Orange And Tangerine; Same Or Different? Find Out Here!
Image Credit: Pexels

As two citrus fruits, oranges and tangerines are frequently interchanged. Both are nutrient-dense, have a mildly sweet taste, and have few calories. While oranges and tangerines are similar, there are important distinctions between the two. Tangerines and oranges have comparable features because they are members of the same family. Although they share a similar appearance, apples and pears are two distinct fruit types.

Origin and species

Oranges possibly originated in southern China or Indonesia in ancient times. Florida and Sao Paulo, Brazil, are today's primary producers of oranges. The Citrus x Sinensis species produces these fruits, which are also related to other citrus varieties. Oranges, surprisingly, are a cross between the pomelo and the mandarin. Palatka, Florida, is where tangerines were first cultivated. Their importation through Tangier, Morocco, in the 1800s led to their nicknaming as tangerines. Fruits of the C. tangerina tree. Botanically speaking, tangerines are a specific type of mandarin. Mandarins with a vivid reddish-orange colour are frequently mislabeled as tangerines.

Peeled oranges, Image Source: Pexels

Size and appearance

Depending on the cultivar, oranges can range in size and shape. However, as a general rule, orange trees produce fruit larger than tangerine trees. Tangerines, sometimes known as "baby oranges," are a convenient on-the-go snack because of their diminutive size, flatter shape, and lack of roundedness. When fully mature, tangerines have a gentler texture than oranges, which tend to be solid and hefty. Depending on the kind, either tangerines or oranges might be seedy or seedless. Navel oranges, on the other hand, don't have any seeds, while Valencia oranges have. Tangerines stand out from the pack because of their reddish-orange colouration, while other oranges lean toward the yellow end of the spectrum.

A fresh tangerine, Image Source: Pexels

Taste parameters

It's possible to find both sweet and sour oranges and tangerines. On the other hand, tangerines are often sweeter and less tart than oranges. In addition, tangerines have a more robust flavour profile and a shorter aftertaste than oranges. Flavor-wise, blood oranges are unlike other types of citrus fruit. The flavour of a blood orange is often bright and not too sweet, with an undertone of berry-like flavour.

Rind’s difference

Another noticeable distinction between tangerines and oranges is their rinds. Tangerines and oranges share a similar characteristic: their skins are pretty delicate. But oranges are notoriously more challenging to peel than tangerines due to their much tighter skin. The peel of most tangerine types is extremely thin and loose. There are no deep grooves or pits on the peel, and it has a pebbly texture. In particular, "zipper-skin" describes the ease with which the skin of wide tangerine cultivars may be peeled away after being torn.

Health quotient

Although oranges provide more vitamin C and fibre than tangerines, they are lower in calories. They're both high in beneficial nutrients, including thiamin, folate, and potassium. Orange consumption has been linked to improved blood lipid profiles, DNA repair, and protection against H. pylori-induced stomach ulcers. Tangerines and oranges are low in fat and calories while contributing to a high-fibre diet.