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Is Lemon A Fruit Or A Vegetable? Here’s What We Found Out

Quick Answer

Lemon is a fruit, according to the USDA. But while it’s commonly thought of as a fruit, it actually falls into the category of “vegetable.” And there are some pretty interesting reasons why it doesn’t fit into either one of those categories.

Limes are technically considered citrus fruits, but they’re commonly called lemons because of their sour taste.

Both lemons and limes come from the same plant (Citrus medica) and both contain citric acid.

The difference between the two lies in the amount of juice produced per lemon versus lime.

Both lemons and limes are great additions to salads, drinks, desserts, and even cocktails.

Is Lemon A Fruit Or A Vegetable Here’s What We Found Out

In addition, they add flavor to dishes such as fish, chicken, pork, beef, and seafood.

If you want to get the most out of your ingredients, consider using lemons instead of limes.

Why Are They Distributed In The Vegetable Section?

This is just how some supermarkets arrange to produce, and it’s nothing out of the ordinary. As one expert explains, “it’s simply a matter of where the retailer wants to place the item.”

Sometimes, stores put certain foods together to make it easier for customers to choose what they want.

For example, say someone wanted to buy avocados, cucumbers, tomatoes, and bell peppers.

They could easily pick up four items and go home without having to worry about mixing things up.

However, some retailers might group the items together in the produce department to help shoppers choose what they want faster.

So, while it may seem like there’s something wrong with the produce located near lemons, it really isn’t.

What Is The Main Difference Between Fruits And Vegetables?

In the culinary sense, we usually differentiate foods based on taste, like apples versus oranges.

There are some things that you might not think about when it comes to fruits and vegetables.

For example, what is the difference between a banana and a potato? What about carrots? Are they fruits or vegetables?

And how about tomatoes? Do they fall into the category of fruits or vegetables?

The botanical definition of a fruit is “the fleshy or dry ripe ovary of a flowering tree or shrub containing seeds.”

A vegetable is defined as the edible part of a plant, such as a stem, leaf, root, flower, seed pod, etc.

So, if we’re talking about whether something counts as a fruit or a vegetable in the botanical sense — it depends on where you draw the lines.

If you’re looking at fruits and vegetables in the culinary mind, then yes, bananas and potatoes are fruits because they contain sugars.

Carrots are considered vegetables because they don’t contain sugars.

Tomatoes are technically fruits because they are the fleshy part of a flowering plant.

But if you’re looking at fruits in the botanical sense and defining them as the fleshy part of the plant, then no, carrots aren’t fruits.

They are actually the root of the plant, and therefore, they belong in the vegetable category.

Is A Lemon Classified As A Berry?

Is Lemon A Fruit Or A Vegetable

A lemon isn’t technically a berry because it doesn’t have a thickened inner wall around the seeds as most fruits do.

But, it does have a tough, thin skin called the pericarp that protects the seed and contains essential oils.

But, there are exceptions.

Apples and oranges have thick, fibrous peels that separate the fruit into multiple parts, and thus aren’t really berries either.

And, tomatoes don’t fit the definition of a berry because they lack a true seed coat. Instead, they contain a small amount of starch that helps keep the tomato firm.

They’re still very much fruits, though, just not berries.

Are Lemons Natural Fruits?

It is known that lemon is a type of citrus fruit. Citrons are known for having very little pulp inside, while oranges have a lot of it.

Lemons, however, are somewhere in the middle. They have less pith than a citron, but more than an orange.

The most well-known type of lemon is the common grocery store variety, which has thick skin and a yellowish color.

They come in many varieties, such as regular lemons, tangerines, and mini lemons.

There’s another type of lemon called a “bitter orange.” This type of lemon doesn’t contain much juice, but it does have some bitterness.

Bitter oranges are primarily grown in China and Japan. They are very popular in Asian cuisine.

Another type of lemon is citron. Citrons are very similar to lemons, except they are smaller, rounder, and have less flavor.

Citrons are mainly found in Asia. They are often used in desserts because they aren’t sour like lemons.

What Can We Make With Lemons?

Lemon A Fruit Or A Vegetable

If there’s one thing we know about lemons, it’s that they’re great for making things taste better. But what else can you do with them?

Lemons are one of those fruits that we don’t really know what to do with. They’re great for making cocktails, but there’s no real reason to eat them.

We just throw them away because we’ve never learned how to properly utilize them. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t turn a lemon into something delicious.

Here are a few things you can do with lemons.

Make Lemon Style Ice Cream

The easiest thing to do with lemons is to make homemade lemon ice cream. All you need is sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, and lemon zest.

You’ll want to add a little salt too, since adding salt will help prevent the cold ice cream from becoming icy.

Once everything is combined, put it in the freezer for about three hours.

When it’s done freezing, take it out and let it sit overnight. In the morning, scoop it into bowls and serve.

Use Limes Instead Of Lemons For Margaritas

If you’re looking for a different drink recipe to try with your limes, why not make a margarita? Just mix lime juice, tequila, triple sec, and salt.

Then pour that mixture over crushed ice and garnish with a wedge of lime.

Add A Bit Of Lime To Your Salad

Instead of using a store-bought salad dressing, why not make your own?

Mix equal parts olive oil, vinegar, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and lime juice. Shake well before pouring it onto your lettuce.

Final Thoughts

While lemons may seem like a boring fruit, they’re actually quite versatile. You can use them to make all sorts of recipes, including drinks, salads, and even desserts.

So next time you find yourself throwing away a bunch of lemons, think twice before doing so. If you give them a chance, they might surprise you!

Jess Smith