The most exotic fruits in the world and their properties

In tropical countries, fruit trees grow in abundance and offer a good number of juicy, sweet and tasty fruits. These are called exotic fruits in those countries where they are not grown and import is necessary to be able to taste them.

Some are well known around the world such as pineapple, coconut or avocado. However, there are other very local and specific varieties. If you are curious to know about them, we invite you to continue reading this article.

What are exotic fruits?

Exotic or tropical fruits are all those that need a warm environment for their optimal development and growth.. Therefore, it is the climate that defines them and not their biological characteristics.

In general, they grow in tropical or subtropical countries where they have conditions that are optimal for them. Exotic fruits need warm temperatures since they cannot bear the cold because it can damage them or influence their growth.

These are highly recommended foods to stay hydrated due to their water content. They also provide vitamins, antioxidants, minerals and fiber, nutrients that are considered positive for the body.

Discover What are the 10 best tropical fruits for health?

The 32 most curious exotic fruits in the world

Achiote is an exotic fruit with little flavor, but with an interesting content of vitamin E.


Native Americans used it for a long time as a coloring in food products and as a body and face paint. Although its fruit has almost no flavorIts seeds contain tocotrienols and tocopherols, which makes them an interesting source of vitamin E.


The Akebia quinata It is a climbing plant highly appreciated for the vanilla aroma of its leaves. Its fruits are similar to chocolate, with a soft and sticky pulp. According to traditional Chinese medicine, its dried roots would have a diuretic effect.


It is a fruit of the same family as lychee and longan. It is the national fruit of Jamaica and its arils are part of a large number of Caribbean recipes. However, there are scientific data on its potentially deadly toxic.


It is often confused with custard apple because of its rounded shape and the green scales that make up its skin. The edible part is inside and is a white pulp full of brown seeds. Its contribution of fiber, vitamin C and some of group B.


The persimmon or persimmon has spread to many countries of the world where it is already in habitual consumption. There are many varieties that are source of fiber and antioxidants, substances that act as protectors, for example, of cardiovascular health.


The carambola or star fruit is a fruit of medium size and yellow color that reveals its carotene content. Due to its beautiful star shape, it is very decorative in green salads, garnishes or fruit salads.

Custard apple

Cherimoya is usually consumed in smoothies or, directly, with a spoon.

Fruit of a tree of the genus Annona, native to tropical and sub-tropical areas of South America. Its medium fruits have the sweet and slightly acidic meat. The pulp is soft and eaten with a spoon, although smoothies, drinks or sorbets can also be prepared.

Copoazu or white cocoa

It is a tree of the cocoa family but its fruit is white and has a higher proportion of pulp than sIt is used in the preparation of compotes, cakes and other sweets. With the seeds, the cupulate, very similar to chocolate.


This Asian fruit is reputed to be one of the worst smelling fruits in the world. So much so that in countries like Singapore or Malaysia it is prohibited to enter with it in some markets and hotels. However, its taste is different and it has many followers.

For the brave who dare to try it, it is important to consider that its unappetizing appearance hides a creamy texture suitable to spread on top of bread and add to savory recipes. Provides fiber, vitamins and minerals.


This is one of the tropical fruits with a nutritional composition that is more different from other fruits. Presents a high concentration of starches and a small amount of water (10% of the total weight). It is a staple in the Caribbean where it is eaten fried, boiled or baked.

Miracle fruit

One of the exotic fruits from Africa is the magic berry or miracle fruit. Almost unique in the world, It has the ability to alter the perception of sour or bitter foods in sweets. In addition, it multiplies the spiciness of capsaicin.


Native to East and Southeast Asia, the gac fruit is traditionally used in Thai and Vietnamese cuisine mixed with rice, in curries or other stews. Presents a marked orange color that reveals the high presence of lycopene and beta-carotene.

Thanks to them, it is a food recommended to maintain eye health, such as alleviating the symptoms of dry eyes and raising blood plasma levels. These pigments are concentrated above all in the arils more than in the fruit itself.


Guanabanero trees are native to the Caribbean and Central America but, today, their cultivation is very widespread. Its fruits are dark green with a acidic and aromatic pulp.


Guava is a fruit in the same family as cinnamon, pepper, and cloves. For this, has a spicy musk-like aroma. Thanks to its pectin content, a kind of quince is made with its meat. It is one of the tropical fruits with the most vitamin C, it is concentrated around the skin.


The consumption of this specimen is booming. Within its nutritional contribution, the beta-carotene content stands out. These have been the subject of scientific study for their possible positive effects in chronic degenerative diseases, cardiovascular problems or inflammations.


This yellow fruit comes from the same family as cucumber and melon. In fact, it is known by the names of horned cucumber or African melon. It can be used in salads or tasted with a little sugar, thus prepared its flavor reminds of a mixture of banana and kiwi


Lychee is one of the most widespread and consumed exotic fruits due to its sweet taste.

Also known as plum of China, it was one of the favorite fruits of the emperors of the Tang dynasty. Its fruit is small and sweet with a strong floral aroma. It is covered by a rough red skin that is easily removed.


