Food is more than just flavor; it can also be an exquisite visual delight. Blue foods, especially, offer a striking aesthetic on any plate. From blueberries and blue cheese to more exotic options like blue corn or butterfly pea flower tea, there’s an incredible range of blue foods out there. In this article, we explore over 20 unique blue foods, their nutritional benefits, culinary uses and cultural significance. Whether you’re a food connoisseur looking for some color in your meals or simply curious about this fascinating world of blue foods – whatever your interest may be – let’s dive in and discover this exciting world!
Why Blue Foods Are So Rare?
Well, the answer lies within plants themselves. Plants contain chlorophyll, a green pigment which absorbs sunlight and turns it into food for the plant. Chlorophyll absorbs blue light specifically, meaning pigments reflecting it would interfere with energy production by plants. On the contrary, some fruits and flowers do produce antioxidants called anthocyanins which have been linked to various health benefits like supporting heart health, stabilizing blood pressure, and decreasing depression risk. So while blue foods may not be plentiful in nature, they offer valuable nutritional benefits nonetheless!
What Gives Blue Foods Their Color?
The answer lies in polyphenols, plant compounds responsible for giving blue foods their vibrant hue. Anthocyanins are one type of polyphenol that gives these foods their vibrant blue shades. Not only do these compounds give blue foods their beautiful appearance but also offer numerous nutritional advantages that make them a great addition to any diet.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Foods That Are Blue?
Blue foods contain anthocyanins, which have numerous health benefits due to their antioxidative effect and ability to fight free radicals that can lead to diseases. Studies have even discovered that anthocyanins can prevent or improve chronic conditions like cancer, diabetes and infections by combatting free radicals in the body. Furthermore, anthocyanins have antiidiabetic, antimicrobial and cardiovascular disease prevention properties as well. Eating blue foods regularly is an excellent way to boost heart health, lower blood pressure and protect against heart diseases!
List of the 20 Foods That Are Blue
Adirondack Blue Potato
Cornell University introduced blue potatoes in 2013, the result of selective breeding. Both flesh and skin are blue, while some show off purple hues. Blue potatoes can be cooked with all your usual potato dishes; however, their vibrant hue may fade slightly when boiled. When baked or fried, blueberries retain their vibrant blue hue while adding an exciting variety of flavor! With such high antioxidant levels, blueberries have earned the title of “superfood”.
All Blue Potato
Experience a unique variety of potatoes, the All Blue. Grown organically in the United States without genetic modification, these potatoes are packed with essential vitamins and antioxidants that rival some of nature’s healthiest vegetables such as spinach, kale, and Brussels sprouts. Their moist texture makes them perfect for mashing or frying with minimal effort; add some vinegar for an irresistibly blue hue!
Blueberries come to mind when thinking of blue food items, and their vibrant purple hue makes them a favorite in cheesecakes, pies, drinks and more. In addition, blueberries can also be found in jams, jellies muffins and even healthier breakfast cereals for their nutritional benefits – loaded with potassium and vitamin C plus fiber which aids digestion. Blueberries make an excellent addition to any diet!
They often compete to be crowned the “King of Cheeses” Blue cheeses are definitely something that you will enjoy. The spots and blue veins in these varieties of cheese are produced by culturing mould Penicillium during the process of making cheese. Sharp, salty and strong The most well-known blue cheeses include Roquefort, Gorgonzola and Stilton. However, with more than 40 different varieties available there are milder choices available and blue cheese enthusiasts are confident that you’ll discover one that you enjoy. Blue cheese can be enjoyed put on bread, or to crumble or melt to make pasta.
