Lima Oranges Are The Extra Sweet Variety Perfect For Snacking

If you're craving a refreshing snack on a warm summer day, an orange might just be your go-to. The tangy citrus fruit is a great source of vitamins and nutrients, and can even help provide a little hydration boost, thanks to its water content. But if you're looking for something a little less tangy and a little more sweet, there's one orange variety in particular that you'll want to keep an eye out for.

The lima orange is a little smaller than the navel or Valencia oranges you might be used to seeing at the grocery store. On the outside, this fruit is a little lighter, too, often showing up as a lighter yellow-orange color. On the inside, this particular variety is actually acid-free, and cuts out any extra bitterness that may be present in other oranges.

Despite the slight flavor difference, the lima orange features almost the same nutritional value as any other type of orange, and is packed with vitamins A and C, as well as potassium.

Where can you find lima oranges?

Lima oranges originated in China, but trade brought the fruit to the rest of the world. They are commonly grown in Brazil, and this particular variety makes up one tenth of the total oranges grown in the country today. However, not many of those oranges are exported. The lack of acid in these fruits means that this variety has a shorter shelf life — only around two weeks, if kept properly refrigerated. This makes it more difficult to transport the oranges to other countries before they spoil.

Fortunately, Brazil isn't the only country to grow these oranges. They can also be found in Mexico, Egypt, and Spain. And, if you're in the United States, you may be able to find lima oranges grown in California and Florida orchards. The two states are the top growers of citrus fruits in the country.

If you snag some of these oranges to taste test how sweet they are for yourself, you can also add them in as a substitute for some of your favorite orange recipes.

Lima oranges can be a great recipe addition

While these oranges do make a great, sweet snack on their own, they can also be an ingredient to swap in for recipes featuring other orange varieties. If you're baking a sweet orange cake, you may want to cut down on the added sugar a little in order to account for the fruit's flavor. But if you're adding them to a fruit salad, they may be a welcome dose of extra sweetness.

These oranges also have minimal seeds inside, which makes them easy to juice if you want something sweet to sip on. Making your own orange juice at home is a great way to get a glass full of fresh-tasting juice each morning. Since lima oranges are a little smaller than other varieties, it may take a few extra oranges to fill up your pitcher. But thanks to the sweetness of the fruit juice inside, that extra effort will be completely worth every sip.