77 Weird Exotic Fruits You Didn’t Know About

Even though when we think of plants, herbs, and fruits, we have a certain picture popping out in our head, our planet is home to more than 390,000 plant species! Out of these, 2,000 species are fruits and the Western Hemisphere uses only 10% of them! That’s why we get surprised when we see weird exotic weird fruits that look more like alien species than something edible (but it’s just the appearance, most of them are actually delicious)! This list is devoted to that; weird exotic fruits in the world!

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Amla (Indian Gooseberry)

amla exotic fruits

At a glance, Indian gooseberries look like giant white grapes but their texture is very different. The plant consists of a deciduous tree with long and thin branches. The Indian gooseberry fruit has a spherical shape with light green color, smooth texture, and sour-bitter taste. It’s not as tasty and sweet as some other fruits but it’s one of the best natural sources of Vitamin C (up to 6 times more than freshly-squeezed lemon).

Bushukan (Buddha’s Hand)

buddha s hand weird exotic fruits

Bushukan, also known as Buddha’s Hand in the Western Hemisphere is a citrus fruit with long extensions that look like fingers (hence, the name) and yellow skin that resembles a lemon. It’s a seasonal fruit that grows in the winters and can be found in Southern China and Northeast India. The fruit’s inside is white and juiceless without any seeds or pulp. Interestingly, the fruit smells a lot like violets and its oily pith is sweet (unlike most other fruits) and is used for making jam.

Kumquat

kumquat

Kumquat is another exotic citrus fruit that comes in bite-size. What makes this fruit interesting is the fact that its peel is edible; it’s actually sweet and tender and it tastes like orange. So, if you think peeling off a fruit is a pain in the but and you like stuffing whole fruits in your mouth, you ‘ll love kumquat. The fruit originates from China but you can find it anywhere in Southeast Asia and even in parts of Europe and North America too.

Pomelo

pomelo weird exotic fruits

Imagine a mix of pear and grapefruit, put it on steroids, and you get pomelo, the largest fruit from the citrus family. We just can’t talk about weird exotic fruits without mentioning this guy. The fruit has a thick outer layer but once you get through it, you’ll discover big and juicy citrus flesh that tastes like grapefruit. The pomelo fruit originates from Southeast Asia.

Araza

araza

Araza is one of the rare weird-looking exotic fruits of the world that was never (massively) replanted outside of its native region. This citrus fruit is native to the Amazon Jungle of South America and is also known as the Amazon guava. Araza has high acidity and is perhaps too acidic to be eaten on its own but it makes a very refreshing juice and is also used for making ice cream.

Lulo (Solanum quitoense)

lulo fruit

Lulo is another citrus fruit that originates from South America. This fruit is very popular in Ecuador, Colombia, and Panama but it doesn’t enjoy that reputation in the rest of the world. It looks a lot like tomato, especially after you cut it in half but it tastes like a mix of a pineapple and a lemon. If you’re traveling in this part of the world, you just have to try some fresh lulo (also known as naranjilla) juice.

Ugli (Jamaican Tangelo)

jamaican tangelo

Don’t let its name fool you; its name might be ug-li but its taste certainly isn’t. This fruit originates from Jamaica and is a natural hybrid from orange, grapefruit, and tangerine. The fruit has a green peel that turns orange when the fruit is ripe. Its taste is bitter (not as bitter as grapefruit) and sour (slightly sourer than an orange).

Rambutan

rambutan
by Carlos Valenzuela CC by SA 4.0

Rambutan is probably one of the weirdest-looking exotic fruits you’ll ever find. It can be found across Southeast Asia. The fruit name originates from the Malaysian word “rambit”, meaning hairy and it’s not hard to see why. The fruit has a thin, smooth flesh, covered in pink/red long hairs. This is one of the exotic fruits that looks more like an alien than something you would eat but despite its weird appearance, this fruit is actually tasty. It has a sour-sweet taste that resembles grapes and it’s often consumed in salads. In Southeast Asia, you’ll even find canned products based on rambutan.

Lychee

lychee weird exotic fruit

Lychee is another tropical exotic fruit with an unusual appearance that closely resembles rambutan. It’s not as hairy but it has a similar color with a rough texture and white flesh just like the rambutan. The flavor is also quite similar- a mix of sweet and tart. At a glance, just like rambutan, it also looks like something you wouldn’t eat, but once you try it, you will ask for more!

