Trying the most scrumptious Puerto Rican fruits should be high-priority while on the island.
Puerto Rico boasts ideal weather for cultivating many tropical fruits. And while trying the local Puerto Rico cuisine is one of the best activities on the island, you shouldn’t miss the chance to try the freshly cultivated fruits too.
As a Puerto Rican, I’ve enjoyed many of these tropical fruits throughout my life. So, if you don’t know where to start, I’ve listed out the best fruits you can try on the island.
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13 Best Puerto Rican Fruits to Try
A round drupe with a sweet and juicy pulp.
Quenepa is a native fruit of the Caribbean and South America. Quenepas are small round drupes that grow from medium to tall trees.
They ripen during the summer and are popular throughout the island. You can eat the inside sweet pulp by breaking the outer skin with your teeth. The seeds look like cashew nuts and you can eat them roasted or grounded.
Besides quenepa, you will find rambutan in Puerto Rico which is another fruit species very similar to quenepa.
👉 Did You Know? Quenepas grow in massive quantities in Ponce. The city is popular for its Quenepas and there is a Puerto Rico festival named Festival de Las Quenepas.
A sweet fruit rich in fiber and great for smoothies.
Mangos are originally from Southeast Asia, but you’ll find them everywhere in Puerto Rico. In fact, there are thirty types of mangoes in Puerto Rico.
The Mayagüezano and Largo are two of the most common types. The fruit is available during summer, and you know it’s ripe when it’s yellowish or slightly squishy to the touch. Mangos are both refreshing and sweet.
Sweet and sour fruit used for popular Puerto Rican drinks.
Pineapple is one of the fresh fruits you can find in Puerto Rico. Although it’s cultivated throughout the island, the pineapple of Laja’s is particularly popular and sweet.
Pineapples are good for digestion and are high in vitamin C and fiber. This is why they’re great to consume at any age.
You can buy fresh on the market or you can try any of it via a popular Puerto Rican drink. It’s also available in coffee cake or pineapple candy.
A versatile fruit used to make different Puerto Rican dishes.
Although breadfruit reached Puerto Rico through Europe, it has become a favorite of locals ever since. Breadfruit is known in Spanish as pana.
It’s used to make different dishes during the various stages of its development. When it’s green, locals like to eat it boiled, baked, or fried in tostones. When it’s ripe it’s also used to make the dough for rellenos, which are meat-stuffed fritters.
Pana is quite filling and cheap, perfect for a meal on a budget. It’s also a great meat alternative for vegan dishes.
👉 Did You Know? Pana is one of the staple foods of Puerto Rico. Other foods you will commonly find in Puerto Rican cuisine are rice, green plantains, beans, avocados, and potatoes. You can learn more about the local cuisine by taking a Puerto Rican food tour through Old San Juan.
This unique-looking fruit is full of vitamins.
The star fruit is popular among Puerto Ricans for its citric yet refreshing flavor.
Starfruit is also known as carambola and most Puerto Ricans eat it in slices or prepared in frappés. You can find carambolas in local markets. They are great snacks for on the go.
A tropical fruit you will find in multiple foods in Puerto Rico.
Guayaba, known in English as Guava, is one of Puerto Ricans’ favorite fruits. You can find guayaba in Puerto Rican desserts, jam, juice, popsicles, pastes, cookies, and even ice cream.
But, Puerto Ricans also like to eat this fresh fruit directly from trees. Guayabas can be round or pear-shaped. Although many recognize it for its characteristic pink color on the inside, it can be white too.
An odd-looking fruit with a rich juicy flavor.
Don’t judge guanábanas for their appearance, I can guarantee you they taste amazing. This fruit’s flavor is similar to the flavor of an apple, but it sports a creamy texture composed mostly of water.
Most Puerto Ricans consume guanabanas (soursop) in limber, frappé, sorbets, or juice, as they make a refreshing treat for everyone.
A fruit that smells and tastes like a flower.
Pomarrosas look similar to guavas and have a texture like a pear. This is one of the most popular tropical fruits in Puerto Rico.
Depending on your taste, you can eat them raw or cooked. You can also consume Pomarrosas in marmalade, juice, and jelly. If you need a delicious alternative to multivitamins, pomarrosa is a good source of Vitamin C, B3, iron, calcium, and phosphorus.
🚜 Want to explore Puerto Rico’s agriculture? Check out my guide to the best Puerto Rico farms to visit!
A popular tropical fruit that can take the form of almost anything.
Whenever you think of the tropics, you’re bound to think about palm trees and coconuts. And that’s why you should also try them during your visit to Puerto Rico.
Coconuts are a refreshing drink and a crunchy snack. They are also versatile, which is why you’ll find them in popular Puerto Rico drinks like pina colada, and desserts like tembleque. Even if you’re short on time and can’t go around hunting fruits, coconuts are easy to find in local markets.
Green or ripe, everyone loves bananas in Puerto Rico.
Bananas are one of the most common fruits you’ll find in Puerto Rico.
When they are green, locals cook them and prepare them in different Puerto Rican dishes like “guineitos en escabeche” or eat them accompanied by taro, yuca, and yautia.
Bananas are filling and a great source of potassium. They can also be eaten raw. When they are ripe, they are sweet and ideal for making smoothies.
Once in Puerto Rico, you should try out guineos niños and guineos mafafos, two bananas with variations in form and flavor from the usual bananas you see at home.
👉 Did You Know? Green bananas and green plantains aren’t the same. Although plantains are similar to bananas and are technically a fruit, they aren’t eaten raw. They are picked green and cooked in Puerto Rican dishes. For example, mofongo is a combination of mashed green plantains with olive oil and garlic.
A fruit rich in antioxidants with a citrus flavor.
Jobo is a fruit native to Oceania, but it has been in Puerto Rico since the 18th century. It looks similar to a mango during the ripe season between October and November.
This fruit is rich in antioxidants and nutrients, and if you like pineapples or mangos, you’ll love jobo too. But, eat with caution! Jobo hides a spiky large seed in its interior that can hurt your teeth if you bite right into it.
A bittersweet fruit that grows on vines.
If you are a fan of passion fruit products, but you’ve never tasted a fresh one, then you’ll love trying it in Puerto Rico.
Passion fruit’s interior is odd looking and maybe even unappetizing, but don’t let appearances fool you – this citric fruit is invigorating and delicious when consumed fresh.
Parcha, as it’s known locally, is a beneficial fruit if you have high blood pressure, as it maintains your heart health. Depending on the plant species it can taste sweeter or more bitter.
Papaya is a replenishing fruit that is easy to eat.
Papayas are another fresh fruit worth trying in Puerto Rico. Unlike other fruits, papaya is originally from the American continent and was introduced to the Caribbean in the 16th century.
Papayas are rich in antioxidants, have diuretic benefits, and help the digestive system. They are sweet and light to the stomach. Papayas are commonly used in smoothies and Puerto Rican candies, which is a great way to introduce them to kids.
FAQs About Fruits in Puerto Rico
What is a popular fruit in Puerto Rico?
Popular fruits in Puerto Rico include papaya, passion fruit, guayaba, coconut, and mangoes. Travelers can find these fresh foods in local markets and fincas. They are also present in by-products like desserts, drinks, and dishes. For example, guayaba and coconut are present in cookies, drinks, cakes, and pastes in Puerto Rico.
Does Puerto Rico have passion fruit?
Puerto Rican fruits offer a great diversity of colors, flavors, and textures. Whether they are natural to Puerto Rico or not, you will for sure enrich your Puerto Rico experience by enjoying the freshness of local tropical fruit. Up next, check out my article about the best restaurants in San Juan!
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