If you’re a big fan of mini fruits or unusual fruits, kiwi berries are about to become your new obsession. They are essentially mini versions of the kiwi fruit but are more fun to eat! Keep reading to learn how to eat kiwi berries and other fun facts.
What are Kiwi Berries?
Kiwi berries, also known as Actinidia Arguta, are a pint-sized fruit that looks like a fusion of kiwis, grapes, and kumquats. They go by many names including hardy kiwi fruit, arctic kiwi, baby kiwi, dessert kiwi, grape kiwi, and cocktail kiwi.
You may initially see kiwi fruit and think it’s a strange type of grape. However, once you slice it open, it resembles its big cousin, the kiwi.
You can think of kiwi berries as kiwis but smaller and without the fuzzy brown skin that is difficult to peel and eat. Kiwi berries have smooth, green skin, although they can sometimes appear brown or red. Their skin is easy to eat, and it’s really good for you. The flesh of the kiwi berries themselves is extremely juicy.
Where are they from and what do they taste like?
Kiwi berries are native to the northern regions of Asia, such as China, Siberia, and Japan, where the climate is cool enough to allow them to grow. Despite their seemingly recent popularity, kiwi berries have been growing in the United States since the late 19th century in New England, Pennsylvania, and Oregon.
Kiwi berries taste sweeter and more acidic than normal kiwis. They are a great choice for people who like the flavor of kiwi but think the fruit is too sour or tart.
Kiwi berries smell sweet and aromatic, and they taste just like they smell. Not only are kiwi berries tasty, but they are also packed with nutrients. These mini fruits are rich in antioxidants and Vitamin C and Vitamin E, and they’re an excellent source of fiber, potassium, and magnesium.
How to Eat Kiwi Berries
Kiwi berries are easy and enjoyable to eat. They have the same fruity flavor as kiwis but without fuzzy skin. The best part about kiwi berries is they’re small enough to pop into your mouth.
While kiwi berries are a delicious snack on their own, they are quite a versatile fruit. They mix well with other fruits, such as banana, papaya, and everyone’s favorite, strawberry.
Kiwi Berries Can Also Be:
- A garnish for cocktails
- Added to cheese boards
- Prepared as a kiwi salsa
- Added into baked goods
- Mixed into a fresh fruit salad
- Frozen and added to smoothies
- Made into jams and jellies
Basically, anything you can do with a regular kiwi, you can do with a kiwi berry. If you have a recipe that calls for kiwi, you can substitute kiwi fruit for kiwi berries and keep the same delicious kiwi flavor you love while adding some extra sweetness.
If you want to cut up some kiwi berries for a salad, try not to cut them up too small as to not lose any of the juice or sweetness of the fruit.
How to Store Them
Like most fruit, kiwi berries taste best when they are ripe, which you will know when they are soft to the touch. If you buy unripe kiwi berries that are hard to the touch, let them ripen at room temperature for a few days before eating. You’ll know they’re ready when they’re soft to the touch and the skin turns into a deep green. If you’re impatient, you can store them in a paper bag to ripen them more quickly.
Although they can be enjoyed at room temperature, kiwi berries last longer when they are kept in the fridge. When refrigerated, ripe kiwi berries can last up to a week. Since you will most likely be eating the skin, make sure to wash your kiwi berries under cold water to remove any dirt or pesticides before eating.
When Are Kiwi Berries in Season?
After reading about how cute, sweet, and complex these bite-sized fruits are, you may be wondering where you can find kiwi berries to try for yourself. However, there is one downside when it comes to this cute fruit: how often you can find them in the grocery store. Unfortunately, kiwi berries are actually quite difficult to find in the United States.
Kiwis are in season during the winter and early spring, so you can find these fruits all year long. However, kiwi berries have a much shorter peak season. Kiwi berry season is in the early fall and only lasts a couple of weeks. In contrast, kiwi berries are in season from March to May in the Southern Hemisphere.
Kiwi berries also have a short shelf life so many grocery stores choose not to carry them at all.
Where to Buy Kiwi Berries
Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s have been known to have kiwi fruits during the height of their two-week season. Look for them in the same plastic containers that blueberries come in.
Kiwi berries are one of those unusual fruits that are known to taste delicious. If you’re ever grocery shopping in late September and spot these fruits in the store, be sure to grab some and give them a try. You may even end up liking them more than kiwi fruit!