Jackfruit

jackfruit weird exotic fruits

Jackfruit looks a lot like durian but (fortunately) its smell isn’t nearly as bad. The jackfruit tree also happens to be the world’s largest tree-borne fruit– it can weigh up to 75 pounds (35 kg). Opening a jackfruit isn’t the easiest but once you get there, you’ll discover its inner fleshy pods and even though it’s not the most appetizingly-looking fruit its flavor is a mix between kimchi and pineapple.

Are you curious about some more visually unappealing dishes? Check out our list of the worst looking food around the world!

Cempedak

cempedak weird exotic fruits

This Southeast Asian fruit is closely related to jackfruit and breadfruit (more about it below). The fruit is cylindrical to spherical in shape with thin, leathery skin patterned with pentagons. The flesh has a similar texture to the jackfruit but is slightly less sweet. Cempedak has a strong smell that can be smelled from far away but it’s nothing compared to the next fruit on this list…

Durian

durian

Durian is another exotic fruit with a weird shape from Southeast Asia known for its disgusting smell. If there was a competition about the stinkiest food on the planet, durian sure would be one of the frontrunners. Hence, it’s no surprise that it’s banned in public transport, some hotels, restaurants, and public areas.

The fruit is the size of a volleyball, and interestingly, the durian tree doesn’t bear fruits until at least 15 years old which explains the high price that goes up to $50 per fruit. But keep in mind that you need to have an acquired taste for it. If you ask me the best way to describe durian’s flavor is as savory, creamy, and sweet. If you’re wondering how this weird flavor would taste like, imagine a mix of mild garlic flavor topped with liquid caramel.

Longan

longan

This tropical fruit is also known as dragon eye fruit. Its flavor resembles rambutan with the main difference being longan having more tart. This fruit is a crucial part of traditional Chinese medicine. People say this fruit has anti-aging properties and that it can even act as a natural aphrodisiac.

Pitaya (Dragon Fruit)

dragon fruit

Pitaya, more famous as Dragon Fruit is an exotic fruit that originates from Southeast Asia but is also popular in Central and South America. It’s pink in color, roughly the size of a pomegranate with large green scales. Once you open it, you’ll see tiny black seeds on its white surface that looks a bit creepy but it’s actually very tasty. Its flavor is often described as a mix of kiwi and watermelon.

Carambola (Star Fruit)

carambola starfruit

Carambola is another one of the many (to the western world) exotic fruits from Southeast Asia. Today, star fruit is also available in other tropical regions, such as the South Pacific, Caribbean, and parts of East Asia. If you cut the fruit in cross-section, you would get star-shaped pieces that are the reason for the fruit’s name (star fruit).

Note: if you have kidney problems, stay away from it; star fruit contains oxalic acid that can make kidney stones even worse.

Mangosteen

mangosteen

If you ever traveled to Southeast Asia, you inevitably noticed these purple fruits peaking from street food stalls flirting with travelers’ curiosity. When you peel it off, the fruit looks like a garlic clove but don’t let this fool you; its flavor is actually very sweet and creamy!

Noni (Cheese Fruit)

noni weird exotic fruit

This fruit is known under a lot of nicknames including, starvation fruit, vomit fruit, Indian mulberry, and cheese fruit. Most of its nicknames are related to the sharp odor the fruit has when it’s ripe. Noni has a lot of spindly growths across its surface that can be creepy if you have Trypophobia (fear of holes). As for its flavor, it’s bitter but it’s still beloved in most Southeast Asian countries. It’s used in an array of beverages, powders, and in some countries, it’s even a staple food!

Langsat

langsat weird exotic fruits

Langsat is one of the most popular fruits in Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. On the outside, it looks like a potato, but it grows on a tree and has a gel-like texture inside. The fruit is sweet and sour. The best way to describe its flavor is like a combination of grapes and grapefruit.

Santol

santol fruit

Santol is one of the most unusual exotic fruits you’ll find in Asia. It has a very thick skin with white texture inside that looks similar to the one of the mangosteen. The fruit’s flesh tastes quite sour, so it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea but the riper the fruit, the sweeter the taste becomes. If you decide to try santol, don’t eat the seeds- they’re not edible and can be dangerous.

