Can you identify these exotic fruits? Bizarre-looking foods hitting your supermarket shelves

Now, of course, these celebrity favourites are a staple of the ‘eat clean’ food scene, with stars like Matthew McConaughey and Gwyneth Paltrow raving about the nutrient-packed wonder berries.

But would you be able to recognise them at first glance?

With ever more weird and wonderful fruit from around the world hitting supermarket shelves, it’s worth knowing your Buddha’s hand from your snake fruit before your next trip to the grocers.


A favourite of celebrities from Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow to Miranda Kerr and Fearne Cotton, these bright red berries are often sold dried and are only 32 calories a serving.

Used in Chinese medicine for more than 6,000 years, they’re packed full of antioxidants and vitamins: including vitamin C, vitamin B2, vitamin A and iron.

But not everyone thinks these strong, bitter berries deserve their superfood label.

NHS Choices says evidence the berries can help prevent cancer and aid digestion are based on small studies with high concentrations of berries.

They’re widely available, but on the pricey side – a 225g bag is on sale for £7.99 at Holland and Barrett.

Sometimes called the 'fingered citron', the peculiar-looking Buddha's Hand is segmented into long fingers. It has no juice or pulp and a teaspoon of rind is only three calories


Otherwise known as the ‘fingered citron’, this strange Chinese fruit creepily resembles a human hand, as it’s segmented into long fingers.

A zingy citrus fruit that’s related to the lemon, it has no juice or pulp so it’s most commonly used for zest, rind and candied peel.

One teaspoon of the rind is only three calories and it’s free from fat and sugar. Like lemons, it’s full of vitamin C.

It’s not readily available in the UK as yet but try specialist grocers and Chinese and Japanese supermarkets for this elongated yellow fruit.

Rambutan is red and spiky on the outside, yet smooth and white in the middle. Its name is derived from the Malay word for hairy. Ten fruit add up to just 68 calories


This red and spiky southeast Asian fruit hides white flesh inside and its name is, appropriately, derived from the Malay word for ‘hairy’.

Only 68 calories for every 10 fruit, it’s also full of fibre – which can aid digestion.

It’s a mixture of sweet and sour but is closest to the flavour of a grape.

They’re rare but can be found in the UK if you look hard enough – though they’re not cheap. Thai Food Online sells a 500g bag for £7.99.

They may look like blackcurrants but these are in fact acai berries. They're touted as a superfood which can help with weight loss and aging, and packed with antioxidants, fibre, and vitamins


They may look like blackcurrants but these Brazilian berries taste very different.

The tart fruit is a favourite of Victoria Beckham and Dallas Buyers Club star Matthew McConaughey, who reportedly likes to sprinkle the berries on his granola in the morning.

They are a true superfood, jam-packed full of vitamins, including A, B, C and E,  as well as zinc and essential fatty acids.

They’re readily available in powder or capsule form in the UK, but come at a cost: Greens Organic sell a 50g 265-calorie pouch for a whopping £9.99.

Packed with antioxidants, this fruit is supposed to help with weight loss, stress, anxiety, and has even been linked with slowing down Alzheimer's Disease.  This strange thing is native to South Africa and has only recently been introduced to other parts of the world. It has plenty of health benefits too.


This has to be one of the strangest on this list – and that’s saying something.

Also called a kiwano, the weird horned fruit is native to South Africa and has only been introduced to other parts of the world very recently.

It’s packed with antioxidants, and is supposed to help with weight loss, stress, anxiety. It has even been linked with slowing down the progress of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Only 42 calories per 100g, it tastes like a cross between a cucumber and a melon – but more like a banana when it ripens.

It’s not readily available in the UK yet – but if you really want to try it, you can buy nine pieces for £32 from Fruit for the Office.

The speckled brown wood apple is 140 calories per 100g serving and is native to India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh. It's hard to find in the UK

The speckled brown fruit is also sometimes called an elephant apple and is native to India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh, where they’re almost ubiquitous.

It’s very sweet – yet it’s only 140 calories per 100g.

They’re hard to find in the UK – but you can try it in jam form for £2.99 from The Asian Cookshop’s website.