The blue maize variety is known under a variety of names like Hopi maize Yoeme Blue, Tarahumara Maiz Azul and Rio Grande Blue. Blue corn is often used in traditional Southwestern meals such as piki, pikos, Tlacoyo cereals and tortillas. These gives these dishes a distinctive blue color The blue corn kernels have more antioxidants than their yellow counterparts that can help keep to protect you from diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
Blue crabs, also known as Atlantic blue crab or Chesapeake blue crab, are found in the western Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico. Their shells range in hue from olive green to blue while their claws are bright blue. Although smaller than other crab species they boast impressive swimming abilities due to their final pair of legs that function like massive paddles! Blue crabs have become an important economic and culinary item from America – particularly Louisiana where there is a thriving blue crab fishing industry – due to their sweet and soft meat that makes them worth all that effort to remove them!
The common ingredient in cocktails is a liqueur with a blue color mixed with a flavoring of fresh bitter orange peel. The oranges used in the taste are Laraha oranges indigenous to Curacao. The iconic Caribbean liquor wasn’t always blue until the Dutch company introduced the food coloring Brilliant Blue Since that time, the blue color is now a hallmark of the renowned tropical drink. Although it is in our list of blue-colored food items, this drink does not offer any specific health benefits due to its blue hue, and it should be consumed in moderate amounts.
Purple and blue tomato varieties produce healthier versions of your typical red tomato, specifically bred to increase nutritional value. These blue tomato varieties contain high levels of anthocyanins – giving their fruit its vibrant blue hue – as well as being slightly tart in flavor. You can eat blue tomatoes raw like regular tomatoes or cook them with other ingredients in sauces or smoothies; there’s now even Azul blue Bosque as well as Bosque and Indigo Rose varieties available! Remember – darker your skin tone, the higher the anthocyanins you’ll receive plus more health benefits!
Borage, often referred to as the starflower due to its star-shaped springtime flowers, is a Mediterranean flower known for its blue blooms with some pink accents. Starflowers add vibrant colour and an irresistibly cucumber-like flavor to salads or food items as garnish. They’re even used in cocktails and desserts – sometimes frozen into cubes of ice for an added luxury touch in refreshing drinks. Commercially speaking, borage seeds are employed in grune Sosse from Frankfurt or Pansoti from Italy as well as pickled gherkins throughout Poland and Russia.
Borage has also been employed as a natural remedy that includes flowers, seeds or leaves. Borage may help alleviate some asthma-related symptoms and contain high levels of Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA), which is beneficial for skin health. Unfortunately, some borage-derived compounds must be processed through the liver; thus it’s recommended that those with liver disorders as well as breastfeeding or pregnant women refrain from consuming borage.
Brilliant Blue FCF (Blue 1)
If your favorite blue-colored food item isn’t listed here, it could have been dyed with synthetic Brilliant Blue. This food coloring has been approved by the FDA since 1992 and can be found in processed products like cotton candy, canned peas and Ice cream as well as children’s medication, dietary supplements and cosmetics. While consuming Brilliant Blue at recommended levels isn’t linked with negative consequences for our health or wellbeing, it does not provide all of the antioxidant benefits found in other blue food items.
The Butterfly Pea is an eye-catching blue flower native to Southeast Asia that’s often used for tea. Enjoy it hot or cold, mixed with lemon or dried lemongrass. You may have also seen this flower used in dishes like Eurasian putugal or the nasi kerabu rice dish of Northeast Malaysia as a vibrant blue hue. In certain countries, these blossoms are battered and fried as snacks; its traditional medicinal effects include stress relief, mood enhancement, and anti-aging benefits. Interestingly enough, butterfly pea flower tea has several medicinal applications as well: stress relief, mood enhancement, anti-aging effects are just some of its known properties!
The dark blue grape was named in honor of Concord, Massachusetts where it was first developed. Although the skin appears dark due to the Concord grape’s origins, this dark color can be removed with gentle rubbing. Just like other grape varieties, Concord grapes can be utilized as table grapes as well as for making wine and juice; particularly kosher wine is traditionally made with these grapes. Blue fruits like blueberries also contain antioxidants which may protect your skin, brain and heart from damage.