Salak

salak weird exotic fruits

This species of palm can be found in parts of Java and Sumatra in Indonesia and it’s cultivated as a local crop. This fruit is also known as snake fruit because of its shape and size; it has brown scaly skin (just like a snake) and it looks like a ripe fig with a pointed tip. The skin drops leaving the fruit open after pinching the tip. Inside, salak consists of three lobes and a large inedible seed. It has a sweet taste and aroma even before riping.

Kiwano (Cucumis Metuliferus)

kiwano weird exotic fruits

Also known as “horned melon”, this is one of the most unusual, weird-looking exotic fruits in the world. Its appearance is rather intimidating and looks like something that came out of this world and cutting the fruit and seeing its inside certainly doesn’t help convince you that this isn’t the case. The kiwano fruit has horns on its outside across its surface while the inside is green and mushy filled with what seems to be cucumber seeds. 

The fruit originates from the southern parts of Africa but can also be found in New Zealand and California. Its taste is often described as a mix of cucumber, banana, and lemon.

Ackee

ackee exotic fruits

Even though it originates from West Africa, this fruit is very popular in the Caribbean. In Jamaica, it even has the status of “national fruit”. However, that wasn’t always the case. For years, people thought this fruit is poisonous, and looking at its outside, you can’t blame them. Ackee looks like an inflated pear with yellow-red leathery skin and creamy flesh that tastes like nuts which made it an irreplaceable part of many Caribbean dishes.

If you’re planning to try it, make sure the fruit is ripe. It’s one of those exotic fruits that have toxic substances when not ripe.

Imbe (African Mangosteen)

imbe fruit
by JM CC by SA 4.0

Imbe is the African, less-known cousin of the mangosteen. Unlike the mangosteen, imbe has an orange color and in appearance, slightly resembles an apricot. Inside, it has one medium-sized seed and juicy flesh, making the amount of edible surface per fruit relatively small. Imbe has a very sweet flavor and it makes a delicious jam but for some reason, most people don’t know about it and hence, is not very popular.

Monstera Deliciosa (Fruit Salad Plant)

monstera deliciosa exotic fruits

Monstera Deliciosa is one of the many exotic fruits that originate from Central America. It’s a plant that’s primarily grown for ornamental purposes but it also gives birth to a corn-shaped fruit which, interestingly, is the only non-poisonous part of the plant. When the fruit ripes, the scales separate and the fruit’s white flesh starts peeking. Monstera Deliciosa tastes like a combo of banana and pineapple.

Acai

acai exotic fruits

Speaking of unusual exotic fruits of South America, we can’t forget about acai. The acai plant that grows in the rainforests of Brazil is a palm tree that stems small, black-purple berries that taste like a mix of chocolate berries. Personally, it’s one of the tastiest exotic fruits I’ve ever tried.

Passion Fruit

passion fruit

Passion fruit is another exotic fruit that originates from South America with purple color and shape of an egg whose taste resembles guava. Inside, the fruit has a gooey, green texture similar to kiwano and with only 16 calories per fruit, it’s one of the least caloric fruits on this list.

Banana passion fruit

banana passion fruit

Banana passion fruit is the not-so-popular cousin of the more famous passion fruit. This fruit originates from the South American Andes and its name is self-explanatory. The banana passion fruit looks like a short, chubby banana with inside flesh that resembles passion fruit. The fruit has a sweet orange pulp perfect for the production of juice.

Cherimoya

cherimoya

Cherimoya is an oval fruit that grows in parts of South America that weighs up to five pounds (2.5 kg). The fruit has smooth skin on the outside while inside, it has a plump dotted with unedible brown seeds. The best way to describe cherimoya’s flavor is like a mix of banana, pineapple, and papaya, speaking of which…

Papaya

papaya fruit

This is probably one of the most famous exotic fruits on this list. Native to Central America, the papaya fruit has a soft texture with soft flesh and a fairly sweet flavor. Papaya contains papain, an enzyme used in meat tenderizers which is why it can be served not only fresh but also baked and even fried.

Sugar Apple (Sweet Sop)

sugar apple
by Filo Gen CC by SA 4.0

Speaking of sweet exotic fruits, we have to mention the sugar apple. This heart-shaped fruit with thick knobby segments is closely related to the cherimoya and the soursop and is native to the West Indies and the tropical parts of America but it’s also cultivated in parts of Asia. Its flavor is sweet and its texture is similar to custard, making it a great base for producing different types of juice and ice cream.