The monstera deliciosa is not too monstrous as it tastes like fruit salad. It's native to the tropical rainforests of southern Mexico


This peculiar-looking fruit hails from the tropical rainforests of southern Mexico, and tastes like a lively fruit salad – in fact, it’s often called the ‘fruit salad plant’.

Loaded with Vitamin C, a 100g serving is only 40 calories.

You can’t buy the fruit on its own in the UK yet – but why not try growing your own monstera deliciosa plant instead? You can buy a 160cm plant from House of Plants for £75.

Snake fruit lives up to its name with its rough, scaly skin. About the size and shape of a fig, it's relatively unknown here but in Indonesia, it's everywhere


The fig-shaped fruit is covered in rough, brown scales – fittingly.

Here it’s relatively unknown, but in Indonesia, it’s very common, and tastes like a diluted pineapple.

Due to its high levels of potassium and pectin, it’s often referred to as the Fruit of Memory, but has other health benefits too. It’s the opposite of a laxative, so it can help stop diarrhea.

Five-hundred grams of the 82-calorie fruit are available at Thai Food Online for £7.15.

The dull-looking sapodilla has bright orange flesh. It prefers a sunny climate, and tastes a bit like a pear


The dull-looking fruit prefers a sunny climate to match its bright orange flesh, and tastes a bit like a pear.

Native to southern Mexico, it’s thought it could help prevent some types of cancer because of its high fibre content.

Good luck trying to find this one on sale in the UK – but wholesaler MS Fruit and Veg UK seem to stock the rare fruit for an undisclosed price.

 Inside the tough, dark purple exterior of the mangosteen lies juicy, soft white flesh. It was used as a traditional remedy in its homeland of Indonesia


The purple fruit hides juicy, soft and fibrous white flesh.

A study found that its juice could help prevent heart disease and diabetes in obese people, as it has anti-inflammatory properties, according to BioMed Central’s Nutrition Journal.

It tastes extremely sweet – almost like ice cream – and yet is under 80 calories for a 100g serving.

You can pick 500g of mangosteen up from Amazon for £9.99.


These red berries are true to their name. When eaten, all sour foods will suddenly taste sweet as if by magic.

It’s due to the effects of miraculin, a natural sugar substitute. The effects lasts about an hour.

But you can also use the berries as a healthy alternative to sugar to sweeten drinks as they have almost no calories.

You can buy a packet for £15.99 from – it’s a great trick for a dinner party.

It may be vicious on the outside, but inside, the prickly pear fruit is very sweet. You can eat the leaves, stem, fruit, and flowers of this fruit


It’s a little known fact that some cacti bear fruit, and this one tastes like watermelon or dilute raspberries. You can eat the leaves, stem, fruit and flowers of this fruit, but requires a lot of preparation to make it edible.

Rich in vitamin C and fibre, they’re also low calorie, at 61 calories per 149g serving.

It’s most commonly turned into jam or other preserves, but you can buy 10 whole from Fine Food Specialist for £19.95.

The luminous pink casing of the dragon fruit hides speckled white and black flesh. But it tastes much more mild than its appearance or name might suggest, and is often likened to a kiwi or melon


Its taste is more mild than its appearance or name might suggest, and it’s often compared to melon or kiwi.

The fruit is rich in antioxidants and vitamin C and is great for anyone who’s calorie watching as one 198g dragon fruit has only 60 calories.

These are much easier to find in the UK than many exotic fruit – you can even get them from Sainsbury’s for £2 a pop.

You may have seen durian fruit on I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here, but despite being the world's smelliest fruit, it's creamy like avocado and supposedly tastes heavenly


Last but not least, perhaps the most ‘famous’ of the exotic fruits and one of the stars of I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here.

Often nicknamed the vomit fruit for its, ahem, ‘pungent’ smell, it’s as creamy as avocado and is a very odd, but supposedly heavenly, mixture of savoury and sweet.

Rich in potassium, fibre, iron, vitamin C and vitamin B, it’s one of the more calorific options here at 147 calories per 100g.

Try it out for £20.50 a box from Malaysia Kitchen.

Source: The DailyMail

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