Navels vs. Valencias

Share this post

Navel oranges (the "winter" orange) and Valencia oranges (the "summer" orange) are similar in flavor and appearance, but what distinguishes one from the other? Oranges are one of the most commonly grown fruits in the world, and both Valencias and navels are categorized as “sweet oranges” of the genus Citrus x sinensis. From the outside, the main distinguishing characteristic that can help you tell them apart is the feature that gives navel oranges their name.

The navel orange actually grows a second “twin” fruit opposite its stem. The second fruit remains underdeveloped, but from the outside, it looks like a human navel—hence the name. Navels are part of the winter citrus family. They’re seedless, peel easily, and are thought to be one of the world’s best-tasting oranges.

The Valencia orange (typically available starting in March and continuing through September or so) is so named for the city of Valencia in Spain, although the variety is thought to have originated in China or India. Valued for their high juice content and availability outside of the typical citrus season, Valencia oranges are usually thin-skinned and have a few seeds. They are considered one of the best oranges for juicing.

A medium orange has only about 60 calories and provides 116% of the daily value of vitamin C; 13% of dietary fiber; 10% folate; 8% thiamin; 7% potassium; 6% vitamin A; and 5% calcium.

And don’t be deterred if you see a tinge of green on oranges—it is caused by chlorophyll to help protect the oranges from sunburn. Green-tinged oranges are ripe and still taste sweet!

Sign up for our monthly newsletter

 

Recent Food articles:

Fun-loving fruit with antioxidants to boot
June 20, 2016
How (and why) to grill every fruit, every day
June 15, 2016
A tale of two cherries
June 7, 2016
All the goodness of pie without the crust
May 20, 2016
Thirteen ways of looking at a strawberry
April 15, 2016
Three fresh salads with spring ingredients
March 29, 2016
The history and health benefits of avocado
March 24, 2016
Warming soups packed with nutrition to power you through to spring
February 24, 2016
February 12, 2016
Ancient grains: the hype and the health
January 26, 2016

More recent articles:

Reflections from Lagier Ranches, 2014 Community Fund grantee
June 29, 2016
How playing games can help your office succeed
June 27, 2016
Honeybees land at FruitGuys HQ
May 24, 2016
It's good for your body, good for your brain, and good for the world
May 24, 2016
How to sleep when the temperature soars
May 12, 2016

About Us

The FruitGuys Magazine is your source for workplace culture, trends, and healthy living. Previously known as The FruitGuys Almanac, the Magazine began in 2007. Editors and contributors include nationally known journalists and food writers. Submissions and suggestions can be sent to the editor.