Atemoya

Atemoya exotic fruits
by takoradee CC by SA 2.5

Atemoya is a cross-bread of the above-mentioned sugar apple and cherimoya. It has a heart shape with bumpy skin like the sugar apple and smooth bottom like the cherimoya. The fruit looks hard to crack on the outside but it’s actually very soft and tender. The flesh is edible and sweet but the seeds should be avoided at all costs.

Chayote

chayote weird exotic fruits

Chayote is a Guatemalan fruit that belongs to the melon family. The fruit is green in color with smooth surface and flesh that resembles a water chestnut. Chayote weighs up to 3 pounds (1.5 kg) and is consumed in several different ways. It can be eaten fresh, boiled, mashed, and people across Central America also eat it pickled.

Guava

guava

We just can’t speak of exotic fruits without mentioning guava. It might not be weird-looking like some other fruits on this list but guava still falls under the category ‘exotic’. This fruit comes in two different colors, yellow or green on the outside, and pink, yellow, red, and white on the inside. Depending on the variety, it can be seedless or with tiny, pale seeds. Guava is used for making juices, jams, and as a basic ingredient for a myriad of different tropical desserts.

Kiwifruit

kiwi

I was having second thoughts about adding kiwi to this list because it’s already world-wide famous and you can get it anywhere but I still decided to put kiwi on this list because how many exotic fruits with a shape as weird are there? Not many. The combo of brown hairs on the outside and vibrant green color with tiny black seeds on the inside definitely make this fruit a perfect fit for this list.

Breadfruit

breadfruit

What’s a better fit for this list of weird and unusual exotic fruits than a fruit that looks like a fruit but tastes like bread? It grows on an evergreen tree across Southeast Asia and Polynesia and contains a lot of starch which makes it a staple food in this part of the world. When cooked the fruit has a taste similar to the one of freshly-baked bread and is also used for making flour.

Tamarillo

Tamarillo

Because of its appearance, the tamarillo is also called a tree tomato but it tastes quite different. There are two main types of tamarillo- red that has a slightly sour taste and yellow tamarillo that has a sweeter taste. Similarly like the tomato, the tamarillo flesh contains a lot of big gooey seeds.

Persimmon

persimmon

Speaking of unusual exotic fruits that look like tomatoes, say hi to persimmon. Persimmon is even more similar to tomato on the outside than the tamarillo but its taste and its flesh are very different. The persimmon fruit has firm flesh and a sweet flavor that is surprisingly similar to dates.

Black Sapote

black sapote exotic fruits

Technically, black sapote belongs to the persimmon family and also looks like a tomato but (are you seeing the pattern?) has a different taste. This is probably the closest natural flavor of chocolate pudding you can get in a fruit. However, if you’re planning to try it, make sure the fruit is ripe. Unripe fruits taste bitter but are also astringent and can irritate your stomach. In some parts of the world, it’s even used as a fish poison.

Physalis (Cape Gooseberry)

physalis

Since we’re talking about tomatoes, we should also mention another exotic fruit that’s closely related to it. Physalis, also known as Cape gooseberry is a tiny orange berry that has the shape of a tomatillo with a sweet taste.

Tamarind

tamarind

Even though tamarind looks like a giant peanut, the two have nothing else in common. Tamarind is a sweet and sour fruit that originates from Africa and its sweet pulp is used in cuisines in different parts of the world. The only edible part of the plant is the fibrous pulp that covers the seeds.

Long Mulberry

mulberry exotic fruits

Mulberries might not be as exotic as some other fruits on this list and it actually grows in many temperate regions around the world. However, it’s blatantly unpopular for some reason despite its sweet-sour, refreshing flavor. Immature fruits are white in color, but turn dark-red or even black, depending on the variety.

Jocote (Ciruela)

jocote weird fruits

Ciruela or jocote is one of those exotic fruits that cause a lot of confusion because of its name. Ciruela directly translates to “plum” but ciruela actually looks like a miniature apple but belongs in the cashew fruit family. As for its taste, this fruit has a taste that’s a blend of mango and nectarine.

Plantain

plantain

Plantain is another unusual exotic fruit that looks like another fruit but tastes nothing like it. This fruit looks like a banana and it belongs to the banana family but it’s actually low in sugar and not recommendable to eat raw. The most common way to prepare is to deep-fry it. I know the idea of a deep-fried fruit doesn’t sound very appealing but it’s actually very tasty!