The Damson Plum is an oval fruit that boasts a distinct sweet taste. The skin color varies between dark blue to almost black depending on the variety, with damson being more common in Great Britain while Jamblang being used elsewhere in South and Southeast Asia. Damson plums can be used for cooking purposes like preservation of fruit or jam making due to their high levels of vitamin C; their darker blue flesh also contains anthocyanins which give them antioxidant qualities.
Elderberries are a type of small blue-purple berry that turns red when mixed with water. They have been approved by the FDA as natural colorants and organic foods based on how they’re grown. Elderberries boast an impressive nutritional profile – they contain vitamin C, B6, iron, and have long been valued for their medicinal properties by Hippocrates – the famous “Father of Medicine,” who referred to the elder tree as his “medicine chest” back then. Today, elderberries remain popular in treating minor illnesses like colds or constipation.
This type of blue berry is known by various names, such as sweetberry honeysuckle or fly honeysuckle, blue-berried honeysuckle and honeyberry. Native to cold regions like Canada, Japan and Russia, its oval shape sets it apart from other berries. When mature, you can use this fruit in jams, pastries juices ice cream juices yogurt – and many more recipes! For its nutritional benefits as well, blue berries make great additions to jams, pastries juices ice creams juices yogurt etc.., though you won’t believe how high vitamin C it provides! Like other fruits too — they provide an impressive boost of vitamin C! Like other berries in jams pastries juices ice cream yogurt drinks…the list goes on!
Indigo Milk Cap
The fungus is interestingly colored and grows in nature throughout Northeast America, East Asia, Central America and in certain regions in Southern France. The color of the fungus is dark blue when it’s fresh but it gradually changes to blue-gray as it ages. Blue mushrooms ooze blue or indigo-colored milk after you slice the flesh which slowly turns green after exposure to air. The mushrooms are edible but its flavor is described as bitter or spicy and is typically consumed to entertain rather than because of its flavor. It has a coarse texture and high levels in healthy saturated fats such as the acid stearic. Blue milk from the fungus is utilized to color marinades.
Pansies are a popular plant that is grown in various varieties that range from purple white, yellow, and blue shades. The name originates of”pensies” in French ” pensee” which means thought, and consequently, the flower has been used as a symbol for thought throughout history. Therefore, the act of giving someone pansies signifies you’re thinking about them. Although they can make a beautiful addition to the mantelpiece or garden however, they’re also edible and taste similar to lettuce, which makes them an excellent option for sandwiches or salads. If coated with sugar, they can be an ideal sweet cake decoration.
We’ve all heard that rosemary leaves make great cooking herbs, but did you know the leaves of this Mediterranean plant can also be eaten? These delicate flowering plants usually have a blue hue but may come in pink, white or purple varieties too. With an aroma similar to rosemary leaves, they make delicious additions to dishes featuring rosemary; however they should be consumed fresh for maximum enjoyment of its delicate flavor. Plus they make stunning table decorations when sprinkled over salads or entrees!
In India, it is said that the Silver Quandong or Blue Marble tree is revered as holy. The fruit of this tree is vibrant blue with green flesh and can be eaten raw; alternatively, you can grind up its pulp and blend with water to make an herbal paste for traditional medicine use in treating epilepsy in certain locations. Furthermore, some locations use this fruit’s seeds in necklaces or rosaries – perfect for anyone on a budget!
Thai Double Blue Butterfly Pea
Experience the beauty and versatility of Thai Double Blue Butterfly Pea flowers, native to Southeast Asia. These vibrant blue blooms can be used as food dye or brewed into an aromatic herbal tea for added color in food dishes. Have you ever thought about making homemade vegan blue ice cream with blue pea flower powder added? You’re sure to be delighted!
Blue foods abound for you to explore. Now that you are aware of a wider array of blue items than just blueberries, you may feel inspired to incorporate more of this vibrant hue into your meals. Remember: eating the rainbow is key for maintaining a vibrant and healthy diet – make sure your plate always includes different vibrant foods!