Its name means "dragon eye" because inside there is a single black seed that reminds us of the eyeball. Its interior hides a juicy and sweet pulp with a flavor reminiscent of hazelnut.


The fruit that the tree produces Pouteria sapota It is usually eaten raw or made into bars, smoothies or ice cream. Provides different nutrients such as potassium, manganese, fiber, and B vitamins. In addition, sapayul oil for cosmetic use is extracted from its seeds.


From the tree Garcinia mangostana It is one of the exotic fruits most marketed as a nutritional supplement. It can be found in the form of juices and other types of drinks.

The presence of xanthones has put it in the spotlight of scientists in order to develop new drugs for chronic and degenerative diseases.

Buddha hand

Without a doubt, the Buddha's hand is one of the most curious exotic fruits on the market. It is a variety of citrus which has the fruits separated into sections similar to the fingers of a hand. Its use is also different since it has almost no pulp. In China and Japan, It is used to aromatize clothes or houses and is one of the offerings offered to Buddha.

Passion fruit

Also known as passion fruit or granadilla. In its composition, the presence of carbohydrates stands out, thus it is a good source of energy after sports. It also provides vitamin C and provitamin A, a very good substance for the skin, mucous membranes and the immune system in general.


This fruit has an aroma similar to durian but is not as intense and disappears when the skin is removed. Its flavor is similar to that of banana and you have to consume it quickly as it oxidizes and spoils easily.

Sweet Cucumber

A shrub in South America produces very juicy and quite sweet fruits. Sweet cucumber is considered refreshing, since the water content is higher than usual in other fruits.

Pineberry or white soul

This curious hybrid looks like a strawberry, but tastes like a pineapple.

Its name means "pineapple berry" and it is a hybrid fruit derived from the strawberry. Very little known, it was marketed for the first time in the United States in 2012. It is small and Although it is shaped very similar to strawberries, its flavor is more reminiscent of pineapple.


The dragon fruit stands out for the high antioxidant content that are in greater quantity in their red parts. These are positive for health as they can delay skin aging, the appearance of degenerative diseases or some types of cancer, according to research.


This tropical fruit is the only one of the genus Platonic. Its cultivation is mainly concentrated in the Brazilian Amazon. It presents a very interesting composition with high concentrations of vitamin C, A, calcium and magnesium. It is also valued for its use in cosmetic products.

Watermelon radish

With the shape of a radish and the color of watermelon, it is a fruit of Chinese origin that today is very little known. It has a green crust on the outside and its flesh is pale pink with a succulent and crunchy texture.


Native to Malaysia and Indonesia, it abounds in markets throughout Southeast Asia. It is small with a red, spiky outer skin and a creamy white interior. It has a striking amount of antioxidants such as flavonoids and polyphenols. It also highlights its contribution of iron and calcium.


This is the fruit of a palm native to Java and Sumatra. Have a strong flavor very sweet and acid at the same time. Some varieties are crisp and moist like apples and others are drier.

Tree tomato

Tomatillo, Andean tomato or Nordic mango, these are some of the popular names of the Solanum betaceum. It can be used raw or cooked and is a traditional remedy used to relieve symptoms of flu, colds and throat problems in Colombia and Ecuador.


It is a solanaceous plant so it has characteristics similar to those of tomato and potato. It is also known by the names of uvilla or aguaymanto. It is appreciated for its content in vitamin C and A, potassium, phosphorus and calcium. It is sold fresh, dehydrated or in syrups, jams and compotes.

Other exotic fruits that stand out for their properties

Avocado contains fatty acids and vitamin E.

Not all fruits that grow in tropical climates are so unknown or difficult to find in most markets. Some of them have become common in much of the world and also stand out for their interesting composition.


Unlike the vast majority of exotic fruits, it stands out for the quality of its fats; various investigations have observed a possible protective effect on cardiovascular health by them. Also, its majority use in savory dishes is special.


Opening one of these fruits at its point of maturity is synonymous with fragrance and sweetness in the kitchen. It is used both in desserts and in salads or in the preparation of some oriental recipes. Its stem contains very interesting enzymes to improve digestion. Also, contributes water, fiber, vitamin C and manganese.


Perhaps it is one of the most appreciated fruits in the world. Mango comes from India where it is another Ayurvedic medicine remedy. Its chemical composition is very varied so its beneficial properties for health are studied. Among them, its antioxidant, antiparasitic, anti-inflammatory and antidiarrheal effects stand out.

Read more Delicious and healthy recipes with mango


Bananas are highly valued in Europe, where almost all of its exports are directed. This characteristic curved fruit has a pulp with abundant starch and it can be eaten alone or used for cooking.


Come from South Asia, its use has resurfaced strongly in recent years; especially some derived products such as coconut oil, sugar, flour or water.

Exotic fruits

Eating fruits on a daily basis has many health benefits. They are light, diuretic, provide fiber and an interesting amount of vitamins and minerals among other nutrients.

In general, they are healthy and can be part of the daily diet. The best recommendation is to choose varied, seasonal and local fruits. Some exotic fruits such as pineapple, mango, papaya or banana are found in the markets on a regular basis. However, the vast majority are very local and it is better to eat them from time to time or take advantage of trips to be able to taste them.