Jujube

jujub weird fruits

Throughout its lifetime the jujube fruit goes through two phases. While it’s maturing it looks like a mespilus and once ripe, it starts to wrinkle like a date and its flavor is like a combination of both. Its sweet and refreshing flavor made this fruit very popular and even though it originates from China, it can be found around the world.

Barrel Cactus

barrel cactus

Did you know that there are cactus fruits that are edible and can even be found in the United States? Originating from the Mojave Desert of California, the barrel cactus is an example of this. As the flowers of the cactus move away, a small pineapple-shaped fruit appears. Its flavor is bitter and its texture dry (no surprise there) which is probably the main reason why it’s not more popular.

Interesting fact: if left untouched, the fruit can last a full calendar year. How many other fruits can do that?

Sapodilla (Naseberry)

sapodilla

Sapodilla is one of those unusual exotic fruits that looks unedible on the outside but packs a powerful sugary punch on the inside. Its flavor is best described as a caramelized pear which makes it one of the best natural desserts in the world that can be served without any additions or sweeteners.  

Cupuacu

cupucau weird exotic fruits

Originally found in Central and parts of South America, Cupuacu is one of the most popular tropical exotic fruits today and once you taste it you’ll know why that’s the case. The fruit has a sweet taste reminisces a blend of chocolate and pineapple. Cupuacu is the national fruit of Brazil and is becoming increasingly popular in the tropical parts of Asia where it can grow in its natural inhabitant.

Needless to say, people make some delicious juices and ice creams out of cupuacu but this fruit recently found use in cosmetics too and is the main ingredient for a lot of cosmetic products, most notably body lotions.

Feijoa

fejioa weird exotic fruits

Also known as pineapple guava or guavasteen, feijoa is a South American native fruit closely related to guava that’s becoming more popular in different parts of the world. Feijoa tastes like a blend of pineapple and strawberry and is rich in vitamins B and C, as well as minerals, iron, and fiber.

Pandanus (Screw Palm)

pandanus

Native to the Old World tropics, pandanusis a genus that consists of more than 750 accepted species. These plants look very similar to palm trees on the surface but they’re actually very different and give birth to the sweet fruit known as pandanus or screw palm. However, if you want to try this plant, you have to go through some hassle. In order to get to the edible portion of the fruit, you have to remove the first key with something hard (ideally a hammer) but once you crack it, you’ll be rewarded with the taste of one of the sweetest and tastiest exotic fruits from the Pacific.

Hala Fruit (Pandanus Tectorius)

hala fruit weird exotic fruits

Hala Fruit is another exotic fruit that originates from Polynesia. It’s basically a species of screwpine and because of its unique shape, it’s also known as the fruit that looks like an exploding planet. The fruit is relatively large, with a diameter of up to 20 cm and a length of up to 30 cm. It can be eaten raw or cooked in many different ways, making hala fruit one of the basic staple foods of Micronesia, especially on the atolls.

Red Banana

Red banana

The best way to describe red banana is as a mini-banana with reddish-purple skin. A few more other things that make red banana different from the regular banana is its flavor that tastes like a blend of mango and raspberry and the fact that it contains a lot more vitamin C, potassium, and beta-carotene than ordinary bananas.

Jabuticaba

jabuticaba weird exotic fruits

On the surface, jabuticaba looks like a purple grape but its flesh is quite different. Inside, jabuticaba has a white gelatinous flesh that tastes sweet and makes a great jam or even wine. The fruit grows on a tree but not at its branches; it actually grows in clusters on the bark and during the peak season, you can see the bark completely covered with clusters of ripe fruits; a sight that looks kind of creepy, to be honest.

Mamey

mamey

It looks like a kiwi on the outside with flesh that looks like a cross bread of watermelon and pumpkin and it certainly deserves a mention on this list of unusual exotic fruits. The flavor is similar to the one of the sweet potato and the fruit is very popular in Mexico, Cuba, and Central America. It’s used in a lot of local desserts, for making ice cream, and some tasty refreshing smoothies.

Cucamelon (Melothria Scabra)

cucamelon weird exotic fruits

Cucamelon is definitely one of the cutest weird exotic fruits you’ll ever come across. As its name suggests, this fruit combines two seemingly uncombinable fruits- watermelon and cucumber. On the outside, this fruit looks like a very, very tiny watermelon and on the inside, it looks and tastes like a cucumber.

