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What Does Kiwi Taste Like?

Kiwi, also called kiwifruit, is a delicious and unique fruit with a bright, acidic flavor that makes it the star of any fruit tray or platter it is a part of.

If you have never tasted a kiwi before, this is not a fruit to miss!

Kiwis are an interesting and iconic fruit with a unique taste and a wide variety of uses.

In this article, we’ll take a look at kiwis: what they are, where they’re from, what they taste like, and the best ways for you to enjoy them for yourself.

What Do Kiwis Look Like?

Kiwi Taste

Kiwis are bigger than your average egg, but smaller than a tennis ball, with an oval shape. The skin on the outside is coarse and hairy, with many short and fine, prickly hairs.

A kiwi the way you might see it in the grocery store looks like a large, brown, furry egg. 

When you slice into a kiwi, you see something completely different.

The flesh of the kiwi is (in most varieties) a stunning, bright green, with tiny black seeds throughout. 

What Texture Does Kiwi Have?

Kiwi Taste

The exterior of the kiwi has a very interesting texture, as it is covered with tiny hairs. To feel the outside of a kiwi, you can sense a grain that the hair follows and a bristle when you run your fingers against the grain. 

The flesh of kiwi fruit is very soft and easy to cut into. It is wet and juicy without being watery like watermelon. The texture is similar to melon but even more delicate. It’s easy to eat a kiwi directly from the skin with a spoon. 

Types Of Kiwi

Kiwi Taste

Many different types of kiwi can be broken down into 3 categories – standard kiwis (Actinidia deliciosa), hardy kiwis (Actinidia arguta), and super-hardy kiwis (Actinidia kolomikta)

Of these, standard kiwis are the only ones we would recognize.

The other members of the kiwi’s immediate family are tougher and able to manage colder temperatures but produce fruit with thinner skins and different flavors that are not recognizably kiwis.

Hardy kiwis, also called bowerberry, grow in trees up to 100 feet tall and produce fruit that grows in clusters similar to grapes.

Super-hardy kiwis produce even smaller fruit but can withstand temperatures as low as -40 C, and grow in places like Siberia.

The kiwi you recognize is probably a Hayward kiwi. This is the most popular variety worldwide and the type you are most likely to see at the grocery store.

Hayward kiwis were originally cultivated in New Zealand but are now produced on farms in many countries.

Some other well-known varieties of kiwi are

  • Tewi
  • Matua
  • Vincent
  • Bruno
  • Gracie
  • Dexter
  • Abbott
  • Monty
  • Chico
  • Tomuri

Where Does Kiwi Come From?

Kiwi Taste

The Kiwi originated in Southern China, where it is called Yong Tao.

It grew there and was initially brought to New Zealand in the early 20th century as “Chinese Gooseberry”, where it was later re-named after the flightless kiwi bird endemic to New Zealand.

The kiwi bird looks a little bit like kiwi fruit, with short and plucky brown plumage, which is likely where the name came from. 

When New Zealand began to export kiwis, the name stuck, and we have referred to kiwis this way ever since.

Today, although “kiwi” is a word that can refer to the fruit or a New Zealander, kiwi is grown in many countries. Most of the kiwis consumed in the United States come from California.

Is Kiwi Healthy?

Kiwi Taste

Kiwi is a fruit with several health benefits

The Kiwi is low in calories and fat while packing in a ton of nutrients, including high levels of Vitamin C, folate, Vitamin K, and Vitamin E. 

Your eyes can benefit from more kiwi too – carotenoids like lutein, zeaxanthin, and beta-carotene can help maintain your vision and reduce the risk of macular degeneration as you age.

There are even some studies that suggest that kiwis can reduce blood pressure and the risk of heart disease and stroke.

Lastly, kiwis have a ton of fiber to help you maintain gut health and regularity.

The kiwi is a very healthy fruit, and if you enjoy them you should eat them as regularly as you like.

RELATED: What Does Dragon Fruit Taste Like, And How Do You Eat It?

What Are The Dangers Of Eating Kiwi?

