Health Benefits of Citrus: Not only vibrant and pleasing to the eye, citrus has been adding nutritional benefits to diets for centuries. Mostly known for its wealth of vitamin C, citrus is loaded with plenty of other dietary advantages as well. The vitamin C available in citrus allows for iron absorption from other foods consumed. Citrus is also a great source of soluble fiber, so it’s a great option for reducing spikes in blood sugar levels. With their high levels of antioxidants, citrus fruits are a great at reducing inflammation. To be sure to enjoy the most benefits of citrus, opt for eating the whole fruit, rather than just drinking juice.
1. Cara Cara Orange: Characterized by pinkish flesh, Cara Cara oranges are part of the navel family. They are seedless, low in acidity and high in sweetness and juice. People often note how the tanginess is similar to that of cranberries. Serve as wedges or use the juice to make a vinaigrette.
2. Valencia Orange: Named for the city in Spain, Valencia oranges are characterized by their sweet flavor and bright colored juice that other citrus fruits don’t have. Because of the brightness of their juice, Valencia oranges are usually used to make bottled juices available in grocery stores.
3. Meyer Lemon: Meyer lemons, with their soft skin, are sweeter and less acidic than other lemons. The mild sweetness comes from a bit of mandarin orange in their family tree. Meyer lemons make extremely flavorful lemonade, salad dressings, lemon bars and lemon curd.
4. Murcott Tangerine: Tangerines are marked by their bright orange skin and their smaller size. They are most often peeled and eaten out of hand, but also make a great addition to a fresh salad.
5. Minneola Tangelo: Minneola Tangelos are a cross between a tangerine and a grapefruit. They are characterized by their bell shape and mildly sweet and tart flavor. They have a reddish-orange skin which is easy to peel and are seedless, making them great to cook with. Because of their sweetness they made a great addition to baked goods like cakes and scones.
6. Red Grapefruit: Red grapefruits are both sweet and tart and are a great way to start the day. They get their vibrant color from the antioxidant lycopene which is great cardiovascular health. Enjoy grapefruits by juicing them (but be aware of any effect it may have on medications) or by eating their segments.
7. Navel Orange: Navel oranges can be easily spotted by the button formation on the opposite side of the stem. They are a seedless variety of orange and are typically very juicy. They make a great addition to salads and make great jam or marmalade.
8. Blood Orange: Blood oranges, named for their deep red flesh, have thin skin, usually with deep in orange color or with hints of red. Because their flavor is deep and their color is so enticing they are great for cocktails, like mimosas, which show off their jewel-like tones.