Avocado, scientific name Persea americana, belongs to the family Lauraceae of the order Laurales. It shares the same family with camphor and cinnamon. Known by different names in different regions, these are highly valuable plants all over the world. Among the several cultivars, the Hass avocado is the most sought after variety. Though, it is easy to grow these trees from seeds, it takes about six years to bear fruit. Considering this, commercial plantation is done using grafted saplings.
Avocados are enriched with various types of macronutrients and micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fats, dietary fiber, carotenoids, calcium, magnesium, and potassium. Considering the fact that they are free of sodium and cholesterol, their nutritional value has been studied in detail from the health perspective. So, we actually know a lot about them. The most confusing question for many of us is whether it is a fruit or a vegetable. Let's take a look at the various concepts that have been put up!
In botany, a fruit is the reproductive organ and/or seed bearing part of the plant. Hence, botanically speaking, there is no doubt that the avocado is a fruit and not a vegetable. It belongs to the berry class of fruits. Nevertheless, there are several such true fruits that are used as vegetables in our day-to-day lives such as peas, tomatoes, chillies, peppers, cereal grains, etc.
Avocados are widely included as a vegetable ingredient in salads and other savory meals. They are also used as vegetables in a variety of cuisines and traditional food recipes. Occasionally, they are used as a fruit in dessert recipes and ice creams. Hence, in terms of the culinary aspect, it can be considered both as a fruit and as a vegetable.
For a layman, fruits are borne in trees, while most vegetables are grown as herbs and at times, as shrubs. Since avocados are harvested from trees, they are included in the fruit category. Another common aspect is that the majority of the species belonging to the Lauraceae family are fruit trees. In addition, avocados continue to ripen after being plucked from the tree, which is a characteristic feature of most fruits. If you search for avocados, you will find them in the fruit market with other varieties.
Many people are of the opinion that avocados are actually fruits, but taste like vegetables. To be precise, they are considered both as fruits and vegetables in our day-to-day usage. On a simpler note, it does not matter if they belong to any group, as long as it is incorporated in the diet plan.