Finger Lime (Citrus australasica)

finger lime

Also known as caviar lime, on the inside, this native Australian fruit has hundreds of fruits that have a shape that’s reminiscent of a fish egg, hence the nickname. On the outside, the finger lime has a long, cylindrical shape and comes in two colors- green and pink.

Akebia

akebia

This Japanese fruit looks more like an alien cocoon than a fruit but just like many other exotic fruits on this list, its appearance can be deceiving. The white, gooey, fruit actually has a sweet taste that closely resembles raspberry and makes delicious desserts but in Japanese cuisine, the fruit’s skin is used for meat-stuffed dishes.

Jenipapo (Genipa Americana)

genipa americana weird exotic fruits

Jenipapo is another interesting exotic fruit that originates from the Amazon Jungle of Brazil. It looks like a rounder, bigger kiwi that smells of a rotten banana and looks like it has fungus inside. With sweet, pungent-overripe flavor, it’s not one of the tastiest fruits on this list but it’s certainly one of the weirdest.

Pacay (Ice Cream Bean)

pacay fruit
by Paolo Torino CC by SA 4.0

The pacay tree gives birth to large pods that look a lot like beans that consist of an edible white pulp that has a taste that’s oftentimes being compared to vanilla. When you see it, you’ll probably think it looks more like a dildo than a tasty fruit but once you get to the soft, yummy pods (or beans), chances are, it will become your new favorite fruit.

Aboujahl Watermelon

Aboujahl Watermelon

Similarly like the cucamelon, aboujahl is another miniature watermelon but this fruit has all the characteristics, appearance, and taste of the watermelon we all know and love. The only difference is the size, making aboujahl one of the cutest and tastiest exotic fruits you’ll ever taste.

Canistel (Egg Fruit)

canistel

Canistel is one of the rare unusual exotic fruits that isn’t juicy or soft. This fruit grows in the tropical parts of North America and Southeast Asia and has a very hard-chewy flesh and fibers that get stuck between your teeth, making it very difficult to eat. The egg fruit tastes almost like a sweet potato with a slightly more intense flavor and harder flesh.

Rose Apple

rose apple
by Tu7uh CC by SA 3.0

Even though it looks nothing like neither, apple or rose, this exotic fruit has the name rose apple. Its shape resembles a tiny version of pear with a smooth, waxy skin like most apples. Its taste is also similar to regular apples but the flesh looks slightly different and the seeds are not edible.

Wood Apple (Limonia acidissima)

wood apple fruit

This is another fruit that looks nothing like an apple but got its nickname from its hard rind that somehow resembles a walnut. Hence, the fruit isn’t easy to open but its flesh is very mushy and the fruit is usually scooped straight from the rind. Freeze it and you get the best natural ice cream (you don’t have to add any sweeteners or chemical substances)!

Crowberry

crowberry weird exotic fruits

Crowberry isn’t one of the popular weird exotic fruits, it’s not even the most popular type of berry but it certainly deserves a mention on this list. It’s a drupe fruit with a dark-red/black skin that originates from the Falkland Islands. Crowberries are tarter than most other berries and are best eaten cooked because the taste of the raw fruit is too sharp.

Safou

safou fruit
by Ji-Elle CC by SA 4.0

This list of weird exotic fruits wouldn’t be complete without safou; a fruit with a texture of melted butter. Hence, it’s no surprise that some people refer to safou as butter fruit. Just like butter, this fruit is high in fat and calories but it also has a lot of nutrients which is why it serves as a staple food in parts of Africa (where safou originates from) people have limited access to food.

Prickly Pear

prickly pear

You’ve probably heard about prickly pear cactus but did you know that the fruit of this plant is actually edible? Sure, the thorns have to be removed which is something that’s impossible to do by using just your bare hands but once removed, you’ll discover a jelly fruit with arillate seeds. Prickly pears taste like a jellied melon and come in three different colors: red, green, or yellow-orange.

Strawberry Tree (Arbutus Unedo)

arbutus unedo
by H. Zell CC by SA 3.0

Don’t let the name of this fruit fool you- this fruit has very little to do with strawberries which, as you probably know, don’t grow on trees. However, this fruit can still be classified as a berry. Once ripe, it becomes red as a strawberry but its taste and texture are actually more similar to those of a fig which can be one reason why this fruit is not very popular.