For most people, eating kiwis is very safe. There are no major health risks to regularly eating kiwis, for average people.

However, some people are allergic to kiwis, and this allergy can be severe. An allergic reaction to kiwis can be dangerous, especially for children.

That’s why it’s important to be cautious when trying kiwi for the first time and to stop eating kiwi if you experience any of the following symptoms

  • Itching in the throat and mouth
  • swollen tongue
  • coughing or wheezing
  • trouble swallowing
  • hives
  • abdominal pain
  • vomiting

This type of kiwi allergy is rare, but it’s something to be aware of, especially if you are trying kiwi for the first time.

How Can I Store Kiwi?

It’s fine to keep unripened or newly-ripened kiwis out on our countertop or in a bowl of fruit. If your kiwis are firm to the touch on the outside, you should probably leave them out until they are fully ripe.

If you have ripened kiwis you want to store, put them in the refrigerator for 5-10 days, preferably in a sealed container. This will preserve the flavor and texture. 

Can You Freeze Kiwi?

Not whole. Kiwis have a high water content, and freezing kiwis ruins both the texture and the flavor.

However, if you remove the skins and cube the kiwi fruit, you can place it in a sealed container and store it in the freezer for up to 6 months. 

How Can I Pick Kiwi In The Grocery Store?

The best kiwis at the grocery store are ripe or nearly ripe and ready to eat right away. To find the ripest fruit, gently press against the skin. You want to be able to push gently and make an impression like you might be able to with ripe avocado

If the skin feels loose or sagging when you press against it, the kiwi is likely overripe and you should leave it behind.

Likewise, if the skin is too firm for you to be able to make an impression, or if you have to press hard to make an impression, the fruit isn’t ripe yet.

How Can I Ripen Kiwi?

It’s easy to ripen kiwis at home, much like other fruit.

Kiwis ripen in response to chemicals they exude into the air, so containing them in a paper bag helps to contain these chemicals and ripen the fruit faster.

When ripening kiwis, make sure not to stack them on top of each other too much, or place other fruit on top of them, as this can cause bruising. 

Can You Grow Kiwi?

It is possible to grow kiwis, but it’s not easy and you need to be in the right climate. Kiwis don’t grow well in areas where temperatures go lower than 10 C, and require trellises, irrigation, and pruning.

If you are committed and live in the right climate, you can grow your own Hayward kiwis at home.

However, if you live in a colder climate and still want to give it a try, you can grow one of the other varieties – hardy, or super-hardy kiwis.

These are smaller fruit with a different appearance and flavor, but much more resistant to cold temperatures. 

Kiwi Nutrition Information

per 3.5 oz (100g) serving of Kiwi, according to Healthline.com

Calories64
Carbohydrates14g
Fiber3g
Fat0.44g
Protein1g
Vitamin C83% of the Daily Value
Vitamin E9% of the DV
Vitamin K34% of the DV
Folate7% of the DV
Copper15% of the DV
Potassium4% of the DV
Magnesium4% of the DV

Kiwi Recipes: Quick Table

RecipesCaloriesPreparation Time
Kiwi Muffins34825 minutes
Kiwi Pineapple Spinach Smoothie2705 minutes
Gluten-Free Kiwi Orange Tart35550 minutes

1. Kiwi Muffins

The muffins are both delicious and practical, packing a ton of kiwi nutrition and flavor into a snack that you can make ahead and take with you when you are on the go. 

Kiwi has a bright, strong, flavor when raw that becomes a little different when cooked, and this recipe is great to show you what a cooked kiwi can be.

Whether you want to make these as a dessert or a convenient breakfast, these muffins show off the unique flavor of kiwis in an easy-to-make recipe that suits all occasions.

Calories: 348

Total Preparation Time: 25 minutes

2. Kiwi Pineapple Spinach Smoothie

Kiwi is one of the most nutrient-rich foods in the world – a true superfood. This smoothie mixes it with pineapple and spinach to create an incredibly healthy smoothie that is also bold and delicious with a tangy and subtle kiwi flavor.

