What Does Starfruit / Carambola Taste Like?


Quick Answer: How Does Starfruit Taste Like?

Starfruit / Carambola has a tangy and acidic flavor with a hint of floral. The taste of starfruit depends on its variety, but most starfruit has a citrus flavor with a slight sweetness. The starfruit has tangy flesh that is succulent and tastes similar to citrus fruits such as oranges or lemons. Starfruit tastes a mixture of sweet and tart, though the tartness reduces as it ripens. Some people find the taste to be like that of grapefruit or pineapple. 

This is a complete guide to what exactly starfruit tastes like.

Let us get started!

What Is Starfruit?

Star fruit or carambola — is a sweet and sour fruit popular in Southeast Asian cuisine. Starfruit is greenish-yellow when it is unripe and bright yellow when ripened. 

Starfruit resembles a star when it is sliced, hence its unique name. It is an oval-shaped fruit with ridges.

It is often used to make jellies or jams because of its exciting taste, which is a mix of sweet and sour. Its unique flavor profile makes it popular in several dishes.

The smaller starfruit can taste sour and tart, whereas the larger one can taste mild and sweeter. Starfruits have an exotic taste which makes them popular among consumers.

What Does Starfruit Taste Like?

If you have eaten grapefruit, oranges, or green apples, you likely have an idea of what a starfruit tastes like. Its flavor is bright and complex, with the ripest being the sweetest.

The taste of starfruit is best described as a cross between a pear apple, with a hint of citrus added. You get a mouthful of this excellent taste and flavor as you bite into them.

Moreover, their skin is edible, which adds a nice crispness to the fruit.

Starfruit has a sharp yet pleasant acidity, which is close to the taste of pineapples. They also have a hint of a floral essence in their flavor profile. Starfruits taste is often compared to a mix of fruits like grapefruits, apples, oranges, and pears.

Unripe starfruit has a tart flavor with a sour undertone, which is slightly similar to the taste of green apples.

On the contrary, ripe star fruit has a sweet flavor with a light sour undertone. 

Here’s the link to the video 

Can You Eat Unriped Starfruit?

Yes, you can. But it is a matter of preference, so if you like the tart flavor of green apples, you might also like the taste of unripe starfruit. Starfruits are less juicy, crisp, and sourer at the unripe stage.  

Unripe starfruit has a tart taste with a sour undertone, Unripe starfruits may even taste excessively sour and even bitter.

You can try using unripe starfruit in salsas and salads with garlic or onion and potent herbs like cilantro. 

What Does Unripe Starfruit Taste Like?

The taste of unripe starfruit is excessively bitter or sour. This bitterness is from the fact that the fruit is still immature. When starfruit is unripe, it does not have as much juice; it is crispy and sour.

Unripe starfruit has a tart flavor with sour notes, which is a little similar to the taste of green apples.

How To Eat Starfruit?

The whole starfruit is edible, including the skin. So, you don’t need to peel the skin of starfruit, just like apples. The skin is delicate like the entire fruit—even the seeds can be eaten, although they’re a bit hard, and some people like to take them out.

The proper way of eating starfruit is to place it length-wise on the cutting board.

Then, slice it like you’d cut a banana, from top to bottom. Pop out the seeds if you do not want to consume them, but they are edible.

Here’s the link to the video

Starfruit Varieties

There are two prime varieties of starfruit or carambola: sweet and tart. Sweet starfruits are a lot more common in Asia and Europe than tart ones, which are more famous in North America.

Between these two, the difference is that the sweet starfruit variety has a sweeter flavor while the tart one has a sour taste. 

How To Store Starfruit?

Starfruit is a perishable food. Make sure to properly store it to extend its shelf life. Here are the steps to follow: 

  1. Keep the starfruit in the refrigerator with a temperature below 40° Fahrenheit. That will make it last longer.
  2. Make sure not to store starfruit inside plastic bags. Instead, you can use glass containers to keep them fresh.
  3. Clean and ready the glass container beforehand. Slice them after, or you can opt not to slice them. 
  4. Place the starfruit in the freezer if you do not plan to eat it within the week.

Uses Of Starfruit

Here are some most common uses of Starfruit –  

  • The best way to enjoy this fruit is by eating it fresh. Slice a clean starfruit and sprinkle some salt on top. 
  • Star fruits are made into pickles
  • You can use starfruit as a substitute for pineapple in any dessert recipe, such as pie with whipped cream on top.
  • The unripe starfruit adds a freshness and a slight tangy taste to the cooked savory dishes. 
  • You can make smoothies, cocktails, and mocktails using starfruits. 
  • Use them as topping for cheesecakes, fruit salads, etc. 
  • You can also make delicious sorbet and ice cream from starfruits. 
  • Make starfruit jam

Watch a quick recipe of making smoothies using starfruit –

In The End 

I hope this guide helped you understand the taste of starfruit better.

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About Judy Taylor

Judy has been fascinated with food and drinks since her teenage years. She loves experimenting with various cuisines, her favorite being pairing food with wine and drinks. She travels 7-8 months a year across the globe, exploring local food and culture. Her dream is to open a small Mexican outlet on a beach someday.

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