Nipa Palm

nipa fruit

The plant known as Nipa palm gives birth to a weird looking brown fruit cluster. Once ripe, the cluster spreads and you can see the individual fruits obtaining their shape. This fruit originates from Bangladesh and is soft, juicy, and very tasty which is why it’s used as an ingredient in a lot of local desserts.

Platonia (Bacuri)

bacuri

Platonia is another one of the myriads of weird exotic fruits that thrive in the Amazon Jungle and rainforests of South America. This fruit has a yellow-brown skin and a seemingly ugly appearance with a surprisingly tasty sweet, white flesh that’s perfect for preparing jam or fruit jellies but it’s even tastier when eaten raw.

Pitanga (Surinam Cherry)

pitanga

Even though this fruit is known as Surinam cherry, the only thing this fruit has in common with a cherry is its size and color. Pitanga is a botanical berry that looks like a mini pumpkin with a sour and slightly sweet taste but not the sweet you’d expect. The Surinam cherry is one of those exotic fruits that should be consumed only when fully ripe because it can make your stomach sick.

Medlar

medlar
by Zeynel Cebeci CC by SA 4.0

Medlar is a fruit that’s available anywhere and perhaps doesn’t fit the description of an exotic fruit but it’s here because a lot of people don’t know about it. It originates from Persia but it’s available across Asia and Europe. It’s soft and mushy and tastes like a fruit butter. Because of its mushy texture, it’s a bit challenging to eat; the best way to do it to make a hole in the skin and such out the flesh and the seeds (both are edible).

Honeyberry (Fly Honeysuckle)

fly honeysuckle
by Opiola Jerzy CC by SA 2.5

Honeyberry looks like a long blueberry that survived a stretching torture. The fruit is zesty with a thin, smooth skin, and easy to eat. It has a very unique flavor that tastes like a blend of kiwi, blackberry, and cherry. There are a lot of different types of honeyberries and some of them are poisonous but most are safe to eat.

Saguaro

saguaro fruit

Originating from the desserts of Arizona, the saguaro is a cactus species that everyone knows about but very few people know that it actually grows a fruit. The fruit is red in color and its appearance resembles a blooming flower. It has a slightly sweet taste and is harvested (with a stick because of the cactus spines that surround the fruit) mostly for making syrup.

Java Plum

java plum exotic fruits

Native to the Indian Subcontinent, this evergreen tree gives birth to a fruit that has the shape of a plum and even tastes like one. The only difference is that these plums are darker in color and its inside is red/pink rather than light green.

White Jamun (Love Apple)

white jamun fruit
by ChanakaW CC by SA 3.0

During summers, the white jamun is one of the most sought-after exotic fruits at Indian street markets. With tangy texture and its own sweet taste, white jamuns are unique in both shape, and flavor. The inner flesh is soft and juicy, similar to the one of a pear, just sweeter, with a stronger flavor, and juicier.

Indian Plum (Oemleria)

indian plum
by Walter Siegmund CC by SA 2.5

This is another exotic fruit that originates from the Indian Subcontinent and belongs to the plum family. The Indian plum looks like a cross-bread of grapes and plum and it has a sour-bitter taste. The fruit is highly variable and you can find different variations of it in Polynesia and North America.

Myrobalan (Terminalia Chebula)

Myrobalan
by Sailesh Patnaik CC by SA 4.0

Myrobalan is one of the most weird exotic fruits from the Indian Subcontinent. It’s a drupe fruit with longitudinal ridges with nut-like fruits and an elliptical seed. It has a very bitter taste and requires an acquired taste but it’s said to have a lot of medicinal properties. A lot of people also consume myrobalan in a pickled version or as a preserve.

Indian Olive (Elaeocarpus Serratus)

indian olives

Finally, to complete this list of weird exotic fruits, we have the Indian olive. This fruit does look like an oversized green olive but other than that, it doesn’t have much in common with the popular Mediterranean fruit (yes, olive is a fruit). The Indian olive has a predominately sour and slightly sweet taste.

How did you like this list of weird exotic fruits from around the world? Did you try any of them? Which one is your favorite? Which one would you want to try?

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weird exotic fruits
weird exotic fruits
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