ingredient in guacamole, the fruit can be used for cholesterol and blood sugar management.

An excellent source of fiber and healthy fats, the fruit can be added to shakes, salads, soups, dips, and many, many other dishes.


Is Avocado a Fruit or Vegetable?

Would you believe us when we tell you that there's no one answer to this question? Botanists say that avocado is a fruit. However, avocados are often classified as a vegetable for nutritional and culinary purposes. The USDA recognizes it as a vegetable.

Although technically avocado is a fruit, it's nutritionally more similar to vegetables. The fruit's mild and creamy flavor makes it versatile enough to be used in both sweet and savory dishes.


For practical purposes, does it really matter whether the avocado is a fruit or a vegetable? No. The fact remains that it's extremely nutritious, good for your health and can enhance the flavor and texture of many dishes. Botanically though, avocado remains a fruit; in fact, it's a kind of berry.

It's an unusual berry, as it has only one seed. Most berries have multiple seeds (strawberries, raspberries, tomatoes, cucumbers). Avocado has a single large seed in the middle, surrounded by flesh.

What Does Avocado Taste Like?

Avocado has more of a texture than a flavor. The fruit has a mild nutty taste, subtle, earthy and grassy. Although the flavor is modest, it's also deep and thick. The true experience of eating an avocado lies in its texture rather than flavor — it has a creamy, buttery texture that's difficult to beat.

The subtle flavor of the fruit allows it to pair well with many stronger, more flavorful items. It's especially yummy in salads (as it readily picks up the flavors of the dressing), and the famous dip guacamole is a favorite of many for its creamy smooth texture. Avocados also eaten simply slathered on toast, as its buttery texture elevates the profile of the dish.


How Do You Eat Avocado?

To have an avocado, you simply need to take a knife and run it all around the fruit in a perfect circle to cut the fruit into two equal halves. Twist the two halves together to open the fruit from the inside.

Carefully pierce the seed with the edge of your knife and twist; the seed will come right out. You can use a spoon to scoop out the soft inner flesh of the avocado. Slice it; chop it, or mash it, according to your needs, and enjoy.


How to Add Avocados to Your Diet?

Avocados are best eaten fresh, although they can also be cooked. They can be sliced, chopped, or mashed when eaten raw. They're also great in creamy salad dressings and smoothies. When cooked, they can be added to soups, sauces, and casseroles.

There are many ways to add this delicious fruit to your diet. Eat it in a sushi roll or yummy salad, on toast or blended in a shake. Whip up a dip like guacamole, or stir it into an egg salad.


Nutritional Value of Avocados

A medium avocado has 240 calories, 13 grams of carbohydrates, three grams of protein, 22 grams of fat (15 grams monounsaturated, four grams polyunsaturated, three grams saturated), ten grams of fiber, and 11 milligrams of sodium. The fruit has no cholesterol in addition to being low in salt.

This fruit contains more than 75% unsaturated fat, making it an excellent option for foods heavy in saturated fat. Avocado is a delicious addition to a balanced diet, as it provides over 20 vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients while also serving as a source of beneficial fats (six grams per 50-gram portion).

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Edited by Bhargav