Bizarre Fruits You’ve Never Heard Of

Bizarre Fruits You’ve Never Heard Of

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Nope, not these! They're far too pedestrian. ThinkStockPhotos
Nope, not these! They’re far too pedestrian.

Everyone has heard the phrase, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” But apples can get a bit boring after a while. When you branch out, you come across some truly bizarre fruits found across the globe that will keep you on your toes, offering new flavors and terrifying appearances. Next time you get tired of your banana-strawberry smoothies for breakfast, try one of these weirdos!

Rambutan AppetiteforChina.com


Although it looks like something you would try to squash as it skittered across your floor, the rambutan is actually very similar to a grape on the inside. After you tear away the hairy exterior, the fleshy inside is sweet and juicy and can often be found in jams and canned goods in its native Southeast Asia. It is gaining popularity however, and is beginning to be grown as far away as Hawaii.

African Horned Melon FairwayMarket
African Horned Melon

African horned cucumber

Also known as the horned melon, this fruit straddles the cucumber and melon family and looks like a spiky lemon. The fleshy green insides are edible and are high in vitamin C and fiber, but are often used for decoration instead. Originally found in the Kalahari Desert, the African horned cucumber is now grown in California and New Zealand.

Durian ThailandTravelPro.com


Durian should be considered an acquired taste, to say the least. Although it is regarded as the “king of fruits” by many people in southeast Asia, it has a strong odor that has been likened to a variety of things depending on who you ask, including almonds, rotten onions, smelly gym socks, or raw sewage. If you’re able to get past that, the inside is described as creamy custard-like pulp and does have some fans. Interestingly, the pungent smell has led durian to be banned on public transportation and in hotels in the countries in which it is popular.

Ackee Time.com


Even though it is native to West Africa, the ackee has become the national fruit of Jamaica, and is featured prominently in Jamaican cuisine. Only the adventurous would think to try the ackee, which is often called a “vegetable brain” because of its cranium-like insides. Additionally, the seeds and skin of the ackee can be toxic if not ripe or prepared incorrectly, and may lead to  what is known as “Jamaican vomiting sickness.” Said to taste like scrambled eggs, this one might not be worth the risk.

Physalis Mnn.com


There are many different types of physalis fruit, but for the most part, they are thought to be very similar to tomatoes. Due to this, they are often used in salads, as flavoring (there are even lines of physalis sauce for your pizza and pasta needs) and in some desserts. Native to the Americas but imported mainly from South America, they have even been used in Chinese medicine as a remedy for coughs and sore throats.

Jabuticaba Ummango.blogspot.com


If you manage to find the jabuticaba fruit out in nature in its native Brazil, it seems as though the fruit grows directly out of the bark of its tree, which makes the tree look as though it has a bad case of purple warts. Also very similar to grapes, jabuticaba are eaten raw, as well as used for jams and jellies, juice, and wine.

Mircalefruit Buy-Miracle-Fruit.com

Miraclefruit (Miracleberries)

If you’re looking for a fun party trick, you may want to pick up some miracleberries which are known for their ability to make sour fruits taste sweet (so you can grab some lemons and chow down). Miraculin, found in the fruit, often used as a sugar substitute. It binds to the tongue’s taste buds and changes the sour fruit taste to sweet. The effect lasts for about an hour before the miraculin is washed away by saliva. The berry itself is mildly sweet and originated in tropical West Africa.

Langsat FlickRiver.com


Found in bunches along trunks and branches in Southeast Asia, the langsat is most easily accessed by shaking trees to free the fruit that is ripe. Its taste is somewhere between a grape and grapefruit, although immature langsat will most likely cause a pretty bad pucker. This orbed fruit is covered in yellow fuzzy hair but the fruit is translucent when the skin is peeled away.

Cherimoya Rayner.us


Though it looks a bit like a malformed artichoke, the cherimoya is thought to be delicious, with a taste somewhere between banana and pineapple. Found mainly in South and Central America, its white, creamy flesh is incredibly sweet, and the sherbet-like texture leads it to also be called a custard apple. Mark Twain went to far to once refer to it as “the most delicious fruit known to men.”

Cupuacu FruitBeats.blogspot.com


Move over, açaí, there’s a new superfruit in town. Full of prime nutrients, cupuaçu’s chocolate-pineapple flavor is often used in desserts and juices, but also in food supplements, pills, and even body lotions (its buttery flesh is highly hydrating, much like cocoa butter). It is widely found in Colombia, Bolivia and Peru, but as its popularity grows, it is increasingly being imported across the world.