are mushrooms vegetables or fruits

are mushrooms vegetables or fruits

Are Mushrooms Vegetables Or Fruits?

Mushrooms have always been a divisive topic when discussing vegetables and fruits. Are they vegetables or fruits? Ultimately the answer is complicated.

What Makes a Vegetable?

Vegetables are generally understood to be a plant or plant based product that’s usually savory or served in a savory dish.

Therefore, traditions categorize vegetables as products that are:

  • leaves – spinach, lettuce, kale, etc.
  • roots – carrots, potatoes, onion, etc.
  • stems – celery and rhubarb
  • flowers and buds – cauliflower and broccoli
  • bulbs and tubers – garlic and ginger

What Makes a Fruit?

Fruits are generally sweet in taste and can be eaten raw. Fruits are considered to be:

  • berries – blueberries, raspberries, etc.
  • citrus fruits — lemons, oranges, etc.
  • stone fruits – plums, nectarines, etc.
  • pome fruits – apples, pears, etc.

Are Mushrooms Vegetables Or Fruits?

This leaves us with the question: are mushrooms vegetables or fruits?

Mushrooms are fruits that are produced from the reproductive structures of fungi called sporophores. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are edible to consume.

Despite the nutritional benefits attributed to them, mushrooms are not classified as vegetables. This is because they lack the essential parts that comprise a vegetable, specifically the leaves, roots, stems, and bulbs. Rather, mushrooms are classified as a type of fruit as they are produced from the reproductive structures of fungi.

Mushrooms are versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes. From salads to soups, these fruits have diverse uses. Additionally, they are a fantastic source of protein and have many health benefits.

To sum up, while mushrooms may seem like they should be considered a vegetable, they are actually fruits!

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