The strangest facts about eating fruits in France

Find out what surprised me about the French way with the fruits.

I love fruits, maybe not in a way as many of you love the fruits as I love fruits too much. Which is a good and a bad thing. But I am not going to elaborate here about my fruit addition but I want to say that I felt very lucky when I came over to France and noticed so many exotic fruits available. But also I noticed that there are things that totally surprised me about the French attitude to fruits. I got the culture shock seeing the French eating fruits and I want to share those observations with you. So here is my little list of The Strangest Facts about eating fruits in France. I hope you like it.

Strangest Facts about eating fruits in France 1

They love eating seasonal local fruits. They don’t buy oranges in summer but at least 2 melons and watermelon on average. Thy love apricots and nectarines. They fight for the local French strawberries, paying for a French quality. They don’t go on compromise when it comes to summer fruits.

Photo by

Local, french fruits available at the markets. Photo by

They love their French sweet and juicy melon with very salty prosciutto. It’s actually an Italian meal but adapted and loved by French. It is the traditional summer BBQ apero.

French melon. Photo by

French melon. Photo by

You buy watermelon by the whole piece rather than by kgs. I got shocked when I was in Carrefour buying the watermelon and forgot to weight it. And it was actually very OK.

So many watermelons in France. Photo by

So many watermelons in France. Photo by

As much as I love and I am excited about their exotic fruits which grow in French fields I am very disappointed with the apples. I miss the Polish apples but maybe I am just sentimental and it is just me who grew up at the farm eating them directly from the trees. Before coming to France, I didn’t know that apples can shine so much. The famous Pink Lady or Smith Granny are some of the most popular in France. 

Disappointing apples. Photo by

I discovered kaki. This light yellow to dark orange-red fruit, what we would call a persimmon, grows on trees that can be found across the world. However, the most widely cultivated varieties, and those which you can find at the local French market, originally come from Japan. Like the tomato, the kaki isn’t technically a fruit at all but is, in fact, a berry. As much as the French love to support the French local producers, they love and eat kaki very often.

Kaki. Photo by

Kaki. Photo by

They like to eat fruits in the salads and mix watermelon, strawberries, and melon with meat, cheese, and green leaves. But maybe this is just a new healthy trend that I discovered since I moved to France and it is popular in different countries?

Watermelon and cheese grilled and yummy. Photo by

Watermelon and cheese grilled and yummy. Photo by

Compote originating from medieval Europe, made of whole or pieces of fruit in sugar syrup is the french dessert not only popular among kids but happily eaten by many adults who like to finish off the lunch by eating/drinking a compote rather than crunching a real fruit. Either it is a souvenir of their childhood or the act of laziness? And obviously, it becomes very popular among the old generation to eat a fruit compote.

They have and eat occasionally the very beautiful fruit – Pitaya. Have you heard about it? The pitaya is known as dragon fruit in English. This is an extremely sweet fruit that has helpful digestive properties, helping to prevent gout and even functioning, by some estimations, as a light laxative. French settlers in Vietnam imported the cacti from Mexico at the start of the 19th century, and cultivation spread across Asia. Today, pitaya normally comes into the EU from the French DOM-TOM.

Dragon- fruit. Photo by

Dragon- fruit. Photo by

Chestnuts are fruits which you can eat in many ways, and they are quite tasty. It almost seems like a compulsory act each winter to eat chestnuts. From about October onwards, street vendors appear on corners and outside metro stations, roasting up these shiny brown nuts and selling them like popcorn in paper bags. 

Roasted chestnuts - so french. Photo by

Roasted chestnuts – so french. Photo by

Coign is the French fruit very particular! Called in English as quince, it is a pear-shaped and voluminous fruit, which is fluffy on the surface and, when ripe, it is yellow and very fragrant. The fruits are mainly used to make jellies, jams, paste or cakes. Quinces can also be roasted in the oven, or used in the preparation of sheep or poultry tagines. Finally, the quince can be distilled to make a liqueur. For me this fruit is very disappointing. You think it’s going to be as tasty and juicy as an apple or pear and it isn’t. So taste it as a jam and you will get a better experience. 

Quince fruit. Photo by

Quince fruit. Photo by you agree with any of the above? Have you heard or seen or participated in the French way of eating fruits? Is there anything else that surprised you, shocked you about the French attitude towards fruits? Please share with me, I would love to expand the list and my experience! Thank you! And I, in the meantime, will go and get my favorite way of eating fruits…homemade smoothie. I got my juicer for the birthday last year from here and have been enjoying it since then! And you? DO you like fruits? What is your fav way of eating fruits? Do you have any?


I am a Polish girl who felt in love with Lyon from the first sight! Jadorelyon is my way of exploring France, the French way of life, their cuisine, sharing the experience from visiting beautiful places in France. Jadorelyon is my new way of adding some Polish influence into French lives and watching on how they like it...

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