Blood Oranges

True story about my daughter…

The other elementary students wouldn’t try a slice of the Blood Oranges packed in my daughter’s lunch when she offered them. They said, “Eww, those oranges look bad.” She came home feeling teased. But she knew a secret those other kids didn’t. Blood Oranges are really delicious.

That night I reminded her that those other girls didn’t know what that fruit actually was, let alone looked like, or how good it tastes. With confidence re-boosted, she’s asked for Blood Oranges to be packed again.

Deep, rich and sweet orange flavor with tones of blackberry, raspberry, plum and pomegranate define the profile of this dramatic fruit. Blood Oranges have striped-red-orange to dark burgundy flesh, are mostly seedless, peel as easy as a Navel does, and… stain, so cut carefully.

Plus, Blood Oranges are a health-dynamo. In fact, the pigment that makes their flesh so dark red is a free radical fighting antioxidant called anthocyanin.

The fruit doesn’t have to be hard, but the orange should not feel so soft that it is squishy either. Moro variety Blood Oranges can show brown, maroon or red blush on their orange skin. Skin color is not an indicator for the deepness of flesh color.

Blood Orange Tips

  • Select Blood Oranges that feel heavy for their size – a sign of juiciness. Blood Oranges tend to be smaller than regular Navel Oranges, and even littlest ones can be delicious!
  • The fruit doesn’t have to be hard, but the orange should not feel so soft that it is squishy either. Moro variety Blood Oranges can show brown, maroon or red blush on their orange skin. Skin color is not an indicator for the deepness of flesh color.
  • Skin scars and shape do not impact the internal fruit flavor, but oranges with sunken areas, black spots or extra soft areas should be avoided.
  • Keep Oranges refrigerated to extend shelf life. Room temperature is fine for a few days, but will cause dehydration thereafter.
  • January through March is the best time of the year to enjoy Moro variety Blood Oranges from citrus groves in California, and that flavor gets sweeter and richer throughout the season.

Blood Orange Usage Ideas

  1. Snacking – Slice into wedges, or peel the rind and pull apart the sections.
  2. Juicing – Hand-squeezed Blood Orange juice is amazing. I often blend fresh squeezed juice from Blood Oranges, Grapefruits, Mandarins and Navels or Juice Oranges. The color is phenomenal.
  3. Salads – Add sections to tender leaf salads.
  4. Desserts – Baking with blood oranges creates some deliciously bold pastries and glazes.
  5. Recipes – Find Blood Orange recipe inspiration here.

January to March is the best time of the year to enjoy richly flavored Moro variety Blood Oranges and sweet Cara Cara variety Navel Oranges from California. Here, Jon talks about what these citrus specialties look and taste like.