The addition of spinach really improves the appeal of this smoothie in multiple ways, adding a fresh and green flavor along with a lot more nutrition. It also helps to create the bright green color that makes this drink so beautiful.

The flavors of pineapple and kiwi go so well together, complementing one another and enhancing the smoothie. There is a lot of tang and acidity, but not too much, especially with the spinach and other ingredients to moderate it.

Add kiwi to your smoothies to increase the flavor and nutrition!

Calories: 270

Total Preparation Time: 5 minutes

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3. Gluten-Free Kiwi Orange Tart

This mouth-watering dessert is gluten free and made with an incredible custard and crust that is to die for. If you are looking for the perfect kiwi dessert, this recipe is here to provide it.

The crust is made from gluten-free oats and almonds. The custard itself doesn’t contain kiwis, which are laid on top raw. The mix of the sweet crust, creamy custard, and fresh kiwi is a taste experience you don’t want to miss out on. 

Calories: 355

Total Preparation Time: 50 minutes

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does A Kiwi Taste Similar To?

It’s hard to compare the unique flavor of kiwi to anything else, but the acidity and tang of kiwi are similar to pineapple or strawberry. Some people also compare the flavor to bananas. 

Is Kiwi Taste Good?

Yes! The taste of kiwi is incredibly popular.

Like any flavor, there are some people who don’t enjoy the taste of kiwi, but they are in the minority. Most people enjoy the taste of kiwi and find it very good. 

Is Kiwi Fruit Sweet Or Sour?

Technically, kiwi is sweet, but the acidity gives it a tanginess that some people experience as sourness or tartness. Kiwi is sweet but not in the way you might be expecting, since there is a bright acidic burst of flavor accompanying it.

The riper a kiwi is, the sweeter it is, and the less noticeable this tangy sour flavor is.

Do Kiwis Taste Like Bananas?

This is subjective and a matter of opinion, but many people claim that there is a slight banana aftertaste to the kiwi. Even more specifically, an aftertaste of banana, mango, and lime. 

The taste of kiwi does include an element of banana, but it’s very subtle and not everyone notices it.

There is a sweet fruit flavor to kiwi that is comparable to bananas and mangoes, but it intermingles with more acidic flavors similar to pineapple and strawberry which arrive on the palate first and are more noticeable.

Can You Eat Kiwi Skin?

Yes, the skin of a kiwi is completely edible and full of fiber.

Although it is more popular to remove the skin before eating the flesh of kiwi fruit, there is nothing toxic or inedible about it, and some people eat kiwi the way you would eat an apple or a pear, skin and all!

You might think the hairs on the skin of kiwis cause a problem or taste bad, but as long as you are okay with the texture they are perfectly safe to eat.

What Do You Eat Kiwi With?

Kiwi plays well with a lot of other flavors, especially fruit. 

In a smoothie, you can combine a kiwi with just about anything and get a great result. The same is true of fruit trays – there is always a place for sliced or diced kiwi. 

When it comes to the tools you use to eat a kiwi – a spoon is fine. You can cut open a kiwi and eat the flesh directly without cutting it, using a spoon. 

Can Kiwi And Milk Be Taken Together?

The high level of acidity in the kiwi means that it doesn’t always work well with certain other ingredients, and one of these is milk. Mixing together kiwi and milk in any way tends to lead to curdling, which is not desirable or tasty. 

Actinidin is a compound in kiwis that breaks down proteins in milk. It also keeps gelatin from setting. 

The flavor of kiwi is unique, vibrant, and interesting, but unfortunately, it’s difficult or impossible to create kiwi ice cream, or kiwi jelly or gummies, because of this compound in kiwis.

Best & Flavorful Kiwi Recipes To Add In Menu

Kiwi Is A Unique Fruit That Has A Flavor That Is Hard To Describe. Learn More About The Taste And Nutrition Of Kiwi Fruit.

Directions

  • Pick a recipe from the list above
  • Click the recipe name and visit the website
  • Collect the ingredients and cook the food
  • Enjoy – don’t forget to leave a review

Recipe Video

Jess Smith
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