Is a Mushroom a Fruit or a Vegetable?
Mushrooms can be a confusing topic when it comes to trying to classify it as either a fruit or vegetable. To determine whether a mushroom is a fruit or vegetable, it depends on its reproductive parts.
What Makes a Fruit or a Vegetable?
The main difference between a fruit and a vegetable is that a fruit is the ripened ovary of a flower and a vegetable is any other edible plant matter such as stems, leaves, or roots. The technical definition of a fruit is any edible part of a plant containing seed(s) while a vegetable is any edible plant matter that does not contain seeds.
Are Mushrooms Fruits or Vegetables?
Mushrooms are actually neither fruits nor vegetables, but are classified as fungi. Fungi are organisms that lack chlorophyll, the pigment that plants use to convert the sun’s energy into food. Fungi include mushrooms, toadstools, molds, and mildews.
In conclusion, mushrooms are neither fruits nor vegetables, but are classified as their own organism – fungi. The following properties describe a mushroom:
- It lacks chlorophyll
- It does not contain a ripened ovary or other edible plant parts such as stems, leaves, or roots
- It does not contain seeds